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The Importance of an Internal Referring Doctor Relationship Champion

A referral network from other doctors can be a great source of new patients for any of your services, especially the elective ones. However, you’re not the only doctor who’s thinking this. Your practice must be better at cultivating and nurturing relationships than your competition if you want to receive a maximum number of referrals each week.

This means making a serious commitment to this aspect of your business. Some guidelines for how to accomplish this will vary depending on how much attention and effort your practice has put into developing a referral network in the past. Also, the size of the network you have, or the size you’d like to have, will determine to a large extent the amount of time needed from your internal “Champion”. A few things to include in your Referral Doctor Management planning:

1. Assign a “champion” for this cause who can devote a significant amount of time to developing and managing these relationships. MD and ODs are no different than any of us. They will remember and think of people, places and things that are on the tops of their minds. The more your practice is in front of them, the more likely they are to think of you when it’s time to refer a patient.

2. LASIK is counter-intuitive to most ODs since it means a loss of contact lenses or glasses revenue from each patient that has LASIK. Much the same applies to Premium IOLs. You can overcome this with a series of steps and tools which will specifically convert those who rarely refer to ODs who advocate and recommend LASIK to a high percentage of their patients.

3. Make sure your internal “Champion” always has something new to share with the doctor and his/her staff during their routine visits. The visit should be more than just showing up. Delivering a check from the patients the doctor referred last month or some new promotional or educational material that the doctor can give to their patients gives you something new to present and adds value to the visit from the doctor’s perspective.

4. Always schedule your referring doctor visits, at least a week in advance. The idea of “just dropping by” cheapens the value of your visit and causes a lot of wasted time sitting in waiting rooms.

To learn more about the steps and tools for developing and managing an effective referring doctor marketing program, call Brandi at 303-731-2634.