Since the beginning of my career, I have always advocated that because of the nature of the products, education for the clinician is a stronger tool than price.
In the 1980s, I organized a number of dealer training seminars for my employer (Vivadent USA), and they sent me on the road to do the same. I also conducted in-house training programs for the company’s Sales Reps. This was all before PowerPoint was introduced… Lots of slides!
This is how I became comfortable as a public speaker.
In-service, “Lunch & Learn” Programs and Study Club Lectures.
Since 2000, I have been engaged to deliver a 60-90-minute presentation for dentists and dental faculty, on the topics relating to restoring the endodontically-treated teeth with mechanically-harmonious materials from different companies.
Here is a synopsis of that activity, including a list of the Universities where I have presented.
Latin America Speakers’ Bureau
In 2007, when RTD asked me to establish a network of importers / distributors in the major Latin American countries, I also set about a system or recruiting influential dentists and/or Professors as a support network for the dealers.
Knowing that NO information is more highly –regarded by dentists as a qualified recommendation from a colleague or “Key Opinion Leader” with special experience or education in a special area of dentistry.
Here is a “catalog” of the dental educators that I have identified, oriented to RTD product lines, and organized, armed with product samples for teaching, slide series’ & inside information. Many have visited the Headquarters for a tour and discussions with the Marketing and Technical Affairs Management.
10 years later, I am still “recruiting” dentists.
These bi-lingual and tri-lingual educators are willing to travel to other Spanish-speaking countries and teach advanced techniques, using favored product lines.
Further, I developed several “Templates”, which a distributor can download and customize to promote a sponsored conference in their country, using any of these distinguished speakers.
Fiber Post 3-PART Webinar Program
To try to reach younger, tech-savvy dentists, and educate them where it is impossible to organize local programming and to spread the best available evidence to a global audience, I organized a 3-part Webinar Series. I worked with a world-wide publisher/CEProvider to do the actual recording, editing and postings. There was a $10M budget, including honoraria. I selected the topics, recruited the 3 Opinion Leaders and outlined their respective programs.
Dental Tribune International promoted these, and I did the same via the RTD Newsletter and Website Blog
RTD was the sole sponsor, meaning that all dentists could log-in and watch all 3 segments in any order, FREE, by supplying only their e-mail address to register.
I was furnished the email addresses of the dentists who viewed any/all of the segments, and did a follow-up solicitation; referring the dentist to their “Authorized RTD Distributor”.
1990’s: Bisco Dental
In the 1990s, Bisco had products with chemistry and techniques that were innovative and controversial. One of the ways we strategized to promote them was through educational programming. As Sales and Marketing Director, my assistant, the Dentist on my staff, and I created two annual events:
- We created a week-long event held in a classy resort on the island of Maui. This program featured half-day programs on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, with a free day on Wednesday. We offered three speakers including the company President, and paid the way for them and their families. I promoted the event all year long for my newsletter (Bis-Dent Globe), in the quarterly promotions, invoice taglines, and at trade shows (Remember, this is before websites, and e-mail blasts existed!). Attending dentists paid a fee, and their own airfare and hotel. We included them in several cocktail receptions and a luau.
This was planned to be a revenue-neutral event; attendees’ tuition, and product sales at the event paid for most everything.
- A scientific symposium held over three days’ time at a resort in Rancho Bernardo CA. Invited were leading research dentists, dental scientists, and their spouses. With a $250,000 budget, we also treated these VIPs to funded “free time” (racetrack/golf outings, spa massage, etc.), while we trained them in very formal lecture in panel discussions during business hours.
In addition to the live version, the presentations and Q/A sessions were videotaped, later edited by me, and made available. The transcript was also published as a booklet. This event normally featured 6-7 speakers over two days’ time, and roughly 75 – 100 attendees. I managed this event for the first two years, and then turned it over to the staff dentist.