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09.16.05 Issue #184  
   
Treatment Presentations And The Power of Patient Testimonials


Belle M. DuCharme
RDA, CDPMA. Director
The Center for
Dental Career Development
belle@ dentalcareerdevelop.com

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We are getting more technically savvy.  We have more ways to illustrate, educate, demonstrate, and saturate our patients with information on the condition of their mouths and the options we can offer to correct or enhance their dentition.  Does this mean that our treatment acceptance will go up?  Not necessarily. 

Yes, it is vitally important to educate our patients and utilize the most up to date products, and technology to insure that we are giving the best care available. However, we must not lose sight of the patient in the chair as an individual and what motivates that patient to want the dentistry that we are so aptly displaying.   I still hold with the belief that “trusting that the doctor can do the work the way the patient expects it to be done” is a key motivator for treatment acceptance. Take for example the following:

Recently, I was helping a client develop text for a website. Dr. Toothman’s objective was to be able to reach more patients with information about the practice and also show his patients and prospective patients that he was serious with keeping up with changes in technology and the importance of the WEB in patient communication. With the help of a web-site designer, he was able to get the plan in motion. We needed testimonials and professional photos of happy patients to complete the site. Dr. Toothman had not kept an accurate Case Book of before and after photos and had not kept names of people who may want to give testimonials.  I began calling patients that Dr. Toothman said may want to help, he was reluctant to ask fearing that few would want to get involved.  We were asking patients to pose for a professional photographer and to give a couple sentence testimonials.  When the testimonials started to arrive in the mail or I would have them dictated to me over the phone or receive them via e-mail, Dr. Toothman was astounded.  “I had no idea so many people were happy with my work”, he exclaimed.  The following are excerpts from some of the testimonials I received:

“Before I met Dr. Toothman, I hated going to the dentist. I always felt like I was being pushed through a sieve whenever I was in a dental office. That changed the day I went to see Dr. Toothman.  I love my new veneers and Dr. Toothman.  I dread the day that he retires.” Jane Smedly

“Dr. Toothman and his assistant have been so helpful and caring.  He actually called me one night after I had a tooth pulled to see how I was feeling.  I would not see anyone else.” Cary Smith

“I had the most crooked, chipped and unsightly smile.  I hated to smile and I was ashamed.  I felt confident that Dr. Toothman could do the work.  I had no idea I could look so good. I felt that Dr. Toothman was honest.  If I weren’t pleased I could count on him to make it right. I would shout it to the world if he wanted me to.”  Beth Meade.

You can see how positive these testimonials are and how powerful they can be in motivating a patient to start treatment.

I would suggest getting at least twenty testimonials and having them professionally produced.  Use them in your brochures, websites, and flyers.  Have them framed and hung on the walls of your office.  It is amazing how many people will move from skepticism to acceptance because you have elevated their trust in your abilities.

For more information on taking your practice to a new level of acceptance, contact McKenzie Management at info@mckenziemgmt.com.

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