Want to Improve Patient Retention? Focus on Marketing

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The thought of marketing tends to make dentists break out into a cold sweat. Most have no idea how to effectively market their practice and would much rather spend time doing what they love most: diagnosing and treating patients. Unfortunately, without a solid marketing plan, you won’t have many patients to treat.

Marketing really doesn’t have to be painful. It can actually be fun—especially when you start seeing the results. Just remember it isn’t just about attracting new patients to your practice; it’s about keeping current patients loyal as well. And one-time marketing campaigns simply aren’t going to cut it. To attract and keep patients, you need a cohesive, consistent and continual marketing message that is targeted to your area’s demographics. Develop a brand, understand your market and deliver a consistent message and you’ll be rewarded with new patients.

To get these new patients to stick around, you have to keep marketing to them and strengthening their connection to the practice. In fact, you and your team members should look at every patient interaction as a marketing opportunity, whether it’s over the phone, chairside or at the front desk. Constantly educate patients about the importance of maintaining their oral health and the services you provide that can help them meet their dental goals.

How, you ask? Give them brochures, show them videos and send out e-newsletters to help keep your practice top of mind even when they’re not in the chair. Hanging posters as well as before and after photos in the reception area represent another great way to show patients what you can do for them. It also encourages them to ask about the various services you offer during their appointment time.

When you make marketing a priority, you’ll notice an increase in new patients as well as loyal patients who are ready to go forward with treatment. This, of course, boosts patient retention numbers, practice production and your bottom line.

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