TOP TIPS Cash in on dormant patients with a reactivation campaign

It’s common knowledge that the effort it takes to get a new patient on your books far outweighs the energy needed to prod old patients into life again.

To do this successfully you need to remind them you’re still there for them and, even better, your practice has a new surgery/distinguished member of staff/treatment plan offer that they can benefit from.

Here are five key aspects to patient reactivation to bear in mind:

1. Set your CRM system to automatically produce a monthly list of patients who have not transacted for more than 12 months, then call every single one, however many times is necessary to speak to them, and offer an appointment.

We recommend outsourcing this activity as frequent call-backs and reporting can be very difficult to juggle around a receptionist’s usual duties, resulting in poor follow-up and conversion.

2. If you have a large backlog of dormant patients, divide them according to age, gender and previous dental services bought. Depending on what kind of practice you run, there will be more effective lines to take with each group. Say, for example, you run a cosmetic practice and you identify a group of 35 women over 45 in your dormant list, sending out a bespoke email to each one with an offer of a free Botox session may be most likely to have an effect.

3. Set up an automated email to go out to patients when they go six months since their last appointment. This should be done as standard by all practices offering check-ups and hygienist appointments but remarkably few do it.

4. Report your patient reactivation conversion rates every month and look at successful conversions and the methods you used – this data will be crucial in improving you reactivation operation.

5. Put all none conversions into a mailing list (which they can opt out of) that you can have ready to broadcast any new treatment offers or other attractive news that is a reason to remind them about your practice. A small proportion of these broadcasts are bound to land just when the ex-patient is having trouble with their new dentist and needs a reason to move again.

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