This Week’s Q&A Topic: How to Convert Callers to Appointments
This Week’s Question:
I run a busy practice and have three receptionists handling the calls. One of them is excellent and the other two need help.
No matter how many times I tell them what to say, they will often say something random and lose the caller. I even heard one of them say today, “We don’t have any openings this Friday”…and then click!
I had to explain to her she could have offered another Friday or the caller could have given us her cell phone and we could have called back if there were any last minute openings.
Any suggestions for fixing my phones?
Dear Dr. C,
Does it help to know every cosmetic practice has experienced “bad phones” that cost them patients and thousands of dollars in lost revenues?
Here’s the good news: The solution to Fix Your Phones is simple but not easy.
There are 3 essential elements needed to turn your front desk into a profit center:
First, you need the right person in that position. Someone who has a cheerful disposition, a friendly and upbeat voice, and a great customer service attitude.
Third, you need to hold them accountable so they consistently perform well for you and BOOK appointments.
That’s how you prepare your receptionist to handle patient inquiries effectively and fill up your schedule. Otherwise, your new patients aren’t ever going to meet you if your receptionist can’t successfully convert these callers into appointments.
Frankly, your receptionist may be unknowingly sabotaging your best practice promotional efforts simply because they don’t have the skill they need to promote YOU professionally.
Every call into your practice not only affects your bottom line; but it’s also enhances or destroys your image. Your staff can represent you as a true professional or not – but the choice is up to you.
During my staff training sessions, I often hear, “But I don’t know what to say when the patient says that.” Or, “What else could I have said that would have made a difference?” My answer is – plenty!
Prepare your receptionist for success. Equip them with effective responses, phrases and questions to help them not only bond with and educate your patients but actually close the caller to a booked appointment.
With the right words to say, your staff will be so comfortable with the process and so prepared that they’ll look forward to phone calls and patient interactions because they’re confident, trained and ready to close!
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She is a business/marketing consultant to plastic surgeons. She speaks at medical conferences all over the world on cash practice building and trains staff to be converting rock stars.