You spend your time helping your patients smile bigger and brighter.
But when it comes to making your own smile the biggest and brightest, nothing works like seeing an endless stream of new patients walk through the door!
It is good to find new dental patients, but you wouldn’t want to do that at the expense of existing ones. The good news is that it’s possible to find new clients as long as you cater to their needs.
Remember, they are looking for a unique experience: the ambiance of your dental clinic, customer service, interaction with your staff members, etc. So, make sure your patients have a great one.
According to a survey conducted by Delta Dental Plans Association, most Americans (85%) believe oral health is immensely important to their overall health. This means that you have a ready market, waiting for you to make them an unbeatable offer.
However, customers need and expect excellent customer service in healthcare. Think of these factors as the heart of your business – your patients need dental services, and quality should be the top-most priority for dental care.
The question is how to get more patients for the dental office and retain them?
In other words, how to get a seemingly endless stream of new patients into your dental practice while increasing the efficiency of your dental practice management?
Here are a few ways to attract new patients to your dental office.
Create a Referral Bonus System
Yes, we now live in a highly digitized world – but word-of-mouth is still one of the most potent forms of marketing. If you can get people to tell their friends about your practice, they're more likely to come. That's because they hear about you from a trusted source (their friend) instead of a random ad.
So, how do you increase word-of-mouth? One of the best ways is to incentivize people. You can do that through a referral bonus system.
For example, you can offer current patients a gift card, a free cleaning, or free dental product for every new patient they refer to. For your staff, you can provide a bigger bonus (perhaps a Kindle or iPad) for every five new patients they cover to.
Membership Plans And Discounts
Bring all your inactive dental patients back by offering them captivating membership plans or discounts.
Entice them with a one-time free dental hygiene checkup. And once they are there at your clinics, get their contact information so you can send more offers later and upsell your services.
This way, you can keep them informed about new dental practices and local events that conduct free checkups and entice them to maintain their oral health.
Today, social media is one of the most cost-effective ways to reach a large audience at once. You can interact with your target audience by looking for ways to keep in touch with the existing and new dental patients.
80% of Americans have at least one social profile, and social apps on mobile devices are the most commonly used apps. Your dental practice cannot afford to be inactive on social media, especially if you are looking for more clients.
While word-of-mouth is powerful, there's undoubtedly still a lot of room for paid online ads. It would be best if you were using a mix of Facebook ads and Google AdWords to attract new patients.
Your ads should include a strong value proposition and benefit and a strong call to action. For more tips for creating great ads, you can check out this excellent post from our friends at HubSpot, as well as this one on how to build a 3-step Facebook ads funnel.
Local Search Engine Optimization
When people search Google for, "Dentists in [Your] city," is your dental practice on the first page of results? Better yet, is it in the top 3 or even #1? If not, you have some work to do.
You see, many potential patients will search that key term or something similar. If you can rank for it locally, you can get a steady influx of new patients. SEO ensures that your dental clinic has an online presence and is found in Google search results by people searching for a dentist in their vicinity.
It ultimately gives them better search results.
So, how do you improve your local SEO results? Here are a few tips:
- Keep your listings updated and consistent. Your practice should have the same name, address, and phone number listed on all websites and platforms.
- Target local keywords: Your website and blog posts should include a variety of local keywords. They should include the name of your city and even your neighborhood, as well as specific services you offer, such as "root canal," "implants," "teeth whitening," "children's dentist," etc.
- Claim local listings with Google, Yahoo, and Bing: Each of these search engines provides a simple guide for claiming your local listing. You can start with "Google My Business" to get your practice set up.
Having a built-in chat function on your website is an incredibly effective way to respond to your patients. This way, they can get answers to their questions and concerns about your dental services straightaway as they browse your site.
After all, there is stiff competition among dental businesses, and excellent customer support is an effective way to win potential clients and retain existing ones by catering to each patient's needs.
A professional website with an active live chat can facilitate our prospects and push them into getting an appointment as soon as possible.
Consider providing an option to chat on pages that detail your dental patients. And let Nexa's answering services quickly answer their queries.
Reviews and testimonials left by existing clients can encourage prospective customers to opt for your services. So, you'll want to ensure you have as many great online reviews as possible. Offer coupons, deals, and discounts to customers who leave positive reviews and address any grievances immediately.
For example, once you claim your listing on Yelp, you can direct patients to your Yelp listing to leave reviews. Aside from Yelp, you can also ask patients to leave a review on your Google Places listing.
Every positive review will make potential patients a little more comfortable with choosing you as their dentist. On the other hand, don't be discouraged by negative reviews. Use these to show everyone that you take customer service seriously by quickly addressing the disgruntled clients, fulfilling their patient needs, and making their issues go away.
Quality Patient Care
Of course, there's the only way that any of the previous strategies will work effectively for an extended period: You must provide quality patient care.
When you provide quality care, your patients will keep coming back to you, leave positive reviews, and rave about you to their friends and family.
Along with quality care, it is imperative to protect your patient's confidential information, not just in the office, but it should be secured online, too.
Quality service includes delivering great customer support (dental answering service may help with this), sending timely appointment reminders, checking up on patients, and treating patients well when they're in your office.
Start An E-Newsletter
Just informing new and potential clients about your dental services is not enough. It is essential to reiterate your USP to the target audience with relevant and valuable information they might be interested in.
Advertise discounts, special offers, and other promotional packages by sending regular e-newsletters include the latest information about office closures and updates. Get their contact information and ask them to subscribe to your newsletter.
There is no definitive rule for getting new patients, but it is important to ensure that the quality of your service speaks volumes. Perhaps it can get your answer to the question, how to attract new patients to your dental practice and preserve customer loyalty.
In addition to getting a number of new patients, it is equally important to maintain quality services to retain them and the current patients. Offer customized treatment plans and quality customer support to ensure a satisfied patient base.
It may be easier than you think to get more patients to your dental practice. With these strategies, you will have more patients smiling bigger and brighter, and you will be smiling bigger and brighter too!
Frequently Asked Questions
How Can Dentists Get A Competitive Advantage Over Others in Their Industry?
For starters, it is important to ensure that your dentistry services are top-notch. Invest in state-of-the-art, industry-leading tools to enhance the effectiveness of your processes and procedures.
Next, make sure that your customer feels welcomed and not ignored or rushed when at your clinic. While good customer services begin when they call to get an appointment, they never really end. So make sure that you present a relatable and approachable visage at every customer touchpoint.
What Are The Components of Good Customer Service?
Politeness can go a long way in getting a prospective client to open up to you. Respect their time and address them appropriately in all correspondence. It can make them feel important and appreciated – and that’s what’ll keep them coming back for you.
It is also important to be observant and address any problem they may have before they bring it up. This kind of personal interest is the core of good service.
Additionally, don’t make them wait. No matter how busy you are, find a way to keep them occupied before the actual appointment, so they don’t get restless.
How Can Dental Practices Deal With Negative Reviews, For Example, On Google And Yelp?
For starters, try to reach out to the reviewers and address their concerns. Offer them discount coupons or free services to make their experience better so they can take down these reviews. Of course, if that doesn’t work, it won’t help to dwell on it. Instead, work on improving your customer service with Nexa answering services to ensure that this doesn’t happen again!