Our most recent article, “Building Your Dental Practice’s 2022 Marketing Plan: Managing Attrition”, focused on how you can manage attrition rates in your practice. By doing this, you can lower your marketing costs, which come in handy as you begin the groundwork for building your 2022 marketing plan! In the third article of this four-part series, we’re looking at the component almost everyone equates with success in a dental practice – the number of new patients. We’ll dive into how you can get new patients to walk in the door, and what that means for your marketing strategy as you look ahead to next year.
To get the multiplier effect of Net New Patients™,
there are three key internal systems that must be
in place to plan your marketing strategy.
We’ll examine these systems and the impact they’ll have on both your marketing efforts and bottom line.
1) Measurement System
It’s important to know what’s happening and know your numbers. You can do this when you build in a measurement system to crunch those figures. How can you start building an effective plan if you don’t have the most accurate numbers of where you stand in front of you?
Let’s look at the most recent example we’ve been using across this series. As a reminder, you have a 1,500-patient practice, with a goal of 37 new dental patients a month, but with attrition that sits at 25 patients lost during that same timeframe. Those aren’t numbers you’re just pulling out of thin air – you can use a system to track these numbers.
It’s vital you measure how many new dental patients you have coming in, but also note where these new patients are coming from! When you know the source of your new patients, you can adjust your marketing plan going forward, which means you can get more bang for your marketing buck. With your measurement system in place, you can get the multiplier effect in assessing where you’ve spent your money in the wrong place.
The next internal system you should have in place is the one that works on your conversion figures. This is the biggest missed opportunity in most dental practices’ marketing strategies.
The typical practice converts one out of four dental patients, but if you’re good at conversions, you can convert three out of four. So, if you want to lower your attrition and increase your conversion, there are a few things you need to add to your marketing plan…
A) Learn How Your Dental Patients Want to Interact
To meet and engage your dental patients where they are, you must figure out how they want to interact. This means to make that conversion happen, you need to be available by all sorts of communication methods, including chat, text, and email.
B) Choose Your Best People Person
You must make sure you have the right person in place to interact with your prospective dental patients; they will make or break your conversion efforts. Choose a dedicated and talented person from your front office team who loves to interact with patients. This should obviously be someone who is good at their job, but they can’t make magic happen if not given the time. You have to give them the space and time each day to talk and work with those patients, to cultivate that relationship and convert them!
C) Match Your Dental Patients’ Availability
Conversion is also being available to dental patients when they want to talk. Studies show that is from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week. When you can connect with potential patients at the times most convenient for them, you increase your likelihood of converting them into your patients.
Focus on these three components and watch your conversion rates climb. If you are good at landing and following up on leads, and then translate that into converting more than one out of four dental patients, then you’ll see that multiplier effect at hand!
3) Sense of Patient Experience & Loyalty
The final system you need to use is getting a sense of your dental patients’ experience, which can then help increase patient referrals and lower attrition. The patient experience and loyalty components are very arbitrary; they’re the most difficult factors to measure.
That’s why, if you’re not set up to survey your existing patients and focus on your NPS score, you’re missing a piece of that puzzle. NPS will give you a sense of your dental patients’ loyalty to your practice. If you don’t know this, you don’t have a tangible way to determine the patient experience.
Once you gain your patients’ understanding and get their pulse, you will get definite recommendations on how you can enhance the patient experience, which then leads to more dental patients telling their friends and family about your practice! Just think, when your referrals go up, you can lower your attrition number, for that bonus multiplier effect!
When you start incorporating these factors into your work, you’ll start seeing the benefit and your number of new dental patients will increase! Laying this groundwork will not only help you to reach your Net New Patient™ goal but help save you on your marketing budget.
By now, we’ve looked at how to set your goals, manage your attrition, and just now, how to get new dental patients. Put all of these practices into motion and you’ll be set for the final article in our series — how to get leads.
If you’re ready to start doing the behind-the-scenes legwork and brush up on these internal systems in place to drive your new patients in the door but don’t know where to begin, give us a call at TNT Dental! Our team is ready to help you go from novice to expert in these areas and not only get new dental patients in the door but help you keep the ones you have!
About The Author
Tim Kelley is one of the founders of TNT Dental, the #1 creator of custom websites and marketing strategies for dentists. Recognized as a leading expert in helping dental practices grow, Tim is passionate about harnessing the power of online marketing to attract and keep new patients. If there is anything Tim can do to help you, please do not hesitate to contact him directly at the office, (877) 868-4932, on his cell, (972) 989-9137, or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Of course, you can always visit www.TNTDental.com to learn more.