Being able to retain a patient base is a key skill for any dental practice. You can spend all the time, money, and energy you like on complex marketing campaigns that attract new patients – but it’s going to do you very little good unless you can retain them.

Retention is something I’m particularly passionate about, to the point that I actually authored a book on the topic.

It’s far cheaper, easier, and more effective to retain your existing patient then constantly go out and look for new ones. Plus, loyal patients tend to be better to work with.

The relationship grows so that over time, the patient comes to know you, like you, and trust you more. Ultimately, this means they’ll come to accept more treatment and get the best care possible through you. And, there’s even the potential for them to refer friends and family to you, or leave reviews.

So, it really is in your best interest to be able to retain patients effectively. Here are some pointers to help keep your loyal patients where you want them.


1. Build relationships

This sounds obvious, but relationships are the glue that hold the practice together. We need to really think about moving from a transactional model to a relationship model.

Relationships are ultimately what give meaning and purpose to human interaction, and there’s a lot of research around psychology that shows people will stick to a business where they feel a connection.

One of the most effective ways to build that connection is to ask genuine questions, and listen intently.  Hear every word they say, hear what’s not said, and show them that what they say is important to you.

The people that you’re listening to will come to realise that you’re engaged, interested, and a relationship follows.


2. Have people come back

A maxim I swear by , is “the purpose of an appointment is to book another appointment.”

Every person should leave your practice with their next appointment booked. 

A key part of being able to do this is to build value and communicate a compelling reason for them to come back. People won’t place any more value or significance on their appointments than we do. We can’t exactly act like “Yeah, come in again if you want” and then expect them not to cancel or arrive late or not book appointments at all.

So, it’s important for you to establish, communicate, and demonstrate the value in them coming back.

Marketing for new patients without retaining your existing ones is like carrying a bucket of water full of holes. It’s important to be able to identify and plug the leaks so you’re not constantly playing catch up.


P.S Want to scale your dental practice and take your profits to 7 figure success?

Me and my team  can  work with you directly  to get  you there!  Simply  book in  your  FREE 1:1

strategy session, and we can get started on a game plan for you and your practice.

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