Most dentists would say that potential patients are never turned away, especially because it can be difficult to bring them in. However, you and your staff could be accidentally turning away new patients without even realizing it. Whether this is happening during a patient’s first visit to the office, or even during their first phone call, there are ways you can avoid this issue.
When trying to make sure that patients are all being welcomed to your office, you need to examine the way questions are being answered by your office staff. During the initial phone call to make an appointment, a patient will probably have questions regarding insurance and payment. Instead of simply answering these questions and hanging up, you may want to train your staff to ask a few more in-depth questions at the same time. For example, have your receptionist say, “Yes, I’ll gladly answer your questions about insurance. I’d also like to know what prompted your call today! What are your concerns regarding your dental health?” This will establish an immediate bond with the potential patient.
Secondly, it’s important to train staff to use patient’s names when talking to them. This will make your staff seem even more personable and friendly, but make sure you don’t overdo it and seem to be trying too hard!
The next thing you’ll want to do is find out how new patients are learning about your practice. Many dentists will simply put this question on their new patient paperwork, but asking in person can allow you and your staff to bond with patients. For example, if a patient says he or she found your office on a list of their PPO’s, you can say, “Yes, we have many long-term patients who found us through Blank Insurance! They enjoy coming to see Dr. Smith and we think you will, too!” This gives you an opportunity to plug your practice a bit.
These are just a few ways to make potential patients feel welcomed and valued. For more tips on bringing in new patients or retaining current patients, please contact CTC Associates today!