Last week we talked about shifting our focus from conversion to retention by setting solid expectations and agreements with new patients. But you might be thinking – Wait, what about patients who stumble during the commit to care phase?
We believe it’s best to leave all the logistics, schedules and systems for Day 3 where we set these expectations – the “Break In”. This helps avoid confusion and potentially overwhelming the patient, especially if they are still wrestling with whether or not to commit to care.
So, let’s back pedal a bit here and revisit the “Break-Out” on Day 2.
At this point your patient that falls into 1 of 3 categories:
1. Decided: They have made up their mind – Yes or No.
2. Undecided: They simply need clarification on specifics.
3. Unable to Decide: They need to discuss with their spouse [or fill in the blank mentor/family/friend].
Make sure you have a response ready that you feel great and confident about. It should NOT and does NOT have to be an awkward conversation.
They are simply committed at this stage or they are not. It should never feel like a sales pitch.
If you feel like you want it more than they do. Trust me, they feel a sales pitch.
By now we have or have not created clarity and built value. It’s not a time to sell them on anything.
If the patient says yes – smile, say great, I can take care of that for you today.
If the patient says no – stop the process, maintain composure and find out why they have come to this decision.
It is absolutely critical to establish the reason behind their decision. There is no need to get defensive or put them on the defense. Your number one priority at this moment is to make the other person feels safe.
After all, they know we share an objective and judgement has no place here.
It may sound like this:
“Thank you for being straight forward about that, I would never want you to begin a process that you were not committed to seeing through. If we are going to do this – we should do it right. So, please help me understand why you do not want to move forward.
Do you understand your problem?
Do you understand my recommendations for you?
Is it just not a priority for you?
Is it our office or me?
Do you want me to refer you to another chiropractor that I trust?
Or is it the time? Or money?”
Essentially, where’s the rub?
It is important at this point to listen to the patient and make sure that you are “barking up the right tree”. You want to make sure that you are addressing the real issue – the right issue – head on. Be careful not to misstep here.
Don’t bring up the money question if that’s not their concern. Heck, it could simply be geography.
It’s time to help them come forward with their real reason they hesitate to commit to care before you address it.
We are in the WHY business, NOT the HOW business. We must focus on the WHY they need to commit to chiropractic care. Try not to get entangled in the HOW’s [logistics of their schedules, their budgets or ANY of life’s other distractions], because the fact is we do not get to influence anything except what happens here in the office.
We want them to be right back in the office to continue their education. Keep them close to you as much as possible in the early stages of care, so that they get the best opportunity to experience their own “Epiphany”.
Be sure to schedule their next visit right away on their calendar. For more specifics on how this is done, review TRP Academy Module 26. If you’re not a TRP member yet, take a quick tour inside our Academy below!
Remember: Unanswered questions create confusion and confusion does not convert.
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