Every so often we like to update everyone on what’s going on at our favorite dental marketing company – New Patients Inc.
Over the past year, dental practices were overwhelmed with existing patient flow. This was caused by three main factors. The first was pent up demand for dental services from the 2+ months some practices were closed during the initial Covid outbreak. The second cause was money. The government dropped five trillion dollars into the US economy. Some of it found its way into dental practices. The third cause was the slow steady removal of Covid restrictions. More people felt more comfortable going back to dental practices for care. All of this (and other factors) led to dental practices being booked out 3, 6, 12 weeks!
What were we (New Patients, Inc) doing while all this was going on? Besides taking care of 1000 marketing projects for clients, here’s what we were up to.
Practice Control Center ™
A few months ago, we released Practice Control Center. Anyone who has followed us over the past decade or so, knows our emphasis on the value of call tracking lines on marketing projects. If you are going to spend more than 10% of your annual marketing budget on it – it should have a call tracking line.
Call tracking lines made it easier for the dentist to see (and listen if they wanted to) first line responders to a given marketing project. We assumed they would listen to the calls (or have someone on the team do it) then put the source of the new patients into their practice management software.
The reality is/was, while the dentists liked knowing the number of calls they got, they didn’t want to listen to the calls or ask someone on the team to listen to the calls. So, some of the value of having call tracking lines, was not realized.
So, what did we do? The first thing we did was talk to dentists and office managers. We asked them what was missing. Here’s what we found out:
- Very few dentists or office managers remembered their login information for the call tracking software. To us this meant there wasn’t enough value to them for the effort it takes to log on.
- Of those who did log on, very few logged on and listened to any calls. They just looked at the volume of calls, made some random assumptions, and went on their way. This told us we needed to expand the reporting capabilities.
Armed with this reality, we went to work.
- We added automated source categories. These primarily have to do with identifying where patients were BEFORE they called the practice, from the practice’s website. This answers several questions. Is the money I am spending on SEO worth it? Is the money I am spending on my website worth it? Is the money I am spending on my social media efforts worth it?
- Then, we took it upon ourselves to listen to each call and note the following:
- What was the outcome of the call?
- Went to voice mail
- Bad Lead (with reasons why it was bad)
- Good Lead (with reason they didn’t schedule)
- Good Lead – New Patient
- How would we rate the interaction between the dental team and the new patient during the call?
- 1 through 5 stars
- Team member name
- What was the outcome of the call?
Now with Practice Control Center, a dentist (or office manager) can assess the value of their marketing investments WITHOUT THEM having to listen, categorize, & attribute!
Client retention on the Practice Control Center is over 90%. But improvement didn’t stop. Read on.
Monthly Exec Meetings:
After a few dozen installations of Practice Control Center, we learned dentists and/or their office managers would really like to have US run the reports, explain the reports, and point out the good, the bad, and the ugly within the report. Then, discuss how to fix the ugly.
So, from that point forward, we set up monthly executive overview Zoom meetings. These are 15 minutes in length. We run all the reports. We share the results on a share screen, then guide the practice toward opportunities to help themselves convert more new patients from the calls generated by their marketing spend.
Now you know how we knew the majority of you were so incredibly busy over the past year. 😊
Dentists seem to really like these quick overview meetings. They want to know what’s going on, but they want the info consolidated into action items for them. Makes sense. They are the CEO of their dental practice.
Saving Digital Clients More Money
If you don’t know NPI, you don’t know how technology heavy we are. And, you likely don’t know how nerdy we are when it comes to technology. If there was a trophy for subscribing to the highest number of different pieces of technology – NPI would win hands down!
Not all of them provide value beyond their cost. But we are nerds, so we get excited to try them all. One of them DOES provide significant value to our digital marketing clients.
If you’ve ever looked at your Google analytics report for your website or if you’ve ever managed your own Google Ad campaign, I am sure you saw “traffic” to your website or ad and wondered: Why did they spend zero time on that page? Why did they instantly leave? And from a Google Ad standpoint; Why did I spend money for that?
Bots. Bots aren’t people (generally), bots are programs. These bots are programmed to visit your website or ad landing page, then leave immediately. Like a sonar ping. The problem is, their visit messes up your Google Analytics data and DEFINITELY costs you more money if you or someone else is managing your Google Ad campaign.
What we found was a service which allows us to seek refunds from Google for our clients (they get the money, we don’t) for the bot traffic they receive from their Google Ad campaign(s). It doesn’t eliminate all bot traffic, nothing does. But it definitely puts credits back into a dentist’s Google Ad account.
NPI Education ™
This improvement started more than two years ago but became official April 1, 2021. NPI Education is an entity owned by New Patients, Inc. NPI Education provides business education for dentists. If a dentist learns from and passes testing requirements, NPI Education can then provide continuing education credits.
Why did we build NPI Education? Good question. We built NPI Education because it is REALLY difficult for a dentist to get effective advice in today’s online dental world. Many/most dentists are afraid to ask questions in open forums, for fear of ridicule from their peers. In Facebook, most of the advice being shared today, is in direct relation to the money being made by the “dental influencers.” So, how do you know you can trust the information? You can’t!
Currently, there are 14 other dental industry leading professionals joining us under the NPI Education umbrella. The criteria to be an instructor at NPI Education is very high. Only the most effective, most reputable, professionals with the highest ethical standards are allowed into NPI Education. The education can be one on one with an instructor, one with a few – like a workgroup, or one with many. One of the goals of NPI Education is to be dentistry’s “safe place”. Safe from influencers, nasty comments from peers, and safe from advisors who have not stood the test of time.
For a full list of all current instructors: www.npieducation.com
NPI Education just went live a week or so ago. We will be adding courses (free, paid, CE, no CE) continually from here on out. Set up a free account, grab some downloads, and we will notify you as new content becomes available.
Fee for Service Journey
This ties into the following:
- Dental practices being overwhelmed with too many patients in their schedule.
- Dentists getting reimbursement reduction notices from multiple large dental insurance companies.
- Dentists feeling like they are trapped. The only way to improve earnings is to work even more than they do right now.
- Dentists talking to each other on internet dental forums everywhere about potentially dropping insurance plans.
- NPI Education becoming a reality
- Over a dozen other business professionals in dentistry who are just as sick of the insurance companies, as you are.
No dentist anywhere should just start dropping insurance plans.
The Fee for Service Journey is in NPI Education portal. The journey is a series of six learning units. Every instructor in NPI Education will be contributing to the Fee for Service Journey’s.
These are small workshops of only 5 to 10 dental offices represented at each Zoom webinar learning unit. Each unit will have milestones which must be reached before the practice can move onto the next subsequent unit. Every dental practice will go through the steps in the process at different speeds.
The goal is to slowly, steadily, smartly, and effectively guide dental practices through the process of dropping plans, WITHOUT the practice taking unnecessary risks.
The very first unit of the Fee for Service Journey course is the Intro Course. This is where the dentist determines IF they should consider dropping plans. Some practices should not.
You don’t necessarily need to drop all plans in order for the Fee for Service course to be a benefit. You might only want to drop one insurance plan. That’s fine. But drop that one plan correctly, so as your career unfolds, you know how to do it the right way.
It feels like we (dentistry) are beginning a new day. The night of Covid is giving way to a faint new dawn.
Let’s go greet this new day with renewed optimism.