Increasing Patient Loyalty

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Retaining patient loyalty is one of the single most important jobs of a dental team. It is made possible by many factors that work together to make a patient's dental visit pleasant, productive and profitable. Patient loyalty depends on a comfortable environment and friendly, nonjudgmental staff, not just professional levels of treatment. People can be very emotional about the condition of their teeth. Socioeconomic standards in the United States have not allowed every citizen to afford proper dental treatments and their teeth often fall into disrepair. All too often people are ashamed and embarrassed as well as afraid to visit a dentist, even when in extreme pain.

Social Media

Every business under the sun is taking advantage of social media and there is no reason a dental practice can’t jump on board and find some success. This technique takes some time to master but can develop a rapport with patients that would previously have been impossible. Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, and Instagram accounts can go a long way towards keeping in touch with your patients and making them feel like part of the family. Running contests, posting daily trivia questions and even a "patient of the day" can give your patients fun and interesting ways to interact with the staff.

Monthly Newsletter

Sending out a monthly newsletter via email or post is a great way to let patients know about new developments in the practice. It could also offer coupons and other incentives to patients. Discounts on procedures or free cleaning are always a big hit. Add fun photos of staff and holiday good wishes. Dental hygiene tips and new studies are also interesting for patients to discover. Keeping it fun and interesting will ensure it gets read each month as opposed to tossed in the junk pile.

Dental Savings Plan

Dental treatment is one of the most expensive personal care choices people make. Everyone needs it but not everyone can afford it. Offering patients affordable and manageable ways to pay for the work they need is often the only way they can get it. It also shows that your practice cares about its patients, and wants to help make sure they get the dental assistance they need. Studies have shown patients who take part in a dental savings plan see their dentist more often, and are more active in their dental hygiene.

Referral Plans

Asking patients to refer their friends and relatives for discounts or incentives is a great way to kill two birds with one stone. Running a promotion in a newspaper or magazine only lasts as long as the ad and it's expensive. Asking patients for referrals where they both find an incentive gets two patients back through the door for services, and the opportunity to keep them for years to come.

A large part of patient loyalty is having staff that patients like and feel comfortable with. Many people have a legitimate fear of going to the dentist and it takes a lot to get them there. Feeling at ease with the staff is a huge step in the right direction.

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