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Dental Tribune Mar 2012


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Part six of my series of articles about how to improve your practice. In this article I discuss how your marketing activity should be integrated with your team.

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Dental Tribune Mar 2012

  1. 1. 20 Practice Management United Kingdom Edition March 5-11, 2012 Why improving your practice is a mystery - part six Jacqui Goss explains how to integrate your marketing within your team S ome words resonate when before but not extrinsically. The of the essential nature of some- dental practice marketing is up an excellent marketing plan you first hear them. Ex- Oxford English Dictionary defi- thing. conducted extrinsically. The and it is enacted with very little, trinsically had that effect nition of extrinsic is: coming or practice owner brings in a mar- if any, involvement of the rest of 2012me. I’d heard intrinsically on Sopro Life Ad (Dental Tribune)_2012 operating from outside; not part Sopro Life Ad (Dental Tribune) 30/01/2012 17:15 Page 1 I sometimes discover that keting consultant, they work the team. I’m not picking on dental practice principals. Similar ‘dis- connects’ happen in many other areas of businesses. How many times have you mentioned a widely (and expensively) adver- tised promotion to a sales assis- tant to be met with a blank look? Marketing consultants may ar- gue that the advertising mes- sage is not aimed at the social- economic groups into which a company’s sales assistants are grouped. True, but aren’t the staff an essential part of all mar- SOPROLIFE keting strategies? I think so. Returning to dental practic- es, I’ve come across instances DIAGNOSIS & TREATMENT of tooth whitening offers being advertised on a website with- out the reception staff knowing – making for an awkward con- versation when they get the first telephone enquiry. Oh, so this A patented new fluorescence article is another roasting of that technology which allows you to old chestnut good communica- tion? Er, no! ‘see the invisible’ – detection of occlusal or interproximal decay, Merely putting a ‘sticky’ on even in its earliest stages, which the receptionist’s computer say- ing ‘10% off Botox today’ does is often missed by X-rays. The not count as involving your fluorescence images produced front of house (FoH) team. What in treatment mode show a does count is making them feel like and act as ambassadors for differentiation between healthy your practice. and diseased tissue, while SoproLife images can be compared under L.I.F.E. Light Induced Fluorescence Evaluator, They speak with more poten- for the diagnosis and treatment of tooth decay tial and actual patients than you white light in daylight mode. All do, they have longer conversa- images can be evaluated with tions, they answer questions and magnification of 30x to 100x resolve queries, they handle the patients’ money and sort them and work seamlessly with Sopro out appointments at convenient Imaging software. times. Hey, they probably have more of a social life than you do and meet more potential pa- tients! Think of them as ambas- For a limited time only, get the sadors and already your market- USB Dock Station (shown right) ing plan starts looking better. absolutely FREE when you purchase the SoproLife. Before you even contact the dental marketing consultant, kick around some marketing ideas in a team meeting. Your front of house staff should be able to say where potential pa- tients learn about the practice and what questions they ask. This information could steer you towards advertising on Yell. com, social media, local news- papers or on the sides of buses. For further information: It could help you with your main 01480 477307 We to create marketing messages – Any- whereville’s friendliest dental | | practice; Children welcome at AN Other Practice; We open on Saturdays etc. You’ll wantdtuk0612_12-21.indd 20 29/02/2012 18:08:59
  2. 2. United Kingdom Edition March 5-11, 2012 Practice Management 21 to monitor the effectiveness of a day. News that the practice to do this but, as mentioned ening on Wednesdays via Twitter About the author your marketing and, again, the raised £500 for a local char- above, may not have the time and there’s no discernible in- A proven manager of change and driv- FoH team can help. How easy ity recently or a posting on (are you missing out on good crease in the number of enquir- er of dramatic business growth, Jac- qui Goss is the managing partner of is it to ask callers where they social media by a satisfied pa- patient communication if you ies on that day, maybe that’s not Yes!RESULTS. By using Yes!RESULTS heard about the practice? Do tient can be turned into mar- don’t have sufficient staff re- working. dental practices see an increase in keting messages by FoH staff source on the front desk?) to treatment plan take-up, improved callers give precise or vague an- patient satisfaction and more appoint- swers? Is it better to give them enthused with their ambassado- question patients and callers. More positively, if FoH staff ments resulting from general enquir- a choice of, say, three places rial role. Nevertheless, you should ask for notice a sudden increase in en- ies. Yes!RESULTS turns good practices into great practices. – from a friend, the website, their feedback at staff meetings. quiries about, say, tooth align- Jacqui Goss, Managing Partner, elsewhere? What, if anything, A feedback loop is desir- If during the month after an ment could this be the result Ashton House Sale Cheshire M33 6HE Tel: 08456 448066 do callers remember from your able if not essential. You need to advertisement was placed in of a television programme, an Mob: 07795 562617 advertisements? And is it all just know the reaction to your adver- a local newspaper no callers article in Hello! magazine or re- Email: so manic on the reception desk tisements, marketing messages, mention it, did it contain the cent tweets? Maybe you need to Website: Twitter: @Yesresults that another way of monitoring news items on the website and so right message? If you always market your ability to undertake the effectiveness of marketing on. The FoH staff are well placed promote discounted tooth whit- tooth alignment… DT should be found? Forearmed, you can now work with your marketing con- sultant. The best ones I’ve come across are not content to remain huddled away with the practice owner and, perhaps, the prac- tice manager. They tour the Seeing practice and talk to team mem- bers (and patients). They get a feel for the type of enquiries received and the sorts of ques- tions patients ask. is believing! Once you have a draft mar- keting plan, it’s time to involve your whole team again, includ- ing the FoH staff. Not only do you want their comments and feed- back but you also need their en- gagement. Give them market- ing messages they can’t believe in and they’ll sound like the employees of large corporations reciting words as required by faceless head office staff. Think: “Have a nice day,” “Please wait Unique three tone and the hostess will seat you,” et cetera, ad nauseam. plaque disclosing gel FoH staff don’t need a copy of the full marketing plan but that identifies new, they do need an itinerary of key events – dates advertisements are to be placed, for example. mature and acid They should also be told (in producing biofilms. good time) when special offers are available. We all like to hear a bit of inside information so if, for instance, a patient is chat- ting at the reception desk and tooth whitening is mentioned, a receptionist could say (with em- Tri Plaque ID Gel phasis): “I’d make sure you look on our website tomorrow, if I were you. Here’s the address.” from GC. Similarly, they might say: “It’s Mouth Cancer Ac- tion Month starting soon and we usually have special offers for that.” I’m sure your marketing IDENTIFY PREVENT plan will include posting news regularly on your website and Part of GC‘s social media pages. Unless you Minimum Intervention program. have daily ‘huddles’ (short, in- RESTORE RECALL formal meetings for staff, in- cluding the FoH team, with, GC EUROPE N.V. say, the practice manager, Head Office business manager and patient Tel. + coordinator) communicating these postings could be time- consuming and problematic. GC UNITED KINGDOM Ltd. I suggest you encourage FoH Tel. +44.1908.218.999 staff to (briefly) check your website and/or social me- dia pages online at least oncedtuk0612_12-21.indd 21 29/02/2012 18:09:05