Read time: 8 minutes
DenGro boosts business performance for Aesthetics Clinics (and Dental businesses offering facial aesthetic treatments)
Perhaps you are opening a new clinic. Perhaps your clinic is well established and you have a solid base of loyal customers, great customer reviews and testimonials.
Either way, the chances are you’ll be investing some of your budget in marketing to attract new customers so that you can grow the business.
Whilst ‘word of mouth’ is perhaps the most powerful of recommendations your business can get, lead generation is an investment and a constant activity for most businesses. It’s not something to do ad-hoc, pick up for a while then drop again, it must be sustained as the return on investment in marketing is not immediate.
Building awareness and establishing a familiarity and reputation for your clinic takes time.Your target customers may need to see and read about your clinic several times before taking the next step – getting in touch.
When they do get in touch, what do you do? How do handle these enquiries? You’ve worked hard to get to this point, you’ve invested time and money in marketing to generate leads; don’t leave it to chance and don’t waste that investment in marketing that’s brought those leads to your door.
Have a process
This does not need to be complex; it just needs to be clear to those involved.
How do you or the team currently handle enquiries about treatments as they come in from a number of places (email, phone, form submission on the clinic’s website, in person)?
As a minimum:
- capture information about every lead in one place, i.e., contact information, treatment type, how they found you.
- make sure each enquiry is acknowledged and as quickly as possible.
If the above 2 things are not done, customers either feel ignored and go elsewhere or don’t get a good first impression and go elsewhere. The customer experience is paramount, those interested in spending their money at your clinic need to know that they are good hands.
Key point: It sounds obvious, but ensure the follow-up is centered around your prospective patient, not the clinic. For example, call them when they want to be called, not when you have a spare minute or two.
Have a lead champion
It’s a good idea to have a member of the team responsible for how the clinic manages its enquiries. It doesn’t necessarily mean they manage all leads; it might mean that different team members are assigned to different leads based on their own area of expertise (e.g., type of treatment). The lead champion ensures that your process is being followed.
You might also want to consider if and how team members are incentivised to own this process. it will pay dividends and its one less thing for the owner to worry about. They become accountable and can report up to you each week on progress, e.g., no. of new enquiries, no. of new appointments, for which treatments, the total value of pipeline and ideally where did they hear about us?
Who in the team most enjoys talking to prospective patients, building up rapport with them and steering them towards making a decision about a treatment?
My old boss liked to say: “What’s worse – train someone and they leave or don’t train them and they stay?”
Investing time here is essential so that the team:
- recognises that the potential value of each and every lead which is well beyond the value of the treatment in question if this person becomes a loyal customer.
- knows responsiveness is key – waiting several hours or worse forgetting to reply/call-back means saying goodbye to £000’s
- perseveres and knows not to give up at the first hurdle, i.e., couldn’t get hold of the person at first attempt so closes the lead as not interested
It is possible to manage your process using a spreadsheet, however that is time-consuming, manual, repetitive and error prone. Plus, a spreadsheet will offer you no reporting or insight. Much of how enquiries are handled can be automated if you chose to invest a fraction of your marketing spend in a software solution (lead management or CRM software).
Used effectively this software can streamline the process of new enquiry handling, automate the routine and repetitive aspects, freeing up time for your team to make contact with customers and prospective customers. A good solution will help your business to achieve a higher conversion rate from ‘treatment interest’ to ‘treatment started’.
It will also offer you real time reporting and business insight – where are my leads coming from (i.e., marketing attribution; which campaigns are consistently delivering the better quality leads?) and what happens to these leads when they reach my clinic (i.e., how responsive and effective is my team with handling enquiries?).
Do ensure the team is sold on its benefits – how will it improve their day to day as well as the business revenue? If that’s clear, they will be far more receptive to the change and more willing to engage with it. With any change, there’s often resistance which is more readily met if one of the team is leading the charge and at the same time, passionate about it.
Pick a solution that requires little technical set-up and is easy to use. It can take time to become comfortable with new processes, but with minimal training and on-going support that comes with any decent solution, your team will be flying in no time and saving many hours a week.
Know your numbers
- If your clinic is attracting new leads:
- Do you know where they are coming from (attribution)?
- Which marketing campaigns drew them in, and which failed to attract interest?
- Which campaigns are attracting quality leads that convert to starting treatment?
Knowing the answers to these questions, means you can potentially fine tune campaigns that work whilst stopping or overhauling elements of your marketing that are not resonating with target customers. Now you know how people are discovering your clinic, next you need to understand what happens to those leads once they’ve made contact:
- How quickly does your team attempt to make first contact?
- How many attempts are made to contact leads before conversion or closed/lost?
- What is the conversion rate by treatment type?
- How many leads are there, at what stage are they at?
- When people decide not to proceed with treatment, what reasons are given?
Knowing the above means you can quickly identify areas for improvement that affect where the enquiry came from (e.g., the enquiry form), or further training might be required to improve team performance (e.g., confidence over the phone, building up expertise across the team for specific and popular treatments). Perhaps the price is cited as being too expensive (doesn’t mean you must reduce your price; it could mean that your team need to know how to overcome that objection – training!).
Whatever your process for handling enquiries that come your way, do make sure you’re covering the basics outlined above. Every lead or enquiry has the potential to be incredibly valuable to your clinic. Provide a first class first experience and they could become a customer for life. What’s more valuable than that?
If you want to save hours of time for you and your team every week, there are software solutions out there, like DenGro. It will do the heavy lifting for you, with automated messaging sequences to acknowledge and then to keep leads warm and informed. It’s easy to use daily task list prompts your team when to make contact with prospective customers along with a host of reporting features so you know your lead attribution, conversion rates and team performance.