A visit to the dental surgeon can be an intimidating experience for a patient. But of course, you want them to return to your practice. Both so they can continue to receive good care and so you can succeed as a dental provider.
Help your patients feel comfortable by creating a simple process that begins at booking and extends beyond the practice. Nerves and fears are natural—find strategies that both work for you and make your patients want to come back. This will grow your practice and help your team succeed at what they do best! Here are five ways to increase patient retention and provide patients with an incredible experience during their OMS visits.
Effortless scheduling, updates, and reminders
We’re all busy. That’s why communication is absolutely vital to keep your patients coming back. In fact, 42% of patients say they would feel more engaged if they were contacted between visits. Take advantage of the wonders of technology and reach out using the client’s preferred method, whether via text, phone call, or email. Using patient engagement software streamlines the complicated ways that OMS practices work.
Harness the power of reminders
Super accessible communication lets your patients know exactly what to expect. Clarity is vital for patient retention! That’s why personalized and thoughtful messaging makes your patients more comfortable. Intiveo also has the tools to bridge any language barriers you may be experiencing. Send out reminders in all different languages to help non-native English speakers remember their appointments and fully understand the scope of their care.
In this day and age, we could all use a kind appointment reminder. Reminders also decrease no-shows and increase confirmation rates so that you can stay on top of your busy scheduling system. Could one software possibly do all this? You betcha! Patient engagement software can easily be tailored to all your unique OMS demands.
It helps your team as well
Furthermore, creating resources that work hard just how you want them to makes the admin parts of your staff’s jobs easier. That way they can spend more time building relationships and cultivating communication that fosters patient retention. All in all, this works to alleviate stress on your team and reassures patients they are in capable, attentive hands. An easy to use interface works well for busy parents, older adults, and young professionals alike. Everyone wins!
Dental care doesn’t end when we leave the chair. The complex nature of OMS procedures means there’s often aftercare involved and it’s equally important as the actual procedure. Even if aftercare is minimal, it’s important to pay attention to your patients after they’ve exited your practice. Send all your patients home feeling safe and looked after with tailored information on what to expect next.
What does follow-up look like?
For example, that can include aftercare instructions, well-timed follow-up calls, text messages, and emails. Personalized follow-up looks different for everyone who visits your practice—sophisticated patient communication software makes it easy to understand each individual’s post-operation demands. In addition to putting your patient at ease, customizable communication provides essential intel for surgeons and staff. The more you know, the better!
Build up the service you provide using the information you receive. Create successful outcomes for both patient and provider when you pay attention to everyone’s needs in a genuine way. Plus, personalized follow-up encourages returning business by helping patients feel familiar with you and your team. It’s like going home to a familiar face.
Educational content, too!
Personalized follow-up also looks like using educational content. Videos illustrating procedures use easy-to-understand visuals that illustrate complicated procedures. The right communication software can aid in designing PDFs or brochures if you still want to hand out hard copies for people to take home.
Additionally, step-by-step aftercare generated by the software can also answer patients’ questions post-procedure. Knowledge is power – the better informed your patients are, the happier they are! They’ll want to return for further care down the road because they know you arm them with all the information they could need.
Utilize patient feedback
Did you know that satisfaction surveys are a powerful tool for implementing change or enhancing what you’re already doing?
Studies show that people rely upon reviews to make buying decisions, and it’s no different at the dentist. With an automated online review tool, it’s effortless to gather feedback from your patients post-appointment. This handy tool prompts patients to share their thoughts without putting any extra work on your plate. Give it a go and see how its many features can benefit your practice!
Patients with positive reviews are asked to write a public review while concerned patients can provide feedback directly to you. You’ll receive insight to help you move in the right direction with your practice. Take what your patients are telling you to heart—and to team meetings!
Reviews really matter
All the information garnered through feedback applies to your entire practice and can be valuable for training or tweaking how your practice does things. There is also an option to use automated surveys to get more detailed info. These surveys gather data such as overall satisfaction scores and can even be personalized to specific appointment types.
It’s undoubtedly about more than just being a better, more attentive dentist, feedback matters for patients. Allowing your patients to advocate for themselves and their needs builds a lasting relationship encouraging patient retention.
OMS patients want to feel seen, heard, and understood, like in any medical procedure. Providing that option can calm their nerves about future appointments and give your team growth goals to work with.
When was the last time you went anywhere without reading a review? Encouraging your patients to use platforms like Facebook, Google Reviews, or Yelp can get your good name out there. Much like internally-received reviews, online reviews provide ideas and inspiration for improvements. Positive public survey results or reviews can also help former patients return for further care. Overall, word of mouth (even on the internet) provides so much growth potential and patient retention for your practice.
Create a comfortable environment
Making your patients happy and comfortable once they check in for a medical procedure is crucial for any service provider. It’s no different for OMS practices. And, when well-executed, it goes a long way. Moreover, creating a calming space for your visitors makes them want to come back. Up-to-date magazines, fresh water, and a personal check-in all improve patient retention. Be the awesome dentist with a TV on the ceiling! Entertainment and amenities make for a peaceful atmosphere that people want to return to. As a matter of fact, real life dentists can attest to this, too! Take Dr. Peggy Brown of New Brunswick.
“We give our patients the VIP treatment. We make them feel special by getting to know them first. We share laughs and stories so they feel like friends coming over for a visit.” says Dr. Brown. “We offer refreshments, pillows, blankets, hot towels with essential oils and lumbar support. During treatment, patients lay back and watch a video of their favourite destination while listening to relaxing music. It’s like a first-class trip.”
Build a happy place for your patients
Remember, personal touches can help your patients feel special. The reassurance they already have via easy scheduling, regular and helpful reminders, and personalized care creates a cozy feeling of belonging.
Cool swag bags for them to leave with also go a long way! Not only is it nice to get a little something after a sometimes scary dental procedure, the items you include encourage continued at-home care. Another great way to encourage patients to continue healthy dental habits at home is through automated procedure-based messaging. It’s hard to remember everything the dentist or surgeon tells you, so providing after-care information that’s easy to access helps your patients even after they’ve left your practice.
Provide additional resources
Remember when you were a child, went to the dentist, and left with a lollipop? Looking back, that kind of seemed wrong, right? Sugar aside, the spirit of the gesture was there! Your tooth fairy just wants to show they care. That’s why we work hard to help OMS practices continually give back to their deserving patients—lollipop or not.
Two-way chat via Intiveo’s platform lets patients and dentists chat in real-time. This feature allows care providers to address current concerns and questions. A direct and consistent line of communication throughout the process helps make your patients know that someone is there to talk to. Importantly, two-way chat is easy for anyone to use. It’s as simple as typing in a box. Great in this modern era where many of your patients are busy and multitasking at work and home. Being able to reach out without spending a prolonged period on the phone encourages patients to talk to you as well. Additionally, the more you chat and understand what patients want, the better you build your relationship.
Establishing trust and reliable communication with two-way chat is a great way to increase your patient retention. It even acts as a tremendous record-keeping system to refer back to during future visits or care. Also, this is great for your staff, who can review chat history before contacting patients for any reason. Knowing about your patients is a special personalized touch that makes their surgery far less nerve-wracking. It’s a simple concept that can be easily implemented. That is to say—when someone is there to talk to you and address your needs promptly and discreetly, patients want to return (or at least feel slightly better about their next procedure).
Elevate your OMS practice with Intiveo
Intiveo supports an excellent, streamlined experience at your OMS practice. We know that OMS practices have a unique level of communication needs that span the patient process. That’s why our offerings are personalized to your ever evolving needs. Specialized software makes the process easier in every possible way. It’s as simple as that.
It can be a lot to handle for patients and administrative staff alike. Personalized follow-ups to satisfaction surveys (and all the administrative bits in between,) helps your admin staff and patients handle the ins-and-outs of the OMS process. Use Intiveo’s tools to their full potential to establish your practice as reliable, easy to reach, and transparent. Then, watch your community and credibility grow with these tools. Give your staff the tools they need to provide patients with the best care and keep them coming back!
It’s not rocket science – be kind, communicate, and listen. Using advanced software like ours makes the patient-forward process easier. If you have any questions, let us know. We’re always here to help! Book a meeting with us to discover all Intiveo has to offer.