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When you go into any business – a shop, a restaurant or perhaps a dental practice, how long does it take you to make a judgement? How long does it take for that unqualified, sub-conscious gut feeling to get a hold? Five or ten seconds? Sometimes even less.
In today’s full on, multi-media, message heavy society we, as consumers are making decisions on thinner and thinner slices of information – it’s a coping mechanism designed to weedle out the noise, so we can concentrate on what’s important to us. If you don’t believe me, answer this question…
Q. In the last month, have you thrown away a letter without opening it?
And that’s exactly what your potential new patients are doing when they land on your web page, when they contact you by phone or call into your practice. They’re making instant judgments on your practice, your culture, your personality…your brand. More often than not, those gut feelings are pretty accurate and, more importantly, those gut feelings are believed and acted upon.
You see, your brand is not what you think it is, it’s what your customers and prospective customers think it is. Ask Volkswagen…and they’ll confirm that.
Your dental practice has a brand, whether you think it has or not – if it’s easier, think of your brand as your reputation.
The question is…is your brand something you are in control of, something that every member of staff understands and buys into, something that is designed, cultivated and nurtured…or is it just what it happens to be?
For most dental practices that I’ve met, the answer is the latter. Which means, for those practices that are prepared to be proactive and approach brand and branding as a strategic differentiator, there is a huge opportunity to steal a march on the competition.
In my next article I’ll show you how you can do just that and as a result, boost your treatment uptake and improve your team morale and performance.
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