It dawned on me when I was watching the movie “The Queen of Versailles“: people want and will pay for a little taste of luxury. In that movie, David Siegel, owner of Westgate Resorts (a time-share business in the US), mentioned that the time-share business model allowed everyday people to get a little taste (e.g. a few days, a week or two, etc.) of luxury, which they could not otherwise afford permanently. And they were willing to pay for that taste.
So why not apply that to your dental practice? How is it that some practices command such a “premium” brand that they can charge over and above the ODA’s Suggested Fee Guide? And how can some practice amass thousands of active patients in a short time while other practices dwindle? And how can some dentists afford to buy and operate multiple practices? Perhaps it has something to do with selling an experience centred around a “little luxury”?
Think of it like this. You have a patient coming in for active recall treatment. They come to your posh practice. They don’t pay for parking (it’s free). They are greeted with warm smiles. They smell coconut and vanilla in the air. They’re told to take a seat on one of the spa-like chairs. The front desk staff approaches to offer a heated wet nap. They’re offered posh magazines and a drink (e.g. premium tea, premium coffee from the Jura machine, etc.). The patient proceeds to get a massage from the chair they’re in while waiting for their coffee.
Now, the actual active care treatment hasn’t even started yet… but don’t you think the patient loves the experience so far? It’s like going into a hotel or a spa. They’re treated like royalty. And it doesn’t cost that much to make the patient feel this way. Warm smiles. Nice smells. Premium coffee and high-end magazines. And what do you get in return? An experience that your patient will take home with them to spread to their 150+ person network. If this patient happens to be a Connector, Maven or Salesperson, even better for you (see my previous blog about this)!
Do you think that this patient would be loyal to your practice if you did these things? Clearly! But here’s the real test: would they be willing to reach into their pocketbook and pay a bit more for their active care treatment? You betcha! Well, at least the “right” patient would – namely, that loyal patient who appreciates the little taste of luxury and is willing to pay for that gem of an experience.
Something to think about, eh?