National Orthodontic Health Month Tips and Ideas For Your Ortho Office

National Orthodontic Health Month Tips and Ideas For Your Ortho Office

Hello Friends,

Today, I am sharing some tips and ideas for ortho offices to celebrate October’s National Orthodontic Health Month.

October’s Theme:  Orthodontic Health Month!  Healthy & Beautiful Smiles!

Tips and Ideas for Orthodontic Offices from Dental Coach Betty Hayden

  •  Brace Friendly Candy – Share on your social media platforms what candy to avoid and what snacks/treats are brace friendly.

 

  • Reviews / Testimonials – Encourage patients to leave a review/testimonial on Google, Facebook, etc.

 

  • Invisalign – Use this as an opportunity to promote Invisalign. This time of year people are thinking about gift ideas and want to get their smile camera-ready for their end of year parties.

 

  • Before & Afters – all month-long feature before and after ortho photos on your social media pages.

 

  • Q & A Video Sessions– use your social media platforms to post short videos of the doctors and/or team members answering frequently asked questions.

Community Involvement ~

October is National Field Trip Month – Don’t wait for Children’s Dental Health Month in February to invite local schools to bring in their students for a Field Trip to the orthodontist. Bring them in during the month of October instead.

I know a lot of offices will be focusing on Candy Buy Back Events, so I will share some ideas for those events and some other ideas just in case you’re looking for something a little extra to exceed patient expectations.

Candy Buy Back ~

Options:

  •   Collect candy in the office. Open to the Public

Or you can do this,

  • Team up w/local school(s) and set up collection bins in each classroom where the kids can bring in their candy and the classroom with the most candy wins a gift card or get a local pizzeria to donate pizza for a classroom pizza party for the winning classroom.

Gift Ideas for Referring Dentists and their Teams ~

World Smile Day – October 4th  – Put together smile themed gift baskets.

Or do a team smiles photo contest. Office photo with the most FB likes wins.

October is Apple Month – Deliver some apple treats to the offices. Such as:

  • Basket Of Apples w/ Caramel Sauce
  • Apple Cider & Donuts
  • Apple Pie

Team Building Activity  ~ Get your team together to make apple sauce, apple pie filling, caramel sauce, or an apple/cinnamon sugar scrub. Put it in little jars with a ribbon and label with your office information. You can then give away as gifts to your new patients and or referring doctors/specialists. How fun is that?!

There you have it some fun and effective tips and ideas to celebrate October’s Orthodontic Health Month.

Do you enjoy the dental leadership, management, and marketing tips and ideas that I share each month?   I would love and truly appreciate for you to please leave a review/recommendation for me here on GOOGLE and/or FACEBOOK

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Yours for Greater Success,

~Betty (Dental Coach)

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Dental Office Open House Tips and Ideas

Dental Office Open House Tips and Ideas

Hello Friends,

One of the most asked questions that I receive is ideas for hosting a dental open house event. So if you have an open house planned for your dental office or are considering hosting an open house event, here are some ideas to help make your open house a huge success!

Dental Clinic Open House Celebration Ideas

Consider adding a theme to your event.

Event Theme Ideas:

  • Luau
  • Winter Wonderland
  • Back-to-School
  • Hearts – We “Heart” our Community or We “Heart” our Patients
  • Decades (ex: 50’s)
  • Spring – Flowers (Thank you for helping our office grow)
  • Celebration of Health
  • Fall
  • Women’s Night Out
  • Office Anniversary Celebration
  • Spa/Pampering
  • Shopping (w/local vendors)
  • Carnival
  • Cocktail Party (Wine & Appetizers)
  • Superhero

 Target Audience: 

Determine in advance who is your target audience.

  • Professionals/Specialists
  • Community (Local Businesses/Non-Patients)
  • Current Patients

 Cross Marketing Opportunity:

Team up with local businesses!

  • Hair Salons, Specialty offices, Restaurants, Etc.
  • Display a thank you board/sign listing the local businesses involved in the open house.
  • Have an area that they can display their business information
  • Have them donate a prize to be raffled off or used in a drawing.
  • Ask them to advertise your event at their place of business.

Word of caution, make sure that if you choose to team up with any other local businesses that it doesn’t distract the guests away from your office.

Advertising your Event:

  • Invitations
  • Local Newspaper (Invite them to the event!)
  • TV News (Invite them to the event!)
  • Radio (Invite them to the event!)
  • Social Media Sites (set up a Facebook Event)
  • Website
  • Current Patients (Ask them to bring a friend for a prize!)
  • Newsletter
  • Email
  • Online Local News Sites
  • Local Chambers
  • Local Businesses (Library, City Hall, Day Cares, Salons, Restaurants, Schools, EVERYWHERE)
  • Employees (Make sure the entire team is on board w/the event and talking about it)
  • Flyers
  • Banner on building

Call To Action/Community Support:

Collect Donations for…

  • Winter Gear (Coats, Gloves, Scarves & Hats, Blankets)
  • Books
  • Canned Foods
  • School Supplies
  • Aluminum Can Tabs (Ronald McDonald House)

or offer:

  • Complimentary Oral Cancer Screenings
  • Smile Makeover Contest

 Give-Aways:

Welcome letter/flyer (Include in it: Info about the office, services offered, a special call to action offer & a thank you for coming in)

Items imprinted with your office information, such as:

  • Toothbrush Bags
  • Lip Balm (www.lipbalmexpress.com)
  • Tote Bags
  • Pens
  • Coffee Mugs
  • Water Bottles
  • Flower Seed Packets
  • Magnets
  • Keyrings
  • Xylitol Products
  • Umbrellas

My favorite company to use for imprinted giveaway items is: Bizarre Marketing – www.promostuff4u.com

Activities:

  • Face Painting
  • Photo Booth with photo props
  • Balloon Twisting
  • Bounce House
  • Craft Table
  • Games
  • DJ/Karaoke/Live Music
  • Dental Health Presentations

Drawing/Raffle for Prizes:

Having a drawing(s) allows you to collect the names and contact information of the guests. Be sure to collect Name, Address, Email & Phone #.

Prize Ideas:

  • Electric Toothbrush
  • Teeth Whitening
  • $/% Off of a Dental Service
  • Gift Cards
  • Television/Tablet
  • Bicycle
  • Waterpark, Sporting Event, Concert, or Theatre Tickets/Passes
  • Gift Baskets

Team up with local businesses for contributions/donations of Prizes. Be sure to remind them that their name will be included in your advertising for the open house.

Offer an incentive (such as; gift card) to the first so many people who RSVP to your event.

Office Appearance:

  • The office must be clean and clutter free!! (Inside & Out!)
  • Restrooms – make sure they are checked during the open house for cleanliness and that they are well stocked)
  • Decorate the Office
  • Music Playing (recorded or live)
  • Have stations/displays set up throughout the office to encourage a tour of the entire office.
  • Monitors set up in reception room and treatment suites playing videos of services offered. Before and After Photo Slideshow.
  • Display “About Our Office & Services” Brochures

Team Members:

  • Well dressed and groomed
  • Name Tags
  • Friendly & Outgoing
  • Specific assignments (designated greeter, tour guide, speaker for dental presentations, etc.)

Food/Drink Ideas:

  • Bottled water with an office label
  • Punch/lemonade/Tea/Coffee/Wine/Beer
  • BBQ Foods
  • Appetizers
  • Wine/Cheese
  • Desserts
  • Ice Cream Truck (great for outdoor events)

You may be able to get a local business to donate cookies, cake pops, cupcakes, sandwich trays, fruit and vegetable platters, etc.

Day of the Event:

  • Smiling faces
  • Name tags for your guests
  • Give tours (Depending on the size of the event you could set up tours as a scavenger hunt)
  • Be ready to schedule dental appointments
  • Greet everyone
  • Take lots of pictures
  • Record a video of the event. Consider doing a Facebook live during the event.

 After the Event:

  • Send Thank you’s to all of your guests and any businesses that participated in the event.
  • Send a follow-up article & pictures to the local paper.
  • Call prize winners to come into the office and collect their gift – be sure to take their picture(s).
  • Post pictures of the event on social media sites.

Remember, Proper Planning Prevents Poor Performance!

To-do lists are your friend! Include a timeline & who is responsible for what & when.

Your goal should be to make your guests feel welcome, special, and appreciated. No one wants to show up to an event where they are not welcomed or confident they’re even in the right place.

Make it a Fabulous Open House Event my friends!

If you enjoy the complimentary ideas that I share each month, I would love and truly appreciate for you to please leave me a review/recommendation 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 each month? If not, please start following us today. If you prefer, send me your email address (to bhaydenconsulting@gmail.com) and I will send you an invitation to follow my blog.

Yours for Greater Success!

~Betty

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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

Are you receiving my free dental marketing and practice management ideas every month to your inbox? If not, PLEASE take a second and follow today or send me your email address and I will send you an invitation to follow. This way, you won’t miss a single idea. Feel free to share my blog with your dental friends. ~ Thank you!

Yours for Greater Success!

~Betty

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