I suggest to you that for most patients, what a dentist actually DOES is a mystery.
They know it’s better to have healthy teeth. So they have a perceived notion they SHOULD visit the dentist. But they don’t actually know WHAT they get when they do or exactly HOW a dentist helps them.
This was true of me until I started to work with dentists and understand the VALUE they provide. Now I’m committed to visiting a dentist who I know to provide value to me.
So why is your patients recognising the value of what you do so important?
Nobody wants to pay for a service they don’t feel to be of value. If you have found yourself in this position, you know it feels uncomfortable to do so, doesn’t it?
Alternatively, when a patient can see and appreciate the value they undoubtedly get when they visit you, they are happy to keep coming back and paying for it.
So you keep the patient. Plus I propose, you give them something to talk about to others. They can share what you have shared with them. It’s worthy of remark.
You don’t mind being remarkable, do you?
Let’s look at how you put this theory into practice. I call it the ‘show and share’ technique.
Every dentist conducts exams, so this is a great place to start.
Showing the value here, I suggest, involves telling your patients what you are checking, as you make your checks. They’ll be surprised just what a wide range of checks you make. And you can quickly complete a printed template confirming what you have checked for them to go away with.
Do this and you will be showing your patients your value in a way in which few dentists do. Plus they’ll have something to keep and show others.
In a hygiene appointment, hygienists have the opportunity to share the ‘scoring system’ they use (BPE etc.).
Humans are used to the concept of ‘keeping score’. So explain what their score is now in simple terms. Tell them what you would like it to be. SHOW them why they have the score they do. Cameras or plain old mirrors help here. And you can illustrate pocket depths with pockets on tunics, a set of balls with varying levels of firmness can illustrate perio situations.
Then complete a pre-printed ‘perio pad’ which records their scores and problem areas, to leave with. Then repeat the process during their next appointment, pointing out any improvements to their scores and showing them where things have got better or worse.
This process shows them you are actively committed to improving their oral health. They have something tangible which they can make sense of in exchange for their time and money. They have something to tell others about their experience at your practice.
So here’s your challenge…
I challenge you to take this action for one month. Then come back and tell me how you are doing and what your patients are saying in the box below.
I witness dentists who show patients the value of what they do on a consistent basis nailing the ultimate ‘double whammy’ or what I call the ‘dentist’s holy grail’ of:
1. Happier, more informed patients who understand the value they are getting, are actively working with their dentist on their oral health and know why they are doing it. There is also increased trust between dentist and patient, which helps the dentist discuss other treatments required.
2. Improvement of the everyday figures which influence the overall results of the practice – Key Performance Indicators such as patient recall rates and new patient numbers. And subsequently see an improvement in their bottom line financial results.
Happy knowledgeable patients. More practice growth. Improved profits.
Are you ready to take up the challenge?
Marketing your Dental Practice: If it moves…measure it!
How to make your first impression compelling for new patients
Your Patient Journey – get it right and grow your dental business
The secret to help you grow your dental business as you cut your marketing budget
Marketing Your Dental Practice: The Memorable Moment – how and why you should use it to make your practice more successful
Marketing your Dental Practice: The Top 7 mistakes dentists make with their website
Marketing your Dental Practice: Your Top 7 tips for a more effective patient recall message