Are you using your patient lists to your best advantage?

Do you want to bring more high-value patients to your dental chair for lucrative treatments? Have you considered how much you are missing out on by not paying attention to the leaks in your marketing?  The answers could mean the difference between a good life and the life that you want; the 3 Day Practice lifestyle.

We discuss in this blog how five leaks which, once fixed, can potentially increase you income next month by more than £6000. But as most dentists don’t know what these five lists are, let alone how to go about fixing them, we will show you how.   Better still, we will encourage your practice to become automated so you can be confident you are not missing out on a patient who needs braces or implants if you are not watching your computer every five minutes.

These five lists are crucial to your dental practice and are simple to make but easy to break:

  • Your potential patient list.
  • Your active inquiry list.
  • Your inactive inquiry list.
  • Your missed consultation list.
  • Your quote was given/no sale list.

Your ability to control and increase your income is in direct correlation to how effectively you communicate with your five lists.  If you do high-value treatments, such as implants or orthodontics, then you need to get into gear and activate all your five lists. Let’s look at them individually.

Your potential patient list is made up of people who are just browsing on your website. They are researching dentists but are not ready to commit to making an appointment. As they do not know you, how can they trust you?  These potential patients bounce off your website and, in Google Analytics, you will create a high bounce rate and no goal conversions.  At 3 Day Practice, we see so many clinic websites without these fundamentals in place. One way to encourage potential patients to engage with you is to offer a free guide, or information pack, explaining who you are, what your practice offers, what makes you different and  examples of your cases. You need to start a relationship, creating trust.

Your active inquiry list is composed of people who asked a question but didn’t book. Again, most potential patients just get a one-off email response.  They might get a templated email response but are never followed up. If somebody calls your practice but doesn’t book, no email is collected to send them more information. These are people who reached out to you but they did not engage further.  It is crucial to collect their email information and follow up with them, explaining what you can do about their inquiry, what makes you different and examples of your cases, actively starting a relationship with a future client.

Your inactive inquiry list is made up of people that got a one-off response in the past, or called and never received any follow-up. Ignoring these people is a huge waste of an opportunity and it is critical you follow up with these potential patients. If they called you they must be interested.  They did not telephone by chance.  But, if they did not follow through, it is either because the time was not right, or somebody else is offering a solution they prefer. It’s frequently one of these two alternatives. You can reconnect with them by email or SMS to find out if they are still looking for treatment and explain what you offer, in relation to their initial inquiry. Let them know who you are and what makes you different. You need to reawaken their interest and start a patient relationship maximising your opportunity.

Your missed consultation list are the people who took the time to come and see you, or booked an appointment with you, but never followed through for multiple reasons. They may have been too busy or may have consulted other providers. By not following up with these possible patients several times,  you are breaking the connection and wasting the increased chance. You need to reactivate their interest and start a relationship. You need to contact them again, by email or SMS, to find out if they are still looking for treatment, explain what you offer and proceed from there.

The quote was given, no sale list comprises of people who came to visit you; they actually traveled to see you, but didn’t go ahead with the treatment at that time, for whatever reason. There could have been a change in their circumstance, the timing might not have been right, or they could have gone for a number of consultations and never followed up with you. By contacting them, you can establish whether or not they are still looking for treatment and make an offer to tempt them in. If you don’t, you will lose the opportunity.

With these lists in place, you can achieve more sales this week, next week and predictably every month.  For example, two weeks ago one of our team members spent four hours working on just one of our lists. She was able to generate over £6,300 of extra revenue in fourteen days which, without her assistance with fixing the leak, we would have lost.

When most of your overheads in your practice are already paid, the majority of any extra revenue you bring in is gross profit. The true scale of loss with the five leaks can mean the difference between a good life and a very good life.  Imagine, each patient is worth around £2000 for braces or somewhere in the region of £5000 for implant dentures. If you lose twenty patients for braces you forego £40,000 worth of extra revenue, and twenty lost patients a year for implant dentures means a staggering £100,000 worth of lost revenue. These five leaks could be costing your practice up to £140,000 a year. It could be even more.

The true scale of your loss is more likely to be in the region of  60%.  An extra £84,000 of personal income could mean four luxury holidays, a deposit for an investment property, a new car,  or investment in a new business. It can also mean more time with your family, doing the things you want to do, which makes for a good work and home life balance. By fixing the five leaks, you can get the most out of what you do.

We know the importance of contacting these five lists systematically, regularly and automatically.  A staff member, employed to work on your lists would cost you £1,500 a month but could generate somewhere in the region of £6,300 a month, is a worthwhile addition to your practice.  But imagine if you could contact your lists automatically, if you could, for the most part, automate your lists, then you could make an even greater saving. An existing staff member could oversee your lists while they run automatically.

Automatic or manual; the bottom line is to plug the leaks.  If you work on your five lists or instruct a member of staff to do this, you should see immediate, positive results and a welcome increase in next month’s turnover. For further advice check out the resource library.

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