Last week, Big Buzz had the pleasure of speaking with Elliott Carson of Patterson Dental about how dental offices today are competing with consumer expectations now more than ever.
Consumers do not necessarily buy things for logical reasons. In many cases, it’s more emotional, which is a trend we’re more commonly seeing in the dental industry.
In the past, being clinically trained, taking CE courses and having a place to practice dentistry was enough to equal success. However, today’s patient seeks instant gratification – convenience, high-tech tools, quick turnaround. Simply put, today’s patient has high expectations.
There is a disconnect between how treatment plans and cases are presented by the doctor, and how they are received by the patient. Dentists live in a clinical world, which is likely not understood by the patient and may leave them feeling confused, fearful or anxious. When doctors find a way to communicate the patient’s situation, needs and plan of action in a way that resonates with them and is understood by the patient, acceptance rates skyrocket.
The environmental and cultural experience at your practice can set the tone for quality, and ultimately impact the buying decision that way. Compare this to any given restaurant’s environment: they may have the best food in the world, but if the environment is dirty, falling apart, not taken care of, or is misaligned with expectations in any other way, the restaurant will not succeed. In the same breath, how can you expect a patient to invest thousands of dollars in a single procedure if the environment does not align with that expectation?
Presently, the most successful dental practices have these traits in common:
- The team is connected to the vision of the practice. They’re clear on who they are, what they do and what the practice is about. This team dynamic breeds success and a progressive culture.
- The physical footprint of the office is up-to-date. It has stayed current with trends, techniques, procedures, offerings, etc.
- The doctor and the entire team have an understanding of the evolving customer expectation. They have found a way to work in a manner that resonates with the consumer.
- The doctor or owner is investing back into the business each year in a strategic way. Any business that refuses to evolve with market trends will suffer to stay relevant.
Imagine that each time you present a treatment plan, the patient is engaged and ready to move forward. Imagine what production and profitability would look like. Get your patients to “Yes!”
Elliott Carson is the General Manager for Patterson Dental’s Denver Branch covering Colorado and Southern Wyoming.