Marketing A Dental Practice – On A Whole New Level
Uncovering the patient journey and why it matters
Where are you today? Where do you want to be?
Every patient you have right now and all future patients you end up acquiring will go on a journey before they end up in your chair. In a time when dental practices are utilizing business intelligence, competition is tough, and patients are careful about their spending decisions, you must understand how one goes from point A to point B.
Having this consumer insight will take your practice to a whole new level.
Having this consumer insight will take your practice to a whole new level. And that means more new quality patients, more returning top value patients, less no-shows, and of course, practice growth. After all, the average value of a new patient is nearly $2,000 in the first year.
In this article, I’ll fill you in on some of the important aspects of the patient journey … so you can share the information with your team and help them better understand who might be considering your practice and how to resonate with them. It’s all part of marketing a dental practice in the 21st century.
Patient Awareness – When Does Dentistry Become Important?
The journey begins with the individual recognizing that dentistry matters. Perhaps they’ve identified it as a need because of the current condition of their smile, a friend just stunned them with whiter teeth (after treatment), or they realize they’re overdue for a cleaning. Or … dentistry is now top of mind because a practice is proactively building awareness about oral health through advertising, or there is awareness because the community is full of dental practices. When you know this, you can more effectively market your dental practice to them.
Consideration & Research – Does Your Brand Stand Out?
Stop and think about what you normally do when looking for a new restaurant to visit or hotel to book. Just like any other service, prospective patients will perform Google searches for “dentists near me,” read reviews, and explore your website and social media. A strong online presence will help you generate leads.
Buying Decision & Conversion – Treat Them Right From The Start
Did you know … 20% of patients who don’t schedule with a practice say it was due to a lack of attention paid to them? At most dental practices, the first live touch with a potential new patient is made over the phone. It’s during this interaction that your front desk team make or break the relationship with the patient. Effective call handling will put you among the top practices – the ones who answer 95% of their calls and convert about 80% to appointments.
Patient Experience – Give Them Reasons To Stay
Patient attrition happens because of perceived indifference. If your patients don’t feel that you value their business, and if they’re not connected to your practice outside of your transactional communications, you may be losing more than you like out the back door. Stay in touch regularly via digital, print, and telephone – and provide added value through educational content that will help them care for their smile at home. Establishing and maintaining this close connection will demonstrate you’re not just “another dentist.” And you’ll ensure attrition doesn’t outstrip your growth.
Advocacy & Growth – Happy Patients Will Be Your Ambassadors
If you and your team repeatedly provide excellent customer service and have made a long-lasting impact on the oral health of your patients, they will remember it. Their friends, family members, and colleagues will take notice of their smile transformation and ask where they got it! More than 90% of people will take the word of their friends and family over advertisements, according to a study by The Nielsen Company. With their positive comments and referrals, more people will call your practice.
Sound like a lot? Patient NEWS can help. We have a full 360° view of the patient journey with Practice ZEBRA™, our advanced and innovative integrated software solution that connects practice and marketing intelligence to improve practice performance at every phase of the patient journey.
We will show you what your data looks like so you can start making informed decisions for your practice and grow at a rapid pace! Call now for a free demo.