How To Get Patients To Refer With Dental Marketing Strategies

How To Get Referrals Using Dental Marketing Strategies

Joanne Bishop


Easy ways to get happy patients talking about you

Referrals is one of many great dental marketing strategies

A highly engaged patient base will happily become practice ambassadors without too much prompting, but how do you ensure that your patients-of-record are talking to the people in their sphere of influence about your dental practice? How do you encourage them to share their positive experiences with family and friends? Do your patients know that you accept new patients? That you’d appreciate the favor of a valuable referral?

Don’t take this personally, but after each visit to your practice, your patients move on and get busy with life … without giving you another thought.

What will keep your name top of mind?

Ensure your patients-of-record are updated on news in your dental practice and educate them regularly about the benefits of the products and services you offer. A must-have in your tickle trunk of effective dental marketing strategies, a personalized customized patient newsletter targeted to the female head-of-household heath care decision-maker will…

  • increase case acceptance, because you don’t have time to tell your patients at every appointment which additional offerings you have that may meet their needs … ones they don’t even know they have. In the comfort of their own home, your patient will listen to your message repeatedly – that you are the dentist of choice who is always looking out for them.
  • give patients solutions to problems they don’t know you can solve. You may be surprised at the number of people who would say yes to bonding or veneers to correct a smile flaw they’ve always been self-conscious about … but didn’t even know it could be fixed at all, let alone easily and affordably.
  • be a conduit to potential patients who are friends and neighbors of your patients-of-record. On average, it takes 9-12 marketing touch points to garner a response, so when you combine a patient newsletter with a neighborhood newsletter, you can increase your exposure and shrink the touch points between first contact and that first phone call.

Why do professional newsletters increase engagement?

When a prospect has received a newsletter at their home from you because they live in your neighborhood (which is an extremely effective dental marketing strategy), your brand becomes more noticeable and memorable than your competitors’.

Couple looking at Dental Patient Newsletter   When that prospect visits a trusted neighbor and sees your branded patient newsletter that’s on the coffee table, it will prompt a conversation that adds to the layers of engagement. Suddenly your prospect is also getting a recommendation from a trusted source – their neighbor/your patient – which dramatically increases your credibility and the trust the prospect is willing to place in you and your practice.


How to increase patients, trust, and case acceptance

  • Educate – Through your newsletters (both patient and neighborhood), share articles about the services you enjoy and want to provide. No writing involved! Patient News has an extensive fully categorized library (2,000+ articles) from which to choose. All articles use emotion-triggering language and focus on patient benefits.
  • Welcome – Add to engagement by including messaging in your newsletters that lets readers know that you welcome new patients to your practice – and that you can offer appointments to new and existing patients within 24-48 hours. Always keep space in your schedule for this! 
  • Thank – Have a strong referral/loyalty rewards program and let your patients know about it. Always incentivize! Hold a monthly drawing for a significant prize. Add a bonus to a patient’s account as a way of saying thanks. And do say thank you – live! – when that patient comes in for their recall. Make a note on their file so your team knows that you want (no … need) to pop in and say a sincere “thank you” in person.

Let your patients know you mean business by showing them how much their loyalty means to you. An important dental marketing strategy, this increased good will increase positive engagement … and a positive buzz in your community about you, your team, and your practice.