30 Oct Live chat lead best practices: Timing and urgency
In this three-part blog series we’re going to teach you the best live chat lead conversion strategies using ApexChat. These approaches will increase the number of leads you turn into happily paying and referring patients in your practice. This can make a marked difference in the quality of your practice and income for the rest of your career.
The first essential strategy for live chat leads is timing. Better said: Urgency. Handle your ApexChat leads as seriously and timely as a prospective patient who calls in directly. Your staff would never put that patient on hold, would they? Your staff wouldn’t tell them you’ll callback tomorrow morning … right? Every minute that goes by after a lead comes through hurts your chance of ever having the prospect as a paying and referring patient in your practice.
Who’s handling your live chat leads?
You must have a dedicated staff member – or outsource live chat operators – specifically trained to take care of chat leads on new prospect calls. The individual should understand HIPAA compliance and engagement with a focus on medical services, as well as how to move forward with a chat lead as opposed to a direct call. A live chat lead is different. The prospect probably isn’t a referral and isn’t sold on your services yet, otherwise they would have called in directly.
When staff follows up on these leads, they should handle these calls in private, and take notes on the prospect just as they would with a new patient direct call. As soon as you’re notified of a lead, assuming it’s during working hours, your associate or live chat agent should take two steps within minutes. First the agent or associate should review the script history, then he or she should immediately reach out to the prospect.
Make sure new prospect follow ups are fast
If the prospect is browsing your site, they’re probably browsing your competitors’ sites as well. When a live chat lead comes in, the associate responsible for following up should act as if they need to get to that prospect before he or she moves on to your competitor’s website. It’s that urgent. Forward after-hours leads staff members responsible for new prospect correspondence outside of business hours, so they may get in touch immediately. Offer a bonus to your staff for every lead who schedules and comes in due to quick response outside of normal practice hours. Most associates will gladly take on that responsibility when a quality bonus structure is in place.
If at first you don’t succeed…
Also, consider that many prospects may be browsing your site and interacting with chat because they’re not in a position to speak on the phone. Associates should remember this when replying. Don’t let your staff or live chat agent stop at a first phone call attempt because it goes right to voicemail. People don’t check their voicemails as often nowadays either. A text message introducing yourself as the new patient care coordinator and offering the best times to call back today to speak should be sent immediately after a voicemail is left. Then follow up with an email with the same intention, catering to the needs and wants of the patient based on the chat dialogue received.
Follow this first rule of lead timing and urgency (no matter what time of the day or week) and you’ll start seeing more leads turn into booked appointments for a busier and more profitable practice. Stay tuned for our second best practices blog that goes over what to do once the connection is made with the prospective new patient.
By Dr. Josh Wagner, Aesthetic Practice Strategies