Podcast (Dental)

How Dentists Can Use LinkedIn to Increase Profitability

March 10, 2021

According to experts, dentists can benefit from being active on LinkedIn to expand their social network and increase profitability. LinkedIn is a social network that dentists can use to connect, network and engage with others to attract new patients, increase referrals and grow their dental practice.

In this episode of The Art of Dental Finance and Management podcast, Art Wiederman meets with Rhonda Sher, a LinkedIn strategist who coaches professionals in utilizing the platform to its full capacity. Rhonda gives a variety of tips and tricks dentists can use to start being more credible, visible and profitable, including: 

  • Maintain a complete, up-to-date profile with a professional headshot
  • Write a compelling headline, About section and include a call-to-action
  • Give and receive professional recommendations

Listen to this week’s episode to hear the full list of LinkedIn tips and tricks for dentists.

Reach out to Art if you have any questions regarding dental finance and management for your dental practice. More information about the Eide Bailly dental team can be found at www.eidebailly.com/dentist.

Managing a profitable dental practice can be challenging. Having the right team of advisors on your side will make it easier.

Today's Guest

Rhonda Sher
LinkedIn Strategist


Show Notes and Resources

The Transcript

Art Wiederman, CPA: And hello, everyone, and welcome to another edition of Art of Dental Finance and Management with Art Wiederman, CPA. I'm your host Art Wiederman. I am a dental specific CPA. I have been, last I checked, under the new math for 36 years. I started this journey in 1984, right after Labor Day, as I remember. And I'm a very proud dental division director of the CPA firm of Eide Bailly, and I'm very proud to bring you this podcast. And believe it or not, folks, about two weeks from now is when dental offices shut down a year ago.

We are a year into this pandemic and a lot has happened. And I have done 50 podcasts. I've probably done the same number of webinars, if not more, and interviews on everything alphabet soup, PPP, ERTC, HBO, ESPN, everything we've been talking about. Right. And so we're recording this on March the 3rd. And the reason I tell you that is that today's topic doesn't have anything to do with the ERTC, although I'm going to give you a quick update.

So we are going to be doing a webinar on March 10th. March 10th is a week from is the you know, we're going to be doing this webinar. It's going to be on tape. And given the flux of these the guidance that we're getting this podcast today and our topic is going to be how to use LinkedIn in your dental practice with a nationally renowned expert. My guest today Rhonda Sher, which we'll get to in a second. So I'm not sure if this podcast is going to be published on the 10th or the 17th.

But the bottom line is you're going to be getting lots of information from us about the ERTC and the PPP. So let me give you my quick updates on that. First of all, on Monday the first, the Treasury came out with one hundred and three pages of guidance. I've read one hundred and two of the pages. One page didn't really matter to me. So I read the guidance. And basically here's what the guidance said. It pretty much confirmed what we have been telling you is you are going to if you haven't filed for PPP forgiveness, there is an opportunity for you. If you had a greater than 50 percent reduction in your revenues in any quarter of 2020, which is probably the second quarter, there is a very good opportunity that you will be able to possibly get for PPP forgiveness and up to a five thousand dollars per Employee Retention Tax Credit.

So the message for today is, if you have not filed for forgiveness on your round one, don't do it yet. Let a CPA. Let us take a look at what you've got and let's see if we can maximize this. They did come out with rules if you have and we're not going to get into those today. But if you have, you could be limited depending on what you put on your application. So, again, March 10th, you know, we have this webinar we're doing. It's going to be on our YouTube channel. So you'll be able to look at it if you can't get to it live. And we are going to be doing a very lengthy podcast on these rules and it will either come out the 10th or the 17th.

So with that said, just a couple of little bit of information about our partner, Decisions in Dentistry magazine. Decisions in Dentistry is a wonderful, wonderful partner of ours. Best clinical content on the planet for dentists. They've been on top of the COVID-19 pandemic. Go to their website at www.DecisionsinDentistry.com. Look at their continuing education courses. For one price, you can get one hundred and forty continuing education courses for a year. And their articles are just second to none, as is their advisory board.

If you are not working with a dental specific CPA, you need to go to www.ADCPA.org. The Academy of Dental CPAs. Twenty four CPA firms across the United States that represent over 10,000 dentists. And our firm Eide Bailly is in Southern California. We represent about eight hundred dentists in our firm. So right now, with all of this ERTC, PPP, EIDL, you need professional help to go through all of this because there's a lot of money on the table. So please go ahead and do that.

And again, our dental series, we are going to be doing one on the tenth and on the seventeenth. The tenth is going to be on the ERTC and the PPP. It will be on our YouTube channel, if you miss it, which is Eide Bailly, www.Eide Bailly.com and if you want to register it's www.EideBailly.com/dentalseries. And then on the 17th, my friend Kathleen Johnson is going to do a webinar with me on what you look for from a management consulting standpoint when either selling or buying a practice.

OK, enough about all that stuff. Let's get to the important stuff today. So I have as I've told you all along, I have my friends in this world who I've come across and most of them are in the dental world. This nice lady I met through the Ellermeyer Connect Group, which is an amazing networking group, and I've had several of the people on here. I've had Bill Ellermeyer, I've had Larry O'Toole, I've had Dennis Kushner. Lots of people have come on because they just have amazing knowledge. So about three months ago, this nice lady by the name of Rhonda Sher came on and gave about a 20 minute presentation. And, you know, again, remember, I am not the most computer illiterate human being on the planet, but I couldn't stop taking notes.

This lady knows LinkedIn better than anybody that I have ever met. And I was thinking, this is a great opportunity to give you an opportunity to hear how can we use LinkedIn in your dental practice? Because, again, you know, you've got people that are sitting at home and they're afraid to go to the grocery store, no less afraid to go to the dentist. And there's some great opportunities to grow your practice and get more people into the door.

So what I want to do is tell you a little bit about Rhonda. She is my guest. She was raised, born and raised in Boston. She's a graduate from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She's been a paralegal, divorce mediator. Rhonda, I've been married thirty six years, so hopefully I will never have to use those services of yours. Insurance professional, serial entrepreneur, she calls herself a serial entrepreneur. She's one of America's leading authorities on LinkedIn, business networking and relationship marketing. She's spoken for hundreds of organizations across the country sharing her knowledge and expertise. And she's cracked the code for leveraging LinkedIn and mastering the art of business networking. And I could read her resume for another two days, but I would like you to hear from her. So, Ronda Sher, welcome to The Art of Dental Finance and Management.

Rhonda Sher: Thank you, Art. I am so happy to be here.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Oh, well, I am so happy that you are here too. Now, something interesting that you shared with me that I am dying for you to tell me and my audience about. Before we get into our topic, you told me that you have been you married the same man twice. Explain to me how that works.

Rhonda Sher: Well, you know, it's kind of a funny story, but I'll give you the short version. I actually met him when I was 14, believe it or not. And we got married when I was in my early twenties and we were married for twenty eight years. And actually have two amazing daughters, one who is twenty nine and another who is thirty one, both college grads out of their own, doing really well. And after twenty eight years, life just kind of fell apart. My mom died, our house was short saled. I was menopausal crazy, had a cancer scare and nobody was hiring speakers and that's what I was doing.

And so my husband and I amicably got divorced. Now, here's the funny part of the story. When we first got married, my husband said, I have only one request of you. I said, Sure, what's that? He said, please don't make more money than me. OK, so when we were divorced, I had to figure out a way that I could go out and support myself. And so what I did was I remembered I had a superpower and my superpower was I knew how to use LinkedIn and I was a connector.

So what I did during that time is I went out and got my life insurance license and I used LinkedIn to actually reach out to the mortgage people so that I could sell the life insurance. Well, within six weeks I was making six thousand dollars and within a year I was doing six figures. Yeah. Which was pretty amazing. But what I realized was I didn't really like selling life insurance, but I had a system that easily could be duplicated. So fast forward. And I ended up reconnecting with my ex husband and we actually ended up getting married again five years ago. So it was February of 2016. And when we got married the second time, my husband said, I have only one request of you. I said, sure, what's that? He said, please make more money than me.

Art Wiederman, CPA: So he changed the rules. I thought you were going to tell me that you had to compare tax returns before you could get married.

Rhonda Sher: Oh, no. But the best part Art and this is really cool, is that because of what I was doing with LinkedIn and the business that I had created, he was able to retire from his corporate job in November of last year. So I like to say I have a husband, a wasband, didn't have to change my name, and the kids are ours.

Art Wiederman, CPA: You need to write a book about that. That would be a bestseller.

Rhonda Sher: Well, it's actually in two chapters of two bestselling books, which is kind of funny. But the reality of it is, and I really believe this, that the system that I used on LinkedIn is the reason that I was able to really go back to my marriage. Right. Create this and really create the dream that we have and the system that I have. And so I really feel like that time that I was divorced, I like to call it the gift that was wrapped in sandpaper because I got so many cool lessons. Right. Everything shows up for a reason. And I'll leave you with the amazing gift that our daughter gave us for the holidays. It's a beautiful plaque. And when you walk into our house, it says the Shers - Established 1980, Reestablished 2016.

Art Wiederman, CPA: I love this. I love this. This is a this is what is this like. This isn't like same time next year, maybe a little bit. I don't know. But that's great. Well you know what, everything happens for a reason and it sounds like you've got everything together. And now that you're making more money than your husband, the planet is good, the planet's align, life is good, and we can move this forward. And it sounds like you have a wonderful family. So I'm excited to hear all about your wealth of knowledge here for my dentists. Well, let's start out, Rhonda, and let's start out with first of all, why is it important for dentists to have an updated and optimized LinkedIn profile?

Rhonda Sher: Well, you know, it's interesting. I mean, I've read, you probably know the numbers better than I do, but there's over two hundred thousand practicing dentists in the United States. Is that about right?

Art Wiederman, CPA: There's one hundred sixty three thousand members of the American Dental Association. Not every dentist is a member of ADA. And by the way, you should be if you're not. But if it's not at two hundred, it's close. OK, well, that would probably. Yeah. Two hundred is probably a good number. Yeah.

Rhonda Sher: So here's the reality of it. OK, if we live and die by what other people say about us in terms of getting referrals. And so what happens and why the dentists should be on LinkedIn is think about this. When you go and Google somebodies name, there is a 70 or 80 percent chance that their LinkedIn profile is going to show up on the first page of Google over and above their website on that first page. So if somebody is going to go to check you out, OK, and that's just the first reason. What they really want to know is who are you? What do you do? Who do you serve? Where'd you go to school? What do people think about you? What's the call to action? Because a lot of dentists get referrals from other people. I mean, we don't just one day decide we're going to go to an endodontist right. We actually get a referral from our dentist. Right.

So and oftentimes you might go to a doctor who might refer you to a dentist. Maybe you're going in there and you're saying, wow, my jaw keeps clicking. Well, that's not what the doctor does. He's going to refer you to the dentist. So when you are checked out, you are going to be checked out on LinkedIn. And oftentimes what happens is the profiles that dentists and a lot of professionals have is they don't match up with who they are. So I like to say that often we see that they're in what I like to call the LinkedIn Witness Protection Program. Nobody's going to find them.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Witness protection. I'll have to remember that. OK.

Rhonda Sher: So it's really important that when we remember that they're going to get checked out, even if they're not going to use it for marketing purposes, which they absolutely can and should, they will get checked out. And I think that's a really important thing to remember, because when you are trusting a dentist, you know, they're going in one of the most personal parts of your mouth and we're scared. I want to know that I'm in good hands. I want to know where did this person go to school? What do their colleagues think about them? Maybe they've written some articles. Maybe they have credentials. I want to know all of that. And you can put it on a website and that's great. And you can put it on Yelp. But people are two times more likely to believe what they find on LinkedIn than any place else. It's two times. So that's why it's important and you shouldn't ignore it.

Art Wiederman, CPA: I mean, for those of the folks that are listening. There might actually be people on you know, on this listening to this podcast, we have thousands of listeners. They don't know what LinkedIn is. What can you get maybe before we give like a thirty five thousand foot overview of what would a dentist use LinkedIn for? How does it work?

Rhonda Sher: So there's a number of ways that they can use it. I like to call it visibility, credibility and profitability. So the first way they want to use LinkedIn is just to be visible and credible because people will check you out. So remember, it's not a place, it started out where people were using it for resumes and for headhunters and jobs. But now Microsoft bought LinkedIn in October of 2015 for twenty six point something billion dollars. So now dentists can use it to get referrals. They can start networking with other professionals who will make referrals to them and potentially even be found by their ideal client.

You just never know where somebody is going to end up looking for you. So to come back to your question, tell me about LinkedIn. It's the largest business networking on the platform. And 90 percent of the people Art that are on LinkedIn than are on Facebook. There are more CEOs, more millionaires, and the average person makes seventy five thousand dollars on LinkedIn. So their target market is right there.

Art Wiederman, CPA: So here's an interesting question, Rhonda. We encourage our doctors in dentistry. PPOs, discounted fee dentistry is becoming more and more prevalent. I was involved in a webinar last night with a prominent dental consultant, and the average discount in fees on a PPO for a dentist is forty two percent. So imagine, Rhonda, if you were to, one of our listeners called you, and I'm going to encourage all of you to call Rhonda if you want to get involved in LinkedIn. But let's say they called you and they said, oh, by the way, Rhonda, are you a member of this PPO? We think that the fee you're going to charge us, you should discount it by forty two percent. That doesn't that probably wouldn't sit well with you. So let's talk. I mean, we're trying to encourage dentists to try and find people that don't have dental insurance. That's huge. So LinkedIn can be used to find your CEOs who are going to be willing to write a 10 or 15 thousand dollar check or more. Right? I mean, that's your target.

Rhonda Sher: Absolutely. And think about this, OK? More and more people are using the health savings accounts, right? And so what a dentist could do on their LinkedIn profile is they actually and one of the things I say is do it in first person. So when you're writing in that about section, you want to specifically say who you're targeting. That's one of the things. So if you're looking to target those people that are CEOs or CFOs, or those professionals that don't have insurance, what they want to be able to point out is why they should work with that particular dentist. And what that would involve is, number one, it's who they work with. You want to put a list because like always attracts like. Right.

So if you're going to go to a dentist that has a practice that caters to CEOs because what do we know about CEOs? Number one, they're busy. Number two, the most valuable thing they have is their time. So if you let those people know when they get to your profile, we value your time. We're going to make sure that you get the highest level of service. We run our office where people are on time. So you talk about all the advantages of why somebody would want to work with them and you can put that in there. And then here's the other part. And this is kind of interesting.

Put something personal about yourself. If you're a dentist and maybe that's something about a charity that you happen to focus on, or maybe you've run five marathons, but you want something for those people that are not those super high Ds on the DISC scale. They are more like me, they're the high Is - the influencers, right? Something to relate to so that they could actually start a conversation because remember, again, it's all about trust.

And then you also want to have on there recommendations and testimonials. And that's really, really important. Two years ago, I had cataract surgery. Now I know I'm too young for that. But I did. And I will tell you that I checked out the physician that I use, the ophthalmologist on every single platform before I was willing to let somebody put a knife in my eyes. So and that included LinkedIn.

Art Wiederman, CPA: So you and I have that in common. My cataract surgery was about three years ago and it was a game changer. Although at night when I drive, every traffic light looks like a big, huge ball, that's the only bad part about the cataract surgery. But anyway, so you're talking about the profiles. Talk about the features of the LinkedIn profile. Maybe you get a little the weeds here.

Rhonda Sher: Yeah. Absolutely.

Art Wiederman, CPA: You're going to a dentist. The dentist is doing a million dollars a year. He wants to get to a million and a half or she wants it to a million, a half or two million. So what things in the LinkedIn profile are going to help generate more referrals and generate more patients.

Rhonda Sher: Great, great question. So the first thing is, number one, make sure that they're dressed for the party. So what do I mean by that? First, your banner, LinkedIn, gives you the plain background. Take it. Take and create a banner that mirrors what your website has, because almost every dentist has to have a website. Secondly, make sure you have a professional headshot. And I would actually do a headshot where maybe you're wearing a white jacket if that's what you wear on your practice, right. You want people to see your professional headshot. And then the headline and Art, you have two hundred and twenty characters to put in your headline. So what you don't want to do is just put a dentist or whatever your title happens to be endodontist or whatever, and then you want to make sure that you have a very complete about section and your contact info.

I cannot tell you how many people they don't put a phone number. They put a website, they don't put an email. It's kind of like, OK, you want people to come to you and you forgot to tell them how. And a call to action. And then there's a little section called excuse me, the Featured Section and what is so cool about that and excuse me, is the video. Can you imagine having people talk about the benefit of what it was like to work with you on video? It's incredible.

So and recommendations. And of course, that's where somebody can literally click to the profile of the person that wrote it. So those are the key elements.

Art Wiederman, CPA: The thing is, Rhonda, is that people are very busy. I read a statistic that said that the average person, when they're surfing the web and looking for service, aren't going to spend more than one and a half to two seconds up front looking at something unless it catches their eye. So you want the LinkedIn profile to catch their eye instantaneously, right?

Rhonda Sher: Yeah. You had me at hello. Let's do it from the banner and the headline and the headshot. Absolutely.

Art Wiederman, CPA: So I know that you can have a business page on LinkedIn and you can have a personal page in LinkedIn. Why is it important for dentists to have both or is it important for dentists to have both?

Rhonda Sher: it absolutely is. And the business page is where they can tell people about their practice and post articles, and that's their company page presence. OK, the personal page is where they're interacting. So what they want to do on the personal page is ask people to follow the business page, particularly if they're posting.

On the personal page. I recommend that they post consistently and it doesn't have to be about the dentistry. It could literally be motivational and inspirational. You know what are dentists famous for? The smile. So why not make their patients smile by posting, you know, just enough that gets somebody to stay top of mind because now they're following and to start interacting so that the people that are following them, which hopefully are their patients, their prospects, their referral partners, are interacting on a regular basis and they're staying on top of mind. So, yes, you want both.

Art Wiederman, CPA: And advertising, as you and I both know. I can't tell you, Rhonda, in 36 years, how many dentists will call me up, say, OK, I'm going to send out a ten thousand piece mailer and I'm going to get a bunch of patients. And I said, OK, so then what are we going to do after that? Well, we'll start with that and see what happens. And I said advertising. I mean, you know, I mean, Johnson and Johnson, you never get a second chance to make a first impression. Capital One, who's in your wallet? How many hundreds and thousands of times have we heard that? And now it's ingrained in our mind. We need to do the same with the dentist, right?

Rhonda Sher: Yeah, and that's very true. And, you know, it's interesting because think about this, OK? How many dentists are actually tapping into their current patient base? Because if you don't like your dentist, chances are you're not going back, right? That's true. You know, we have to. I love my dentist. And I'll say a quick story. Sure. The first, excuse me, I don't have my voice, the first time I went to my dentist for a filling, he called me. He literally called me and I went, who's this? He said, this is Doctor. And he's I'm just calling to see how you're doing.

And I was like, oh, my God. The dentist called. Do you know how many people I told and how many people have referred to that dentist? I mean, it's amazing. So when you think about the fact that the dentist already has a really solid book of business, how many of them are actually if their patients happen to be on LinkedIn and maybe their patients are CEOs. Right. If they're posting, they can tag them, but they can also be sending things in the mail.

You know, St. Patrick's Day is coming up. Why not send a card that just says to their patient, you know what, we feel so lucky to have you as one of our patients and put a little card in there that basically says, PS, we would love your referrals. And if they want to incentivize for that, they can. But there's so many people that they're not tapping into and they could even say, here's a QR code. Please follow our business page on LinkedIn. We're posting all kinds of amazing articles and information that will help you save your teeth.

Because I always remember that joke. Remember the joke that you go to the dentist and the dentist says, well, I have good news and bad news. Well, what's that? Well, the good news is your teeth are great. The bad news is the gums have to go.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Yeah, that's good for the periodontist. That's all I can tell you. But, you know, it's funny, we were talking on this webinar last night with my good friend Gary Takacs about that, there's two types of practices, Rhonda, there's a transactional practice, which is basically what you have if you have these PPOs and it's basically you're there. It's a transaction. It's a commodity. You're writing a check. There's not a lot of personal interaction, although there probably is. But that's the type of practice.

And then there's the relationship based practice, which is the one that you're talking about, which is the one that you want to build the relationship with the people. OK, we all understand. Again, you're a LinkedIn expert. It's obvious you know what you're doing, but you're very personable. I like to think I'm very personable. So this is just another way to show people that you are the person to do this, that this is wonderful.

So there's a paid version of LinkedIn and a free version, I guess, or how does that work and why should we be using a paid version versus a free version?

Rhonda Sher: Great question. So with the paid version, there's two different versions. There's premium and there's Sales Navigator. I am a very, very big fan of Sales Navigator. And let me tell you why. Number one, I'm guessing that many of the dentists out there at some point when they started to build their LinkedIn profile, they connected with a lot of people. Some of them might be people that they know, they don't know. But those are kind of like your first cousins, they show up at the wedding, and the funeral, you don't really know them, right?

What if you could reconnect with them? So using the free version, you have very few filters to be able to sort, sift and separate. Using Sales Navigator, you have 13 more filters. Now, most dentists are geographic. We still have to go into their office. That's one thing I wish I could get my cleanings by Zoom. Oh my God, that would be such a miracle. And I go four times a year because I'm a big believer in, you know, take care of your teeth and your body takes care of itself, right?

Art Wiederman, CPA: That's exactly right. Yeah.

Rhonda Sher: So think about this, OK, when you can now go and reconnect. So it might be something like, let's say I'm the dentist and you're somebody I connected to, but I don't really know you. So I do the search and I'm looking for people in a particular geographic area. Maybe I'm looking for CEOs, CFOs. So I send you a message, hey, Art we been connected for a while on LinkedIn. Curious how 2020 was for you, love to set up a call. Now, the dentist is not going to have time to do the call, but they have practice managers. They have people in their office. Love to set up a call, just catch up, see how things are and I promise we'll keep it in the no sales zone.

So you're not selling that person. You just want to see, well, maybe there's somebody they can refer to, vice versa. But even more important, what about all those people but they haven't connected with. So you can use Sales Navigator to now send personal messages using what's called inmail. In mail is very different than a connection request because it goes directly into your email box, which gives it a very high likelihood of getting opened.

So that's another advantage of the paid version. You also get to see who's looked at your profile. So with the free version, you can only see the first five. But imagine that you are posting on a regular basis and some people are starting to look at your profile, whether they're already connected or they're not. They're second or third level. Well, now you have a reason to connect to them. It might be. Hey, Art, I noticed you viewed my profile. Curious what caught your eye? And I see we have X number of mutual connections both in the X, Y, Z area. Love to connect. So it gives you a huge advantage over all of the filters that you get in the free version, plus a free version, you're going to bump up against limits on the number of people that you can reach and invitations you can set.

Art Wiederman, CPA: It goes back to the same rule that I've lived with for my whole life. You get what you pay for, right?

Rhonda Sher: Absolutely. And when you see the little gold button on a LinkedIn profile that says you have the paid version, then you know that person is paying to play. And that's a pretty good chance that they're going to respond, whether it's them or somebody in their office that's monitoring the accounts of them.

Art Wiederman, CPA: So I've got a bunch more questions which we're going to get to. But I want to take this time to I want you to talk a little bit about what you do. And so I'm assuming that if I have a dentist listening to this program and they're saying, you know, this is a great interview and remember this podcast and folks, this is number one hundred and sixteen or one hundred and seventeen, I remember which one of my series we started this in December of 2019. And we've not missed a week except for Christmas week every year, which is I take off.

This is a call to action. And obviously you've got someone that you're listening to here who knows LinkedIn probably better than anybody on the planet. So, Rhonda, if they were to come and talk to you and I'm assuming that you would have, you would you know, we're going to post your information as show notes. I'm going to give out your information here in a second. But do you train them on how do you do LinkedIn? In other words, how do you do what you do? Tell us a little bit about what you do as a LinkedIn consultant.

Rhonda Sher: So the first step that I do is we basically have a conversation and I want to know what's your goal? Is it are you just looking for credibility? OK, basically, maybe you're looking for more patients. Maybe you just know that people are checking you out. It's not usually the case, but it happens.

But let's just say you're looking to grow your practice. You want to take it to the next level. Maybe you're even getting ready to sell it. And so you really want to bump up that practice. So the first thing I do is I do a complete overhaul, overhaul of the profile with key words. OK, key words are very important because that's how you get found.

That's the first step. That's what I call Present. The second step is Prospect. So what I teach the dentists and thousands of people I've worked with and you can look at my profile, I think there's about one hundred and twenty recommendations on there. So you will see that what I do is I have a very simple system. You don't need any talent. You just have to be able to follow a formula where you'll be able to excuse me, reach out to those people that you want to connect with, reestablished connections, post and basically send them where you want to send them.

So maybe you want them to go to a landing page. Maybe you want them to jump on a call and have an appointment, whatever it is that you're looking to do. So I do. I coach them and I have a program where I do exactly that. And if they don't want to do it themselves, or have somebody in their office, I have a strategic partner that can do it for them. So all they need to do is spend 30 to 60 minutes a day at most.

So that's the program that I offer and the gift that I have for everybody that's listening, which hopefully should make everybody smile, no pun intended there. Right? Right. Is a 30 minute free consultation with me. Where I am happy to jump on a Zoom and we can go over the profile and I'll show you exactly the areas where and this is interesting because a lot of dentists don't understand privacy settings. And they're sending people, believe it or not, to their competitors.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Wow.

Rhonda Sher: Yeah. Sending them to their competitors. And I show them how to change all that.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Rhonda, what would be the best way for people to get a hold of you, maybe your phone number and email or what would be the best way?

Rhonda Sher: Probably just going to an email which is LinkedInDiva@gmail.com.

Art Wiederman, CPA: You got that? That's a that's a great title LinkedIn Diva.

Rhonda Sher: At Gmail.com at and if they go to my website, which is just my name, www.RhondaSher.com, they can download the free LinkedIn planner that I have. But if you want to get that free 30 minutes one on one with me, just send an email to LinkedInDiva@Gmail.com put that you heard here on Eide Bailly. And I will send you an email and we'll get that set up.

Art Wiederman, CPA: That's a great offer. Thank you so much, Rhonda, for that. So let's talk about posting on LinkedIn. Should our dentists be posting? How often? What are your recommendations? What should they be posting? We talked a little bit about that, but talk a little bit about that.

Rhonda Sher: 80 percent of, what, 70 to 80 percent of which post motivational and inspirational. Why? Because people don't want to be reading technical stuff all the time. Right? They want to be motivated. They want to see something that's going to make them smile.

And how often in reality, three to five times a week. One of the best days to post, believe it or not, is Sunday. 20 percent of what you post should be related. And one of the things that dentists can post is possibly they could put case studies, maybe they have an amazing case study, don't have to use names, but before and after, especially for those that are doing veneers. Right. Think of the plastic surgeons.

So there's a lot of really, really cool things that they can post. And in the post and this is what a lot of people forget. Two things. Number one, use hashtags because people follow them. And number two, tag people. So if you want to tag a colleague, you want to tag a prospect, you want to tag a client, but make sure the people that you're tagging know you. You don't want to tag people that don't know you because you're just going to annoy them.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Yeah. Yeah, that makes sense. Yeah. You don't want to annoy people on LinkedIn. So what about mistakes? What are some of the biggest mistakes that you see dentists make in using the LinkedIn platform?

Rhonda Sher: Well, number one, they have the worst pictures or no pictures. It literally cracks me up when I see that they have a picture of their entire office. It's your profile, right? One photo, a professional one. The other thing that I see is they don't take advantage of the two hundred and twenty characters that they can use for their headline. And then the most biggest mistake, no contact information.

Art Wiederman, CPA: I can see you Rhonda. You're shaking as you're about to say this.

Rhonda Sher: Yeah. There's no there's no website. There's no email. There's no phone number. There's no call to action. So that's a huge mistake. And they don't fill out all of the sections on the profile either. So a lot of times you'll see education and it's blank. It's like, wait a minute, you're a dentist. I want to know where did you go to dental school? What associations do you belong to? What charities do you follow? So what I see is that they don't do the profile complete or even worse. It's written like a resume and it looks like they're looking for a job. And I can't tell you how often I look at profiles and I say, wow, you've been in practice for how long. You've there's no recommendations. And it looks like you're looking for a job. And it's like, no, no. Exactly. So those are the biggest mistakes that I see.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Oh, wow. So I'm sure, how many off the top of your head, how many how many businesses have you consulted with in your life? A lot.

Rhonda Sher: Oh my God. Since 2009. I can't even count.

Art Wiederman, CPA: I mean, in the thousands probably. Right.

Rhonda Sher: Yeah. You know, a funny story. I remember my kids were young. Right now they're twenty nine and thirty one. But when they were young, or younger, they decided to Google all the moms and so they Google and they came up, there's like ten pages on your mom, is she famous or something. And they're like, oh no, she doesn't even have a job. She just speaks.

Because every time I gave a talk, was on a podcast, wrote an article, you know, it shows up on Google, so I can't even tell you how many people I've worked with. But what I can tell you is that about one hundred and twenty of the people that I've consulted with or worked with have been kind enough to actually write a recommendation on my LinkedIn profile to talk about the benefit of what it was like to work with me, but I couldn't even keep track.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Yeah, so and I asked that because share a success story or two, maybe an example of a client that maybe didn't even know what LinkedIn was and they you started working with them and the next thing you know, their business went to the moon or something like that.

Rhonda Sher: So last year I was working with a gentleman who is a commercial real estate broker in San Diego and pretty successful, but really wanted to take his business to the next level like a lot of people, and was ignoring LinkedIn. And his business coach said, you need to get on LinkedIn. So he hired me what we worked together for several months. I upgraded his profile. He wrote a recommendation for me which said that he had increased his business by twenty nine percent and added an additional seven figures of revenue. And he attributes that to the work that we did together. And that's actually on my LinkedIn profile.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Wow. Wow. So you're going to make the phone ring now. Remember, folks, just, you know, if you were to hire someone like Rhonda and she makes your phone ring, you got to take care of the other end of this, which has nothing to do really with what Rhonda does, which is you've got to train your people how to answer the phone and what to say because, you know, the phone would ring a lot. And if they just, you know, here's the perfect example.

Oh, hi do you take my insurance? No bye. And Rhonda's just wasted her time and stuff. Rhonda talk about for a second. What about our doctors who are listening, who are just maybe a little daunted by social media? A lot of people in my age group are. I am now on it. I'm not anywhere near where I should be and I'm working on that. But doctors who have never done this and they I mean, this is not really, you know, rocket science or hard, not to minimize what you do for a living and because it's very technical, but for someone who's never, ever done this before, doesn't even know what LinkedIn is, how hard is it to get started?

Rhonda Sher: You know what, I say to people, stay in your lane. And so it's really not that hard. I can set up a profile for somebody and give them a presence on LinkedIn very, very quickly. You know, people should really stick to what they're very, very good at and the fact that they're not on LinkedIn or they are maybe they set up profile and they never did anything. So it's just kind of sitting there and it doesn't really reflect who they are. They need to pay attention to the fact that other people, their patients and their referral sources are paying attention to LinkedIn.

And I'll give you an analogy. A lot of real estate agents, again, most of them don't get their business from LinkedIn. A lot of them do, but many don't. However, Inmen, who is the huge monster out there when it comes to what people say, just like for the American Dental Association, they did a study in 2015. And what they found was that forty three percent of sellers will check out the LinkedIn profile of the agent before they hire them.

So let's talk about dentists for a minute. Right. How many people actually do you think are going to Google the dentist before they decide that they're going to go? And, you know, and a lot of maybe they're doing a lot of work because, you know, getting cavities done, implants, veneers endodontist. I mean, literally, I could have bought about two Mercedes for the dentists over the years, I've had so much work done.

You know, we're going to check them out. And if you have a LinkedIn profile, it's going to probably show up on that first page when somebody Googles you. So you want to make sure that you're just not ignoring it. How hard is it? It's not. It's really not. And if you don't want to use it to generate business, then don't ignore it. At least have a profile.

You know, I'll never forget when I trained a bunch of Keller Williams people and I had a woman in the audience and I said, does anybody here ever lost a client because of LinkedIn? And she raised her hand and she said, I'm seventy three years old. I've been doing this for forty years. I was going on a call to a listing for a listing appointment. I knew there was another agent that was being considered who was much younger, not as experienced. And I did not get the listing. And I was shocked because I was totally prepared. And I called the woman and I said, I'm curious, why didn't you hire me? And she said. Oh, my son looked at your LinkedIn profile and said I couldn't hire you.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Wow.

Rhonda Sher: Think about the fact that, you know, millennials, I have two of them. We all live and die by what other people say. So when you check out that profile, you want to know, well, what if other people said, you know, and where'd you go to school? What are your credentials? And especially for the millennials, they all look at what are doing to pay it forward? So maybe there's a charity, maybe you're feeding the homeless, maybe your support, you volunteer, whatever it happens to be. But those are the things that people are looking for. So ignoring LinkedIn or having a profile, that is what I call in the Witness Protection Program of LinkedIn could potentially cost a lot of money.

Art Wiederman, CPA: And you, Rhonda, you bring up millennials. I mean, you get to remember doctors. Now, I'm talking to my doctors who are in their 40s, 50s, 60s. OK, you have to remember that the doctors come out of dental school. Twenty eight years old. Twenty seven years old, maybe in practice in their 30s. These young men and women are living and breathing social media. If you're not doing LinkedIn, they are right. I mean, your competition is doing all the stuff that you're talking about.

Rhonda Sher: Yeah. And here's a really, really cool thing that people don't even realize about LinkedIn. You can go. And let's just say somebody gives you a referral because there are a lot of high level networking groups that people are in and they're on LinkedIn and you do get referrals. Wouldn't it be cool to go on LinkedIn and check out that person that is going to potentially be your next patient or your next referral partner and learn about them so that when you have that first conversation, remember, this person's in your mouth, right? You know, I mean, since I've been with my dentist Art, he's had four children, four kids. Right.

I know as much about his family as he knows about mine. So, you know, we have a relationship. Well, what if you could go on LinkedIn and learn about that person, then you're cementing that relationship because you've said I took the time to learn about you. And even if it isn't you as a dentist who's doing it, have somebody in your office do the search on LinkedIn and let you know so that they know you're paying attention because it's a personal relationship and you can find out all kinds of stuff. What do they do for a living, what charities, where they went to school. And if you don't want them to know that you've looked at them, do it incognito. You can actually look and search and they'll never know that you were there. Cool.

Art Wiederman, CPA: So if I have a dentist who's not terribly computer literate or just doesn't want to get into this, can you if you're consulting with a dental office, can you work with, like, the office manager, the dental assistant or the hygienist who just lives and breathes this stuff? And they can they do a lot of this for the doctor?

Rhonda Sher: Absolutely. And here's the here's a really cool part. The dental hygienist is actually somebody that could be bringing people into the practice because the first place that they start is with the hygienist. So even the dental hygienist could have a LinkedIn profile. Right. And if you're talking about the benefits of working in that office, guess what's going to happen? People will come in. And I'll never forget when I moved during the time that I was divorced and I had to go find a new dentist and I was sitting in the dental hygienist chair and the dentist came in. And you know what the first thing he said to me was it's so nice to meet you. And I hope I never see you on the other side of that wall in my chair. And I instantly fell in love. I thought, oh, my gosh, this is not somebody that wants to start doing root canals and filling cavities. He is so happy that I'm here doing the prevention. And then the hygienist just kept telling me about how she had been with the practice for so long and what an amazing dentist he was. So if she had a profile and she was reaching out, the dental hygienist can actually help growth practice, believe it or not.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Yeah, I have been saying this, Rhonda, for years, not only on my podcast, but in all my lectures that I've done. Doctors. Now, I know that nobody's been to a live dental convention since 2019, and you're probably not going to one in 2021 either. We hope in 2022 they're starting to open up some CE courses. But when you do go back or if you're doing this virtually doing your CE, don't you know if you just want to go to courses on technical dentistry and occlusion and veneers and TMJ. Do me a favor, go to a course on how to talk to your patients and how to build relationships with people.

I mean, I was talking to a consultant to the accounting industry a couple of weeks ago, and he was saying, you know, Art, you should be getting to know your people, getting to know your prospects. Don't just jump right in and say, OK, so how much did you pay in taxes last year? You know? Yeah, we'll get to that. But well, tell me about your kids and tell them about your family. I have I have two boys, twenty six and thirty one. So you and I have a lot in common. You raise girls, I raise boys. You and I can spend a day talking about the difference. Probably.

You know, the bottom line is you have a full head of blond hair and I have no hair. I don't know what that means, but here you go. But it's all about relationships, guys. It's relationships. LinkedIn is a relationship tool because people are looking at this. So we talked about have we have we covered recommendations or do you want to say a little more about let's talk a little bit about that, OK?

Rhonda Sher: One of the things about recommendations is they need to be current. They are dated. If you look at a recommendation on the LinkedIn profile, and I've seen some that are 2009, it's like, oh, my gosh. And they're not even for the position that the person is currently in. So be sure that recommendations are current and that there's a balance between the number that you've given and the number that you've received.

You know, one of the flags for me is when I look at a profile and I see received forty five recommendations, given zero, what does that tell me? One of two things. Either they don't understand LinkedIn and they're basically just a taker. Right. Or they are really not taking the time to be reciprocal because for me that would be a red flag.

The other thing about recommendations and this is pretty important, is you want to make sure that they're very benefit driven. What do I mean by that? It's great to have a dentist that's a nice person, a nice woman, a nice guy. But at the end of the day, you know what I want to know? Are you going to make are you honest? Are you ethical? And do you do a really good job so that I know that I'm going to be out of pain, that I'm going to actually pay a fair price? Right. And that other dentists recommend you?

Because I want to know that your peers are also refer, because they do refer to one another. Again, dentistry is geographic. So if I if somebody moves to my area and they're looking for a dentist, who would they're going to ask they're going to ask for somebody that they know. And if you look at that recommendation and the recommendation is I move to a new area with given the name of Doctor X, and it was the most amazing experience, not only did he or she whatever. So you talk about the benefit of what it's like to work with somebody, because the secret is to step into the shoes of the person that's reading the profile. What do you want them to know?

Art Wiederman, CPA: Right. Exactly. I could talk to you for days. This is wonderful. Couple more things before we have to call it a podcast. I know there's a featured section on LinkedIn. Talk about that. What should be in there.

Rhonda Sher: So there's three boxes that are visible now. You can put many, many more, but one or two or three of the most important. One of the things that I recommend you put there are testimonials, video testimonials. So if you happen to have patients that are willing to be on camera, OK, and when do you get it? When people are in state, what do I mean by that? Imagine that you've had somebody that had teeth whitening, just something very basic. Right. You could actually say and they say, oh, my gosh, I never knew that this is really the color of my teeth. All you have to do is say, you know what we would love if you would just give us a short testimonial. I've got my camera here. Would you mind just and that's what you can put in the feature section and you can even say, you know what? If you want to say your name and you want to say what you do, I'm happy to give you a little bit of visibility.

So, hi, my name is John Smith. I'm a criminal law attorney. I just had my teeth whitened by Dr. Smith, and I cannot believe that I look ten years younger just from this one procedure. So that's one of the things you could do. Another is put some case studies. That's an amazing thing to do, and you don't have to put names.

So, again, you have a lot of people that are having implants there. So put the case studies there. And then the third thing is a video of the dentist and maybe make it into like a little sizzle reel where you actually give them a tour of the office. You talk about who they are, what they do, you know, keep everything under two minutes, but use that section because it's very prominent on the profile and that's where people look.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Yeah, we definitely don't want to put names that might be a HIPPA violation. We'll get into that. So, yeah, last thing is, I know you and I have talked about the dentist can use LinkedIn to research strategic partners and referral sources. How would that work?

Rhonda Sher: So where did dentists get referrals? Probably from other dentists, from physicians, from doctors. Right. From patients, other patients. So using Sales Navigator, you can do a very specific search. You can search geographically, you can search by title. Maybe you want to work with an H.R. person who has a lot of people that are relocating or real estate people. Again, a lot of real estate people are the go to. So why not connect with them? And then basically when you move into a new area, say, you know what, you're probably going to be needing a new dentist, a new doc. Here's a list of the people that I've already vetted that I prefer, and you give it to them that way.

But you connect with those people on LinkedIn. So it's the anybody who already has your target market but isn't competing with you. So that's the real estate agent. That might be the people that are in the moving industry. Maybe it's other dentists and doctors, other types of dentists, and you can easily connect with them.

Again, with Sales Navigator, you have so many different ways to search. And again, come back to your earlier question of what's common mistake. It's not making a personalized connection request. It's just hitting the connect button. That's the quickest way to say I'm lazy. And they don't even know that you looked at their profile.

Art Wiederman, CPA: So, yeah, that's amazing. I mean, at the end of the day, you know, we live in a social media world. That's what people use. Yeah, it's funny, I, lecture at the dental schools. We have we have wonderful dental schools, USC, UCLA, Loma Linda and Western down here. And what I do when I go to the dental schools and lecture, I bring, I have kept an old copy of the Yellow Pages. And what I do is I say, OK, now, guys, I want to tell you how many of you and I hold it up, how many of you use the Yellow Pages to look for a professional service or for something that you need?

And I do it just for a kick, because I love to see the looks on their faces. And I have I literally every single time somebody will say. The what are the Yellow Pages, they don't know what they are. They know, they know. They don't know how to practice without digital X-ray. They don't know how to market without Facebook and Instagram and LinkedIn.

And I was talking to you earlier about we were talking about five star Google reviews. So the question is, what's the number one search engine Google? What's the number two search engine? Who cares? And that's what we talked about. Then you had something the.

Rhonda Sher: Oh, yeah, how to hide a dead body. Page two of Google.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Exactly. Yeah, because nobody's going to see that. But so any final comments, I'm going to want you to give out your contact information one more time. You've given a really comprehensive, you know, road map for dentists. And folks. Again, you know, I tell people that marketing is not just send out a mailer and hope for the best or, you know, every once in a while you ask for a referral. Marketing is a coordinated effort that you have to make every single day. And I have I've said this on this podcast, the day you stop marketing your business is the day your business begins to die. And I am adamant about that.

And this nice lady, Rhonda, that has been on my podcast now for the past hour or so is nobody knows LinkedIn better that I know than her. And if this is a platform that you think is important, it is a tool. It doesn't mean you don't ask for referrals. It doesn't mean that you don't work on your website. It doesn't mean that you don't get involved in the community. These are all the things you do to market your practice to get your name out because you've got lots of competition.

So LinkedIn is a it's a tool. It's not the be all and end all of your dental practice. It is a tool. So, Rhonda, if they would like to use LinkedIn as a tool and they would like to use you as their tour guide of LinkedIn, if you will, again, you had made a very nice offer earlier of a 30 minute complimentary consultation.

Rhonda Sher: Absolutely. And again, if you put it in the show notes, but just send an email to LinkedInDiva@Gmail.com and I'm happy to give you the 30 minute consultation. And I'll just share with you. One of my clients wrote a great book called Expose and Close. And when he was putting on an event, he had me upgrade his profile. And what happened just from the upgrade of the profile. Within five days, he had a thirty three percent increase in the number of views.

So, yeah, I mean, that's pretty amazing. And people that actually have good headshots and complete profiles are thirty six times more likely that people send a message to them. So what I would say is, and this is my tagline, if you're not LinkedIn, you're probably going to be left out. And if you're one of those dentists that's in the LinkedIn Witness Protection Program, reach out to me and let's jump on a Zoom. I promise to give you my best smile and to give you some insight into how to present yourself as the only logical choice and to fill that calendar with appointments because it is so possible to be able to generate an additional five thousand dollars to potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars just using LinkedIn.

Art Wiederman, CPA: So again, the email, if they want to reach out to you, it's LinkedInDiva@gmail.com, and they can go on to your website and take a look at what you're all about here. And folks, please take advantage of what Rhonda has to offer for you. So I want to thank you. Please hang on till after we sign off.

Folks. What a wonderful, wonderful recording. I'm very excited that we were able to present this information to you today. So I wanted to mention one other thing I forgot at the beginning. Remember that if you have not applied for your second round PPP loan, the deadline is March 31st. And I actually got an email from a bank last night that said it has to be in by March 31st and the SBA, so into the bank. So the bank is basically saying that if you don't get your application in by March 17th, you're going to be too late. So that's something to keep in mind.

Please go to EideBailly.com, go to our events page and also www.EideBailly.com/dentalseries on March 10th. And again, I'm not exactly sure what day this is going to come out. We're still wrestling with when we're going to do the ERTC webinar. But again, we're going to be doing a webinar on March 10th and we're going to be doing, you know, a podcast with our ERTC team. Coming up here in the next couple of weeks, so do not file for forgiveness yet.

Again, if you are looking for a dental CPA anywhere in the country, www.ADCPA.org. Or my firm is Eide Bailly if you want to get a hold of me, my phone number is 657.279.3243. And I am at awiederman@EideBailly.com. If you need help with this, getting your full forgiveness and ERTC credit of five thousand per employee, we are working diligently to get this going and have a spreadsheet and we can help you with all of that. Don't forget our partner Decisions in Dentistry magazine www.DecisionsinDentistry.com.

Rhonda, thank you. So, so, so, so, so much for coming on. That's more sos than I usually give because this is an especially fun and interesting interview. And if I have anybody else who is thinking about getting married a second time to the same person, you're the first go to person I'm going to contact.

Rhonda Sher: I love it. I'll absolutely touch, move and inspire them with our story.

Art Wiederman, CPA: Thank you, Rhonda. And again, everybody, thank you for the honor and the privilege of your time. Thank you for listening. Please tell your please tell your friends about my podcast. Again, we've got thousands of people that are downloading it. Please tell your friends. Tell a colleague this is really good information. We're going to keep it very, very current going forward with all of the government rules and regulations and the new stimulus that's going to pass. And there's going to be a tax law later this year and will be on top of that, too. So with that said, everyone get on LinkedIn. And for the Art of Dental Finance and Management with Art Wiederman, CPA. This is Art Wiederman CPA signing off. Have a great day and we'll see you next time. Bye bye.