Many dentists are taking up the responsibility of screening their patients for sleep apnea or snoring problems. Some get very excited about dental sleep treatment as part of their practice and want to make it a focus. We want those dentists! We love marketing sleep apnea treatment. Since our company’s inception in 2010, we have worked with dentists who market sleep apnea treatment as part of their dental practices. Unfortunately, other dentists stumble along the way and lose steam before generating a steady stream of sleep patients. Building and marketing a practice focused on dental sleep treatment has some nuanced challenges and opportunities. Over the last decade, we’ve seen what makes a successful dental sleep practice and we’ve learned how to market them with tremendous results.

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Marketing a Great Product and Service is Easy (Well, Easier)

The most successful dentists offering dental sleep treatment have their ducks in a row on the back end of their practices. This makes marketing sleep apnea treatment as a service much more fruitful. Especially when a dentist new to dental sleep treatment is starting out, the ducks that prove most difficult to wrangle are undoubtedly:

  1. Medical diagnosis
  2. Getting case acceptance (and payment)

These two components will do more to build your sleep apnea marketing success than you’d think and will create a feedback loop that will build your return on investment.

Streamline Medical Diagnosis to Boost Sleep Marketing ROI

When I ask dentists what their biggest challenge is in building their sleep apnea practice, many dentists say, ‘Getting referrals from physicians’. Getting referrals from local MDs is a good goal, but their answer is also evidence that these dentists believe local physicians are their best and only opportunity to get a medical diagnosis and perhaps even the majority of their new sleep patients.

Check out Dentists can partner with physicians via telehealth visits and home sleep testing technology to get accurate test results, a diagnosis from a board certified physician who specializes in interpreting sleep testing, and a letter of medical necessity. Dentists can even receive an actual prescription for oral appliance therapy if the patient needs it. There is zero risk of losing the patient to a local MD who decides that surgery or another run at PAP therapy is in order. That might be necessary, but then you make the referral. You get to treat the patient without having to jump through hoops and handles all the billing for the sleep study too. It’s a win-win-win.

With the continual increase in interest in sleep apnea treatment and home sleep testing, this is something that you should get excited about!

Full disclosure: is a client of Pro Impressions Marketing, but that’s not why I’m recommending them. They became a client because they could tell how much we love their service and that we understand how huge can be for dentists. I’m recommending them here—not because we get any sort of kickback—but because I believe that if you’re offering oral appliance therapy, you need to include as part of your process. It will make your patient experience better and will make getting a diagnosis easier on you.

The marketing upside is that you get to describe a quick and easy home sleep study process that the patient will think is cool and super simple. It’s very affordable too. Affordability boosts case acceptance and means more of your phone calls and emails that turn into consults will turn into paying patients. In other words, will boost your sleep marketing ROI.

Streamline Medical Billing to Boost Sleep Apnea Marketing ROI

It’s TOUGH to close dental sleep treatment on a purely cash or financing basis. For a fee-for-service practice, this may feel like fitting a square peg in a hole that they have worked SO hard to make round. But holding to a pure, fee-for-service model in dental sleep treatment can be counterproductive.

Medical insurance can be a terrific ally for streamlining case acceptance and payment. With the proper ally and team training, the cost of an appliance doesn’t have to be the patient’s focus. They just want to hear the magic words “in-network provider” and then the price tag fades more into the background and they can focus on the fact that you have answers to their problems.

Even with a dynamo of a sales person presenting your treatment, you can struggle to get patients to say ‘yes’. Is it worth it when some insurances will pay you good money for treating their patients? The administrative headaches may seem daunting, but you can alleviate this by working with Pristine Medical Billing to help shoulder the burden of completing that paperwork. Then both you and the patient can devote your attention to the treatment and getting better.

Again, full disclosure: Pristine Medical Billing is a software development client of Pro Impressions but just like with, we don’t see another dime if you sign up with Pristine Medical Billing. It just makes sense to do so.

Streamlining medical billing will increase your sleep apnea marketing return on investment by minimizing insurance and billing headaches that would otherwise complicate case acceptance and patient satisfaction. This is critical because you won’t be alone in trying to add sleep apnea patients to your office.

Launch a Separate Dental Sleep Treatment Brand

The most successful dentists in sleep apnea marketing have a brand that promotes sleep disordered breathing treatment as a focus in their practice. We have several clients who do this and it works very well. Our very first client did this and his marketing launched to the forefront of his geographic market on Google for sleep apnea-related searches. His conversion rates were higher than when he promoted sleep apnea and snoring treatment on his general dentistry website.

When patients don’t have to weed through messages about cosmetic dentistry, dental implants, and other non-sleep concepts, they get a more focused dose of the marketing that matters to them. It’s clearer that you understand their problem and you have the experience and solutions that will solve that problem. Consequently, they convert at a higher rate.

Google has a similar experience when it encounters these focused brands. The answer to the question “What does this business do?” is clear, and that makes it easier for Google to see that they should recommend you to patients who are searching for solutions to snoring or sleep apnea.

Your new sleep brand needs a name that says, “I can help you sleep better” and a logo to match. It shouldn’t be overly complicated or artsy, but it should be distinct from your main brand.

Launch a True Secondary Business Entity or DBA for Optimal Dental Sleep Marketing Results

If you try to fake a second business with branding and marketing only, it won’t work as well as if you do a little bit of extra work to make your new sleep brand more legitimate from a business perspective. Google believes that a business should have exactly one website and one business profile on Google My Business. Local marketing is very important, and if you’re fighting Google to convince them that you’re special and should get two separate profiles and two websites for one business, you’ll lose that fight. A second, verifiable business entity solves this problem.

The other upside of separating these entities is that you can later sell the general dentistry practice without selling the sleep business, if you want to keep it, and move on to the next phase of your career.

Leverage local, social media, SEO, and pay-per-click

Effective sleep apnea marketing will include these internet marketing tactics:

Again, you may do some or all of the above things to promote your overall dental practice, but those efforts are likely already focused on promoting the other things you offer to your patients. If you peel off a portion of the budget from those other priorities…they’re no longer your priorities. You’ll underfund those campaigns only to create a new, underfunded dental sleep treatment campaign that’s doomed.

Once you build your seperate sleep brand, you need to promote it. Build local listings for your new dental sleep treatment brand just like you did for your main office. Promote the brand on social media and monitor your new brand’s reviews, working hard to get the word out about the difference that you are making in people’s lives.

Blogging on your website will give you more to share on social media and for Google to find and keep them sending traffic your way. SEO and online ads will help your message carry even further online.

Push the Envelope as the Sleep Expert in Your Market

Don’t let fear neuter your sleep marketing. You have to respect the dental board in your area and other regulatory bodies. Don’t say anything in your marketing that would actually get you into trouble, but push the envelope as the expert.

Grab the microphone in your market and lead. Speak the truth until someone tells you to sit down and shut up and then—don’t sit down. You’ll know that you’re doing the right thing. You are leading a cause to save lives. That’s worth a little friction now and then if a competitor gets their underwear in a bind and tries to get you into trouble.

Sleep apnea is a medical condition that requires a medical diagnosis and dentists can’t do that. Fine. But don’t confuse your marketing with a bunch of legalese and disclaimer mumbo jumbo! Dentists DO treat sleep apnea. You DO screen patients and refer them for testing. If a patient needs more intervention, you DO refer them to other professionals for help, right? Of course you do. That’s a service worth marketing. You are a sleep expert. Do not be silent on that fact.

What does grabbing the microphone in your area look like? In your city, it might look like doing more of what you’re already doing: reaching out to physicians and letting them know that you can help them streamline their own process of getting patients OAT. It might look like being on a morning show on your local TV station or writing a book.

You might blow up the market’s Facebook and Instagram pages to let the city know that you are saving future and current grandmothers and grandfathers who might otherwise “die in their sleep from natural causes”. Put a giant billboard across the street from a local sleep center that says, “Tired of being tired? We help people get quality sleep.”

There are all sorts of things you can do to turn heads once you have your sleep brand and website ready to roll. Don’t let fear keep you from telling the world that you can help them.

Dental sleep experts get more return on investment from their sleep marketing efforts.

Hire a Sleep Marketing Expert (Pro Impressions Marketing)

Sleep marketing is our passion at Pro Impressions Marketing—that and TMJ treatment. We love them both, but sleep apnea is especially fun because it has that life-saving component as well as the improved quality of life that you see with relieving pain and beautifying teeth.

We can help you build a new sleep brand and get the word out that you offer life-changing and life-saving treatment. Schedule an appointment and we can talk about where you are on that journey and how we can make the next step you take more effective.