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  • by: Deborah Bush & Amol Nirgudkar
  • 11 min read

7 Reasons to Listen to Call Recordings

Note: This article describes a previous version of Patient Prism. You can read about the latest version of Patient Prism, V3, here.

October 2022--We’d all be rich by now if we had a dollar for every time we said to ourselves, “I wish I had said…”

With Patient Prism RELO (Re-Engage Lost Opportunity) alerts you have opportunities to call back and make a great first impression on the second try.

This is great because 25% to 35% of the time you will win over that new patient and schedule the appointment they need.

Before calling back, take a moment to listen to what went wrong on the call and reflect on what you can say to impress the new patient with your genuine desire to help them. You’ll discover what you can add to the next conversation, and that “add” might be just what the caller was hoping to hear.

7 Reasons to Listen to Recorded Calls


1 - Was it difficult to build immediate rapport with the caller?

Perhaps, the caller was agitated about needing dentistry or like so many callers afraid of going to the dentist. Listen to the call recording for clues as to what might be going on with that person. After giving the caller a little time, you can call back with extra TLC in your voice to inquire if they had any thoughts or questions that you could answer.


2 - Did the caller want specific information you did not have at your fingertips or could not give them?

If you are new to the practice, it may take a while for you to know the specifics callers want to know, for example, “Do you do same-day crowns?” or “Do you take my insurance?” A caller asking for fee information over the phone could become a big stumbling block as well. Do you know the best way to answer fee questions in alignment with your practice’s policy? Listen to the call recording for the specific questions, and then research the information and instructions you need, so the next time a caller asks, you are better prepared. Calling back with the information you just learned is usually an easy way to restart a conversation. Download this infographic for 7 Tips to handle insurance and payment concerns.


3 - Did you make the caller feel he or she called the right place?

Listen to the phone recording to evaluate your tone of voice. Did your voice deliver a genuine desire help? Were you appropriately compassionate, upbeat, and confident? Your tone represents the tone of the practice. Very often callers are seeking a dental practice that is friendly, comfortable, and eager to serve them – a place where they will feel at home.

4 - Were there lapses in the conversation? Did you lose momentum?

Listen to the red-marked seconds in the call recording that indicate when there were lulls.

Patient Prism Call Recording ScreenMaybe the caller wasn’t sure what to say or ask. Maybe you weren’t sure what to say or ask. Listen to learn what preceded the lull. Think of ways you can better take control when that situation occurs.

For example, if the conversation started with a question about insurance or fees, return to that subject with something like this. “I have the sense that you are concerned about the cost of dentistry (or how to pay for your dentistry). In our dental practice, we work with patients in multiple ways… Do any of these options seem feasible to you?”

If the conversation stopped because the patient got the answer to her or his questions and said, “Okay, thank you.” Interject immediately with something like this. “Many new patients want to know about what it is like to come here as a patient. We are especially warm and welcoming and take the time to get to know our patients. You will be treated like a special person, and our dentist and the entire team will be sensitive to your concerns and questions. Can I help you sort out if this is the place for you and how soon you would like an appointment?”

When you ask a question, the caller will respond, and now you’ve done your best to help them talk to you.


5 - Ever wonder why a caller didn't make an appointment even though the call seemed to go especially well?

This is the primary reason receptionists listen to call recordings. They’re racking their brains to understand what went wrong after going so right. Often you can pick up clues while listening that will enable you to call the person back comfortably and say something like this. “Hello, Sue, this is Ashley at Dr. Green’s office. We had a great conversation yesterday, and I’m calling back to check on you and see if I can help you figure out what you want to do about choosing a dentist and scheduling an appointment. I’m pretty good at helping people figure out what is most important to them and the next steps they can take. I’m not trying to sell you on coming here. I just genuinely want you to have the care you need. When we got off the call, were there any thoughts or questions you had that I could help with today?”


6 - Did you forget one of the call basics you’ve been trained to say or ask?

For example, did you get the caller’s name and use it in the conversation? Did you get the best phone number to call them back? Did you fail to say, “I think you will like it here. Let’s get you scheduled!” or “Would you like to make an appointment? We have available appointments this week on (Mon-Fri) at (9a-4p).”

Patient Prism’s AI catches omissions such as these in call recordings and reports them in the RELO notes. You may have thought you didn’t miss a beat but the AI says you did. Listen to the call recording to double-check on such omissions.

An omission may not be relevant to a callback but remembering to use these key phrases will help you when you answer future incoming calls. The positive results of using these key phrases have been measured to be so high that the AI keeps track of the phrases to remind you.

Patient Prism Call Basics Criteria for Scoring Recorded Phone Calls

7 - Would you like to measure the success of a different statement or question?

You have reached the stage of being both confident and competent on the phone, and now you are moving to the advanced “call expert” level. Perhaps, you have a “signature” statement or question that you think will engage callers in conversation and increase their interest in your dentist. Or, perhaps, you have heard of a new way of saying something and you want to try it. Listen to phone recordings to spot when you use the words you are evaluating and note how callers respond to them. If callers respond positively, you may want to continue using them.

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