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Leveraging the Internet Part 3: Automating and Optimizing the Customer Journey


In Part 1 and Part 2 of leveraging the internet, we explained why reviews and online reputation matter to your potential customers and how to start getting found by Google in local search. But leveraging the internet to grow your dental practice is about more than just good marketing. It’s about becoming a customer-centric business that adapts to customer feedback.

You’ve already heard how important it is to get customer feedback in the form of reviews. More reviews lead to more customers, which lead to more revenue. Some dental practices leave it up to chance—asking patients to leave a review when their staff remembers to do it.

High performing dental practices, on the other hand, use a review management platform to automate the process of sending review invites to patients and it makes a huge difference. These practices see, on average, a 6% increase in revenue and 16 reviews per month after implementing a software platform.

How Automation Leads to Higher-Quality Reviews

Some business owners are hesitant to set up automation, worrying that it might upset customers or be perceived as cold. The truth is, dentists who’ve set up automated review invites get more reviews and save their staff precious time in the process. Just look at the difference automating review invites with Podium made at CT Braces.


When you integrate Podium with Open Dental you can guarantee customers are going to get a review invite at just the right moment, so they’re more likely to leave a review. This helps prevent your staff from forgetting to send out an invite, or worse, ignoring in-person customers to tackle another to-do.

Once the automated review invite is sent, customers can still respond to it and talk to someone on your team. Automation allows you to deliver a personal experience that’s scalable to your entire customer base. So you can better serve your customers and they can more effectively support your business.

“In terms of getting reviews, we just have to keep treating the patients well. We don’t really have to do anything else and we keep getting great reviews.”
Dr. Desai | Owner, CT Braces

Open Dental + Podium

If you’re already using Open Dental, your account can be integrated with Podium to send out review invitations automatically from Open Dental (here’s how). This integration will eliminate the need for your employees to manually send out invites, allowing them to focus on patient care and other important efforts, all the while still providing your business great online reviews through Podium!

The integration pulls the patient contact information to send out a text message review invite. You can customize which appointment statuses trigger this review invitation to be sent (patient arrived or dismissed; set complete, etc.) and when to send it, based on 5-minute increments.

For example, if I wanted all new patients to receive the invitation after marking the appointment complete, I would select the ‘set complete’ status trigger and choose ‘5 minutes after’ timing. The patient would then automatically receive the review invitation 5 minutes after being marked ‘set complete.’

Podium creates an ‘in-the-moment’ opportunity for customers to leave a great review for your business. Sending invites to patients while still in the office actually helps improve the click-through and completion rate for reviews as a result. The best performing practices also encourage staff to remind patients to leave a review after their visit.

Creating a World-class Customer Journey

Twenty years ago, things moved slower. Customers found you in a phone book, then called you from a landline. As phones have gotten smarter, so have your customers. For new customers looking for a practice, it starts with convenience.

If you have the best reviews, you’ll be easier for customers to find on Google. If they can talk to you directly from your website, you’ll get more leads. If you text them about appointments, you’ll see more revenue. If you text them review invitations five minutes after their visit, you’ll get more reviews. If you want customers to think about you more frequently than they floss, you need a superior practice. For a superior practice, sign up for Podium today.

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