Attracting a new patient can cost five times as much as maintaining a relationship with an existing patient. Implementing this Continuing C.A.R.E. System will help you retain valuable patients and keep them returning – on a regular basis – for essential dental hygiene and preventive care appointments.
Investing in a patient retention strategy such as this Continuing C.A.R.E. System will keep your profits consistent and decrease the amount of time and money spent on advertising for new patients. Never assume that an overdue patient won’t return to your practice. Many times, patients appreciate your efforts to reconnect with them. When patients know they matter to you, their loyalty to your dental practice will grow. The Continuing C.A.R.E. System consists of four concepts rooted in effective communication: Consistent Communication, Advanced Scheduling, Reasonable Payment Options, and Efficient Planning. Combined, these steps will help motivate inactive patients and revitalize your dental practice.
Rule One: Consistent Communication
Establishing a system of connecting with your patients is essential to building and maintaining relationships.
Rule Two: Advanced Scheduling
Make every attempt to schedule the next dental hygiene appointment at the end of each dental hygiene preventive appointment.
Rule Three: Reasonable Payment Options
It is possible that many of your patients today are experiencing financial challenges and educating them about your dental practice’s flexible payment options is essential to bringing them back for regular preventive care appointments.
Rule Four: Effective Planning
Create a plan outlining daily or weekly responsibilities with the end goal of contacting inactive patients and scheduling appointments.
THE 7 KEYS TO Reactivate and Retain Your Patients. Show You C.A.R.E. !
- Follow up with patients by phone as soon as possible to schedule their next visit.
- If there is no response to a phone call, send the first letter.
- Send the second letter if patients do not schedule within 6 months – if not sooner.
- Send the third letter with a SASE so patients can easily communicate why they are not responding the phone calls and/or letters.
- Please note: Many patients may desire emails or text messages instead of a phone call or in addition to phone calls. Contact patients using their preferred method of communication. With an appointment is still unscheduled always follow up with a letter.
- After 18 months of follow up calls, letters, emails and/or text messages without a response, this patient should now be considered inactive.
- New patients are the lifeline of your dental practice but keeping the old is much easier and more cost effective than brining in the new! “One is silver and the other is gold!” Effective communication and this Continuing CARE Plan will keep your schedule full!
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