7 Ways to Give Your Dental Practice the Personal Touch

September 20, 2017 Rieva Lesonsky

How can you retain dental patients throughout their lives? Creating a personal touch at your practice helps. Here are seven ways to give your practice the personal touch.

  1. Get to know your patients. Patients are more likely to be loyal to your practice if they feel that they're not just a number on a chart. Take time to talk to your patients, not only about their dental health but also about their lives. Keep notes on things like children, hobbies and interests in your patient records. Every morning, before your day’s appointments, go through the schedule and refresh your memory about each patient. That way, you'll be able to ask personal questions like “How is your daughter liking the first year of kindergarten?” or “How’s your tennis game going? Did you win that tournament you were telling me about?”
  2. Make your office a welcoming place. Everything from your decor to your front desk staff should work together to make the dental office a place where patients feel welcome. It starts with having your front desk staff greet each patient as they come in (ideally, by name), with a smile. Provide comfortable seating and a relaxing environment in the waiting room to help ease any stress patients may feel.
  3. Spend enough time with each patient. Patients don’t want to feel like they're on an assembly line. Make sure your scheduling allows time for each patient to share their dental concerns and ask questions. It should never seem as if you are rushing through a consultation.
  4. Personalize marketing emails for different types of patients. You can segment your emails for different age groups, lifestyles and dental concerns, then send only those emails that are relevant to that group. For instance, young parents could get emails about how to keep their children’s teeth healthy. 
  5. Use the power of touch. A friendly pat on the shoulder to say goodbye at the end of a dental exam or a warm handshake when you greet a patient can go a long way toward building bonds. Even when patients don't consciously realize it, the power of touch makes them feel closer to you and your staff.
  6. Use social media. Patients use social media to stay in touch with friends and family. When you share information of interest to them on social media, it helps create a personal connection.
  7. Tap into technology. Many dental practices are reluctant to adopt new technology for fear it will make interactions with patients cold and impersonal. But if you use it correctly, today's patient communication systems actually allow for a more personal relationship. For example, if you use Lighthouse 360, you can:
  • Text with your patients one-on-one, directly from the dashboard—no need to use a mobile device.
  • Email patients personalized messages, such as birthday greetings.
  • Easily share content such as photos, posts or links on Facebook from the dashboard.

 

 

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