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Patient Attraction Episode 058: The One About Being Liked is Good Business
Hey again everybody, Colin Receveur here. Today is Friday, February 7th and I want to pose today’s question to you: is being like important to you personally or also professionally?
The second of Dr. Robert Cialdini’s principles is the influence of liking. It’s that people don’t want to say no to somebody they like. The best example of this that I can give is there’s a knife company that sells high-end knives. Their business model is built around this principle of liking. What they do is they run an ad to find entrepreneurs that want to do a door to door sales business selling knives. They bring these kids in, or these people, under the premise that they’re going to train them to be great knife salesmen and that they’re going to sell knives for the company.
What the company doesn’t tell them is the model that they operate this business under. This knife company brings in a new rotation of entrepreneurs every couple of months, and the reason is because each group that they train goes out to their family, out to their friends, out to their network of people, and sells all the knives they can. Once they have exhausted their network of friends and family, or ‘framily’ if you’ve been watching the T-Mobile commercials lately, they don’t have anybody else to sell knives to. So this knife company continues to bring in new people that want to be entrepreneurs under the guise of this is going to be a lifetime career for you and you can sell these knives forever. Once they’ve exhausted their network of friends and family, people they know, they bring in another group of churn and burn.
It’s an interesting concept that this knife company has leveraged, because they are hiring people to go out and sell to their network of people that they know and people that like them.
That’s how they’ve been so successful selling knives.
There was another study that was done by Dr. Cialdini at Northwestern and Stanford Universities for students that were going for their MBA. The one group of students negotiated a deal by email and what they found is that in a negotiation by email, they were successful approximately 30% of the time in reaching an agreement, in reaching a deal.
There was a second group of students who still only exchanged information by email, but instead of jumping right into the deal, into the negotiating, this group of students spent a few emails talking about who they were personally, talking about what they enjoyed and just a little bit of personal information shared about who they are and what they do. This group of students was successful 94% of the time in reaching a deal, in negotiation to an agreement.
It shouldn’t really come as a surprise to you, but if you can establish a little bit of rapport with your patients this is going to pay off tremendous dividends for you in terms of building rapport with your patients, increasing what your patients call your bedside manner. Getting your patients to like you is probably one of the strongest things that you can do to not only attract the types of patients that you want, but also to close a higher percent of them and get more of those patients to pay, stay and refer.
One of the next principles that I’m going to talk about is consistency, and that is that people tend to do what people that they see themselves being like also do.
If you’re attracting the types of patients that you want, those types of patients are going to attract more of the types of patients that you want.
If Suzie likes you and Suzie is a good type of patient that you want, Suzie’s friends that also like Suzie are also going to be good types of patients that you want.
There are three very important ways that you can get people to like you, and help you build rapport with you.
Let them get to meet you.
I talked in the previous podcast about letting them get to know you before they ever come in for a consult. Video is the strongest thing that you can do online right now to let your patients get to know you, who you are and let them meet your staff. You can also do patient testimonials; let them meet your patients. Patient testimonials should be based on two principles.
The first is you want to structure your testimonial using a reverse testimonial format. The reverse testimonial starts off not talking about how great you are. The reverse testimonial talks about the problems that your patient had upfront. It goes back to entering the conversation going on in your patient’s mind. Your patients had a problem before they came to you that you were able to fix, and your prospective patients that you are courting right now also have a problem going on. In order to get those prospective patients to call you, you have to identify that problem and not only do you have to identify it, but they have to know that you can identify their problem and that you can fix it.
The best way to do that is to let your patients talk about their experience. Let Suzie, who you just did a complete upper restoration for, or you did some implants to stabilize their lower denture, or maybe you did a double All-on-4 and fixed both arches. Let Suzie tell her story about how for the last twenty years she hasn’t been able to bite into an apple, or she hasn’t been able to chew, or she couldn’t smile at her daughter’s wedding, or she hasn’t been going on a lot of dates since she got divorced because she’s been embarrassed or worried or fearful that her denture would pop out, or that somebody would make fun of her or that it would end badly. Who knows?! Fear of the unknown. Let Suzie, your very happy patient, talk about these problems and then lead into how you are able to fix those problems for her. That’s going to resonate, it’s going to do what I call the mirror effect with your prospective patients out there. Your patients are going to look at that testimonial out there and go that’s me. They’re going to see themselves in the mirror.
When they see themselves in the mirror they’re going to go well that’s exactly like me, this doctor can probably fix my problem because that’s the same problem that I’m having. It’s not about selling implants and sedation and all these different products and items that you sell.
It’s about getting down to what matters to the patient.
It’s all emotional. We often back up an emotional decision with logic. We often justify that new car purchase with oh it gets great gas mileage, or oh I really hated black, it was so hard to take care of, now I’ve got a red car and the paint is much easier to take care of. The truth of the matter is , you bought a new car because you got excited and you wanted it and you took it for a test drive and you fell in love with it.
Patients that buy dentistry follow that same pattern. They get excited, they love it, they fall in love with it, you close them and you fix the problems that they’re having. Then you get a testimonial from them and you can start that cycle all over again.
Another way that you can use to get patients to like you is to reach out to them frequently.
Autoresponders are a great way to do this. Every dentist that we work with we have hooked up on InfusionSoft. If you aren’t keeping in touch with your prospects right now, you’re missing out on a huge portion of your new patients, of your potential new patients. What we see with a lot of dentists is maybe they tried InfusionSoft in the past, they haven’t been able to leverage it or they just haven’t made the jump to get on board with it.
There are a lot of great companies out there that can manage your InfusionSoft for you. It’s not very expensive and it can allow you to keep your name in front of these prospective patients. Think of what DemandForce or Lighthouse 360 or Smile Reminders does for your existing patients; it keeps your name constantly in front of them with appointment reminders, reactivations, everything. Your name is always in front of your current patients. You need to be following that same principle, that same concept, for potential patients. InfusionSoft can give you the leverage to do that.
Stay tuned for the next podcast on Dr. Cialdini’s fourth principle of persuasion coming up tomorrow.