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Patient Attraction Episode 1110
Welcome to day 2 of how dentists can use Robert Cialdini’s 6 Principles of Persuasion to attract more new patients and keep the ones they have. In this podcast and the 4 podcasts to follow, I’ll be looking at one of the principles each time. If you’re not familiar with Cialdini’s work, I highly recommend it. Everything he’s written about so extensively directly applies to your marketing efforts. I’ll be back after the break to tell you about his principle of Scarcity.
– I’m Colin Receveur, CEO of SmartBox.
– Thanks for watching the Patient Attraction Podcast™.
– I’ve been an admirer of Cialdini’s work for a long time, particularly his Principles of Persuasion.
– The principles themselves are universal, although there are some wrinkles in exactly how they play out in different cultures.
– Today, I’m talking about his principle of Scarcity.
– Scarcity is pretty straightforward.
– If there are only a few of something, or if something’s available for a limited time only, people are more likely to want it.
– They don’t want to miss out on savings, or acquiring something.
– You see this all the time in advertising.
– “Limited time only!” “Sales ends Wednesday!” “This weekend only!”
– Or, “Only 25 left in stock! Don’t miss your chance to SAVE!”
– Or, “Available to the first 50 customers only!”
– And even though this advertising scarcity is almost always artificial, people are still persuaded by it.
– Not everyone, but advertisers don’t need everyone.
– They need enough people to respond, and generally enough people do.
– There are 2 limiting factors when it comes to using Scarcity.
– The first is that you can’t use it for too long a time or too often.
– People catch on to the fact that savings aren’t time-limited.
– Or that there really are a lot more than 25 left in stock.
– Unless they’re seeing the ad or offer for the first time, they’ll no longer respond.
– So time- or quantity-limited Scarcity is something to use carefully and with a planned timetable.
– The second limiting factor is that it has to be something people will want.
– Here’s a silly example just to make the point.
– You can try pushing a limited time offer on used motor oil, but you’re not going to get many takers, if any.
– There’s nothing desirable about used motor oil.
– Now, you’re probably wondering how this principle applies to dentists.
– After all, you’re not selling bouncy castles or hand vacuums.
– Let’s start with time-limited offers.
– What you are selling is dental treatment.
– Think about what treatment in a general practice usually focuses on: cleanings, exams, X-rays, whitening, minor restorations, and minor cosmetic dentistry treatments.
– If your state regulations allow, you could discount some or all of those things.
– Maybe you already do … and so do your competitors.
– That’s a price war that you’ll need really deep pockets to win.
– But there’s another way to use Scarcity, and that’s to offer an enhanced service for a limited time.
– If your exams don’t usually include oral cancer screening, add that as a free feature.
– But add it only for the next 20 or 30 new patients who make an appointment.
– Again, if you’re allowed to, offer one time-limited, in-house whitening session.
– Or a free trial of a take-home whitening program.
– Or a free computer simulation of the end result of cosmetic dental work.
– Maybe schedule an extra half day once or twice a month and advertise limited availability.
– But don’t try offering a root canal special.
– That’s something people need but wish they didn’t.
– It’s not something people want.
– Using Cialdini’s principle of Scarcity in marketing your practice is limited by your state regulations, by the services you offer, and by your imagination.
– But you must understand what your prospects will value, and focus on providing those things … for a limited time, or to the next however many new patients.
– There is one other way to use Scarcity.
– You can establish yourself as the best and only logical choice to solve your prospects’ dental problems.
– You can position yourself as the trusted, relatable dental expert.
– There’s only one of you, so that’s automatic scarcity.
– And the time-limiting factor is appointment availability.
– In essence, that’s what SmartBox’s industry-leading Patient Attraction System™ accomplishes for more than 550 dentists on 3 continents.
– SmartBox dentists get more and better new patients.
– If you’d like to see a Patient Attraction System™ that can double or even triple your practice, here’s what you should do.
– Visit smartboxdental.com and reserve your free Practice Discovery Session™.
– It’s a small investment of your time that can pay big dividends.
– You can get more patients, more profits, and more freedom.
– Join me for our next podcast, when I’ll discuss the principle of Authority for dentists.
– Until then, keep moving forward.