04 Mar Barter for Business Growth
Bartering can grow your businesses and help you find new customers. Bartering? Yeah, like the kind you did as a kid in the lunchroom of your elementary school. “I’ll trade you my chocolate milk for your cookie.” It may not be something you’ve considered as a dentist. But as a business owner with a valuable service, you make for a great trading partner. Why not open up possibilities to grow your business and find new clients?
Barter is a system of exchange where people in a transaction directly exchange their goods or services for other goods or services. Leaving out a medium of exchange like money. Now I know it sounds like an archaic way of doing business but it still has a place in modern business. As you know, dental work isn’t covered by all insurances, which means patients can be left with hefty out of pocket bills. The idea of paying out of pocket for dental work might even be enough to keep some customers away. Enter the barter system! These potential patients may not be your average everyday cash paying patients, but they still have something valuable to offer.
Just by doing a quick search on U-Exchange, a barter service website, I found a few people willing to trade valuable things for dental work. For example “Jon” in Utah is willing to barter web design and computer OS support for dental work. Additionally, “Gene”, a lawyer in Utah is willing to trade legal services such as estate planning, elder law, trust administration, probate, and contract drafting for “dental work”. As you can see, bartering has come a long way since trading chocolate milk for extra cookies in the lunchroom. Look, dental work is a highly needed service and bartering allows for more people to have access to that service, in exchange for a fair value of services of course. Looking at my two examples of barter requests above, there really are tangible services willing to be traded for dental work. Trading dental work for lawyer services seems like a pretty good business deal, if you ask me.
It’s not everyday that someone comes to your office asking to trade carpentry work for a root canal. In all honesty, that’s probably never happened. That doesn’t mean there aren’t carpenters that desperately need root canals or dentists that don’t need carpentry work done. So where do these business owners meet to exchange their services? The internet, duh! There are a few websites that cater to the idea of business bartering with other business. The first one that comes to mind is one I mentioned previously, U-Exchange. U-Exchange has over 70,000 members and has listings all over the world. BizXchange is a business-to-business barter website that helps businesses save cash on expenses by linking up services with other businesses. Last but not least, the most popular website, Craigslist. I know what your thinking, but Craigslist offers legitimate barter listings with great services and is available across the United States.
My uncle was a jeweler and he was a master at bartering. He would trade jewelry for all sorts of things: property, vacations, sports tickets,, etc. Bartering can be a very valuable tool if you use it correctly. And with a great service to provide like dental work, you can make it work for you.