Studies have shown that referrals, whether from patients, doctors, or other external sources, account for as much as 80% of new business in the dental and orthodontic industry.
That is why we put so much emphasis on the importance of developing and maintaining a variety of strong referral programs. Your office can use these programs to aggregate strong referral sources and convert your happy community into an army of vocal advocates for your business.
But this won’t just happen! Building good referral sources requires effort on your part and commitment on the part of your team.
Here are some tips on how to improve your current referral programs:
- Get Excited! Your team needs to come to work every day EXCITED to see new patients and happy to be there! If your team is not excited about what they do, why should clients be excited about it? Your attitude is contagious. Get excited about the opportunity to provide beautiful smiles to your community, and the community will get on board.
- Be Vocal. You have to be proactive in promoting yourself to referral sources. If they don’t know know that you are accepting new patients, or they don’t know why your office is the best, how will they know to refer business to you? Train your team on telling EVERY patient and referral source what makes YOUR office special. Do you offer low payments? Special certifications or extended training? This is not the time or place to be humble. Train each team member on what makes your office special, and be sure to be vocal about what makes you the best!
- Keep referral sources informed. Be sure and keep your referral sources up to date on what is happening in your office. Whether it is a new form of technology you are excited to share or a monthly promo you are running, be sure and let everyone know! By keeping your sources informed, you are not only letting them know that they are important by being kept in the loop, you are also ADVERTSING your product and information!
- Make them feel special – because they are! Your referral sources are an essential part of a healthy, thriving office. Be sure and take the time to let them know how special they are to you and your office! Run client special for your patients, throw a block party for local dental office, and visit schools to hand out gifts to teachers!
These little gestures go a long way towards letting your referral sources know that they are appreciated, and the more appreciated they feel, the more vocal and effective they will be.
Building strong referral sources requires identifying your sources effectively and putting in the work required to create a strong and healthy relationship with sources. Yes, it takes work, but we promise it will be worth it! The relationships you will create and the reputation you build will be a priceless contribution to your practice, your team, and your community.
Be sure to review our list of referral sources below to identify where your office referral program is working well and where you would like to expand to next. Remember, if you are not optimizing each of these sources, you are not taking full advantage of your marketing referral potential. Let us help!
- Referring offices / Local doctors
- Patient referral
- Local Community/ businesses
- Employee referral (Team members)
- Ads/marketing pieces
- Online sources
Don’t forget that the team at Marketing by SOS is here to help you along the way, and our experts would be happy to help you develop and strengthen your referral programs to optimize your return and improve your business. Lets work together to optimize your Referral Programs and reach a new level of marketing potential!