How to get more patients in a dental office: A 7 step guide


In order to build a thriving dental practice, you need to continuously acquire new patients, however figuring out how to get more patients in a dental office is often harder than it looks. 

To help you learn how, I’ve put together a 7-step guide for you to follow.

#1. Understand your patients’ needs and expectations

In order to acquire new dental patients, you need to provide exceptional customer service. To do that you need to understand your patients’ needs and expectations. One of the easiest ways to do this is to conduct patient satisfaction surveys to understand what bothers your patients about your quality of care and customer service.

Another great way to figure out your patients’ needs and expectations is to monitor social media platforms and review websites to see what your patients are talking about and your overall perceived online reputation. By aggregating your notes on all the replies and responses, you can get a fairly good idea about the areas you need to improve.

#2. Conduct sentiment analysis for a deeper understanding

In order to learn how to get more patients it’s important to empathize with your patients about their concerns so you can understand their emotions in a more friendly and accurate way. While directly talking with your patients is one way to do this, it’s unlikely they will feel comfortable enough to be honest with you and it’s difficult to accurately record each of their responses.

Instead use surveys powered by sentiment analysis software so you can not only understand your patients’ emotions but can also keep a report of them and draw conclusions. 

For example, you can use questions such as the likelihood they would recommend you to their friends/relatives based on their experience using a scale 0 to 10. This type of question will likely elicit an emotional response that can be analyzed for sentiment. 

#3. Identify your target audience based on demographics

While analyzing the data and information you get from your surveys you should also make note of your patients’ demographic like age, gender, location, etc. This will help to create and execute very specific marketing campaigns and also optimize your online marketing activities.

#4. Create patient referral programs

Referrals from current patients are the best way to acquire new patients and also the cheapest. While you can simply rely on providing great customer service to your current clients to generate referrals, another way is to create a patient referral program to incentivize your happy patients to refer you to their friends, families and colleagues and get your name out in front of more prospective patients who are hearing such positive reviews about your work.

#5. Build strong relationships with referring practices

Building strong relationships with other specialists and other referring practices will help you get more patients to your clinic. It will take time to build a strong reputation among referring practices, but by ensuring an optimal physician-to-physician communication and privileged care to the patients referred by them, you can easily secure a strong and long-lasting relationship with them. These can often turn into a long lasting resource for delivering you more clients that doesn’t require any financial investment only maintaining your relationships with other experts.

#6. Create a robust online presence

Whether you are starting a new dental practice or have been a dental practice owner for several years, it is critical to spend the time and energy to improve your online presence, including your dental practice local SEO.

For those unfamiliar with the term SEO, it’s short for Search Engine Optimization and is a generic term for all the methods you can use to improve your business’s online visibility and ensure it appears in search results on search engines like Google.

Ensuring a robust online presence and strong SEO practices makes it easier for potential patients to find your dental practice and gives them all of the information they need to know about your business without having to look too hard. 

#7. Get involved in your community

One of the best was to acquire new dental patients is to get involved in your community. This can be done in lots of different ways, such as donating your time or services to less fortunate families.

Another way is to sponsor a local sports team or volunteering at a community event.  Giving back not only feels good, but people remember, helping to boost the image and profile of your dental clinic, which in turn will lead to new patients and referrals.

To learn more about how to get more patients in a dental office you should download my book DentalEase – the essential guide to building the stress-free and profitable dental practice of your dreams. The first chapter is free to download and will give you even more insight into how to create a successful dental practice.

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