In an ideal world, patients will start the same day they are presented treatment. But the reality is that most patients need some time to consider their options. According data collected by Startaloo, approximately 29% of patients across all practices will have a same-day-start. But what about the remaining 70% of patients? Investing in orthodontic treatment is not like shopping for a candy bar. It’s a considerable investment, so many patients need time to weigh their options. There are three important phases of the patient’s journey that all orthodontists should be aware of:
Phase 1: Discovery- This is when a patient discovers a local orthodontist and wants to learn more about their practice
Phase 2: Consideration – During this phase, a patient attends a consultation and is considering treatment
Phase 3: Decision- This typically takes place after they leave the consultation room, and it’s the phase when patients decide whether or not to start treatment
Throughout the patient’s journey, the third phase is the most important, and successful orthodontists who have a solid follow-up process are the ones most likely to get the patient to say, “yes”. By not having consistent and timely follow-up protocols, practices see patients drop-off during this critical phase, costing them thousands of dollars a year.
The challenge for many practices is dedicating the time and the resources to follow-up. For a treatment coordinator, this requires finding time to make phone calls or send follow-up emails, all while attending new patients. TCs are busy, so it’s easy to forget, or put new patient follow-up on the back burner.
Luckily, Startaloo, an orthodontist presentation system aimed at turning consults to contracts, makes the follow-up process easy and requires minimal effort at the practice level. We recently assisted a practice by updating and completing follow-up auto-tasks. The result? We added over $100k to the practice’s production calendar!
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Check out these tips aimed at improving follow-up and increasing patient starts:
1. Create a standardized system that maps out follow-up touchpoints and implement this system across all pending patients. This system is essentially a schedule on when to follow-up. For example: Day 1 after initial consultation: Make a follow-up call; Day 3 after initial consultation: Send follow-up email.
2. Vary patient follow-up across different platforms. Follow-up by email, phone, and text messages. This maximizes exposure and ensures messages stay on the patient’s radar.
3. Don’t give up. Most practices make the mistake of stopping their follow-up a couple of weeks after the initial consultation. Startaloo has found that successful follow-up protocols should run the span of approximately seven touch points spread out over the span of two months.
Making patient follow-up more efficient isn’t easy. Let Startaloo do the work. Schedule A Demo Today.
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