With the occurrence of the recession, marketing is becoming more of a necessity rather than a luxury for dental practitioners. However, this notion may be counter-intuitive to some dentists. When one is trying to save up and cut costs, the idea of running an ad in any newspaper can be extremely impractical. To some extent, this logic is completely understandable and true. However, only one part of marketing costs money and that is external marketing. The underrated and often ignored marketing type may be more difficult to pull but it costs nothing than one’s time. This type is called internal marketing.
Internal marketing is not that explored. The entire point of internal marketing is to make one’s existing patients recruit new patients. Because dentists are enticing their patients to bring in new patients for them, this platform can be more difficult to pull as compared to external marketing wherein dentists only have to shell out a certain amount in order to have a billboard put up or to have a space in any publication. To those who are new to internal marketing, here are a few rules that one can follow:
Although the rules of internal marketing might be tricky, this form of marketing is predictable and measurable. Although it might not seem so, dentists have an ability to pick out patients who are most likely to refer them to their family members and friends. The dentists who are successful in internal marketing are those who understand the power of satisfying patients. To begin with, only the satisfied and happy patients are the ones who are most likely to make referrals. Dentists do not have to be that sensitive in order for them to single out the happy patients from the not-so-convinced ones, and hence approach the right patients to ask referrals from.
Successful dentists should work towards ensuring that 40 to 60 per cent of their existing patients make at least one referral per person on their behalf. By doing so, one can expect a steady number of new patients and new revenue pouring into the practice. It’s also very important for dentists to remember their professional etiquette and thank patients who gave referrals. Thanking patients can be in a form of a personal call but if this is inconvenient, dentists can choose to send thank you emails instead.