3 tips to get patients back in the office

June 10, 2014

Every practice has those patients who need a little extra prodding to schedule visits on a regular basis.

Every practice has those patients who need a little extra prodding to schedule visits on a regular basis.

Even when patients do come in faithfully every six months, there are still times when an additional service or follow-up may slip their mind, or they simply might not know about all of the services the practice offers. With both types of patients, it makes sense to keep in touch regularly and promote the practice in a way that is both unobtrusive and helps them learn about what your practice has to offer. But for office staff, these tasks can be time-consuming and easier said than done.

For just over a year, our practice has been using RevenueWell, a practice marketing and patient communications suite. This service automates a long list of tasks for staff members, while at the same time helps to increase revenue and gives patients tools to easily get in touch with the office using the methods they prefer.

1. Automated appointment reminders

RevenueWell lets patients tell you how they like to be contacted-email, text message, phone or regular mail. With that information, the service can automatically send appointment reminders to patients to give them a little extra help remembering their appointment. For patients who have enabled text messaging, the service can even send them a final reminder one or two hours prior to their appointment. We’ve had many patients tell us that the text message made the difference in helping them remember their appointment on a busy day.

2. Customized marketing campaigns

The service comes with a library of professionally written email and direct mail campaigns. Practices can also create their own campaigns to promote specific services. Our practice has seen great success with promotions for Invisalign, and we’ve also done campaigns promoting Botox, which is a service that many patients didn’t realize we offered.

For added convenience, campaigns can be planned and prescheduled months in advance. This lets the practice manager easily organize, for example, a quarter’s worth of promotions, set them up quickly in the system, and then not worry about it for the rest of the quarter.

Click here to learn how RevenueWell makes follow-ups a snap.

3. Automatic treatment plan follow-ups

It’s easy for patients to forget about a treatment plan, but it can be obtrusive for the office to contact the patient to find out their status. RevenueWell automatically monitors our practice management software and sends patients a reminder about their treatment plan if it has been presented but not scheduled.

This approach allows us to stay in contact with patients and gently help them remember their dental needs. The revenue generated by this feature alone has added up to more than $18,000 over the past year in our practice.

In our experience with RevenueWell, we’ve seen that pretty much any marketing campaign or communication we send helps remind patients to get back in touch with us. They may not even be calling about the specific promotion we’ve sent, but just seeing our email in their inbox triggers the thought, “Oh, I’m probably due for an appointment.”

It also helps position our practice as tech-savvy and convenient for patients, since we can communicate with them in the method they prefer most. The fact that all of these features are largely automated and require little time from the office staff is extra icing on the cake, and further reinforces that using this service has been a great decision for our practice.

This article originally appeared in the April 2014 issue of Dental Products Report. For more great articles about products in action, click here to subscribe to DPR: http://bit.ly/17ocF5z