Using call scripts is a widespread practice in business or practice management. Call scripts provide structure to your calls. Your staff can wing their patient calls and perform well. However, more often than not, they will forget to add information or miss important points. To make sure you are covering all your bases on patient calls, use call scripts. Call scripts are a set of guidelines or a framework that help you effectively converse with your patient on call. You can significantly reduce prep time for your front desk staff with scripts.
Advantages of call scripts for your dental practices:
1. Structure you call.
As mentioned before, having a framework in place makes sure that you do not miss out on anything during your call. Your call script acts as a checkbox for you. Tick off things as you move through your conversation. That way, you do not have to worry about forgetting anything.
2. Train your employees.
Training becomes so much easier if you have material your employees can refer to and use. Having a call script on hand will be useful when you train your employee to handle different situations, they can use call sheets to easily navigate a conversation with your patient. Additionally, if you record your calls, you can use those transcripts in training.
3. Delegate patient calls to other members of the staff.
What happens if your patient calls and the team is busy? You can’t miss out on potential leads or appointments. Having a call script means that any other staff member can take over.
Things you should remember when using scripts.
1. Keep it brief and to the point.
No one has time for lengthy calls, even for their own benefit. In an era where momentum is the most important, holding people’s attention is difficult. Additionally, because of work and chores, your patient won’t have time for drawn-out conversations on the phone. So when you have them on the phone, get to the point as soon as you can. Do not stray from the objective of the call.
2. Customize part of the script for the patient.
Nothing is truer than the saying: no two people are alike. Therefore, you should have some degree of flexibility in your script. Unfortunately, your patient on call will not follow the script like a movie. They will deviate from your talking points. And you should prepare for it. While scripts are amazing, they are just a framework for you to use. With experience, you’ll know what to say and when.
3. Mention the next steps.
At the end of the call, always give your patient the next steps. It clears up the process for them and gives them a clear idea of what they are to do. For example, you have a patient inquiring about the teeth cleanup treatment. At the end of the call, tell them to schedule another call for more information, direct them to your website, or book an appointment.
Here are a few call scripts you can use:
1. For new patients.
Gaining new patients is far more challenging than keeping the current ones. Because it takes time to build trust and open communication with new patients. However, new patients are crucial for a clinic’s revenue stream and expansion. It does not matter where you are getting your patients from, following up with them is pertinent. First impressions on calls can lead to potential new customers.
Hello, <name of the patient>. This is <name of caller> from <name of practice/clinic>. We’re calling because you <inquired about a service, schedule a call, etc.> Is this a good time to talk?
If they say “no”, ask what time they would be free and try then. If they say “yes” ask them what treatments/services they are interested in.
Is there any specific treatment or service you would like information for or an appointment? We have free slots on <date and time>. Which one can I put you up for?
2. Confirm treatment or appointment.
Confirming a treatment or appointment is a great way to remind your patient that they have a slot. You should call a few days before that appointment date. Two-three days in advance is good practice. This way, you can allot the slot to someone else if your patient cancels it. A win-win solution to cancellation or re-scheduled appointments.
Hi <name>. This is <name of caller or practice>. I just wanted to confirm your appointment on <date> at <time>. Are we still on for that?
- If they say no:
There are two ways that this can go. One, they say that they would like to reschedule it at a later date. Two, they do not want to reschedule the appointment. In the latter case, wish them a good day and ask them to call back when they want to book an appointment. Here is what to say if they want to reschedule their appointment:
No problem. Do you want to reschedule it? We have a few slots open on <date and time>. Great. We look forward to seeing you then. Have a good one.
- If they say yes:
Great. We’ll see you then. Have a great day.
3. Schedule future appointments.
Clients are more likely to book future appointments right after they have come in for one. You can always book appointments on call. If your patient is in a rush and does not book one. However, the longer you take to call them, the less likely they are to book another. So get them in a day or two.
Hello, this is <name of practice>. We noticed you did not book an appointment for your next <treatment, service, clean up, etc.> Would you like to schedule one now? We have a few slots open on <date and time>
You can also include why the next appointment is important to their treatment of service.
4. Scheduling an appointment for missed ones.
It is common for patients to miss appointments due to hectic schedules and a lack of open appointment times. Patients who are overdue for treatments and follow-ups usually ship between the cracks. They will go long periods without treatment unless you remind them. It is crucial to call patients who miss their appointments as soon as possible. It is ideal to call them up within two days of the missed session to book another slot.
Hi, <name of patient>. This is <name of the caller> speaking. You seemed to have missed your appointment on <date and time>. Would you like to reschedule it? We have open slots on <date and time>.
5. Feedback is valuable. And you can get it from repeat patients.
Every clinic loves repeat costumes who keep to their scheduled appointments. This loyalty and commitment are crucial for your clinic. And that is why it is paramount to take their feedback on your practice. They can highlight areas where your clinic can improve and what elements worked well. Feedback is essential for a clinic to boost customer satisfaction.
Hi <patient’s name>, it was great having you back in the clinic. If you have the time, our team would love to give you feedback. We would love to hear your thoughts about the treatment/service and your experience.
Thank you so much for your time! We look forward to seeing you at your next appointment.
Learn 15+ powerful ways to drive more patients and positive reviews to your dental practice. Download your free guide today.