I worked in sales for about a decade since I turned twenty and I started in selling alarms door to door and worked my way up to enterprise software sales. Something I learned in sales was called, “Pre-Suasion.” Dr. Cialdini recently wrote a book about it, but salespeople (at least great ones) have known it for years. The premise of pre-suasion was that your current relationship with your patient or customer was sailed from how you communicated yourself earlier in your relationship. We would use pre-suasion to eliminate specific objections before they even come up. So if a company has a common objection that’s giving its salespeople trouble, you can change the beginning of your sales process in a way that reduces or eliminates that objection being brought up.
A perfect example is luxury cars. A Rolls Royce Ghost has the same body chastise as a BMW 7 series, it’s arguably the same car with slightly more luxurious features and a different logo; yet, it costs about 3x. How do Rolls Royce consumers (proudly) justify paying triple for a similar car and why does price rarely come up as an objection when buying a Rolls Royce compared to a BMW? The answer lies in how they communicated with their prospects up to that point
The way Rolls Royce markets and treats prospects guides them to expect to overpay for the product and prevents that objection from coming up in the first place. This doesn’t mean your marketing for your dental practice should scream high price, but it’s a strategy you can use to further align the patients you want to attract, how you want them to behave, and how you provide service to your community.
When you’re facing adversity around your marketing or growing your dental practice, the first way you should look toward overcoming that problem is preventing it from happening again. An example would be low appointment attendance rates. If your patients aren’t showing up on time, there’s likely not much you can do about it after it happens. There’s going to be at least a six month gap until the next time that patient sees you and it’s unlikely they will remember anything on their next visit.
The solution in this case would be to either change the messages you're sending in your marketing and/or scheduling training with your front desk staff. Changing the way you're communicating with your patients by removing anything with the impression that being late or no showing is acceptable and adding communication that stresses that importance of showing up a few minutes early is the most effective way to solve this problem.
The way you communicate with your patients has an immeasurable impact on their perception before they first call your practice. The messages on most of the marketing I see on a daily basis commoditizes me into a number which in turn into an invite for me to commoditize that business. Is that the best way to invite someone to your dental practice? Probably not… actually it’s positively not even close to the best way to market your dental practice.
The marketing philosophy you should have for your practice should treat people like people and should be consistent across every platform you use. You should invite people in a way you would invite a neighbor or someone you hold in high regard rather than reflecting car dealership commercials. The reason this is important is because of the direction dentistry is heading. Competition could increase or decrease drastically and you need to be the dominating dental practice in your area to live the dental dream.