Building Relationships…Priceless!

    July 24, 2003

There are many things you can and will do along the way to building your practice, but few things will have the impact on your practice as that of building your patient relationships.

In our fast paced society of computers, voice mail web-sites and e-mail some think you don’t have to “interact”. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Web sites, e-mail and voice mail are the reasons you must build relationships! Think about it. Don’t you absolutely hate answering machines or voice mail when calling a business? There is no contact.

For example, how many times when you are “on hold” or “pressing 1,2 or 3” have you thought, “If I could just speak to someone!” or “What happened to actually speaking to a real person?”

You want contact, contact builds relationships and relationships build patient loyalty. Offer good patient relations and great service. Make it easy for your patients to do business with you.

Satisfied patients will refer their friends and associates to businesses that have provided them with great service!

Build trust. Let your patients get to know you and you get to know your patients. Ask them what they want to see, what they would like added, what could you do to improve your service or what would be of benefit to your patient. Find out what you could do or offer differently.

The critical part of building relationships begins after you have made the “sale” (financial arrangement).

The “quality” of service you provide during and after the visit is what builds loyalty and lifetime relationships with your patients. Quality service produces returning patients, or continual referring, the lifeline of your practice.

How would your patients rate the “quality” of your service? Make no mistake about it, it is the patient who determines the “quality” of your service.

No matter how good your “work” is, your patient will rate the quality of your service based on….How you treated them during their visit, how you resolved their problem and what benefits they received or will receive as a result of doing business with you.

Testimonials are another way to relay your practice benefits and to build relationships. Ask for testimonials when cases have been completed. What made them chose your practice? What did they think about it? How was their service? Find out their likes and dislikes.

Make “ear” contact with your patients by developing the art of listening. Listen to what is not being said in addition to what is being said. The purpose of listening is to gain new insight and information.

At least once a week, include a survey-testimony for each patient seen that day. This will make it easy for your patients to give you their feedback. Very often, the information you receive back will show the direction to take your practice.

Be personable. Your “voice” on the phone, on your web site, even in your e-mail, represents the personality of your practice… friendly, enthusiastic and confident or…distant, mechanical and cold.

Providing outstanding services builds your reputation and establishes you as reliable and trustworthy, two of the main ingredients needed to build relationships!

So remember, a New Patient initial visit may be $255 and your crowns …$910, but….

Building Relationships….Priceless!

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