Answer The Call!

Sep 30, 2020 | Dental Support Organization

woman answering phone

Hold The Phone!

Answer the call for an increase in patients.


Here’s a good business practice that appears to be fairly obvious, yet many businesses don’t even realize the exponential loss that results from not doing it. Answer your phone! As simple as it seems, many dental practices fail to execute in this arena. This lack of customer service in today’s hyper-competitive marketplace will not work. You must execute at the highest customer service level each and every day.

Phone calls are the lifeblood for how small organizations stay connected to their current and potential customers. According to Google, 70% of mobile searchers say they regularly call a business from a mobile search ad. It may very well be that your employees are already busy with other customer service issues, but callers don’t know or care about the reason why you’re not answering and will likely get a negative perception of your business. And call someone else!

It’s all about good customer service. According to Aircall, 80% of all business communications take place over the phone. Even more staggering is the fact that roughly 85% of people whose calls are not answered, will not call back.

“You really can’t blame them for looking somewhere else if their call goes unanswered,” said Mick Janness, CEO of Oakpoint. “You’re about to spend thousands of dollars on marketing initiatives and no one is answering the phone. That’s really not acceptable.”

Let’s say your office misses 10 calls each week. That doesn’t seem like a lot in the grand scheme of things. Or does it? That’s 520 potential patients you may have missed in a year. Or let’s say half of them were existing patients having a question or worse, an emergency. Now you have 260 patients that may not recommend you since you weren’t available or even answering calls during working hours, leaving 260 individuals you could have talked to and possibly turned into customers.

NewVoiceMedia’s 2018 “Serial Switchers” report says that businesses lose $75 billion a year from poor customer service. The good news is, you can do something about missed calls and boost your company’s profitability all at the same time.

Oakpoint, a North Carolina-based, doctor-owned group, can provide dental practices with deep analytics that show precisely where opportunities are being lost. You can start to achieve profitable growth just by centralizing your non-clinical administrative support functions.

Before partnering with Oakpoint, one practice had missed 233 calls of 2,504 total calls in the month of January (or 17%). Oakpoint ran the numbers and saw the critical need to make a change right away. Now receiving ongoing support from Oakpoint, the same practice is missing less than 2% of its calls each month, with many of those after business hours. During working hours, the practice is answering 98%+ of all calls and the positive results are staggering.

The practice saw an increase in new patients from 16 per month to 27+ per month while missed calls fell from 17% to 4%. “The results were pretty dramatic,” said Janness “Part of the solution was as simple as making sure calls weren’t missed, or as few as possible. Unanswered calls will cost your business in many ways.”

So pick up the phone, and possibly pick up a lot more patients in the process.