Marketing a Dental Practice: Mailers 101

Dental practices see mixed results when they mail flyers advertising their services to local neighborhoods. No one wants to add to the pile of junk mail that their patients throw away, and that fear may keep you from investing in a mailing list and sending your flyer out. However, some practices see great results using mailers, but the reason they work is that these practices stick to certain principles that make their mailer successful in attracting new patients. Here are some principles to keep in mind if you are considering using a mailer as part of your marketing mix:

1.)Texture: Leaf through at the “junk mail” you get every day in the mailbox with your fingers (physical mail from a physical mailbox, not email). What do you feel? Glossy catalogs? Newsprint paper coupons? Standard weight paper flyers? Pay attention to the textures of paper you get in the mail and send your mailer on a type of paper or in a film cover that stands out from the usual mix when you touch it. Avoid the glossy finish you can just imagine a Bed, Bath, and Beyond mailer in. Avoid the standard printing paper that you might get a wedding invitation or local event invite in. Make your flyer stand out before the patient even looks at it—grab new patients’ attention by the hand! And be sure you tailor the paper you choose to the mail that goes out in your area! Maybe glossy paper dominates the junk mail scene in your mailbox, so you reach for cardstock. Whatever paper you choose, avoid matching anything else that you get in the mail too closely. Maybe you are thinking that there aren’t that many different paper types available, but this is not true. Just go on Amazon and see that you can mix up the content of cotton in your paper, the gloss level, the grit. Explore for yourself or talk about it through your publishing company if you are using an agency to print your mailers.

2.) Size and Shape: Again, avoid the sizes and shapes that are sticking out in your area. Unique shapes are another way to stand out both from a visual standpoint and a sensory one. Avoid post card size or 8.5/11 size, unless no one else in the neighborhood is doing that. Make your flyer longer and skinnier than most, thicker or stouter, whatever it takes to be different from the coupons, leaflets, brochures, and other mailers you are getting locally.

3.) Images: One successful dental marketing company uses retro images on their mailers to draw the attention of their audience—pictures of people printed in black and white that look like they came straight out of the 1950’s. This type of image sticks out as a blast from the past. Images that do NOT stand out include stock photos, clip art, or shapes. As with our tips on texture and size, choose images that grab the attention of your audience.

4.) Fonts: While we are discussing the subject of optimizing your mailer visually, we also encourage you to choose fonts that you don’t see every day, maybe that you downloaded from the internet or had a graphic artist draw. Comic Sans, Papyrus, Times New Roman, Arial, Calibri, and nearly all the standard Microsoft Office Fonts should be avoided unless you haven’t seen them recently. The problem with Microsoft Office fonts is that they have become cliché with overuse and will cause your audience to ignore the content of your flyer for lack of originality.

5.) Content: This is what you hire a copy writer for, unless you think you can do it in-house. Great copy will convert, and monetize your audience from onlookers to new patients like nothing else. All other tactics play the supporting role of attracting the attention of the people on your mailing list. The content of your flyer will actually keep their attention and convert your mailing list into appointments. Have a message that excites, informs, and holds the attention of your audience. If you blow your audience with a flyer that is fun to look at and fun to read, you’ve gained patient trust without even meeting the person (and without them being a patient yet…). If you can’t hire a copy writer and don’t feel confident writing the message yourself, look for examples you can pattern your mailer from examples online and in your own mailbox. Our advice is to avoid passive voice, use engaging verbs, and maybe even include some humor.

6.) Extra Advice: Mailers are not meant to be one-and-done. Your mailer ought to change periodically to avoid redundancy. Use your mailer to demonstrate that your practice is alive and adaptive, not stagnant and content with the status-quo. Use various tactics, find what works best, and keep your marketing mix alive with new approaches. Maybe that means new graphics or a new central message, or maybe that means dropping the mailers all together and putting more emphasis on digital marketing. Whatever draws the members of your community that you hope to treat, focus your efforts and attention on that. One doctor in the Midwest said Twitter and Facebook gained few new patient leads, but mailers and public events did. Not all areas are the same, so depending on the demographic you serve, tailor your marketing to them.

Platinum Recall is a patient retention and reactivation service that offersdental accounting and bookkeeping, afull-service dental laboratory, a24/7 dental call center, andPlatinum Stats, a state of the art digital tool that reflects the progress and state of your practice daily, revealing the effectiveness of your business operations. At Platinum Recall, our goal is to help you reach your goals as a dentist, by making the business aspect of your practice easier. Call today (800) 900-2012 to learn more or sign uphere for a free demo.

Changes in the Dental Industry: Instagram for Dental Practices

If your practice is using social media to stay in the minds and hearts of the community you serve, then you know the benefit an occasional Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or Google Plus post can have on your practice. It strengthens your brand, establishes goodwill, and can even aid in new patient acquisition. Different rules govern different platforms, and because Instagram is a fairly new but widely popular platform, we wanted to give you some pointers:

Instagram is a Picture Feed

Unlike Twitter or Facebook, Instagram is a purely picture feed. Although you can use your captions to send a message, Instagram is designed to give a snapshot of what is going on in your world.

Instagram is a Cell Phone App and Can Not be Posted to from a Computer or Tablet

If you want to start an Instagram for your practice, you need to download the app to your cell phone. Other staff members can access the account if you share with them the username and password on their phones or computer, but you can only view Instagram posts from the web and cannot post to the account from anywhere but your phone.

Your Instagram Posts Need to Be Funny, Interesting, Informative, or Otherwise Attention-Grabbing

If you catch a followers’ eye with an interesting picture, then they will read the caption to your picture. However, most people scroll through the images of people they follow without taking the time to read the caption or “<3” the picture unless it merits the attention. The reason you need to put up good pictures is that it will help you attract and retain followers and they might even read the caption you put or even “<3” the photo (the equivalent of liking on Facebook or favorite-ing on Twitter).

Establish a Following by “Guest Posting”

When you start out, you will have no followers. A good way to get followers is to ask your staff and patients to follow you, follow other people, and to ask other people to tag you in their posts. That will expose your name to the followers of that account, and those followers might follow you as a result. Basically, it just gets more eyes on you. And you can do the same for the person who draws attention to your account! Tag that friend in one of your posts so they are exposed to your followers.

Don’t Post All The Same Type of Picture

Your posts can be graphics advertising an event or offer at your practice, pictures of staff and patients, or can be inspirational quotes in front of a neutral background! The possibilities are endless, but avoid a lot of the same “type” of picture. If you only ever post graphics depicting dental tips, you should give your graphics person a break and throw in some pictures of patients in the chair or staff at a local charity event. Keep it interesting by mixing up the types of posts you share with your followers, and you will draw more attention to your posts, account, and practice.

Instagram Filters

Use them! Abuse them! Instagram filters make the photos of amateur photographers look more intense, dramatic, and professional. Mostly, filters are just fun. You don’t have to put a filter on every picture, and you should not be using the same filter every time, but don’t be afraid to use them. Filters are another way to draw attention to your posts (although an occasional “no filter” post can draw a lot of likes as well, because it draws attention to the quality of the raw photo.)

Comments, <3’s, and Captions

Comments are a way to react to other peoples’ posts, they are pretty self-explanatory. The only thing to keep in mind with comments goes for all social media outlets—don’t share any sensitive or personal information in comments. Keep them light, message the follower if you have something to say that you don’t want other followers to see. Give comments, get comments.

“<3”’s are likes, so the more likes you get on a photo, the better. If you like other peoples’ photos, they will likely follow your account or like some of yours. To like someone else’s photo, tap on it twice with your finger.

Captions can be long or short, they are a great way to tag people in the photo, explain where it was taken or when, or the details of an offer if you are posting an infographic. Share information about your office!

Who You Target with Instagram

If you are using Instagram, your audience will be somewhat different than your audience on Facebook. Most adults have Facebook while Instagram attracts more young people. For the most part, the kind of patients you will attract and retain through Instagram will be young moms, singles, and teenagers (with exceptions, of course!). In a word: “Millennial’s”. This is an important age group as Millennials include young parents, college grads, single adults, and teenagers—all of whom you treat. And, as with Facebook and other social networking sites, Instagram is fairly young and will attract more of the clientele you serve over time.

There is no better time than today to create an Instagram account for your dental office. As you follow social cues on the application and apply these principles, you will be able to strategically use your Instagram account to build your brand and establish yourself in the minds and hearts of the community you treat more effectively.

At Platinum Recall, we consider ourselves experts in the dental industry, and we know how to make practices thrive in a challenging industry. Just follow the account of our dental practice in Utah,Platinum Dental Care, on Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, and Twitter for an example of how we use social media marketing.

However, our expertise is not so much in social media as it is inpatient retention, practice expansion, and staff unification. Ourdental accounting (dental bookkeeping) service, 24/7 dental call center,Platinum Stats virtual practice progress tracker, and team training can guarantee your business success. Dentists have enough to deal with—Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn…. Not to mention serving patients! Let us take a load off and boost your production while we are at it. Give us a call at800.900.2012 today for a free consultation or sign up here for afree demo of Platinum Recall dental management services.

If you are asking, “How do I sell my practice?” Platinum Recall provides the dental management services necessary for the success of your practice.

Attracting New Patients to Your Practice: Shock and Awe

Trying to attract new patients? (and the right ones?) Trythe “Shock and Awe” approach. (Click that link for additional ideas on how to use the “Shock and Awe” to build your practice).

“Shock and Awe” was originally a military doctrine, used to overwhelm and paralyze the enemy with spectacular displays of power (explosives, fire, more explosives, etc.). As a marketing tactic, the shock and awe technique is used to impact your audience (and paralyze the competition) by targeting the right people and inspiring customer loyalty.

Rather than using your shock and awe resources on everyone with a pulse in a 2-mile radius, you will use these techniques on a small number of promising candidates in order to prepare them for their next appointment with you. For example, anyone who has expressed interest in a full mouth rehab, veneers, implants, or any other “big case” that you want to move towards case acceptance.

How can Dentists Use Shock and Awe?

As explained earlier, your best display of “shock and awe” needs to be targeted towards promising candidates. Decide what that means for your office! Are you looking for promising Implant candidates? Maybe you are looking for families? However you want to build your patient base, use “shock and awe” to win hearts in your community and build your patient base.

What to Include in Your Shock and Awe

It doesn’t really matter whatever branded freebies you decide to include in your shock and awe package as long as you stick to these principles:

  1. Whatever you send, it has to be of some VALUE (a mug, a picture frame, a jacket, a laptop case, an umbrella…but stay away from just pens or chapstick or anything cliché or kitsch-y, because that won’t shock or awe anyone)
  2. In addition to gifts, you have to include things that add to your legitimacy as a medical practitioner. This means make including some publications, maybe a hand-written note on nice letterhead from your office, published patient testimonials, reports, pictures of past cases, etc. Whoever receives this package needs to have no question as to your expertise or the quality of your work
  3. Make your message clear. Are you thanking them? Are you soliciting referrals? Are you inviting them back? Are you letting them know you look forward to seeing them? Whatever the purpose behind sending a shock and awe, make sure the recipient understands why they are randomly getting gifts from you. In some cases, maybe the motive is obvious and requires no explanation. However, it may be better to play safe than sorry and just include a personal note in every shock and awe.

Shock and Awe Tactics

  • Pre-Appointment Prep: Maybe you hosted a free informational event where people could learn about dental implants, and some of the attendees signed up for a free consultation with you, leaving their contact information. Before the consultation, you send your “shock and awe” package. What does this do? Just by opening the package, the potential client feels that you value their business. Not only that, but by thumbing through the materials you send, they feel they already want to do business with you. Why? Because you care about the details, you care about them, and you care about doing great work.
  • Post-Appointment: Maybe you met with someone who has serious potential to be an amazing client but they are either on the edge about your services or just a contact not expecting to do further business with you after an initial consultation. Send your shock and awe package as a way of saying that you want to see more of them.
  • Handling a Patient Referral: A patient of yours gives you the name of their friend who you should get in contact with. By calling them and setting up a free consultation, you automatically feel like a salesman. To diffuse the pressure, send your “shock and awe” package before the meeting. 8 out of 10 referrals are not going to be ready to accept any big case, but sending the shock and awe package will help relax the patient, decrease the likelihood of a no-show, and increase potential for acceptance.
  • Post-Acceptance: Especially after accepting a big case, your patient may be experiencing a certain amount of buyer’s remorse, and may even back out of the deal. Send your shock and awe package to re-establish in their mind that they made the right decision and it’s going to be a great experience.
  • Unexpected Gifts for Existing Patients: Every once in a while, your patients need to be reminded how important they are to you. Strengthen patient loyalty (especially with your favorites) by sending a shock and awe to your current patient base. This will not only help them feel your gratitude, but will remind them of your expertise and professionalism (and may garnish a few referrals).

The shock and awe technique is really just a marketing idea that has really taken hold in the dental industry. It is not, however, guaranteed to boost your production. Platinum Recall dental management services, on the other hand, are guaranteed to bring in 10-40 new patients a month or your money back. Pretty sweet, right? With ourpatient reactivation system,dental call center providing 24/7 phone answering for dental practices,our visual practice progress gauges,dental lab anddental bookkeeping/dental accounting services, Platinum Recall dental practice management services will boost your practice’s bottom line, guaranteed.

How Do I Sell My Dental Practice?

The dental industry is ever-changing—processes and techniques that once produced booming business now barely eke out enough revenue to pay the bills. In reality, the market dentists work in today is as different from previous generations in the same profession as it is increasingly competitive and difficult to enter. Dental students enter the market with higher amounts of student debt. Regulation makes barriers to entry steeper to overcome—opening a new practice is not what it used to be. From a marketing standpoint, dentists are facing more competition, not just from other dentists but from every potential competitor for the dollars of your patients. We could enumerate the various struggles that make 2016 a challenging year for dentists, but it would be lengthy and incomplete. The good news is, we have a solution.

If you have found yourself so overwhelmed with the current state of the market and want to sell your practice, you may be the perfect candidate for an account with Platinum Recall. Our software, approach, and mission is so simple you could explain it to your staff over coffee: We specialize in revitalizing and boosting production levels of suffering (and ambitious) dental practices. Ourdental call center provides 24/7 call answering services to your patients but also reactivates old patients. We promise10-40 new appointments a month or your money back, guaranteed. In addition to patient retention and reactivation, we also providedental bookkeeping and dental accounting services. In many cases, our accounting experts save dentists money and prevent embezzlement/fraud (a near-epidemic in the dental industry). Ourteam training helps get your staff on the same page. Considering the fact that many dental practices throughout the country suffer from dysfunctional teams, we promise to unify and strengthen the power of your team, getting them on the same page and working towards higher levels of production, together.Platinum Stats is our service to help your practice track progress, providing visual indicators of progress and success rates to help target where your practice is, and where it can be. Finally, ourdental lab provides a way for you to bundle services and save, to say nothing of theincredible aesthetic quality and durability of our work.

Platinum Recall specializes in helping dental practices thrive. If you find yourself asking, “How do I sell my dental practice?” or just feel like your production levels have plateaued, call800.900.2012 or try afree demo.

In short, maybe a better question for dentists looking to sell their practices is “How do I sell mydentistry?” and, in that case, we have all the answers.

The Importance of Online Reviews for Your Office

How well are you managing your online reputation? TheBrightLocal 2015 Local Consumer Review Survey revealed important and undeniable results relevant for dentists.

Here are five takeaways from their report:

1. Consumers read evenfewer reviews than they once did before deciding to pick up the phone or call. 40% of consumers read 1-3 reviews before forming an opinion. What does this mean for you? People are not going to balance all of the reviews you have. They will pick a few to read and make a judgement call. Hopefully your reviews represent a mix where the positive will always outnumber the negative, and all are highly informative.

2. 44% of consumers said that reviews older than a month were irrelevant. Your reviews need to be fresh, meaning you need to solicit new reviews from current patients every day. Show your patients how much you value their feedback with incentives like, “Review us on google and get entered into a prize drawing,” or “Get $10 cash at the front desk for reviewing us on Google!” Good, informative reviews are worth paying for.

3. Your reviews have a huge impact on potential customers–the star rating was the #1 tool used by consumers determining the trustworthiness of a business. Only 13% of those surveyed said they would consider a business that had a 1-2 star rating.

4. People put more credibility into online reviews than ever before in determining the trustworthiness of your business. 92% of consumers use online reviews to choose who they will do business with

5. One in three people polled said they had read reviews for dentists and doctors in the last year and 35% of said they had used Google to search for a dentist in the last year. 53% said that a practice’s online reputation “mattered most” when choosing a dentist (only 51% said the same for selecting a restaurant). Simply put: THIS IS AN INDUSTRY WHERE ONLINE REVIEWS MATTER.

Managing your dental practice’s online reputation has become more important than ever. Monitor your recent reviews frequently because prospective patients are reading fewer reviews AND depending on those reviews more to decide if they will schedule an appointment. Your practice’s recent reviews are determining the likelihood that a patient will call, so keep a good watch for any reviews that appear overly negative or damaging to your reputation. ALLOW FOR SOME NEGATIVE REVIEWS. We don’t want people to think you’re working the system or making up fake reviews. People can smell a fake review a mile away, so make sure to solicit reviews from actual patients.

What do I do with this Information?

Your reputation is a valuable asset, and this study demonstrates how much the internet controls your reputation. Do not leave it to chance. Refer to your reviews in staff meetings, solicit reviews from all of your patients, and offer incentives for patients who leave Google or Yelp reviews. Reward your staff for meeting a “Google Review Quota” each month. Print out good reviews and display them in your office breakroom.

Implementing these practices has boosted our number of online reviews exponentially. These days, it’s hard to determine what’s worse—only one bad internet review or no reviews at all. Luckily, by implementing these suggestions and understanding the results of this study, you can control your online reputation. And forming a positive reputation will yield real returns.

For Clients of Platinum Recall, we seek to strengthen patient retention through ourdental call center, strengthen purpose within the office through ourdental coaching and team training, take a burden off with ourdental bookeeping/dental accounting service, provide24/7 call answering to your patients with our dental phone answering service, exceptional and artistic dental restorations through Platinum Dental lab, and Platinum Stats, which provides your practice valuable insights on areas of improvement and progress.

Why is it so important to garnish online reviews through Yelp, Google Reviews, and Facebook? Because it will drive strong SEO for your website, build the trust of new patients, and boost your bottom line. Need we say more? With our services and your efforts to solicit patient referrals, we guarantee your practice will be seeing10-40 patients a month or your money back.

2 Considerations for Treating and Marketing to Millennials

As generations go, there has never been one quite like Millennials. Typified by their tech-savvy, particular religious and political views, and, most of all,their age, Millennials are growing up and making a name for themselves, and need to be accommodated for.Trying to attract, convert, and monetize when it comes to treating the Millennial generation requires understanding their preferences. Here are 2 considerations to take into account when treating Millennials.

1.No-Needle Anesthesia: As the Millennial generation moves into parenthood, their preferences concerning anesthesia on their children are quite clear–no pain, faster uptake, and less volume. As sedation technology moves forward, needleless anesthesia has become extremely popular with Millennial families and their children, Millennial parents being concerned about the behavioral effects of strong or painful sedation on their children. Marketing to Millennials requires teaching them the sedation options in addition to traditional needle-powered injections. NumBee, Anutra, etc. are products that offer local or inhalable anasthesia that you can offer to attract and convert Millennials into lifelong patients.

2. “Metal is Toxic”: Millennials are fans of white fillings. White fillings not only look better, but they are especially appealing because of the bad reputation metal has for being toxic or somehow more dangerous. For whatever reason, when treating Millennials, white is right. In your office, make it clear that you offer white fillings and highlight the benefits of white fillings. Millennials want restorative dentistry as inconspicuous as possible.

When it comes to treating Millennials and their children, consider their tastes and the circumstances under which they were raised. Attracting and converting more Millennials in your practice will really make a difference, especially in the coming years. Platinum Recall staff training specializes in helping your practice adapt to the changing tides of the dental industry and the changing views of your audience. Marketing to Millennials does present new challenges, but adaptive practices using adaptive technology will not fail. Finding the balance between providing consistent, reliable service and constantly re-evaluating and adjusting to meet the demands of your market takes skill and razor sharp trend perception and identification. Beat the market with Platinum Recall.

If you are wondering, “How do I sell my practice?” or simply want to boost production, Platinum Recall can help. We guarantee our clients10-40 new appointments a month or your money back. With our 24/7dental call center, dental management service,dental accounting/dental bookkeeping, staff training and marketing expertise, we can get your practice producing at levels never before seen. Our clients report a12-1 return on investment, read ourtestimonials page to learn more. With a family of products from Platinum Stats to track a practice’s progress to Platinum Recall to reactivate patients in your area, we are the experts in dental practice optimization. To learn more, request yourfree demo today, or call 800.900.2012 for a free consultation.

Strengthening Chairside Communication 101

What single initiative within a dental office has the potential to immediately boost patient satisfaction? Studies show that credentials and clinical expertise have a lesser impact on patient satisfaction ratings than simple, effective communication between doctor and patient. In other words, dentists who take the time to educate their patients, explain treatment in layman’s terms, and follow up after non-routine visits cultivate lasting relationships and greater satisfaction with their care.

WHY STRENGTHENING COMMUNICATION MATTERS

If you want your relationships with your patients to be transactional, perform patient treatment as a transaction. If you want your patients to yield the fruits of a lifelong investment, treat your patients as an investment. Strong patient relationships bring return appointments, referrals, and strong online reviews. However, developing the strong communication skills that foster trusting patient relationships requires commitment. This is because the time constraints facing today’s busy dental practices threaten the amount of “face time” most dentists get to spend with their patients–when schedules get tight, one of the first dental office casualties is communication. Good communication must therefore come about as an office-wide priority if it’s really going to happen.

Weak communication can quickly erode the dentist/patient relationship, which then increases the chance of noncompliance with treatment and patient turnover. Malpractice suits—particularly those related to misunderstood treatment expectations—are often caused by poor dentist communication, as warned by insurers. Additionally, the large population of “dentist avoiders”, those who dodge dental treatment despite the many advancements that make dental treatment painless, may be a product of bad communication between dentists and patients. Dental anxiety festers in patients where lack of understanding feeds imagination unremittingly.

WHAT CONSTITUTES WEAK COMMUNICATION

It’s good to know what to avoid. Some examples of weak communication in a dental office include

1.) Rushing through the explanation of a procedure or after-care instructions

2.) Forgetting to follow up after a surgery or otherwise eventful appointment by call or text within 24 hours

3.) Failing allow time for a patient to voice a question or concern.

At Platinum Recall, we specialize in training doctors and staff in strong chairside communication. From tone of voice to body language, we know the best practices in the industry. If you are looking for office training,a dental call center, dental management services,dental accounting or dental bookeeping,24/7 phone answering service or a professionalpatient reactivation and retention service, or even if you are asking, “How do I sell my practice?” we’ve got you back. Please try afree demo today or call 800. 900. 2012 for a free consultation.

6 Fool-Proof Ways to Improve Patient Communication Today

Educate your patients and build their trust in you by creating an atmosphere that fosters open, collaborative communication. What does this mean? Rather than one-sided lecturing, the goal should be to create a partnership that involves cooperation with the patient in both decision-making and the care plan. As the dentist, your goal is not to be seen as the all-knowing magistrate but rather as a coach or mentor. Provide instruction and guidance that empowers the patient to participate in decisions and take ownership in his or her own care.

This technique also involves reassuring patients that they have a certain measure of control during treatment. For example, most patients are comforted knowing they can stop a procedure, if, for instance, it becomes painful, by a pre-established signal to the dentist. (A favorite example of this at Platinum Dental Care was a younger patient who’s chosen signal to her dentist was to yell “BEEP!” if she wanted to stop at any point. Luckily she never had to use it.) In addition, the timing of a procedure during the visit affects the patient’s perception of control. This means pausing to explain the REASONS and the STEPS for a procedure before performing it.

THE BENEFITS?

Following these recommendations will…

  • Lay a foundation of trust
  • Strengthen the dentist/patient partnership
  • Increase compliance with treatment regimes and self-care
  • Reduce fear for those who normally experience dental related anxiety during treatment, diminishing any perceived threat and motivating them to play an active role in their own well-being.

WHAT IS THE ULTIMATE GOAL?

Safely empower patients with clear communication, ensuring that they have realistic expectations and understand their treatment options. This is important because even if YOU (as the dentist) clearly explain the procedure and likely outcomes. the media and advertising have contributed to the rise in unrealistic expectations of providers, their services, and treatment outcomes.

To reduce opportunities for misunderstanding:

  • CREATE a comfortable, unrushed ATMOSPHERE for the patient exam (plan for adequate time!)
  • ASK QUESTIONS to weed out any false, preconceived notions; counter misinformed ideas with clear information.
  • Understand and EMPATHIZE with the patient’s concerns (takes real effort!).
  • EXPLAIN ALTERNATIVES as well as risks/benefits associated with procedures.
  • DETAIL the expected OUTCOMES of a treatment or procedure (as well as the possible and undesirable ones.)
  • AVOID using dental industry JARGON and other language that might confuse or put off patients.

NONVERBAL COMMUNICATION

Help send clear messages to your patients that you are honest, knowledgeable, and caring with nonverbal cues. Here are 6 tips to help you speak, gesture, dress, and respond to your patients and staff in positive ways. These cues will strongly influencce patients’ perceptions of the practice and of your trustworthiness as a professional.

  1. ​Use an open, attentive posture (leaning slightly forward shows interest).
  2. Face the patient while talking and use eye contact.
  3. Nod your head in understanding, but not excessively.
  4. Smile.
  5. Use appropriate touch, such as a handshake or a pat on the hand or shoulder.
  6. Give positive affirmation for patient input

Negative, nonverbal clues — even if unintended — send a subtle message to patients that you may be hurried, unconcerned, or indifferent to their care. Nonverbal, physical clues to avoid include:

  1. Speaking with your hand on the exam room door knob.
  2. Fidgeting, such as drumming or tapping fingers.
  3. Avoiding eye contact.
  4. Using closed body language, such as crossed arms.
  5. Glancing at the clock or your watch, especially while the patient is speaking.
  6. Closing the patient’s chart.
  7. Turning away from the patient while speaking.

Countless books and techniques exist teaching effective chairside etiquette. These are just guidelines for strengthening the communication strategies you currently employ in the office in order to foster patient rapport and yield the returns of lifelong patients who really trust you.

Platinum Recall specializes in optimizing your practice. Through staff training,24/7 call answering service for dental offices, our dental management service,dental accounting service/dental bookkeeping service, and our patient reactivation service, we promise to boost your practice’s production by 10-40 new appointments a month. Whether you experience regular production levels or you find yourself asking, “How do I sell my practice?” we guarantee that our systems can boost your production. Our clients see a12-1 return on investment for our services, sorequest your free demo today or call 800. 900. 2012.

5 Ways to Boost Production by Leveraging your Waiting Area

Perhaps the reason beautiful smiles are so striking and attractive is that if they were affordable for everyone, you would see them all the time. If you want to increase the patient case acceptance, your solution may lie in leveraging your waiting area.

1. Get Rid of Magazines in the Waiting Area: This may sound counterintuitive, and you might even get some complaints, but get rid of the Vanity Fair, Sports Illustrated, Forbes Magazine, and other catalogs you may feature that only compete with you for your patients’ discretionary income. If they spend 15 minutes in your office looking at how much it would cost to buy a new fishing boat, they may be less inclined to give up the money for a root canal. What will you do with the remaining magazines before your subscription runs out? Recycle them, take them home, give them to your staff. Whatever you do, make sure they never creep back into your waiting area again.

2. Feature a “Memory Book”: What do you replace the magazines with? Publish (through an online book publishing company, nothing too fancy) a book featuring past cases. Before and after pictures (especially with veneers or implants). Pull out your dental school cases! With permission, tell the stories of the many patients who started living happier, healthier lives after treatment at your office.

3. Put out Current Copies of your Newsletter: Feature your monthly newsletter—it should include pictures of the patients who won giveaways, interesting articles, recipes, jokes, etc. all with the purpose of strengthening your brand and holding the attention of your patients. When your next patient leaves the waiting area, he will be thinking about what he can do to be featured in your next publication (and maybe which of his friends might benefit from your services.)

4. Change the Channel!: Rather than leaving the waiting area television on a muted news channel, put up slideshows with pictures of you, your staff, your family, and your patients. Successful offices do this to foster a feeling of community in the office. Keep the pictures recent, because people will be watching to see their own picture or people they might recognize. Again, they will leave the waiting area looking forward to getting their picture taken so they can be included in the office community as well.

5. Solicit Referrals/Follows/Reviews: Making this change in your office will not only improve your patient acceptance rate, but it will also increase the feeling of community and desire your patients have to become a more active part of it. They might do this by providing their own Google Review for your office, participating in your next office giveaway contest, or posting a picture of their visit to Facebook. Not to mention, if you don’t have any magazines competing with you in the office for your patients’ attention, they’ll be more likely to see the signs that solicit such active participation in the community you’ve created. Include instructions around the office on how to leave a review (and advertise incentives for leaving reviews and/or submitting patient referrals.)

Using your office in effective ways will increase patient trust, loyalty, and case acceptance. And, if you got nothing else out of this article, start by taking the magazines out, putting up some current pictures of your patients, staff, and family, and actively soliciting referrals and reviews in the office.

Platinum Recall specializes in optimizing your practice. Through staff training,24/7 call answering service for dental offices, our dental management service,dental accounting service/dental bookkeeping service, and our patient reactivation service, we promise to boost your practice’s production by 10-40 new appointments a month. Whether you experience regular production levels or you find yourself asking, “How do I sell my practice?” we guarantee that our systems can boost your production. Our clients see a12-1 return on investment for our services, sorequest your free demo today or call 800. 900. 2012.

Getting Your Team on the Same Page

11% of dentists polled in the2014 Dental Economics national survey said that their biggest challenge was “working with my team.”

The key players in an office include (but are not limited to) the doctor, hygienists, assistants and office staff. In order to get the office working at full efficiency, everybody has to be on the same page, working towards the same goals. For some offices, strong personalities get in the way of unified, safe, and efficient systems working in the office.

At Platinum Recall, our purpose is to maximize the profitability of your practice. If you’ve found yourself asking, “How do I sell my dental practice?” you may not need a new practice, just a new vision for your team. With Platinum Recall’s Team training, we help your team get on the same page. Ourdental call center, dental management services, dental call forwarding, patient reactivation services, and dental accounting are just part of a system that works as a whole. When we train dental teams, we give practices new life.

Too many doctors struggle working with their team. It’s time to unify and align yours in order to maximixe profitability and optimize the systems working for you.Our clients report a 12-1 return on investment by bringing on our dental administrative services. Revitalize your practice today by calling 800.900.2012.