Grow Your Practice with Effective Networking Techniques
Are you trying to expand your dental practice? Or, have you been struggling to find patients? If that’s the case, you’re not alone. Many dental professionals have challenges with growing their practice. Fortunately, there are many ways to expand. Below are effective networking techniques used by many top dentists in the country. Read on and share with a colleague.
The Networking Approach
Even though there are many ways for a dentist to grow his or her career, networking has always been the most valuable one. It can be a challenge especially for those with introverted personalities, but embracing the art itself can make the process easier.
You don’t have to make major steps right away. Start small, and you’ll eventually get the hang of it. For example, you can offer free dental checkups to those who can’t afford such. If they love your service, they’ll share the experience with family and friends. Before you know it, you’ll be swamped with clients on a daily basis.
Also, connect with like-minded individuals. They are the people who’ll see that unique spark that you have, and help you further your cause. They don’t even have to be in your field. Just look for anyone who shares the same hobbies or interests as you.
1. Be active on social media
Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram are great, but you need a professional online presence. The kind that can only be found on platforms such as LinkedIn. About 80 percent of dentists depend on social media to market their practice, but very few of them rely on LinkedIn. Many dentists market on Facebook just because they’ve been told that Facebook is the most popular platform. They forget that this is not a social media popularity contest. Even though Facebook has millions of active users, LinkedIn is just as competitive.
2. Create rapport with referring physicians’ staff
We’re talking about the gatekeepers – the nurses, office assistants, receptionists, and insurance and billing managers. Developing a solid relationship with these professionals is key, as they will be the ones who’ll be setting up appointments, and distributing business cards. Know their names, and remember to thank them every time you get a referral.
3. Find a way to connect to other medical professionals in your location
In addition to the patient referrals, different medical professionals and dentists in your area can act as sources for new business:
- Talk to other professionals and ask around for overflow patients found in multi specialty practices.
- Don’t just focus on traditional sources when searching for referrals. Try cross-referrals from non-conventional sources such as allied health
professionals. For example, you can talk to physicians in the cosmetics industry.
- If one of your colleagues has just been recognized for an accomplishment, drop them an email or a note personally or professionally.
- Make sure other dentists know that they can always seek your assistance. For instance, if they need a 3D machine to diagnose a difficult case,
they can reach out to you anytime.
- Ensure you have business cards wherever you go. Hand them to people you talk to in social gatherings.
- If there are new physicians setting up shop in your region, let them know you’re ready to help build their practice.
4. Work on your visibility
You’ll only be able to reach out to a wider audience and even build stronger connections, if you work with peers and professionals from all over the country. In addition, write some byline articles about what’s going on in the industry or how best to enhance service delivery.
5. Make your practice “referral ready”
The most common complaint heard from doctors and dentists who refer clients to their peers is a lack of responsiveness. You can easily destroy that peer relationship that has existed for years by ignoring a referral. Let your staff member know ignoring a text, email, or missed phone call is an unforgivable mistake.
Every dentist can grow their practice. Networking is one way that many have succeeded. Learn more with top industry leaders at our upcoming 2019 Dental Business & Legal Symposium on October 18th and 19th at the MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, MD. Dentists and office managers are invited! Reserve your seats here. We look forward to seeing you there!