Dentistry is what you love, but it isn’t a skill that comes naturally. You had to go to dental school to learn to be a dentist, to get experience and develop the artistry that the field demands. The art of sales does not come naturally to most people either, especially not to dentists who are focused on technique and oral health needs. Thank goodness for consultative sales training, an advanced offering that helps dental teams excel at selling needed treatments to their patients.
Here are just some of the signs that you and your dental team need consultative sales training:
Information is a good thing for your dental patients. They need to know why a procedure is important, how it works, what it’s made of, and how much it costs. Unfortunately, throwing all this information at them is not going to make them be on board. In fact, a running commentary could make them mistrust you and turn them off completely because they aren’t given the opportunity to speak.
Active listening is a critical component of consultative sales training. You need to let your patient speak too. Yes, you know teeth, but they know their own teeth better than anyone. And they have opinions, fears, concerns, hopes, and more, whether they need sleep apnea treatment or want porcelain veneers. Let them tell you – and make sure you hear it.
You did the examination on your patient’s mouth. You reviewed the x-rays. You gathered information from your hygienist and dental assistants. That’s all the information you need to make a diagnosis, right? Not so much. There’s that patient sitting in the chair there too. They might be quiet because they have dental anxiety or you are steamrolling them with all your talking.
Now is the time to ask open-ended questions. Find out what hurts or what makes your patient uncomfortable or embarrassed. Whether you are selling them necessary restorative dentistry or elective cosmetic dentistry, it’s critical to ask them questions that require more than a yes or no answer. Believe it or not, your patients have things to teach you too. Their perspective is always valuable.
Presumably, you see your patients every six months for a dental exam. This isn’t a typical close relationship, but it’s frequent enough that you remember each other’s faces, that you can talk about favorite sports teams, home improvements, kids, significant other, hobbies. Relationships are critical when it comes to health, including oral health. Your patient will be touched if you remember a major event in their life even before they mention it.
Consultative sales training is about teaching dentists and their teams that good relationships with patients are about more than reading what’s on their chart and recalling it back to them, it’s about everything else that’s going on too. Add a few life notes to their file to discuss in the future.
Sales is a separate skill from dentistry, and sometimes you need to admit that you need help in this department. Independence Dental understands that persuasion is not a natural skill for every dentist, but the ability to sell those pricier dental treatments is a must. Through the consultative sales approach, we help you understand your patients’ oral health problems, develop solutions to their challenges, and identify opportunities for enhanced communications. Get more “yes” answers to treatment. Contact Independence DSO today to get started.