Better Phone Skills – The Fastest Way to More New Patients in Your Dental Chair

Phone call conversion is one of the fastest ways to increase the number of new patients in your practice.

Better Phone Skills – The Fastest Way to More New Patients in Your Dental Chair
Better Phone Skills – The Fastest Way to More New Patients in Your Dental Chair
July 13, 2022

Are you having trouble with poor call answering skills at your dental practice? The way your office staff answers the phone directly affects the long-term growth and success of your business. Fortunately, you can increase revenue, expand your practice, and convert new patients by improving the phone skills of your staff and incorporating new technology into your business.

In addition to improving phone skills, opting for a professional dental phone answering service will help your practice get more new patients into the dental chair. At Reach, we offer a range of answering services for dentists, including after-hours and weekend call answering, website chats, insurance verification, and more.

We know that a critical factor of success for dentists is how they handle new patients on the phone. Keep reading for seven different call answering tips to convert new patients and fill up your appointment book.

Convert Callers into New Dental Patients with These 7 Tips and Tactics

1) Take Notes with Every Phone Call

Invest in a few cheap notebooks and give them to your office staff. When they answer the phone, they should jot down quick notes and essential information, like patient name, number, concerns, questions, etc.

With extra information close at hand, you can identify the patient’s needs faster, improve call answering skills, and identify any areas that could use improvement. However, be sure that your staff doesn’t write down confidential or private medical information that would fall under HIPAA guidelines.

2) Invest in a Professional Answering Service

According to Reach data, every missed phone call costs dentists an average of $500. In addition, patients are three times more likely to call the dentist’s office after hours or on weekends.

By investing in an answering service, you’ll be able to get all the calls you would usually miss, giving you more leads and chances to convert new patients. Our professional Reach schedulers have dental training and will help your practice land new patients, increase revenue, and improve production.

3) Create Uniform Phone Greetings

When patients call your dental office, they should hear the same greeting from every staff member. A uniform greeting establishes your practice as professional and provides consistency for every patient.

Create a friendly and helpful greeting, and have every staff member practice their call answering skills to avoid sounding fake, rehearsed, or disingenuous. Here’s a great example: “Hello, thank you for calling 123 Dental Practice. I’m (Name); how may I assist you today?”  

4) Train Your Office Staff

Although it might cost a little up front, training your office staff in basic dental information is worth it in the long run. When your team sounds knowledgeable, it shows new patients that they’re calling a professional, experienced practice. In addition, it establishes trust and credibility—two critical qualities a dental office needs to convert new patients and keep existing ones.

5) Always Offer an Appointment

Here’s the cardinal rule for every dental receptionist: Never end a phone call with a new patient without offering to schedule an appointment. Remember, your office staff is responsible for “selling” your practice to new patients.

However, that doesn’t mean they should adopt a sales-heavy pitch, which sounds fake and often makes the caller uncomfortable. If the person wants a quote, try to avoid giving exact prices. Instead, have your staff offer a free in-office consultation. It’s a great selling point and gives you a much better chance of converting a new patient.

6) Follow Up Calls Promptly

When new (and existing) patients leave a message on your voicemail, website, or answering service, it’s essential to follow up promptly. It shows the new patient that you value their business and establishes the beginning of a rapport. Your receptionists should get as much information as possible when following up. And remember: Always have them offer an appointment.

7) Repeat, Rephrase, Confirm

When speaking with new patients, every staff member should remember these three tips: repeat, rephrase, confirm. Repeating or rephrasing information back to the caller prevents miscommunication, which is unprofessional and could result in a lost conversion. For example, staff should always repeat contact information, like phone numbers or addresses.

In addition, they should have the patient confirm the date and time of their appointment. It shows new patients that your staff cares about customer service and pays attention to details.

Convert New Patients with These Expert Tips

With these seven tips and tactics to help your office staff improve their call answering skills, you can boost your new patient conversion rate, increase revenue, and keep your practice growing and expanding.

For example, investing in a professional call answering service like Reach eliminates the risk of lost revenue and missed opportunities by ensuring new patients always reach a live person instead of a robot or voicemail. Contact Reach today at (801) 901-8852 to request a free demo and learn how our services can help your dental practice grow.