Transforming The Dental Industry One Smile At A Time

About the show:

The Agency Spark Podcast, hosted by Sara Nay, is a collection of short-form interviews from thought leaders in the marketing consultancy and agency space. Each episode focuses on a single topic with actionable insights you can apply today.

About this episode:

In this episode of the Agency Spark Podcast, Sara talks with Dr. Ingrid Murra on transforming the dental industry one smile at a time.

Dr. Ingrid Murra is the 48th Latin woman to secure over $1,000,000 Venture Capital funding in the history of the United States, a Harvard-trained orthodontist, and the founder & CEO of the orthodontic startup, Two Front.

Two Front has modernized orthodontic care by providing a trusted network of best-in-class orthodontists and by making care convenient with virtual visits – eliminating up to 95% of in-person Invisalign appointments.

Key topics:

  • Dr. Ingrid’s journey from residency to launching Two Front
  • digitizing the dental experience and keeping customer acquisition costs down
  • valuing and enhancing the customer’s experience

More from Dr. Ingrid Murra:


Sara Nay (00:00): This episode of the agency spark podcast is brought to you by term again, a privacy policy generator, any website collecting as little as an email address on a contact form should not only have a privacy policy, but also have a strategy to keep it up to date. When laws change, learn more at duct

Sara Nay (00:25): Welcome to the agency spark podcast. This is your host, Sarah Nay, and I have challenged my guests to come prepare with impactful, actionable insights they can share in just about 10 minutes. So you can walk away, take action and get back to your busy day. Today. I have Dr. Ingrid Murra, the 48th Latin woman to secure over a million dollars venture capital funding in the history of the United States, a Harvard trained orthodontist and founder and CEO of the orthodontic startup to front. So welcome to the show, Dr. Ingrid.

Dr. Ingrid Murra (00:57): Thanks for having me, Sarah.

Sara Nay (00:59): Yeah, I'm excited. You're here. One of the things from a marketing agency standpoint that we do a lot with our clients as is we help them look at their industry and essentially not just do the same thing that everyone else is doing, and oftentimes look for opportunity to potentially even disrupt what people are doing in the industry. And so what I know about you, it sounds like you're revolutionizing the dental industry and, and what you're doing. So I'd love to hear about your journey and what led you down this path.

Dr. Ingrid Murra (01:27): Yeah, 100%. So I'm an orthodontist by trade and I, I was not a marketer or an entrepreneur by any means and I was in residency. That was my very first year in residency at Harvard dental. And that was the year that smile direct club launched. And basically it was the first time that I was like, oh man, I spent 20 years of my life trying to become an orthodontist. And is this the industrial revolution? Are we about to be replaced? One fun fact also is orthodontists are the most in debt specialists in the country. Orthodontists are like half a million to a million dollars in suited debt. So I was like, our ortho is gonna have jobs. Um, as I continued in residency, I basically realized that these companies don't work. So I looked at these companies and I was like, wow, but they're amazing at branding and marketing and like basically showing how convenient something is, but the quality of the product itself wouldn't actually get patients results.

Dr. Ingrid Murra (02:22): So it was just a really great example of like over promising, under delivering. But at the same time, I was like, now that these companies are in the market, there's no way that the old way of doing orthodontics is gonna work. There's no way that like an orthodontist can just start a brick and mortar clinic expect have an in-house financing team that's offering like pretty okay. Terms to patients like the patient experience just isn't optimized because the traditional way of doing things that require so much manual labor, whereas the mayor way of doing things really delivers this great experience through product, through customer service, through messaging, through branding. So like, how do we mend? How do we mesh these two worlds? How do we actually give patients what they're looking for, which is orthodontist sled care when it comes to streeting your teeth, but also with that kind of beautiful brand and experience and convenience and mail order liners promise. So that's when I decided to stop practicing orthodontics and start to front, we went through a little bit of a journey. I think I was like, I'll just learn business.

Sara Nay (03:23): I has a lot of businesses do actually like into something they're passionate about. And it's a lot of learning along way that's

Dr. Ingrid Murra (03:31): So that started seven years ago. Um, and I was like, I'm a student, I'm a student, my whole life. I'll just study this. So I like studied. Yeah. I like took classes at HBS in Boston. I like listened to all the podcasts, read all the books I'm supposed to read, like Peter, the zero to one new venture deals, all the things. And then I got Tom Lee, the founder of one medical to be one of our first investors. And I was like, okay, this is great. We're gonna apply like the one medical primary care model to orthodontics, beautiful brick and mortar clinics, great brand great telehealth experience. And I realized that itself wasn't enough to differentiate. I realized like in this world of Instagram and Facebook and Google ads, customer acquisition costs is a very real thing. . And so I realized like when we are three times more expensive than mail order liner companies, because we have actual doctors involved price is always gonna win online, especially when price is paired with convenience and the beautiful brand.

Dr. Ingrid Murra (04:31): And so we realized no matter what, we just couldn't get our customer acquisition cost down. So we pivoted and we realized like we have to figure out a way to get patients at a place where they trust. Who do you trust when it comes to your teeth, your dentist. So now our business model is a little bit of a mix of Uber and Airbnb beam. We basically have Uberized the orthodontic practice. We give orthodontists this free platform to basically give patients a fully digital experience. The convenience that they're looking for with 80%, fewer visits in person visits, right at their dental office orthodontist comes right to their office, seamless digital experience from scheduling to insurance verification, the checkout to all of your virtual checkups in between. And it's something that helps us avoid customer acquisition costs altogether. So we realized like we still need customer experience is everything. I think that's number one, no matter what that's been at the forefront, but then it was all about avoiding. How do we get people away from offline, away from online and build that trust in person. And that's where we decided to partner with the dental offices.

Sara Nay (05:33): That's wonderful. I love hearing about how much you've evolved over the years from day one, all the way through where you're at today.

Sara Nay (05:42): Yeah. And so is your target audience today, obviously the end of patients that you're working with, but are you going after more dental practices essentially to get exposure through them? Ultimately,

Dr. Ingrid Murra (05:52): Exactly. It's the average patient sees 16 ads. Like as soon as you Google, like how do, how do I treat my teeth or Invis line or mail order liners, they get targeted with 16 ads before they actually make a decision. And the information online actually isn't accurate, surprisingly yeah. Around like what works, like what's the best solution. But, and so we realize like we actually just have to speak to the patients and dental offices. So we have built a digital experience for the patients and dental offices, where if we partner with like dental office, like Dr. Sarah, all of Dr. Sarah's patients, every single person that walks in the door will be onboard into our dental experience. So they have a hub or they can learn everything they need to learn about. And we basically educate them on orthodontics. Through this hub, everything is researched back. Everything is written by a clinician so that they can actually be empowered to understand what's happening with their mouths. And there's no WebMD for dentistry really from their dental office.

Sara Nay (06:49): That's wonderful. And I see that being a really great value, add for the dentist as well, be able to offer that to their patients. And so it encourages them ultimately to promote it and encourage it more. I'm sure

Dr. Ingrid Murra (07:00): Exactly. Yeah. It's not just like this, like orthodontic as a service Invisalign product for your office. It's really, it's all about enhance your patient experience. Like we're not like buy Invisalign and we're like, here's this hub that's going to empower you to learn about your teeth, add knowledge before we're trying to make a sale.

Sara Nay (07:17): Yeah, absolutely. I loved how you keep talking about the patient experience. That's so key. A lot of times when people are thinking about marketing there, how do we get in front of more people, more people, but it's take care of the people that are already in your world and have them stick around longer ultimately. And that's how you'll grow and scale.

Dr. Ingrid Murra (07:34): Yeah. It's a conversation that I'm constantly having with investors speaking up of, of, of like scale by just like hiring a sales team and just like partnering with dental offices, as opposed to like working on the experience within our current dental offices right now, we're only in LA and we're keeping it that way on purpose. We actually don't even have a sales team right now until we really nail the patient experience. Yes. Because once we able to experience, like we'll go through referrals, people will be like, oh my God, this is the best thing ever. And that's how we know we'll grow. And so we're really sticking to those values, just delivering the kind of experience and care that we're looking to deliver.

Sara Nay (08:09): Yeah. I absolutely love that our founder actually just wrote a whole book on the ultimate marketing engine. It's all about taking care of your clients and your customers. So they grow and evolve and refer you. And that's the best way you can approach growth these days in terms of marketing. So I, I think you're absolutely on track and it's really fascinating to hear your story. Thank you for sharing today. If people wanna connect with you online, where can they find you?

Dr. Ingrid Murra (08:30): Yeah, they can follow along on our Instagram, which is at my two front all spelled out like my two front teeth or my personal Instagram at Dr. In grid mirror.

Sara Nay (08:39): Awesome. Thanks so much for being here and thank you all for listening to agency sparks podcast. This is your host, Sarah nay. And we'll see you next time.



This episode of the Agency Spark Podcast is brought to you by Termageddon, a Privacy Policy Generator. Any website collecting as little as an email address on a contact form should not only have a Privacy Policy but also have a strategy to keep it up to date when the laws change. Click here to learn more about how Termageddon can help protect your business and get 30% off your first year payment by using code DUCTTAPE at checkout.

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