Did you know that it costs an average of $200 to acquire a new dental patient through marketing and advertising?
Wouldn’t it be frustrating if you spend the marketing dollars to drive website traffic only to lose the potential patients because they fail to show up at their appointments?
What can you do to lower marketing costs and prevent no-shows?
This is where pre-visit communications come in to help progress prospects down your marketing funnel so they’ll eventually convert into new patients to optimize your marketing dollars.
Master Pre-Visit Patient Communications For Your Dental Practice
Today’s consumers expect to communicate with service providers through various touchpoints. As such, you need to be found and reachable via different platforms. Here’s how:
1. Optimize Your Dental Practice Website
Did you know that 94% of people decide if they trust a business based on its website design?
Your website is your online storefront. It creates an important first impression, helps you build trust with prospects, and makes it easy for them to further engage with your services.
A well-designed dental practice website should have a clean design, be easy to navigate, and offer online booking features. Make sure it’s mobile responsive and loads quickly on all devices. Also, include essential information such as a service page, contact page, about/doctors’ page, and testimonials.
2. Leverage Online Reviews
More people are using third-party review sites and local directories (e.g., Google, Yelp, Facebook) to look for local service providers. Meanwhile, 97% of consumers aged 18-34 read local business reviews to help them make decisions.
Online reviews can help you build trust and attract new patients cost-effectively. Besides asking your patients to post reviews on third-party sites, you can also use a dental practice management software with a patient survey feature to integrate referral marketing seamlessly into your internal workflow and patient experience.
3. Increase Brand Recognition
Brand awareness can help you stay top of mind and attract more patients into your marketing funnel. There are many online and offline tactics to increase brand recognition at the top of the funnel, such as billboards, postcards, and social media.
In particular, social media marketing can drive online traffic right to your website on which potential patients can book an appointment right away. Update all your social media profiles to ensure that they project a consistent brand image and include links to your website.
4. Offer Online Booking and Forms
After you have spent the marketing resources to build brand recognition and drive traffic to your website, the last thing you want is for the visitors to leave the site without taking action. Capture prospects at this point when they’re most likely to schedule an appointment by offering an online booking feature on your website.
Also, use cloud dental software that offers online forms so patients can take care of the paperwork before their first visits. Not only will this streamline workflow but it also helps reduce wait time and improve the patient experience. In addition, when patients invest the time to fill out the forms, they’re more likely to show up at their appointments.
5. Automate Appointment Reminders
Make sure patients show up at their appointments with automated reminders sent via email, text, or voice calls. You can include educational information in these reminder messages to help patients prepare for their appointments or alleviate any anxiety associated with the visit.
Also, include links to your online forms in these messages so patients can complete the paperwork ahead of time to help you deliver a better patient experience during their visits.
Successful patient engagement starts with effective pre-visit communications, which not only help you acquire more new patients cost-effectively but also start building the trust you need to retain them.
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