Spring Clean Your Dental Office Using Your 5 Senses

Spring Clean Your Dental Office Using Your 5 Senses

Hello Friends,

It’s that time of year when many take advantage of the warmer weather to “spring clean” their homes. This is also a great time to spring clean your dental practice.

I encourage you to make a checklist of all the areas in your office that need some spring cleaning.  I’ll help you get started by showing you how to take advantage of using your 5 senses while cleaning your office. This is by no means an exhaustive cleaning list but it will you give you ideas of where and what to clean.

Betty Hayden Consulting Dental Marketing and Practice Management Ideas

Sight, Smell, Sound, Touch, and Taste.

SIGHT

What do your patients and potential patients see?

Areas to “see” include;

  1. Office Exterior
  • Signage
  • Windows
  • Landscape/Weeds
  • Garbage/Debris
  • Safety Concerns/Handicap accessibility
  1. Office Interior
  • Reception Room – Sit in your reception room, what do your patients see, touch, hear, smell and taste? Look high and low. What do you see? Dirty carpeting/flooring? Outdated magazines & decor? Stained or worn chairs? Peeling wallpaper? Cobwebs? Dusty plants/floral arrangements? Light bulbs that are out?  Look over at the front desk area, if you see a sliding glass window that is full of signs and papers telling your patients what to do and what not to do…remove them immediately! In fact, remove the glass. It’s very unwelcoming!
  • Restroom – Most if not all of your patients that visit your restroom WILL determine the quality and safety of your care from that experience. (Isn’t that true of you when you’re at a restaurant or any public restroom? No one wants the gas station bathroom experience…not even when you’re at a gas station.) Your restroom should be clean, nicely decorated and well stocked with quality paper products and soap.
  • Front Desk Area – Clutter represents indecisions. Make a decision to get rid of the clutter! (That includes any sticky notes attached to computer monitors, coats/sweaters hanging on the backs of chairs and fast-food drink containers sitting out on the counters.) Purchase hot/cold beverage tumblers, preferably with your office logo on them for your team members to use at their workstations – this looks much nicer than your patients seeing soda bottles or coffee shop cups.

While you’re visiting the front desk area, don’t forget about cleaning these areas too…

  • Current Protocols–  Hygiene Continuing Care, Incomplete Treatment Reports, Confirmation, A/R-Collections, Greetings, Patient Hand-off,  New Patient Welcomes, and Referral Thank you’s, etc.
  • Paper Communication Materials –Intake forms, Letterhead, HIPAA forms, Financial Policy & Postcards.
  • Job Responsibilities/Descriptions –Have every team member write down a detailed list of all of their job responsibilities. This is VERY helpful in determining more effective ways of doing things as well as finding out what is NOT being done.
  • Operatories – Sit in the treatment room chairs. What do you see? What do you hear? What do you taste? What do you smell? How do you feel? Again, your patients don’t measure the quality of care, they measure the quality of their experience. Keep your patients loyal to your practice by making certain they consistently have great experiences.
  • Closets – Make an inventory checklist. Throw away any expired or outdated products, equipment, manuals, etc. While you’re at it, if there is anything that isn’t be used properly due to lack of education or training, go ahead and schedule time for continuing education/training.
  •  Equipment/Technology – What needs repairs, upgrades or to be tossed? Computers, Software, Internet Speed & Access, Printers, Copiers, Telephone Systems, TV’s, Postage machines, including…dare I say, typewriters?
  • The Team – Appearance – Wear clothes that reflect the excellent care you give your patients. Professional, clean, and wrinkle-free clothes.  Clean hair, nails & body). Attitudes – Remove any toxic attitudes. Office Policies – Review and update employee benefits and expectations.

TIP: Make a cleaning schedule – who, what & when will the parking lot, restrooms & reception room be checked. This should be done several times throughout the day. Do not wait for the “cleaning person” to take care of those areas.

SMELL

  • Get rid of the dreaded dental office smell. There are products out there that will eliminate that smell without aggravating patients with allergies. Bake chocolate chip cookies if necessary.

SOUND

  • Keep the noise down! Patients want to be put at ease; they don’t want to hear the latest office gossip or a TV that is too loud. Avoid using patients’ full names or complaining about patients when you can be heard from the reception room or treatment chair.
  • Music – Consider playing music in the reception and treatment rooms. Wireless headphones will allow patients’ to listen to music or the TV while in the chair.
  • Telephone Greetings/Messages – What do your patients and potential patients’ “hear” when calling the office? Be sure that what they hear is a reflection of your goals and vision. See How To Effectively Answer The Dental Office Telephone

TASTE

  • Beverage Station in the reception room. Complimentary coffee, tea, cold bottled water, juice, etc. See this Pinterest board for beverage station design ideas.
  • Snacks – Offer snacks such as fruit, granola bars, etc. This is especially nice for patients that may have been in for a lengthy appointment and need a little boost in energy.
  • Allow patients to rinse with mouthwash before and after the appointment.
  • Offer pre-pasted toothbrushes for patients that didn’t have time to or forgot to brush their teeth before their appointment.

TOUCH

  • Reception Room – Is it comfortable & welcoming?

Reading Material – Have a variety of magazine and books for patients to read.

Temperature – Keep the temperature in the reception room at a comfortable setting.

  • Treatment Rooms – Be sure that your patients are comfortable during their visit.

Massage Pads on Chairs

Blankets (If you have a patient that is always cold, pop the blanket in the dryer for them right before appt).

Distractions –  (Movies, Music, Digital Aquarium, Etc.)

Give Painless Injections…always.

Put your patients at ease by talking with them before you start looking in their mouth.

  • Free Stuff – Give away items imprinted with your office name, website and phone number to each patient at their appointment. Such as; toothbrushes, magnets, calendars, pens and lip balm. (If you’re wondering where you can order some quality imprinted items, check out Bizarre Marketing.  I share this particular company with you because their customer service is awesome!)

Using your 5 senses, look closely at yourself, your team, the exterior, and interior of your building, all office systems, your lab, sterilization procedures, website & social media sites, marketing materials, marketing programs and the patient experience.

Your goal during your spring cleaning should be to find ways to consistently exceed your patients’ expectations and remove anything that is hindering you from reaching that goal.

Are you receiving my free dental marketing and practice management ideas every month to your email? If not, PLEASE take a second and follow today or send me your email address to bhaydenconsulting@gmail.com and I will send you an invitation to follow. This way, you won’t miss a single idea. Feel free to share my blog with your dental friends.

 ~ Thank you!

Yours for Greater Success!

~Betty

P.S. Please stop by and say hello to me on  FacebookTwitterInstagramLinkedIn and Pinterest

Dental Marketing and Practice Management Ideas for January (2016)

“Approach the New Year with resolve to find the opportunities hidden in each new day. ”    ~ Michael Josephson

Hello Friends,

December is a great time to make your to-do list for any wanted and needed improvements to your office and to set your production, collection and new patient goals for the new year. Do include your team in this plan, ask them what their ideas are to make 2016 a more productive and happier year for all.

Have you been following my Improve Your Office posts? If not, check them out here: Improve Your Office

Do not delay, put down on paper all of your thoughts and plans to make 2016 a better year for you and your practice.

dental marketing ideas for january

I would like to help, here are some dental practice management and marketing ideas for January.

Practice Management Ideas ~

Let’s start with your existing patients active and inactive…

Hygiene Continuing Care & Incomplete Treatment:

Insurance Maximums: Many of your patients dental insurance maximums renew on January 1. Phone your patients with a friendly reminder of their renewed benefits and make a reservation for them to come in for their hygiene visit or incomplete treatment with the doctor.

Inactive Patients: It doesn’t help anyone to have a file cabinet or computer full of inactive patients – Get them on the schedule. January is a great time to send We Miss You Reactivation Letters to your patients. For a sample letter visit this post: Reactivation Letter

Hygiene Patients: Are you pre-appointing hygiene visits? If not, January is a good time to make this a goal for the office. While you have the hygiene patient in office, schedule their next 3, 4 or 6 month visit. Avoid saying “would you like to schedule your next appointment?” Many will say no. Instead, say this: “Let’s go ahead and schedule your next visit.” Assume they want to schedule their next visit. By the way, your entire team needs to be on board with pre-appointing your patients. It can be done! 🙂

Thank God It’s Monday” Day: 4th – Are Mondays typically bad days in your office? Starting in January, change that pattern. These ideas may help you start liking Mondays: How To Love Monday

Next, we have few internal and external marketing ideas, some are educational and some are just for fun. Both are presented to exceed your patients expectations, help to create value for better dental health and get them talking about you to their friends, family members, co-workers and neighbors.

Marketing Ideas ~

I’m Not Going To Take It Anymore Day: 7th – This is a wonderful educational and marketing opportunity:
I’m not going to take my…”Crowded Teeth”,“Yellow Teeth”,“Bad Breath”,“Sensitive Teeth”,“Snoring”,“Headaches”, anymore! – Show your patients how you can help.

Jan 11 – Cigarettes are hazardous to your health day.
Promote the Smoking Cessation Programs your office offers. Keep track of your patients that are trying to give up cigarettes and be sure to celebrate your successful “quitters”!

Just for Fun Ideas:

National Soup Month and Soup Swap Day – January 16th.
Try this:
– Team Building Opportunity: Each team member brings in a slow cooker of soup. Enjoy a nice lunch together.
– Swap soup recipes on your social media sites or in the office.
– Delicious idea for Winter: “Warm-Up Wednesday’s” Set up a slow cooker with soup or chili every Wednesday for your patients to enjoy. (Have recipe cards ready to share) Your patients will love the free food.

January 29th – National Puzzle Day – You can purchase puzzles at your local dollar store and give away to your patients as unexpected gifts. Tie a ribbon around the boxes and attach your business card or office information to it. Even if your patient doesn’t want the puzzle, they can give it away as a gift on your behalf to their friend, family member, co-worker or neighbor.

This one is my favorite idea for January…

National Hot Tea Month

Educational & Service Opportunity:

Drinking teas such as green tea can be very good for one’s dental health.

Does Tooth Sensitivity hold some of your patient’s back from enjoying their favorite hot beverage? Show them how you can help relieve/eliminate tooth sensitivity. This will give a nice boost to your production too!

If you are interested in having me help your office create a custom “National Hot Tea Month” (or different themed) campaign that includes ideas for special offers, patient give-aways/drawings, community involvement, cross marketing with local businesses and recare/incomplete treatment scripting, please contact me today at bhaydenconsulting@gmail.com

“Hope Smiles from the threshold of the year to come, Whispering ‘it will be happier’…”     ~ Alfred Tennyson

So there you have it, a few dental marketing ideas for January. Please be sure to comment below with any other ideas or reminders you have for the month of January. I LOVE hearing from you!

If you have not yet subscribed to receive my Free Dental Marketing Ideas each month, please do so today.

Stay warm out there!

Yours for Greater Success,

~Betty

P.S. Why not go ahead and put down in writing all of your marketing and practice management plans for the entire first quarter? For sure start planning for February’s Children’s Dental Health month. For some idea’s check out my Dental Marketing Ideas for February and March.