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A dental office managers guide to establishing credibility with new patients over the phone.

As a dental manager with three decades of experience, I've witnessed firsthand the power of building trust and credibility with new patients from the very first phone call. It's not just about scheduling appointments; it's about making a lasting impression that sets the tone for the entire patient-provider relationship. So, grab your headset and let's dive into some tried-and-true strategies to win over those new callers with enthusiasm and warmth!

1. Answer with a Smile: Believe it or not, a smile can be heard over the phone. When picking up calls, imagine you're greeting them face-to-face. Let your voice convey warmth and friendliness, instantly putting callers at ease. Remember, the first hello sets the stage for everything to come.

2. Listen with Empathy: New patients often have questions, concerns, and maybe even a bit of anxiety. Take the time to listen attentively, acknowledging their feelings and addressing their inquiries with patience and understanding. Empathy goes a long way in building rapport and showing that you genuinely care.

3. Offer Personalized Guidance: Every caller is unique, so treat them as such. Instead of using a one-size-fits-all script, personalize your responses based on their specific needs and concerns. Whether it's explaining procedures, discussing insurance options, or calming nerves about a particular treatment, tailor your approach to make them feel heard and valued.

4. Share Success Stories: Nothing instills confidence quite like hearing about real-life success stories. Share testimonials from satisfied patients who have had positive experiences at your practice. Whether it's a pain-free root canal or a life-changing smile makeover, these stories can inspire trust and demonstrate your team's expertise.

5. Be Transparent and Honest: Transparency breeds trust. Be upfront about treatment costs, potential discomfort, and expected outcomes. Avoid using jargon and technical terms that might confuse or intimidate callers. Instead, communicate in clear, straightforward language, empowering patients to make informed decisions about their dental care.

6. Follow Up with Care: The relationship doesn't end once the call is over. Follow up with new patients to ensure their needs are being met and any questions or concerns are addressed. A simple follow-up call or email can make a world of difference in making patients feel valued and appreciated.

7. Exceed Expectations: Go the extra mile to wow your new patients. Whether it's offering a complimentary consultation, providing educational resources, or sending a handwritten thank-you note, little gestures can leave a big impression. By exceeding expectations, you'll not only build credibility but also foster loyalty and advocacy among your patient base.

Building credibility with new patients over the phone is not just a skill; it's an art form. It requires genuine empathy, effective communication, and a genuine passion for helping others achieve optimal oral health. So, the next time the phone rings, remember these tips and approach each call with enthusiasm, empathy, and a commitment to building lasting trust. Your patients—and your practice—will thank you for it!

Don’t forget to join our vibrant community of dental office managers, where support, collaboration, and growth thrive. With over 15,000 like-minded professionals, our Facebook Community is a hub for knowledge, inspiration, and camaraderie. Together, we empower each other to navigate the dynamic landscape of dental office management, share the best practices, and elevate our collective expertise. Join us in shaping the future of dental office management and unlocking the possibilities for success! 

Author bio

With over 22 years of experience in the dental field, Kyle L. Summerford has honed a unique approach to case presentation and patient acceptance. As a seasoned dental office manager and financial dental consultant, he leverages his expert knowledge to assist both new and struggling dental practices. Through his education programs, Mr. Summerford empowers staff members with effective patient education skills and persuasion techniques, significantly enhancing overall case acceptance rates. 

Driven by a passion for teaching and sharing knowledge within the dental community, Mr. Summerford has lectured at numerous Continuing Education (CE) events and prestigious academic institutions, including Stony Brook University, the New York City County Dental Society, and Georgia Regents University. His expertise is further recognized through his self-authored articles in his renowned dental coding column, "Dental Coding with Kyle." 

Mr. Summerford is also the founder of the Dental Office Managers Community and These platforms serve as invaluable resources for dental professionals, fostering connections and facilitating the exchange of knowledge among peers.


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