The power of word of mouth.
In almost every aspect of daily life, consumers are given more options than ever before. Some industries have reached such a state of option influx that consumers feel overwhelmed, confused and even incapable of decision-making. As a result, we’re now seeing consumer behaviour where the opinions of others are relied upon more heavily than ever before – especially when it comes to choosing health professionals.
A recent industry survey showed 44.7% of people used friends and family recommendations for choosing their current dentist and 63.7% said they would rely on recommendations when choosing a new dentist. These telling figures show just how powerful word of mouth can be for dental practices trying to find a competitive edge.
Factors such as staff, location and brand image all have their importance in creating a successful dental practice, but if the patient experience isn’t the best it can be then those factors mean very little.
A great patient experience goes beyond the chair. It can include a variety of considerations such as the environment they’re stepping into – a practice’s layout and design can instantly put patients in a positive frame of mind. Another impact can be the condition of equipment – when patients see state-of-the-art, well-maintained machines and tools they feel at ease. Even seeing a practice run smoothly and professionally can make patients feel like they’re in safe hands.
Many health professionals who are faced with increasing competition are now realising that rather than looking at what’s going on around them, they should be focusing internally to create a patient experience that’s worth talking about.
For dentists, creating healthy mouths is great for business. But creating talking mouths can be even better.