Let’s face it, we could all stand to improve in one area or another. Improving, however, is hard to do if you exist in a vacuum. That’s why it’s important to expose your practice to as much constructive criticism as possible.
We’re not talking about getting a verbal lashing from every unhappy patient that walks through your doors (hopefully there aren’t many of those), rather we’re looking for real, useful feedback that you can take action on and share with potential patients seeking similar honest advice.
When looking for feedback you want to ask questions that:
- Are open-ended
A post dental visit survey is a great way to not only get feedback but also interact with your patients. Here’s why.
Build Your Relationship With Patients
Your patients are the backbone of your practice. If they’re unhappy, you won’t succeed. By involving patients in the feedback process, you’re telling them that their opinion matters, that you value what they think, and that you’re committed to continually improving.
When they personally experience this they feel a connection to their practice and are more likely to spread the word about your office to their friends and family.
Get More Patients
It might seem counter-intuitive, but asking for feedback through a survey can actually lead to more patients for a couple reasons. First and foremost, you’ll empower patients to feel a connection with your practice. This is something that will excite them and encourage them to share the good news with those around them.
Second, when you begin to read the feedback you get, you’ll have an understanding of what you’re doing right and what you can improve on. Take action on both types of feedback and use them to fuel both marketing campaigns and improvement opportunities.
Increase Patient Retention
Every dental or medical practice loses patients. It’s a fact of life. People move, grow up, pass away. Whatever the reason, patient attrition is one of the reasons dentists need to continually grow their patient base. That way every time a patient is lost you have someone to take their place.
A post dental visit survey can be used to identify patients at risk of being lost due to an unpleasant experience of overall unhappiness. Once you know what is making these patients unhappy, you can make it a point to rectify the situation.
Over time you’ll notice these improvements leading to better patient retention.
Connect With Patients
A post-visit survey can be used to connect your patients to both your social networks and email list. Email plays a huge part in personally connecting with patients and keeping them up-to-date on what is happening at your office.
This is because those who are subscribed to your email updates are people who are already either interested in what you have to offer or are patients. Learn more about email marketing for dental practices in this article.
Social media, on the other hand, not only connects you to patients, it also gives you access to their social networks. This leads to “viral marketing” which quickly gets your name out there among people who will instantly trust you because their friends or family are connected to you.
We all know that reviews are like gold when it comes to internet marketing. The more positive reviews you have for your practice, the more likely you are to rank highly on search engine results pages. Better rankings on search engines mean you will get more organic traffic. This is the most valuable traffic because it tends to convert at a higher rate, is already interested, and carries with it a lower CPA (cost per acquisition).
Additionally, the more positive reviews you have the less credible any negative reviews will be. Your post-visit survey is a great place to ask people to review your practice. You can include links to your social media pages or Google or Yelp listings to make it easier for people to find your pages and leave reviews.
Another great option is to include a link to an internal reputation management tool that you use to post reviews on your dental website. Read about how to get more five star reviews in this blog post.
Study The Data You’re Given
When a person takes the time to fill out a survey for your practice, you should be grateful for the time and effort they took to provide you with valuable data.
The information you receive through surveys can be used to improve your business from several perspectives. You can use it to improve your marketing tactics by understanding what works and what doesn’t. You can also use it to learn how people found your practice and how they percieve it.
The opportunities are endless and you’ll glean loads of information if you ask the right questions of those you’re surveying. Just remember to make it quick and easy for them, so you get the most honest answers possible.