Effective follow-ups for the ‘think about it’ patients

Regardless of how well you promote your dental plans, sometimes patients will struggle to make a decision there and then and will want to take time to ‘think about it’. 

Each patient is unique and each situation presents itself with numerous variables, a lot of which you have no control over.  However, by having a greater appreciation of the decision-making process which a patient goes through, you will be better able to help them reach a decision.

Decision making

Without going off on a massive tangent about human psychology, below is a very simple diagram to illustrate the two main axis involved with decision-making: logical/emotional – the WHY, and deliberate/speedy – the HOW.

 

Getting your marketing right

Marketing is all about communication and if you get it right, it will do a lot of the hard work for you!  For example, if your brand is right, already your target audience will know why they should be choosing you over your competitors.

 

Look at things from the patient’s perspective

If you are dealing with a ‘think about it’ patient, then already you know that they fall into the more Rational/Humanistic side of decision making for this particular purchase; there is something that is stopping them from saying yes/no straight away and they want to take the time to consider a more deliberate response.

Below is a useful table showing example triggers that can help patients with their decisions based on how they think:

Type of decision

Trigger item

 

Rational 

 

Detailed case studies

 Competitive 

 

Fact sheets, checklists

 

Humanistic 

 Brand reputation, recommendations, social media

 

Spontaneous 

 Sales emotive one-liners, customer testimonials

Be prepared

Ensure that the frontline-staff who are dealing with dental plan enquiries are given adequate training and are aware of the systems and processes to follow.

 

Prompt sheets are very useful to act as an aid-memoir.  It can be particularly helpful to provide set responses for objections and more awkward questions which may throw your team member off course (particularly if they are communicating with a ‘think about it’ patient who needs more convincing!)

 

Less is more

Don’t provide too many options or too much information as this can be overwhelming and make a patient feel stressed and therefore unable to make a decision.

Every patient will have a head full of decisions to make so try and make things as simple and straight-forward as possible and ensure that your marketing materials are benefit focused rather than feature-packed; answering for the patient the all-important ‘what does this mean for me?’

 

If you would like help with promoting your dental plans and would like to chat things through, then please do get in touch by either emailing me at garymoore@ident.co.uk or call 01463 223399.