At best, oral surgery is the ultimate way to spend an afternoon.
Procedural uncertainty is common. Concerns about lingering pain are almost brought up. Billing confusion is typical, especially among patients without dental insurance.
Most oral surgeons and their staff try to answer these questions and silence doubts when the patient is in the dental office. The best oral surgeons call patients the night after surgery to check for discomfort and residual bleeding and to confirm that they are following the postoperative instructions.
But then there's Dr. Glenn Gorab of Clifton, New Jersey, who builds all-important trust with his patients not AFTER a procedure, but before he sees them.
Every weekend, Dr. Gorab calls each patient to the office for the first time the following week. His typical greeting goes like this: “Hello, this is Dr. Gorab, I know we have an appointment coming up for you next week. I just wanted to call to introduce myself and ask if you have any questions before your appointment. ”
This simple, remarkable gesture — connecting with patients before they arrive at the office instead of after — sets Dr. Gorab's oral surgery practice apart and attracts regular attention.
Doctor. Gorab says patients aren't really sure how to call because they're so surprised. “Most people are shocked when the doctor will call them before their appointment. They were almost dumbfounded. It is very unusual. They say, 'Nobody has ever done this for me before.' ”
These patients tell their friends about Dr. Gorab's calls, and they bring new patients through his front door on a consistent basis. His commitment to proactive customer service clones the customer.
“I have two new patients just this week who said, 'I understood from my friend that you were the one who called her before the appointment, and I thought that was great, I wanted to come see you. . Gorab, outsmarted dozens of highly respected oral surgeons near their homes.
Doctor. Gorab says 80 percent of patients refer to one-time calls in the office for their appointments. “They said, 'Thanks so much for your call on Saturday.' Or, 'I'm sorry I'm not home to take your calls. Thank you for leaving me a voicemail,” he told us.
This is simple. Literally every doctor – even every professional service provider – can imitate it, but they cannot. Why?
Because we have been conditioned to believe that customer service will commence once the transaction is complete and the consumer has received the product or
A much better approach is to understand that the most impactful customer service is the service that passes the transaction, ideally before it.
Twelve Souths preceded the Consumer Confidence Curve
Just this week, I had a great experience with a company — like Dr. Gorab — that changed their customer engagement time.
A year ago, I bought Apple AirPods wireless headphones. For a while after they came out, I thought the whole premise was stupid. I don't want to give in to Apple's naked cash grab, enabled by completely removing the headphone jack on the iPhone 7, 8 and X.
But I travel so much that the convenience of the wireless listening experience let me down. I can not handle this anymore. Turns out, I LOVE AirPods. Sound fidelity is good (not loud), but the size, convenience, and ability to easily take calls won me over.
Lately, however, I've stayed longer - airplane flights with multimedia screens in the back seat in front of you. This presents a small dilemma (admittedly a first-world problem in every way): Wireless, Bluetooth headsets don't work with those displays. So even though I'm a big fan of AirPods, I still have to carry my wired headphones with me to plug in the audio on the plane.
The team at Twelve South — a creative designer and Apple aftermarket device seller — decided to solve this problem by creating AirFly, a Bluetooth transmitter that plugs into an airplane's display and lets you use your wireless AirPods. Smart!
Within about eleven seconds of receiving an email announcing the AirFly launch, I had this add-on in my TwelveSouth.com cart. Later that day, I was checking my upcoming flight schedule to try to predict when I might try AirFly when I received an email from Twelve South.
I expect shipping confirmation. But it's not. It was much, much more, and it immediately reminded me of Dr. Gorab. It's 100 percent about building trust and doing so before the product is received.
They provided detailed instructions—including animated GIFs and videos—showing me exactly how to set up and use AirFly. The message at the top of the email is perfect:
Thank you for purchasing AirFly! We are packing your order and preparing it for dispatch. As soon as your package arrives, we know you'll be anxious to get it set up — here's everything you need to get started with AirFly.
Brilliant! This email builds anticipation for arrival, and cuts possible customer service questions down the line by providing a help document when the MOST LIKE customer actually opens and reads the email — right after when making a purchase.
Everyone can — and should — think about building customer trust ahead of time. Not difficult to do. You just need to change your perception of when a relationship and trust-building can and should begin.
Bravo, Twelve South. I hope the product lives up to its promise. I think I'll be able to try it out next weekend and I'll update this post with my response.