Even though you may not think of it this way, every part of the dental patient experience offers you an opportunity to market your practice. This does not mean you are asking for referrals every ten minutes or showing commercials to patients about your practice. Instead, you make every aspect of your practice positive enough to inspire someone to want to keep coming back, and the more patients return, the more likely they will refer friends and family.
Let’s consider just some of the examples of how your patient experience factors into your overall marketing. First, when you consistently run on time, you let patients know you value their time, and when patients feel valued, they know that you care. There is no greater marketing message in a dental practice. Patient loyalty is built on consistently demonstrating to patients that you care.
Next, when a friendly and helpful team member promptly answers the phone, consider the great marketing message you send about customer service. How many times do you encounter the opposite situation when you call someone’s office? Or consider the positive impact when patients first arrive and your dental team greets them with a smile and by name. When we feel welcome, we are more likely to invite friends and family to enjoy the same experience.
Also, your marketing message is delivered by small parts of the patient experience you may take for granted. For example, if you want to come across as an up-to-date practice, you need to make sure your patient intake forms look new and crisp. If you want anxious patients to feel comfortable in your practice, it is important to consider how your practice smells and how you can control noise from music and other operatories. Even small aspects of the patient experience factor into your overall marketing.
The bottom line is that marketing never stops in your dental practice. To make sure you are sending the right marketing message, please consider how you can fine tune every aspect of your patient experience.