You have heard of spa dentistry and cosmetic dentistry, now you are going to hear of “Concierge Dentistry”.
You will be pleased to know that it does not take much effort or much money to establish yourself as a dentist who practices Concierge Dentistry. It will also be of great interest to you to learn that if you became known as part of this elite group of dentists – the concierge dentist; you will be able to command a huge influx of patients to your dental practice.
The concierge dentist is able to generate huge business by attracting new patients to the practice and preventing existing patients from ever leaving.
So what are we talking about………..
Concierge dentistry is a new philosophy of the way in which we approach the delivery of dentistry. It is about providing services that are akin to those you may find in a five-star hotel establishment. E.g. The Ritz or The Savoy. It is all about raising the standards of not only the actual treatments we carry out on our patients but also the way we provide those services. It is customer service on an entirely new level.
Concierge Dentistry is a way of developing a completely unique advantage over all other competitors. It facilitates the development of a unique selling proposition (USP). This is simply because your patients actually enjoy the entire experience from first entering your practice to benefiting from the services of health you provide your patients with. It is a sure way of creating raving fans of your dental practice. What better way is there to grow your practice and increase your revenues at the same time? You will be in actual fact developing a self perpetuating referral system for growth and productivity.
What is the concierge dentist?
A concierge dentist is one that does one of two things in everything they do. In fact, the entire structure of the practice is organised to accommodate and facilitate these aspects:
- Make it easier for the patient to have the dentistry. This can be done by things like providing various ways of affording the treatment so that it doesn’t become so much of a burden, or providing babysitting for their children whilst they have the dentistry, or providing lunch if they have a busy schedule. It can be practically any errand that they find difficult to fit into their hectic schedules. The true concierge behaviour makes things easier and better for your patients. There are now even companies you can hire which will facilitate you in providing concierge dentistry.
- Make the experience of the treatment they have, a far superior one than they could have ever imagined. The aim is to more than exceed their expectations. This could involve a high level of service like providing associated beauty treatments which they can have done at the same time or after the dental work. Another idea would be to use aromatherapy, acupuncture or other similar practices to enhance the dental experience to one of complete relaxation and wellbeing.
Why does it matter so much?
Look at the following situations:
- Your competitors may be providing dentistry in exactly the same way as you. So how can concierge dentistry matter? Other practices may be continuing in this manner for so long but what happens when one of them raises their level of patient care and, as a result, raises the expectations of patients across the board. If you continue as you have always done, your rivals will take a greater chunk of the market share.
- You feel you can easily compete on factors other than the patient level of service, like price. Indeed, you may believe (mistakenly) that if you raise your level of patient service your costs will rise and so must your prices. This may result in a drop in revenues. Alternatively, you may have to increase your fees. This you believe will result in a loss of patients. This will actually become a self-fulfilling prophecy. Also the evidence completely contradicts this belief. Virtually, every survey of consumer motivation puts “price” below other critical factors like quality, “value for money”, courteous service and rapid availability. Excellent patient customer service will enable you to market more efficiently and also set better fees.
- You may feel you don’t have the need to compete because your services are more in demand than that of others. You may be in demand now, but will you be in demand forever? Life changes and other more innovative and enthusiastic setups will take your place. It’s only a matter of time. Patient buying behaviours change with the media focus and trends. If you don’t move with the times, they’ll remove you!!!
- You feel your dentistry is excellent and that alone will attract more patients to you. Excellent clinical skills are important but they are only half of the equation. People don’t understand how good you are until after they’ve had the treatment. The buying decision is made before. Concierge dentistry will help patients make decisions more in your favour.
How do I get into this elitist group?
This really shouldn’t be a consideration. Any practice can perform some level of Concierge Dentistry. Any small change or behaviour that can be provided for your patients will be one step closer to propelling your practice to another level. The more you do the better the rewards you will enjoy. This is a concept that will allow you to attract the appropriate type of patients which will ultimately allow you to practice dentistry the way you have always wanted.
A key strategy to understand would be the one employed in the hotel industry or restaurant industry. These businesses tend to rely entirely on customer service and they understand exactly how to make someone feel really welcome. Although this is not always the case, every experience you have is one to learn from. These businesses die very quickly if they do not maintain a certain level of customer service.
What will it do for you?
- Attract a greater number of new patients to you.
- Keep your existing patients from leaving you.
- Increase patient loyalty.
- Increase the number of patients going ahead with your treatment recommendations.
- Increase the amount of production in your practice.
- Increased revenues and greater growth.
- Happy team, happy patients and happy you.
Practical steps to becoming a Concierge Dentist……
- Brainstorm with your entire team on how you can do the following:
- Make your patients experience fantastic.
- Help them in any errands or concierge-type service.
- Create and write down in the correct steps the experience your patients will undergo from the moment they enter your practice.
- Take your team out for a learning experience to a 5-star restaurant or hotel establishment for lunch. After the experience, get them to write down all the positives and negatives that they felt whilst there. See how to incorporate the positive into your practice and how to avoid the negatives. This needs to be done as an entire team training exercise. If they are all involved in creating “Concierge Dentistry” within your practice, it will be more successful.
- Create an establishment that looks the part. For this, you don’t necessarily have to spend a huge amount. You could do simple things like the use of throws over seating or artificial flowers or interesting paintings. It is possible to make your practice look more inviting at little cost. However, the return on investment you get will be phenomenal.
- You could designate a key role of “Dental Concierge” to a member of your team. This person must be capable and want to do it. You will be astounded how much your patients will want to never leave you, simply because of this attention you give them.
Studies have consistently shown that in any buying decision, 80% of the decision rests upon how that product or service was delivered to them, and only 20% to do with the actual item itself. Therefore, how your dentistry is being provided becomes very significant. The entire experience for your patients becomes a major decision-maker or breaker. This being true your practice would be able to command higher revenues, simply because the delivery process has been elevated, by concierge dentistry. A greater proportion of your patients will say “YES” to your treatment recommendations. They will want to experience and enjoy all the added bonuses of benefits you provide them with as part of the whole dental care programme. Try it and see – money will not be a significant consideration for your patients, if you are providing the best care in the best way you possibly can. Let your patients experience your best.
Concierge dentistry is a concept which any business should have within their practice. Embracing this concept will bring about a multitude of benefits. The main benefit to you is an increase in production and revenues. This is because more people will want to have their dentistry done by you. The environment you create in your practice will be one of satisfaction and production. Everybody wins.