I just want my teeth cleaned! Part 2 of the New Patient Process
We have all heard it! I just want my teeth cleaned. Nevermind that they have not been to the dentist in 5 years or that they are having a tooth ache. It's almost as if they are saying, don't try and sell me anything else. My cleanings are free and that's all I want.
So, what is your New Patient Process? Do you schedule new patient's with your hygienist or in your schedule? What occurs on that first visit? Most importantly, what does your front desk tell patients on the phone when they call to schedule? As a dentist, you have in your mind how you want that initial visit to go. So, put a system in place to make that happen. Make sure your whole team understands and supports it. If you do all of this, you will have a successful New Patient Visit and a happy patient at the end that tells their friends about how amazing your office is!
Here is the reality. Most administrative staff do not understand the process or your new girl doesn't know how to explain it and sets the wrong expectation to your patients. This results in a mess when that patient doesn't get what they think they should at that first visit. Being up front about how you treat the amazing patients that walk through your door will go along way. Make sure your website explains it and have your administrative staff direct people to your website. The more that patient knows, the more positive and happy they will be when visiting your office. Team training is key on this! Everyone should know your process and can explain it the same way to your patients. The result - a satisfied New Patient!
Whether you see every new patient or your hygienist does, make sure your team is trained on what to say and set the expectation for the visit. Some patients will still hear what they want, but that is why you direct them to your website. Then, in the small chance they come in with a different expectation, you can be confident they were told on the phone and directed to your website. Make sure your training includes emergency new patients as well. Many times these patients slip through the cracks of your practice and miss that comprehensive exam. That means you have missed a potential $10,000 opportunity!
If you need help with your new patient process, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org