Can Offering A Free Visit Be Beneficial?

Now I know a lot of you don’t think it is professional to offer a free exam and some of you have tried but without any success.  If you practice in an area that is underserved or the competition is very little, then a free visit would not be for you.

However, if you practice, let’s say in New York City, where there is a podiatrist on every block, then a free visit to your office can be just what the doctor ordered to get new patients through the door.

A free visit just invites them to check you out.  Now, if you are constantly running behind, your office is dirty, and your staff is rude, then guess what, they won’t come back and probably don’t want you to treat them.  The free visit is just for the initial office visit.  You need to mention in the advertisement, letter or coupon, that treatment and x-rays are not included.  Now let’s say your office is a great place.  This does not guarantee the free visit will work for you.

You see, the patient needs you to earn their trust.  It is rare the patient comes in to just to be examined.  They usually have a problem and need it to be treated.  Once they trust you, they want you to treat them.  Many doctors don’t know how to convert a free visit patient into a paying patient.  It is definitely easier if you take their insurance and if their insurance covers your services. However, the doctor usually fails to sell his treatment plan when the insurance does not cover the patient’s care. 

One piece of advice that will help you convert these patients into paying patients:

  1. Find out why the patient finally decided on treating this problem.  Now, it might be the free exam card they received, and if it was, great.  It did its job by getting them in the door and helping them on their way to good health.  Otherwise, is it because the pain has become worse and now they cannot run or stay active?  Or is it that they have a trip coming up and need to be better for their vacation.

Stick around for next week’s blog to learn the next six tips for successful conversions.

We at Top Practices are dedicated to giving you more free time while building your dream practice. 

Rem/Peter

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