If there is one area the vast majority (95%+) of all business people fall short in, Dentists included, is the follow-up with non-buyers. You know, a prospective pt raises hand, makes appt, shows up, but is, for whatever reason, not ready to pull the trigger on a treatment plan. Then, the dust starts. There’s a bird, somewhere, that when threatened, starts stirring up the dust to camouflage itself and then escape. It’s a natural defense mechanism. Patients have this, too. Except, while they understand the logic you’re using, and, they know it’s in their best interest to pull the trigger, even sometimes if they want it bad enough, they can’t for whatever reason, sign on the line. So, the dust starts.
Sometimes it’s financial. Sometimes they are scared. Other times, they don’t know if their spouse will kick their butt or not. And, yes, there are other excuses, but these are a few of the more common.
It’s at this point when dentists bail. They refuse to invest more time, energy, effort or money into the pt that said, “No…” and what the pt most likely said was, “No, not yet.” But, most don’t wait to listen to the “…not yet…” part. It falls on deaf ears and the dentist, insulted, storms off, writing the potential patient off as a source of treatment income.
BIG, deadly, DUMB mistake. By the way, it’s not just dentists. This kind of reaction is alive and well in EVERY industry. Example: Last week, on a Monday, I made 3 calls to companies that do driveway re-sealing and pavement repairs. Mine’s nearly ¼ mile long and the last sealcoat was in 2003, not long after we moved in. That’s 12 years ago. It’s not a small job. Probably a $2500 to $3500 project if I three-times the last time we had it done. All three said, “OK, we’ll get a guy out to bid it.” It’s now been a week and not word ONE from any of ‘em. Worse, not ONE of them will follow-up. I was prepared to give one of them money. All they had to do was show up. If this happens ten to twenty times a year to these guys, there is potential lost sales of $25,000 to $35,000 and up per year. Idiocy and insane business suicide. However, I am sure they have an excuse. Good thing they are not a franchisee of mine, I’d whack ‘em.