By Shirley Misiak; VP of Strategic Partnership, Dental, CareCredit
Enhancing the patient experience, and as a result increasing production, can be as easy as the 3Cs: confidence, convenience, and comfort. Luckily, there are technology solutions that can make it easy.
Confidence in You and the Dentistry You Do
When patients have confidence in your clinical abilities, they may be more inclined to move forward with your recommendations. Historically, confidence has been built through in-person, in-practice face-to-face interaction. Today, the opportunity to build confidence has expanded online. First, new patients have access to reviews and ratings from other patients, which is why it’s important for you to manage your online reputation. This can be as simple as encouraging your long-term, happy patients to post on public sites like Yelp! You can also take control by posting authentic reviews, patient testimonials and case studies on your own website, giving people another perspective from public sites, which often attract those with less than kind feedback.
Another way to build confidence is through your social media sites. On platforms such as Instagram and Facebook, you can literally show patients how good you are, highlighting the types of patients you want to attract and the type of dentistry you want to do. The good thing about social media sites is that they are easier to update on a consistent basis than your website, so you can post yesterday’s case (with written permission from the patient) for people to enjoy today.
Convenience is a Personal Choice
Technology has set people’s expectations that they should be able to do what they want, when they want to. Shop for shoes at 2am? Easy. Book a flight at midnight? Done. Schedule an appointment at the dentist or pay an invoice at dawn? That would be nice and convenient. The more you can make it convenient and easy to engage with you, the more patients may be attracted to your practice short and long-term.†
Comfort Means Reduced Stress and Fear
To comfort, which can be defined as alleviating distress, has become even more meaningful and relevant. Fear continues to be a barrier to care. In fact, it is one reason patients find it difficult to visit a dentist for an examination let alone move forward with recommended treatment. Education may help many patients feel more comfortable. And, again, technology can help. There are third-party platforms that can work with your practice management software to consistently educate patients on the benefits of care, your safety protocols, the advances in dentistry and even the consequences of avoiding dentistry.
The 3 Cs—confidence, convenience and comfort—are not new. What is new is using technology to give patients a way to become familiar with you and your practice through social media, learn about ways to address their cost concerns on their smart device and be comforted through relevant information delivered to their inbox. Plus, it frees up your team’s time to do the fourth C—connect on a personal and emotional basis with your patients—which may be the most important C of all.
CareCredit makes it easier for patients to access care by providing a healthcare credit card that helps families manage out-of-pocket expenses for dental procedures. †CareCredit’s “Custom Link” technology helps its enrolled practices make paying for care more convenient by enabling patients to learn about and apply for the CareCredit credit card and pay* their bills anytime, anywhere, using their smart device or home computer. Scan the QR code below to learn more. *Subject to credit approval.
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