Have you ever bought a product or paid for a service where you didn’t quite get what you thought you were paying for? Not quite the expected quality? Or not the level of service and care that you thought you were entitled to? Did you grumble about it to yourself and just resolve not to do THAT again or not to trust them again? And finally, how would you feel about referring anyone to buy that same product or service … you probably wouldn’t do it, would you?
If, on the other hand, you were to have received more service or a better quality product than what you expected, you would have been very happy, wouldn’t you? And if you additionally experienced an added dollop of care, interest, niceness during the transaction or delivery of the service, this would probably have remained in your mind and you would be more than happy to tell others about it, right?
If you want to increase the number of new patients or clients being referred into your practice, here is an area that you can do something about. You can never do enough of this one. This is part of your internal marketing. Here is an example of this that many practice owners already do: At the end of the day, calling patients or clients who had a major service or a difficulty procedure and following up to see how they are doing. This can also be done the next day.
Here is a short project to expand on this internal marketing strategy:
Have a short staff meeting and go over this concept of giving service above and beyond what the patient or client is expecting.
Get the staff members to each share a time in their own life where they got more service or care than they expected, and how they feel about referring someone else there.
Ask for ways that they already give a little extra service to patients or clients in the practice.
They are probably already doing some things and it would be good to log them into the policy manual and job descriptions.
Find out if there are other ideas they have had or heard about?
Really examine each area of the practice and each position, and see what additional ideas the staff can come up with.
Write these down and work out one idea for each person that they can work on the next week. Tell them to keep track of exactly what they do and the patient or client’s reaction to it.
Have them keep track of how often so you can all meet and review it next week.
At the meeting a week later, find out what the feedback is as to what was done and were the patients or clients pleased by the extra service? Are there any bugs that need to be worked out?
Log all successful actions and make sure everyone continues them.
Have everyone decide on an additional action they could do from their part of the practice and add that onto what they did last week.
Meet again in another week and go over the results. Log all successful actions.
By this time, you may already start to see more patient referrals, but sometimes it takes 6 or more weeks to start seeing the results. Make sure that new successful actions are never dropped out. Review this from time to time at your staff meetings. Be open to new ideas and suggestions. You can even ask patients and clients for feedback and ideas.
After all, the sole purpose of the practice is to give ideal care to the patients and clients of the practice. Take it over the top!