Have you ever wondered about your practice’s first impression on prospective patients? It does not start when you’re patient walks through the door, or even when they pick up the phone. It is starting right now, online. That’s the thing about the 21st century. Everything can be found online, including reviews of your practice. Now are you wondering about your first impression? What are your existing patients saying about you? What about the one-time patients? If you haven’t got a yelp page or a place on your website for patients to leave reviews, consider this your blank slate.
21st century technology is taking over in the form of social media, online marketing, and online reviews. A good first impression understands the importance of technology and how that technology can influence the way existing and prospective patients see you. These are just a couple of ways new technology can work for you.
- Helps your practice stay current
Adopting new technology in addition to updating older technology is paramount to developing a good rapport with prospective patients. Don’t believe me? While doing research on this piece, I came across this. The link provided is to a blog post entitled 12 Red Flags to Look out for at the Dentist’s Office. The second red flag to patients is a dental office “using old technology.”
If this is your office, it’s definitely time for a change. Patients look for Dentists who keep up with the times and update as necessary. It makes a statement that not only are you successful but you care about being able to better accommodate your patients. You do not want old technology for x-rays or otherwise, destroying your chances for a good first impression.
- No more accidentally missed appointments
The reviews patients read are always focussed on how one of your existing patients feels when they leave the office. I have read so many reviews with patients insisting that a Dentist who keeps in touch and ensures they don’t fall through the cracks is the only one for them. They tell their friends, their family members, and remain loyal through it all.
The right technology can ensure these kinds of positive reviews therefore adding to your first impression. So many patients fall through the cracks without a proper practice management system in place, and this can make those patients feel unimportant and low on your list of priorities. But when a patient receives email reminders and confirmations instantly, allowing them to confirm from the comfort of their own home, or on the go, they are more than willing to tell the whole world about it. This kind of customer service not only acts as a reminder of their appointment but further convinces your patients that they are appreciated and cared for. And if they don’t remember an appointment, technology also ensures that you will.
- Stronger communication
How often do you communicate with your patients? Since the first impression involves how someone feels, finding ways to keep in touch with your existing patients makes them feel– for lack of a better word– human. Critical reviews always seem to start with “I only felt like a number or a dollar amount.” As a patient myself, I have come across those reviews and steered clear of those offices because I wanted what all people want, to be treated like a person with feelings and dreams and a life outside of the dentist’s office.
The right technology can ensure you don’t just contact your patients but rather connect with them on a personal level. You can send them birthday or Christmas greetings or even a survey to find out how you and your team are doing. Not only are you giving your patients a good feeling, you are also letting them know that their voice matters when it comes to the services you provide. Be the office that is known for their customer service and let that be reflected in your patient’s reviews.
As important as communication is to your patients, not too far behind that is convenience. Here’s the truth; all patients are just like you. They have lives, they have work, they have families. Trust that trying to work around your schedule, especially as a new patient, can be tedious and time-consuming. Nobody appreciates the runaround. Nobody wants to wait on the phone or worry about paperwork, especially if they need a procedure done right away.
If your first impression is that your practice is accommodating to patients, even those with incredibly busy lives will be attracted to you. If you don’t yet have a website, it might be time to set one up. Not only is it convenient when it comes to finding your location, your number, and the type of dentistry you provide, but you can also provide your prospective patients with online medical forms they can fill out on their own time as well as a form they can submit via email to show their interest.
By implementing the right technology for your office as well as updating old technology, you will convince your existing patients to tell their friends and family that choosing you as their dental professional was the best decision they ever made.
For more information on the impact of technology and how best to integrate it into your practice, please visit the links below.
- 12 Red Flags To Watch For At The Dentist’s Office
- 10 steps to integrating new high technology into your practice
- Tips to Integrate New Technologies Without Sacrificing The Personal Touch