7 Ways to Engage with Patients After Their Dental Visit
Engaging with existing patients after their most recent visit is crucial for dental offices to foster strong relationships, provide ongoing care, and encourage patient loyalty. Here are some reasons why and how dental offices should engage with their patients:
- Reinforce care and treatment instructions: Following a dental visit, patients may have received specific instructions for oral care or treatment. Engaging with them after the visit allows you to reinforce those instructions, answer any questions, and ensure they understand the importance of following through. This can significantly improve treatment outcomes and patient satisfaction.
- Encourage preventive care: Regular check-ups and preventive care are essential for maintaining oral health. By reaching out to patients after their visit, dental offices can remind them of upcoming appointments, promote the importance of preventive care, and encourage them to schedule their next visit. This helps prevent oral health issues from worsening and demonstrates your commitment to their well-being.
- Address concerns or complications: Some patients may experience complications or have concerns following a dental procedure. Proactively reaching out to check on their well-being shows your dedication to their care. It provides an opportunity to address any issues promptly, offer guidance, and schedule a follow-up appointment if necessary.
- Gather feedback: Engaging with patients after their visit allows you to collect valuable feedback on their experience. Sending surveys or conducting phone calls to gather feedback demonstrates that you value their opinion and are committed to improving your services. Feedback can help identify areas for improvement and enhance patient satisfaction.
- Enhance patient loyalty: Consistent engagement with patients builds trust and strengthens the patient-provider relationship. When patients feel valued and cared for, they are more likely to remain loyal to your practice, refer others, and leave positive reviews. Engaging with patients after their visit demonstrates your commitment to their oral health and fosters long-term loyalty.
Here are some effective strategies to engage with patients after their visit:
a. Personalized follow-up messages: Send personalized emails or text messages to express gratitude for their visit, provide post-visit instructions, and offer assistance if needed. Personalization helps create a sense of connection and demonstrates that you value their individual needs. In ThriveCloud, you can use Note Templates (for repeated scenarios) or custom messages for this purpose:
b. Automated recare reminders: Use automated recall reminder texts or personal calls to remind patients to schedule their hygiene care. Make the reminders informative, concise, and easily accessible to help patients remember and schedule their recare visits. ThriveCloud automates this process by checking for unscheduled recare every week and automatically texting patients for you based on your preset criteria. You can even pair the texts with patient education videos and an online scheduling link:
c. Patient education materials: Share educational materials, such as articles, videos, or infographics, that offer oral hygiene tips, preventive care information, or specific details related to their treatment. Providing valuable educational resources demonstrates your commitment to their oral health. This is easy in ThriveCloud where you have a rich library of patient education videos and articles at your fingertips, which you can present chairside, in the treatment consult room, or even text them to patients:
d. Social media engagement: Leverage social media platforms to engage with your patients. Share oral health tips, news about your practice, and patient success stories. Respond to patient comments and inquiries promptly to foster a sense of community. Currently, the most popular sites include Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok.
e. Email Newsletters: Use regular email newsletters to keep your dental practice “front of mind” for your patients. A good frequency is at least every 3 months (if not every month). Include exciting news about your practice, new or discounted services, seasonal specials, patient education tips, and contests. It is easy to do this in ThriveCloud with integrated email newsletters.
f. Email and Text Marketing: Run frequent email and text marketing campaigns to reactivate patients and generate new treatment visits. For example, a timely special for a free Mother’s Day teeth whitening (with a paid cleaning) or a summer special for clear aligners. ThriveCloud enables this through targeting marketing groups and text and email campaign options.
g. Online review requests: Send post-visit online review requests to gather feedback and assess patient satisfaction. Keep the requests brief and straightforward, and consider offering incentives for participation, such as discounts on future treatments. After you complete a visit in ThriveCloud, you can text automated or selective requests that allow happy patients to leave reviews right away on your Google, Yelp, or Facebook sites.
Remember, effective communication and personalized engagement are key to building strong relationships with your patients. By demonstrating genuine care and providing ongoing support, dental offices can ensure patient satisfaction, loyalty, and improved oral health outcomes.