Reception Area Pearls

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This Week’s Topic: Reception Area Pearls

Dear Catherine,

I wanted to see if you would like to contribute to an upcoming article talking about pearls to maximize your reception area such as:

–       3-5 Tips to Maximize the patient’s time for the practice’s benefit
–       3-5 Characteristics of a great reception area
–       3-5 Mistakes practices make in their reception area

Thanks! Dr. P

Catherine’s Answer:

Hello Dr. P,

Thank you for a great topic and asking for my input.

The reception area is often passed over for nothing more than a place for your visiting patients to “percolate”, when in reality, it’s the pivotal piece to the start of a great patient visit…or not.

Your Dermatology Times article with my quotes is great and I wanted to expand on my suggestions even more to give you detailed step-by-step of what a practice can do to turn their reception area into an educational and interactive center that leads to more patients, added-on procedures, increased referrals, and a happier patient visit.  For example….

Maximize Patient Time with Silent Sales Tools in the Reception Area

Reception Area Pearls:

  1. Show off your best results by running a “Silent” power point presentation of before/after photos of patients of different ethnicities, age, etc. so your visitors can see themselves in the photos and ask you for more information during their consultation.
  2. There’s a good chance your patients don’t know ALL you offer so display and eye-catching aesthetically beautiful menu of services so you never hear the dreaded, “I didn’t know you did that!” and they had it done by your competitor.
  3. Show new patients how much your current patients love you by displaying a high-quality photo album filled with your patients thank you notes, emails, patient surveys and reviews.

Great Characteristics of Reception Area

  1. Open space, especially at the check-in counter (that means no little window separating patients from staff).
  2. Less is more. Lose the clutter.  And, visiting patients will be more comfortable with less chairs with more space between them versus lots of chairs close together.
  1. Product displays with testers should be available if you are making patients wait (I hope not too long) and it gives the patients some time to consider the products so they are more inclined to buy at the end of their visit.

Mistakes Made in Reception Area

  1. Greeting patients with a clipboard full of forms that are redundant. With today’s technology, the repetitive information (name, address, phone, etc.) should be pre-populated so the patient only fills out what is necessary.
  2. Need a balance between educating the public about the services you offer and pummeling them with vendor brochures and promotional materials so they feel overwhelmed or deluged.
  3. Running non-stop talking videos that are repetitive and annoying to not only the staff who has to listen to it all day, but also the patient who thinks, “Once is enough!”

Better yet, ask your visiting patients what they think of your reception area. They’ll have great ideas for you to consider.

Need Help?  The How-To Library contains a module called “Make the Most of Your In-House Marketing” along with 11 other Patient-Attraction and Staff-Training Ready-Made Modules, How to Series Library seen below.

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What educational tools have worked well in your reception area?

Do you find your patients want more of your services when they are educated using those tools?


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