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Building Relationships Builds Value for Patients


It’s the age-old question of every parent (and dental practices): how do you get this person to want what they need?


Patients routinely want great results; beautiful smiles, straight teeth, insurance companies who pay for everything. But they rarely want what they need; a root canal, extraction, or in-depth cleaning and the cost associated with those procedures.


The dilemma becomes how to convince those dental patients to see the value in those procedures that they simply don’t want but desperately need.


Finding the Value in the Dentist’s Office

Everything, including and especially the first interactions a patient has in the dental office with dental hygienists, dental assistants, or the dentist themselves, has value.


When interacting with a customer for the first time in the office, take time to evaluate what the customer is searching for and what they value. Maybe they’re searching for pain relief, a brighter whiter smile, or someone who just takes their insurance. No matter what the customer is searching for, realizing what they value can help you direct them toward what they need.


Something as simple as cleaning is never "just" a cleaning. By providing the basics of routine dental care, customers can prevent those more serious needs. Everything said about these services will reinforce to the customer whether they're important or not. Utilize a language that emphasizes each routine service provided. Without even realizing it, customers will start to associate the value of that service with the care they receive at the practice.


A Whole Team Effort

Building a customer’s trust takes time and is a whole team effort. Each person in the office is a cog in a machine, not a freelancer out on their own.


From the time a customer walks into the office to the time they leave, they interact with dental hygienists, dental assistants, receptionists, and the dentist themselves. At each step, a relationship must be built. To acquire a customer’s trust and help provide them with excellent service, a relationship of trust and value must be built.


As the customer goes throughout the office, each person they encounter should express concern for their healthy mouths. From the smallest routine procedure to the biggest complication, setting the expectation for the customer to see and hear is vital to them wanting what they need.

In a gig economy, it can be easy to focus on the next task rather than on building a relationship. But caring for the individual and building a relationship with them will keep them coming back for the great service and value.


Takeaway

Each dental assistant, dental hygienist, dentist, and office member is part of a great team. This team has been assembled to care for customers with dedication, value, and respect. Rather than operating as a gig economy, moving from job to job with an eye only for payment, dental offices should be focusing on building relationships with their customers. By creating trust and respect, customers see the value of dental procedures that they may have avoided and willingly schedule them.


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