Dental Office Tips and Ideas for March

Dental Office Tips and Ideas for March

Hello, Friends ~

The month of March is the final month of your first quarter. Make it count – spend some time reviewing your numbers, your plans for how to reach your goals, and ways to continually improve your office during the year. With March being Employee Spirit Month it’s also a great month to celebrate your dental team! (Well, isn’t every month a great month to celebrate your team?)

Note: March is an especially important month for any of you that typically struggle with your schedule during the month of September (AKA Sucktember). Be sure to pre-appoint your March hygiene patients for their 6-month continuing care appointments. (If this isn’t already being done with your hygiene patients, make it your goal to schedule their next appt. while they are there in the office.)

 Here are a few Practice Management and Marketing Ideas for March to get you started:

Dental Marketing and Practice Management Ideas from Betty Hayden Consulting

~ Practice Management Tips and Ideas ~

National Dentists Day: March 6th   – Spend today celebrating the awesome dentists’ in your life! Be sure to take a picture(s) of your dentist(s) to post on your social media pages with a message of appreciation.

National Dental Assistants Recognition Week: 3rd-9th – This is the week to celebrate your hard-working assistants! Be sure to take a picture(s) of your assistants to post on your social media pages with a message of appreciation.

Employee Spirit Month – If you want to increase employee trust, creativity, teamwork, engagement, and productivity, then it’s time to have some fun, commend more, improve communication and huddle up!

SEE A Happy Dental Team is not just a dream! and Dental Team Building Activities, Reward, and Incentive Tips and Ideas

Hygiene Continuing Care Opportunity ~

National Cleaning Week: 24 – 30th – Take advantage of the theme for this week by sharing hygiene continuing care email & text reminders with your patients that are due for their appointments. Be sure to include posts on your social media pages too.

~ Dental Marketing Tips & Ideas for the month of March ~

Theme: Tropical Luau

Product/Service Feature:  Teeth Whitening

Tagline: “Smiles So Bright You’ll Need To Wear Shades!

Special Offer: Offer teeth whitening at a reduced price or BOGO (encourages patients to bring a friend) or donate a portion of teeth whitening collections to a local charity.

Remind your patients that gift certificates are available!

Educational Opportunity –

National Kidney Month – Good dental health isn’t just about preventing cavities and keeping your gums healthy. Both tooth decay and gum disease can lead to infections that can cause problems for people with kidney disease.  A study in the Journal of Clinical Periodontology reported that people with kidney disease and those on dialysis are more likely to have periodontal disease and other oral health problems than the general population.

~ Social Media Post Ideas to Improve Engagement ~

Employee Appreciation Day 1st

World Compliment Day 1st

Oreo Cookie Day 6th

Daylight Savings Time 10th

Lips Appreciation Day 16th

Spring 20th

Kick Butts Day 20th

Spinach Day 26th

What are your plans to make March a great month?

I would love and truly appreciate for you to please leave a review/recommendation for me here on GOOGLE and/or FACEBOOK.

Don’t miss out on any of the ideas that I share each month! Are you receiving my complimentary Practice Management and Marketing Ideas in your email inbox each month? If not, please start following us today.  If you prefer, send me your email address at bhaydenconsulting@gmail.com and I will send you an invitation to follow my blog.

Yours for Greater Success,

~Betty

P.S. Please stop by and say hello to me on FacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedIn and Pinterest

Dental Office Marketing and Practice Management Tips and Ideas for February

Dental Office Marketing and Practice Management Tips and Ideas for February

Hello Friends,

Hope you all are having a fantastic start to 2019!

As always, my wish is for you to have the best months ever, all year-long!

To help you do just that, I’m sharing some Marketing and Practice Management tips & ideas that you can use during the month of February.

Dental Marketing and Practice Management Tips and Ideas for February

(Note: If you’re looking for ideas to promote February’s Children’s Dental Health Month and Give Kids A Smile Day please look to this post: Children’s Dental Health Month & GKAS Day)

February is American Heart Month so Our focus this month is Heart Health.

Heart Health Talking Points:
Dental Health and Heart Disease Are Related -Dental health and heart disease are intricately linked and the cost for avoiding advanced periodontal disease or even something as mild as gingivitis may very well prove to be the cause of serious medical problems in the future.
Be good to your heart beginning with good oral health.

Special Days:
Women’s Heart Week: 1-7 – Focus this week on Women’s Heart Health. Have a special gift for your female patients. Hand out heart-healthy tips for your patients to share w/their friends and family.

Tip: If you’re not currently taking your patients’ blood pressure at their appointments… make it a goal to start during the month of February.
Many people see their dentist more regularly than a physician and could get an early warning about high blood pressure when getting their teeth cleaned or having other dental treatment done.

Have fun with this heart theme!

Here are 3 More Ways To Help Your Team and Patients Smile in February!

Pet Dental Health Month – Share pet dental health tips on your social media sites, ask people to share pictures of their pets on social media, hand out dog treats packaged with your office information. Even if the patient doesn’t have a dog surely they know someone who does…great way to get your office name out there!

National Eating Disorders Awareness Week: 25-3/3 Educational Opportunity – share on your blog and on your social media pages the impact eating disorders have on your oral health.

International Boost Self-Esteem Month –
For your team: Negative people are the greatest destroyers of self-confidence and self-esteem. Avoid office negativity, it’s toxic and will infect your team – Rather, focus on and share positive experiences. See: How to Have a Happier Team

For your patients: A beautiful & healthy smile can boost one’s self-esteem and confidence.

Social Media Post Ideas to Improve Engagement:
Bubble Gum Day: 1st
Super Bowl: 3rd
Toothache Day: 9th
National Drink Wine Day: 18th
Through with The Chew: 17th – 23rd
National Tooth Fairy Day: 28th

Message me please to tell me what you have planned to make the month of February special for your patients and the community.

I would love and truly appreciate for you to please leave a review/recommendation for me here on GOOGLE and/or FACEBOOK.

Don’t miss out on any of the ideas that I share each month! Are you receiving my complimentary Practice Management and Marketing Ideas in your email inbox each month? If not, please start following us today. If you prefer, send me your email address at bhaydenconsulting@gmail.com and I will send you an invitation to follow my blog.

Yours for Greater Success,
~Betty (AKA Dental Coach)

P.S. Please stop by and say hello to me on  FacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedIn and Pinterest

How to Prevent Same Day Dental Hygiene Appointment Cancellations

How to Prevent Same Day Dental Hygiene Appointment Cancellations

Hello Friends,

A complaint I hear quite often is “we have so many hygiene cancellations every day!” Does that happen to you? You have a beautiful, full hygiene schedule at the start of the day and by the afternoon the schedule looks more like swiss-cheese! UGH!

Most often I discover that we have allowed patients to think it’s ok to cancel at the last minute. If you have created this cancellation monster, it will take some time to re-train your team and your patients. How do we train our patients that it’s ok to cancel last-minute?

  • Not creating true value for the appointment through patient education.
  • Constantly rescheduling patients appointments because of some change to the provider’s schedule.
  • Not respecting the patients time by running behind and not giving the very best experience from start to finish.
  • Telling the patient, no problem or that it’s OK when they call to cancel.
  • Poor and inconsistent appointment reminder systems and protocols.
  • Not acknowledging no-shows with a telephone call 5 minutes after their scheduled appointment time and with a follow-up letter/text/email.

Sadly, I have heard many offices tell the patients, no problem when they call to cancel. They don’t even attempt to reschedule. They just say OK and hang up. I’m not joking. This really happens.

Today, I’ll share with you some scripting examples for handling calls from patients that want to cancel same-day hygiene appointments.

what do I say when patient calls to cancel their dental hygiene appointment

 

Please note: this isn’t scripting for perio appointment cancellations. You would use different scripting for those types of appointments.

Scenario #1:

Patient: I’m calling to cancel my appointment for today at 10:00, it’s just for a cleaning.

Admin: NOOOOO!

What do you do? It’s 9:00, how are you supposed to fill that time slot?

Scenario #2:

Patient: I’m calling to cancel my appointment for today at 4:00, it’s just for a cleaning.

Admin: YESSSSS!

What do you do? Celebrate, of course! Now you can get out early.

I’m kidding! We hate cancellations (even the “just a cleaning” ones) at any time of day because they all kill profitability.

So what do you say to the patient when they try to cancel? How do you save the appointment?

You can’t save them all, there are unavoidable, legitimate reasons that some patients are canceling their appointment. For help filling the schedule with those inevitable last-minute cancellations, please see: Ideas to Fill Holes in the Dental Hygiene Schedule

For all others, try this:

Patient: I’m calling to cancel my appointment for today at 10:00, it’s just for a cleaning.

Admin: (with genuine concern) “Oh no! I hope everything is alright. Jenny was really looking forward to seeing you today for your appointment. Is there any way you can keep your reservation?” or

“Oh no! Thank you for calling, I know Jenny will be concerned, is there anything we can do so that you can be here today?”

or, if you have a broken appointment policy…

Admin: “Oh no! I’d hate for you to have to pay the broken appointment fee, is there any way you can make your reservation with Jenny?”

Now, if the patient is sorry and truly can’t make the appointment and this is the first time they’ve canceled an appointment, say this:

Admin: “I know that Jenny was looking forward to seeing you, I’m sorry that you weren’t able to provide us with 48 hrs advance notice due to (whatever their reason was) – we’ll go ahead and waive the broken appointment fee this time. Let’s get you rescheduled…”

Or if you don’t have a broken appt. policy, say this:

Admin: “We obviously made an appointment for you that isn’t convenient. Since your appointments are important I want to make sure we never do that again. Is there a time we can schedule that you know will work better with your schedule?”

Document your conversation and that you waived the fee for this time and that the patient is aware next time they’ll be charged.

If the patient refuses to reschedule their appointment…

Admin: “That’s fine, but if I don’t hear back from you, I will call you on ______, how does that sound?” (Follow through on that promise.)

For patients that habitually cancel, I urge you to charge them your broken appointment fee and do not reschedule their appointment.

Admin:  “Mr/Ms (use their name), I can see that you have a really busy schedule and that makes it difficult for you to commit to an appointment time. I thought I was a busy person!
What I recommend is that we place you on our “same day” call list. If we have an unexpected change in our schedule we’ll give you a call. How does that sound?”

Document your conversation! Follow-up accordingly.

Whatever you do and no matter how desperate you are to fill the schedule DO NOT REAPPOINT habitual offenders! You should never be able to look at the schedule and point out who will most likely cancel or no-show. But, I’m sure that’s never happened in your office, right? 😉

Work together as a team to come up with scripting that works for your office. Think of all the different scenarios and reasons patients call to cancel (cost, illness, work, no babysitter, schedule conflicts, etc.) and role-play the best responses. Your goal should be, if appropriate, respectfully help the patient find a way to keep the appointment as scheduled without threatening or embarrassing them.

Ultimately, preventing cancellations starts with creating value for the appointment before it’s even scheduled… it’s never “just a cleaning” that they are trying to cancel.

Create solid hygiene continuing care protocols for your team and consistently follow them.

If you enjoy the complimentary ideas that I share each month, I would love and truly appreciate for you to please leave a review on GOOGLE and/or FACEBOOK

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Yours for Greater Success!

~Betty

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