After all that time spent designing marketing strategies and nurturing your leads, it comes down to the moment of truth — the consultation. 

You have anywhere from fifteen minutes to an hour to sell the value of your service to a potential patient. Even though there will be people more than ready to start working with your dental or ortho practice, you must be prepared for the worst-case scenario. Your potential customer may come up with excuses to avoid closing, often after discussing the price of the service.

Here are three of the most common excuses patients use, and how to respond to them.


‍"I'll need to talk to my spouse."

In our experience, it's quite unlikely that the patient is being honest about the need to discuss the treatment with their partner, and they are likely looking for a way out of the sale.

Most of the time, excuses like these occur when you discuss the price before selling the value of your treatment. Selling the value starts with listing all of the benefits and explaining how it’s not a commodity, but an investment in the client’s future happiness. 

You can address this excuse by requesting that your patient attend consultations with their partners, or that they gather whatever relevant information they might need prior to committing to treatment.  Without putting pressure on the client, simply explain how it would be the most convenient for everyone involved if the patient comes prepared. Make sure they understand how busy your schedule is, and that there’s no guarantee you will have time for a follow-up consultation. 

“Do I have to drive all the way down there?” ‍

It's impossible for all your customers to live just around the corner. Some of them will inevitably complain about the distance or the commute time, especially if there are other dental or ortho practices closer to their area. 

From the beginning, you must firmly and clearly remind them that they are not driving to meet just any dentist or ortho. They’re coming to see YOU, and you are the expert they’ve been looking for who can help them fix their smile. Make sure all your staff is on-board with this strong attitude, and remember what makes your business and your services remarkable.  When you speak to the client, explain what makes you unique and why they should choose you over any other practice.

"I can't afford the service."  

Usually, when a patient cannot afford the service, you'll notice the red flags early on. However, sometimes clients use this as an excuse.  

First of all, make sure you are confident about what you’re selling, and project that confidence to your customer. Help them think about the outcome of the treatment and how much they want it. Your patient’s smile is about so much more than vanity  — it’s a personal investment.  Sometimes it helps to remind them that the high price is an assurance of quality, value, and customer satisfaction.

There will be times your patient seriously wants the treatment, but genuinely struggles to afford it.  There are ways for you to help them get around this obstacle. Propose monthly payment plans or other financing options, and stress that, for medical services, it’s always a smarter decision to put quality over affordability. 

Every time that a patient chooses you over the competition is a victory. Be proud of what you do, and you'll see the results in no time! You must keep focusing on the value and the quality of your services over the price. Not every person who comes through your doors is a future patient, but you should always treat them as though they will be. As you learn how to overcome obstacles more and more, it will become easier for you to seal the deal, increasing the “closing rate” that your bottom line is relying on.

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