Times are changing and standards of healthcare are constantly evolving. What are you doing in your dental practice to keep up with the changing times? Much of health care can now be provided virtually, as we have recently learned. But some methods of care are better left done in person. Some tips for growing your dental practice include building your social media presence, improving communication, improving your office culture, updating your offered services, and improving your team. Let’s discuss these five tips for growing your dental practice in more detail.
Build Your Social Media Presence
We now live in an online world. Making your business known on social media and online is essential to gaining clientele. Focus on gaining positive Google and social media reviews. Positive reviews can improve patient retention, as well as call attention to your dental practice. When developing your website, ensure it is mobile-friendly. Research from Hubspot has shown that 61% of mobile searchers are more likely to contact a local business if the site is mobile-friendly.
Also, about 71% of people will leave a business a review when asked according to BrightLocal research. Depending on the average age of your client base, you can also consider using a social media platform, such as Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, to promote your practice. Patients can use the site to post positive patient experiences and you can use the site to showcase your positive outcomes, before-and-after photos, patient education, talents, and even special offers.
Improve In-Person Communication
Although the world is quickly becoming virtual, excellent in-person communication cannot be replaced. There are several benefits to improved patient communication, including patient adherence, lower readmission rates, improved mortality rates, lower malpractice risk and reduction in care costs. Showing respect for your patients is one easy way to improve communication.
Also, pay attention to non-verbal communication such as facial expressions, hand gestures, and body language. Communication starts from the moment patients enter the door. Greet everyone with a respectful statement such as “Good morning, Mr. Smith,” and send patients off with a statement like “Thanks for letting us serve you today, Mr. Smith. I hope you feel better soon.”
Engage in conversations with patients and get to know each of them personally. Consider investing in communication training webinars for your team. Even the way that office personnel answer patient phone calls makes an important impression. In fact, a bad phone experience can cause a patient to seek dental care elsewhere. What ways are you working to improve your dental practice’s communication?
Make Over Your Office Culture
Reflect on your values, your leadership style, and your expectations for your dental practice. Essentially, your office culture is how you want your dental practice to run. It can also include the décor and physical appearance of the office. Upgrade décor if it has been a while since your last makeover! According to one study, 97% of healthcare patients are frustrated by long wait times and 80% of patients would be less frustrated if they knew how long the wait time would be.
Steps can be taken to reduce wait times and alleviate this primary cause of patient frustration. For example, consider a remodel of the waiting area. It should be roomy and inviting. Include digital entertainment options that are customized to connect with the patient. For example, broadcast information about common dental problems or procedures. Ensure that you and your staff are on the same page about what is important. Improve or make changes to keep patients coming back.
Update Your Services
This includes modernized tools and equipment, in addition to procedures. Patients will be drawn by updated dentist chairs, but patients should not be subjected to outdated, painful procedure methods if there are newer options available. Explore options for updated X-ray machines, sterilization equipment, dental lasers, and imaging systems.
From simple dental cleanings and extractions to more elaborate procedures, patients will be drawn in by your expanding range of less painful procedures and more updated equipment. Promote your new equipment and procedures via your updated social media platform. One concern to consider when updating and expanding is to ensure you are not taking on more than your staff can handle.
Re-Evaluate Your Team
Evaluate your care team. When was the last time they had a training session or webinar on the latest and best dental practices? Continuous staff training is essential to providing quality dental care. Also, evaluate your team dynamics to see if everything is running smoothly behind the scenes. Consider having individual meetings to find out what is working well or not working well. You may need to make a difficult decision to cut someone from the team or hire fresh new employees for the betterment of the overall practice.
One option is to use a professional company to provide leadership training. Some companies, like Strategic Practice Solutions, also assist in hiring the right fit for your team. Contact them to re-vamp your dental practice in 2021!