CFO World

Bringing lead gen and marketing smarts to dentistry

Aligner Advantage’s precursor company, Phorge, shares the approach and technology that helped it develop a solid business providing specialised marketing and sales services to dental service providers

Niche industries can be small, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be lucrative. And as Aligner Advantage has found, even the most specialised of industries can also harbour their own lucrative niches.

Aligner Advantage’s precursor company, Phorge, had built up a solid business providing specialised marketing and sales services to dental service providers. After three years however, its founder, Paul Hanney, realised there was a deeper niche within dental procedures that shone out in terms of its ability to generate revenue – fitting Invisalign dental adjustment devices.

With each client worth an average of $7000, it was a niche worth exploring as a marketing service opportunity, especially as many dentists lacked the sales and marketing expertise to attract and convert clients. So last year, Hanney launched Aligner Advantage.

“I’ve understood the power of niching and focusing on a specific market within what was a niche to begin with,” Hanney tells CMO. “It was just a case of finding one where there was a demand from the consumer, a demand from the client, and an opportunity to join the gaps. So we decided to leverage what is probably the biggest known brand when it comes to orthodontics, which is Invisalign.”


Aligner Advantage offers a three-tier service starting with lead generation using behavioural targeting through channels such as Facebook and Instagram. Once potential customers have registered their interest, Aligner Advantage sends a quick succession of SMS and email messages to encourage them to call in to book a consultation.

What has made the service successful, however, is that Aligner Advantage also trains clients on how to improve conversion on inbound calls – a skill rarely taught anywhere in the dental sector. Hanney says the goal of the training is for people taking the calls to be able to form a connection with the callers.

“If somebody is coming in to improve their smile it is because their confidence is affected at some point in their life,” he says. “We need to be able to talk to that point and understand why they are wanting to come in, and what they have coming up in the future that has prompted them to want to improve their smile.”

Hanney says coaching has proven incredibly important for ensuring callers turn up for their appointments and become clients.

Also critical to the success of Aligner Advantage has been its use of call tracking technology from CallRail, which enables the company to understand the origin of the call while being also able to listen in on recorded calls.

“We wanted to be able to listen to the call recordings to be able to coach and train them on how to improve their communication skills once an inquiry comes in,” Hanney says. “How you speak to somebody over the phone determines how they turn up on the day. If their team aren’t onboard and they aren’t invested in making this work, you are pushing s*** uphill.”

Hanney says CallRail has proven especially effective thanks to its ease of use and enhanced functionality.

“Without the call tracking we would have no way of quantifying how many leads we are getting and also what percentage of the leads we are getting are actually calling inbound after they have submitted their details online,” Hanney says.

With some clients bringing in an additional $100,000 in revenue each month, Hanney is happy to focus on the dental niche for now. But he believes the same model would apply equally well in other sectors such as the legal and accounting services.

“The quickest way to grow a business is to understand something so intricately that the people who do it come to you for advice,” Hanney says.

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