It’s No Joke: The Funnies Make for Creative Marketing

An Oregon writer has created a comic strip to help dentists market their practices. The series runs for 14 weeks and can be customized with a dentist’s name, phone number and other details. The strip can be published in a local newspaper for a fee. The artwork can also be used on direct mail pieces, postcards, websites, social media sites and e-newsletters.

“The story basically follows a young couple who are looking for a dentist,” says writer John Shepherd. “After his dental visit, the husband decides to change his lifestyle for the better and his wife notices his change and loves the ‘new’ him.”

Shepherd is a technical writer by day and produces comic strips as his second job. “I used to sell newspaper ad space in college and thought a comic strip would be a great attention-getter,” he says. “So I teamed up with an artist friend and we produced this dental ad series.” He also writes a strip for real estate professionals.

Shepherd charges $35 for each week’s artwork. Color is an additional $5 per strip. The dentist must make arrangements to have the comic run in their local newspaper. It generally uses about six column inches. The strip is exclusive to the first dentist who reserves it in a particular city. For more information, contact Shepherd at (503) 547-0308 or