Tips On How To Effectively Answer The Telephone At Your Dental Practice


Dental practice marketing can take many forms. From the dental newsletters and postcards that you design and send to potential new patients to the signage on the outside walls of your practice, each method contributes in its way toward the positive promotion of your practice and attempt to bring in new patients while retaining old ones. Even the most subtle aspects can be tremendous reflections of your practice, good or bad. One underrated factor in dental practice marketing is in how receptionists answer incoming calls. That first conversation with your point person on the phone could be the first interaction the potential new patient has with your practice. As is commonly said, you only get to make a first impression once, so make sure it's a good one.

Here are some telephone etiquette tips on how to effectively answer the telephone at your dental practice:

What to do before actually picking up the phone

While it is naturally important that whatever you say and how you say it once you pick up the phone is effectively done, what goes on in the few precious seconds before picking up the receiver can be just as crucial. According to Developmental, one of the most important things you can do is to sit straight up and smile a bright, sincere smile before picking up the phone. While this might sound silly – after all, who is there to notice your gleaming pearly whites other than the telephone receiver? – these tricks can substantially help you get in the right frame of mind for dealing with inquiries. Smiling naturally sends positive energies throughout your body, and that kind of positivity can be instantly picked up by someone listening to your voice. Additionally, sitting straight up helps you concentrate, and that extra effort is sure to show in the enthusiasm of your voice. After all, a front line employee must be well versed in all products and key competitive advantages of the practice, including being able to reinforce the dentist credentials. Enthusiasm can go a long way toward demonstrating preparedness.

Answer with normal polite language

There is a certain business etiquette that should always be used when answering the phone at your dental practice, one that is not akin to the way you would speak with your friends or family members. Etiquette Page recommends always starting by saying "Welcome to" your practice and by giving your name. It's important to create engagement with potential new patients, so exchanging names right from the start helps personalize your practice. Additionally, speak slowly and clearly and at a moderate volume. After all, nobody enjoys being yelled at – but of course, ensure that your voice is audible.

Be well trained on what to do after exchanging pleasantries

Pleasantries and politeness are all well and good, but people are ultimately calling your practice in order to learn more information or schedule an appointment. To this end, it is essential that you or your telephone agent is well-trained in all facets of your practice's systems. Being able to quickly find empty appointment slots and schedule quickly to being flexible enough to move things around, and also to be well-educated regarding the practice's services and industry trends are all tremendous boons to effective telephone behavior.