Be Nice. It's the little things that matter.
Right now for a lot of people, times are tough.
Lots of dentists are looking at their bottom line and trying to figure out how they’re going to attract new patients – and how they might squeeze more production and referrals out of the patients they already have.
Some dentists don’t think that they have the funds to invest in a world-class marketing campaign or even a small postcard blitz.
However there was a lot of marketing savvy stuffed into all the behavioral wisdom (basically, manners) that your mom taught you over the years. The best part is, this kind of savvy will not cost a fortune to implement.
In order to increase patient loyalty and maximize your referrals, all you need is kindness and sincerity:
Do you and your staff greet patients with a friendly smile? Chances are, if you smile beautifully, patients believe that you’ll give them a great smile too (and they will feel welcome). So be a walking billboard for your own practice.
SAY THANK YOU
Don’t just thank patients as they’re leaving. Send a REAL thank you note (not a flakey email) or follow up with a genuine phone call. Doing this for every patient may be time consuming, but choose a certain amount of minutes a day to allot to this task, and start there. Those 15 minutes each evening could turn into a huge return in repeat business, referrals and production.
ASK ABOUT THEIR FAMILY
Ask your patients about themselves and their families – and for goodness’ sake, remember the answers! If you have to make notes and stick them in their file, do it. Your patients will trust you, and feel even more comfortable with you, when you remember that little Jimmy had his tonsils out, or Susan just graduated from McGill University in the English program with honors.
DON’T BE SHY
Offer up some information about yourself. Let them see you as a person, instead of a clinical stranger in a blue mask, drilling away at their teeth with sharp instruments.
Hospitality can range from giving the gift of a complimentary lip balm, to offering patients refreshments while they wait. Pretend the dental office is your home, and that your patients are guests.
The point of all of this is to create a trusting, familiar bond between you and your patients. This will make them more likely to come back more often, and recommend you to their friends and families.
It doesn’t cost much to follow mom’s advice – and if you pair your kindness, and courtesy, with a polite request for referrals, you could see some major production from new and existing patients come your way.