Customer service principles are a must in the healthcare industry. As health professionals, giving your patients quality treatment and care is actually part of healthcare customer service.
But there is something that sits on top of customer service in healthcare. This is the secret behind holistic care, returning patients, and referrals – and that is customer love. In celebration of the LOVE MONTH, we’ll be talking about customer love in healthcare and how you can provide high-quality customer love to your patients.
The Difference Between Customer Service and Customer Love
Before we dive in further about customer love in healthcare, let’s define what customer love is and why it’s different from traditional customer service.
What is Traditional Customer Service?
Traditional customer service involves doing a series of activities that improve customer satisfaction and experience.
In traditional customer service, businesses have the tendency to offer a product or a service without adding value to customers, leaving them with the impression that businesses don’t care about them.
What is Customer Love?
Customer love, on the other hand, involves giving customers an outstanding holistic experience, exceeding their expectations effectively and consistently, and continually engaging with them in meaningful ways, resulting in loyalty.
With customer love, businesses continually add value to customers, taking good care of them in ways that go above and beyond traditional customer service.
The Importance of Customer Love in Healthcare
Quality is paramount in the healthcare industry as it can often be the difference between life and death. Patients rely on high levels of care and effective communication between them and the staff that guides safe treatment.
It is crucial for every person in the healthcare environment to provide exceptional customer love. Traditional customer service is no longer enough to meet and exceed patients’ expectations.
As a healthcare professional, if you truly want to show your patients that you care for them, you need to approach your job with a customer-love mindset. Here are a few reasons why you need to shift from traditional customer service to customer love in healthcare.
Experience sets patients’ expectations
Would you rather be remembered as a practice with the most skilled and highly-educated doctors, physicians, and nurses? Or would you rather be remembered as one that provides consistent, high-quality patient care and experience?
Patients trust healthcare professionals who are able to provide outstanding healthcare. This means giving value to your patients by letting them that you genuinely care for their needs. Customer love in healthcare is all about developing lasting relationships with patients rather than approaching visits as transactions.
Happy patients become loyal
Great customer love in healthcare is one of the secrets of developing happy, loyal patients. If a patient gets less than what they expect from your healthcare facility, they will most likely look for another practice. But, if they received quality experience from you, they’ll keep coming back to your facility.
How you develop your reputation as a healthcare professional will determine whether patients want to revisit you in the future.
Word of mouth is powerful. Providing excellent customer love to your patients paves the way for people to spread the word about you, your clinic/practice, and the high-quality care you provide.
Regular, happy patients will surely refer you to their friends, family, and loved ones if you consistently provide genuine care and quality experience.
Remember, recommendations from other people can go a long way. Get recommended by providing exceptional customer love to patients.
Poor service leads to a deeper issue
Customer service performance is usually an indicator of whether there are potential problems within an organization’s operations. Customer care providers with excellent service are likely to have processes and systems that help streamline healthcare practices.
On the contrary, if you have poor service, you might encounter problems and inefficiencies with your processes within the practice. It’s best to invest in quality service that echoes exceptional customer love to your patients.
Ways to Provide Customer Love in Healthcare
Patients experience an elevated level of stress when entering the hospital or a doctor’s office. They are worried about their health and any financial issues that could arise from the visit.
They will definitely expect to receive genuine care that would relieve them of their illness, worries, and anxiety.
As healthcare professionals, it’s your responsibility to provide patients with excellent service and experience through customer care. Here’s how you can do just that:
Put yourself in the shoes of your patients
Providing genuine customer love to your patients starts by understanding their needs. Patients expect to feel good inside and out through the level of healthcare you provide. Whether a patient is visiting or confined, show them that you care and that you value their needs with every interaction.
Practice courtesy and respect
Showing courtesy and respect is another way to provide genuine customer love in healthcare.
Some healthcare professionals have the tendency to make patients feel that they are an inconvenience. Others make it seem like patients are misinformed about their condition.
Remember, patients come to you for help because they don’t know what’s going on with their health. Show some respect and courtesy when interacting with patients.
Be polite and patiently explain their condition, the treatments they need to take, and the procedures they need to undertake.
At the end of the day, you need to show that you genuinely care.
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Communication is the key to successful patient relations. Clarity is crucial whether you are talking to your patients face-to-face or virtually via phone call/chat/email.
Talking in medical jargon is not going to make your patients feel any better. In fact, it is best to walk your patients through the procedures and test results in a way that’s clear and concise. By doing so, you make them feel informed and empowered when making decisions about their treatment.
Let patients reach you easily
In a world where technology has made almost everything accessible, people have the chance to access quality healthcare through online appointments, medical blogs, and communication channels with doctors via conference calls, emails, and phone calls.
By allowing yourself to be accessible to your patients, you make them feel like they are seen and heard. This also provides an additional layer of genuine customer love towards your patients.
Add value through end-to-end services
Healthcare has its checkpoints where doctors and medical staff interact with patients. These end-to-end services provide an opportunity for you to add value to your patients and show them the quality of care you give.
Ask these questions and evaluate whether you’re adding value through end-to-end services:
- Are patients able to schedule an appointment with ease?
- When they check-in for their appointment, is the process quick and efficient?
- How well do you manage your patients’ expectations about their appointment schedule?
- Do you focus on providing for your patient’s needs?
- Are they having a pleasant experience during their appointment?
- How well do you look after your patients undergoing continuing care?
- Do you guide your patients regarding their health insurance?
- Are your patients relieved of the stress accumulated from their physical condition and financial anxiety?
Remember, it is crucial for you to make patients feel that they are valued every step of the way – it is what customer love in healthcare is all about.
Don’t just settle for old-school traditional customer service principles in healthcare. Do what you can to provide the best healthcare experience. Surely, your patients will be happy and satisfied with your care, thus recommending you and your practice to others as well.
Providing genuine customer love in the healthcare industry is what we love to do. It is the priority of our healthcare VAs to make patients feel that they are seen, heard, and valued – from scheduling an appointment, and checking them in to be seen by a physician, to providing assistance in medical insurance and continuing care.