Tools that Convert Dental Leads into Patients

Dentistry is a competitive business. Right now, there are more than 189,000 dental providers in the United States.1 Granted, not all of them are in your immediate vicinity. But the fact remains, there are countless dentists and a finite number of patients. How will your practice succeed?

One action you can take to rise above the competition is prioritizing lead acquisition. Every person who lands on your website, visit your social media pages, or even drives by your practice is a dental patient lead. So how do you get them to convert from “just” a lead to a bonafide patient?

Follow-Up on Dental Patient Leads Right Away

When a user completes a form on your landing page, your team has 15 minutes to follow up. Any more than that, and the potential patient is already on to another dentist’s website, probably creating an appointment online with your competition. That means your team’s focus is always split between customer service to the patients in your waiting room and the potential patients in your email.

You can reduce the time and energy your team spends on responding to new leads—and nurturing the leads you already have—by leveraging technology to provide your potential new patients with quick, informative responses to their questions and easy-to-follow calls to action.

Automate Your Follow-Up

Your initial reaction to automating your marketing might be negative. A personal touch with your patients and connection with your community is an important part of your dental practice, and many dental professionals may be concerned that automation may negatively impact these relationships. When implemented correctly, however, automation allows you to foster positive. ongoing communication with current patients—without taking employee time.

And consider this: your patients are busy, too. Scheduling appointments online, outside of your standard office hours when their own calendars are filled with work and family obligations, provides them 24-hours’ worth of opportunities to book their appointments. Online scheduling provides a convenient way for your patients to make appointments immediately while the thought is top of mind.

Automation is especially helpful during the follow-up process. Recreating your standard follow-up communications cadence in an automated format frees up time for your team to focus on more strategic objectives and prioritize other responsibilities.

For new leads, the look and feel of your website sets the tone you want to communicate—not whether or not you use automation. For example, you can use software that automatically emails patients a link to schedule an appointment after filling out a form online. Or you can get a bit more technical and have a message pop up on their screen when they navigate to a specific page. Preprogrammed text messages reminding patients to book and confirm their appointments increase annual visits and decrease no-shows. Automation already has so many benefits for appointment-based practices, but it continues to improve.

Improve Customer Service Efficiency with Chatbots

Many providers manage patient queries and online bookings with chatbots. If you’re not familiar with the term, chatbots are the friendly little windows that pop up on the right side of a webpage and say something like, “Did you know you can make your appointment online?” or “How may I help you today?”
Chatbots undeniably work. Two-thirds of consumers have already used them at least once, and around 60% of millennials regularly use them when shopping online.2 For searchers visiting your website outside of standard office hours, chatbots provide 24/7 support for most routine queries.

Chatbots can answer about 80% of the questions they’re asked. 2 When their questions are immediately answered, users are much more likely to continue their new patient journey by making an appointment with your practice. Research shows that chatbots convert web users anywhere from 10 to 100% of the time.2 Even at 10%, investing in this technology is worth the cost.

Regardless of how you’re handling lead follow up, your team should have comprehensive training on your processes and any technologies they’ll need to use to support your plan. Making sure your employees are comfortable using your lead nurturing tools is critical to implementing your plan. Even the best-laid lead nurturing campaigns are only as successful as a team’s ability to carry them out.

Also, train your team on how to welcome new patients that might have only interacted with your automated marketing prior to their first appointment. This will help provide a consistency of expectations and experience for your patients across their interactions with your practice and help strengthen your dental practice’s brand.

Ready to start converting more leads into patients? Dreamscape can help. Contact us today at 888.307.7304 to learn more about nurturing your leads and improving your patient conversion rate.


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