Across the country, dentists are preparing to re-open their practice and book new patients. However, there is a new obstacle dentists must overcome in order to build trust with patients: communicating safety. Patients are afraid of catching the virus, and only the dentists that prioritize safety will help patients overcome that fear, and get them to book an appointment. Your practice can prepare for your re-opening by creating ads and marketing that will reassure patients that by booking with you, they will be treated in a safe and sterile environment.
If you want to learn how to attract high-quality patients before and during your re-opening, sign up for our Masterclass, Growing Your Practice Post-Pandemic: How to Overcome Patient Fear of COVID-19 to Win New Patients & Sustain High Patient Flow Through 2021.
New Patient Mindset
As much as we wish the world would return back to normal once the pandemic is over, there will still be a lot of fear and worry of catching the virus, even after states re-open. Dentistry is not immune to that fear, and many patients that have stayed loyal to their dentists for years will be wary of safety measures. Those patients, for the first time, will doubt their dentist and avoid coming in for routine hygiene appointments until they know they are entering a clean, safe space. Patients will be paying close attention to what dentists are communicating about their practice, making dental marketing more valuable than ever.
This new patient mindset will bring more patients into the market, looking for a new dentist, and comparing their current dentist to others in their area. Unfortunately, this will also apply to your current patients. It is absolutely critical that you communicate your safety steps in your marketing and on your website as soon as possible. This will bring reassurance to your current patients, so you can retain more patients, and will also help you attract those newly hesitant patients that have entered the market. Communicating your safety steps will build and strengthen trust with patients, which will be the key to these patients overcoming their fear, and coming in for an appointment.
Identify Your Safety Steps
You most likely know how to improve the safety and sterilization of their practice, but do you know the best way to communicate those steps to patients? Take a moment to collaborate with your staff and create a list of all of the tasks you are completing to keep your office safe. Honestly, you were probably already taking most of these steps before the COVID-19 closures, but never had to share them with your patients. Now is the time to communicate everything, such as:
- Eliminating the waiting room
- Only taking one patient at a time
- Taking temperatures of patients before an appointment
- Using EPA-registered, hospital-grade disinfectant
- Cleaning and disinfecting room surfaces between patients
- Cleaning and disinfecting all reusable dental equipment
- Wearing gloves, masks, gowns, eyewear, etc.
- Disposing of gloves/masks after each patient, washing hands and putting on new gloves/masks
Once you and your staff have identified all the steps you are taking to promote safety and sterilization in your practice, those tasks need to be communicated to patients in your marketing.
Run Video Ads
The best way to communicate your safety steps is in a video ad. We have seen overwhelmingly positive results from our clients running video ads on Facebook. These dentists communicate their availability and reassure patients that it is safe to enter their practice, in a brief, 1-2 minute video filmed in their office. These safety steps become more powerful when patients see a dentist communicating them from their office, in their lab coat. These video ads emphasize that you are a trustworthy healthcare professional, and patients are in safe hands when they book an appointment with you. If you need help creating your own Facebook video ad, or simply don’t know where to start or exactly what to say, set up a call with us.
Potential new patients need to see these safety measures at every step of your marketing in order to commit to an appointment with you. When you run your video ad explaining the safety of your practice and a patient clicks on that ad, they need to be taken to a landing page where you confirm those steps. Show a picture of you or your staff, and list the safety steps once again, while having an accessible path to book an appointment with you, such as booking online.
If a patient calls your practice, your front office staff needs to be prepared to answer any and all COVID-related safety questions. This is why we emphasize collaborating with your staff early on in your preparation for re-opening. Everyone on your staff needs to be on the same page, and aware that patients are more hesitant than ever. If a patient is met with reassurance from your ads, to your website, on the phone, and finally, in the exam chair with you, you not only give that patient peace of mind, but increase the odds they become your patient for life.
If you need help marketing your safety steps or running your video ads, set up a call with us (at no cost) by clicking below.