Posted on Oct 27, 2014
Image Credit: © Dreamstime.com
Posted on Oct 27, 2014
As you consider an upcoming dental practice transition, one important area of your business to be aware of is the number of clients that you have. Your client base can have a direct impact on the value of your practice. There are many ways to boost your client base. One of the easiest and most effective ways is to utilize referrals with your existing patients. Referral-based marketing is a highly effective way to bring in new clients. It’s similar to word-of-mouth marketing, in that you’re relying on your existing satisfied clients to share and bring new business into the practice. The subtle difference with referral based marketing are the incentives that you may provide to clients to send new customers your way.
There are many simple steps you can take to increase referrals through your patients. Here are just a few examples:
Announce that you want referrals: Utilize an email marketing campaign to announce to your patients that you’re always available for and appreciate their referrals. Something as simple as “A referral from my patients is the biggest compliment I can receive” can be printed on appointment cards, invoices, and other mailings. This is a gentle, subtle reminder for your patients to remember you when they’re talking to friends or colleagues that may be looking for a new dentist.
Rewards for referrals: Give your patients something small for sending referrals your way. A $10 gift card to a local coffee shop or bookstore is always appreciated. This won’t break the bank, but you’re still recognizing and rewarding your clients for telling others about you. These little touches will be remembered and will be returned to you in the way of new clients.
Reward even more: Consider doing a big drawing once a month or once a quarter for all patients that refer clients your way. This bigger drawing would be for something with more significant value – say a $50 gift certificate to a local restaurant or a tech device.
Make sure your referral rewards are prominently displayed: Share your referral rewards on your social media accounts, your website, in the practice via a nice sign and in any mailings that you send out. Also, be sure it’s on appointment cards and business cards.
If you’re considering selling a dental practice, make sure you’re utilizing referrals in your marketing strategy to help improve your practice’s overall value.