Just like an old tape recorder, it appears life has a pause button.
In mid-March the country hit the pause button on time and your dental practice.
Thankfully though, just like the tape recorder, there are other buttons that allow us to carry out other tasks. And while society cannot rewind or fast-forward, it can play.
You can take action and ensure your practice continues to adapt and evolve to the new circumstances brought about by COVID-19.
One of the best ways you can keep moving forward right now is to communicate. And the great news is that there are more ways than ever to do so as the world has begun to embrace distanced ways of connecting with each other.
So you have even more ways to reach out to new and existing patients, via social media, telephone, website, printed media, window posters, billboards, email, zoom calls etc.
If we could fast forward to autumn, I honestly believe we will see a dispersion of patients and that those who regularly and proactively communicated during this time will win over a whole new segment of the community. And their reviews would be:
- the dentist down the road just recorded a fun video, it was really good
- the dentist down the road helped my sister with tooth repair kits
- the dentist down the road showed patients how to repair a tooth at home
- the dentist down the road dropped off a prescription to my mum
- the dentist down the road were phoning their patients, my brother told me
- the dentist down the road have a priority list for their patients
- the dentist down the road have a whole plan in place for reopening
- the dentist down the road looks very modern
- the dentist down the road seems to be fun and really cares.
The list goes on and on…you see word of mouth travels far and wide. A whole new world awaits, with new patients dispersed into practices who communicated and kept finding new ways to move forwards. You might think you are only communicating with your existing patients. But with word of mouth and the many devices at your disposal you just never know who is listening, who is thinking of moving dentist, etc. Communicating now will stand you in good stead for the long-term recovery from COVID-19.
Because although your daily clinical dentistry practise may have had to pause (and that’s all it is… just a pause), there are still plenty of reassuring and informative messages you can be sending to your patients and the local community. For example:
- we are here for you
- when we re-open…
- our re-opening plan is…
- members will be on our priority list, join today
- when we reopen soon, we will be taking on dental membership patients
- we can’t wait to get back to our unique style of independent care
- we can’t wait to get back to caring and hearing all your real-life stories
- we miss our patients, the banter and your smiling faces
- we have been receiving a high volume of patients wanting to join us.
I only wish I had a fast-forward button to see into the future and how many patients have moved to your practice, you know, the one that pressed play when others paused.
About Gary Nelson
Gary Nelson is an Area Manager with Practice Plan, the UK’s leading provider of practice-branded patient membership plans. Gary has successfully run his own business for ten years prior to joining the team at Practice Plan.
If you’re looking for more independence from the NHS or want to transform the profitability of your business through the combination of a well-populated plan and personalised support, call 01691 684165 or visit practiceplan.co.uk