From Little Fish to Big Fish
Hi, my name is Dan Mount, founder and President of The Practice Marketers.
Nowadays, anyone can hop online and claim that they’re a marketing “expert” – so I thought I’d share a little about myself before I start posting blog material for my clients and followers. This way you can really know the source of all this shared information.
I love to travel with my wife and two beautiful daughters. My “business hero” is Walt Disney, and I also collect weird bird coins – but I spend most of my free time analyzing and strategizing new and better ways to help Dentists and Orthodontists boost their production and grow their practices through marketing.
Today I help professionals like you enjoy thriving practices with less marketing stress… and believe it or not, it all started over 17 years ago when I began selling little feeder goldfish that cost a nickel apiece.
That’s right. I’m one of the premier Practice Growth Consultants in North America, and my first job out of college was selling cheap feeder fish (appetizers for Piranhas) to pet stores for my family’s wholesale pet and aquarium business.
This job may seem a little “bush league” – and it definitely sounds eccentric – but it was pivotal to how I started, because while I was selling big fishy nom-noms I realized in an unconventional way that marketing is my true passion.
During my sales visits I found myself not only interested in selling pet supplies, but also in helping pet stores with their overall marketing. I was compelled to invest my time into their marketing strategies, without even thinking about sales for myself.
Customers were thankful for all the assistance, and realized that my genuine intention was to help them with the long-term success of their business. This led to larger orders and more of our company’s products being put on the shelves.
Going the extra mile to serve my customers gave me a distinct advantage over my competitors.
It also triggered the realization that I had special abilities in the marketing arena. As an entrepreneur, I began to question my career path selling feeder fish (poor little things!) and pet supplies.
My grandfather, uncle and my dad had owned and operated the pet wholesale company for almost 50 years, and I was given the opportunity to make my career part of their legacy. As you can imagine, telling two generations of a family-run business “goodbye” was tough, but that’s what I did. I brought them thank you cards to do my best to soften the blow – and of course they forgave me, because it was clear that my talents were bigger than 5¢ feeders!
So off I went with their blessing. I thought I was on my way to becoming a “Big Fish” by opening my own company called Proactive Solutions: a marketing company for pet stores. I had big plans to revolutionize marketing for pet stores near and far… but this is where the “failure” part of my success story comes in.
Turns out, it was way too hard for pet stores to drum up the money they needed to invest in effective marketing. They wanted it – but they couldn’t afford it. In a few months I was almost broke, and drowning in debt with a newborn daughter at home. Like many people who thought they could be entrepreneurial “Big Fish,” I was going belly-up. My wife was even telling me to get a “ ‘real job’… or else.”
Despite my stress, with our first baby and a worried wife at home, I was able to observe that every time I sent out a targeted newsletter for my pet store clients, I would receive several calls from Dentists and Orthodontists.
They would be excited about the newsletter they received from their pet store. They would ask if I did the same for Dental and Orthodontic practices – and when I realized that for every pet store there were 12 Dentist and Orthodontic offices – I stopped saying “no.”
I observed that there were lots of Dentists and Orthodontists out there, and they all serve a real need. Their marketplace is very competitive, and I began to wonder: “how do they differentiate themselves?”
I had an epiphany. I should be devoting my efforts to Dentists and Orthodontists.
It was this epiphany that thrust me into launching The Practice Marketers in the year 2000. Over the next few months I started an accelerated learning quest. I interviewed dozens of successful Dentists and Orthodontists, attended conferences, took notes at seminars and read just about anything I could get my hands on regarding the profession.
The next step was integrating my intuitive marketing knowledge and experience with the unique challenges that face Dental and Orthodontic practices.
All of this came together to develop the arsenal of innovative marketing tools and strategies I have refined over the course of many years – marketing tools and strategies that I use today, to help practices like yours soar.
It’s been a rewarding journey. My company has helped hundreds of Dentists and Orthodontists across North America quicken their growth. We have generated millions of dollars in production revenue and attracted tens of thousands of patients for our private clients.
Over 17+ years we’ve evolved from a one-man band, to a glee club of innovative, entrepreneurial staff that gives every project our full attention and spirit.
Our accomplishments come from treating our clients’ practices as if they are our own – and supplying sophisticated, tested and proven practice marketing systems that are second-to-none.
But no matter how successful The Practice Marketers becomes, I’ll always remember my humble beginnings with little feeder fish – because without them, I wouldn’t be the “Big Fish” that I am today.