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How to change your dental practice name, without losing patients

There is so much more to choosing a name than how well it rolls off the tongue. As Prince Harry and Meghan Markle recently discovered, everybody has an opinion about titles – and not all of them supportive in the choices made.

The naming – or renaming of a dental practice, if you are an existing owner – presents challenges beyond placating family, honouring tradition and shrugging off the critics.

Indeed, the pitfalls are many and you ignore your patients’ views at your peril. If you move too fast to refresh your brand or speed through a renaming journey without a nod to your biggest supporters, you run the risk of confusing them and, in the process, sending them elsewhere – lost without the luxury of instant recognition.

You may also alienate those with whom you’ve built up trust if they feel they have been wrong-footed or side stepped. Transparency is everything and engagement key, especially if you enjoy healthy on-going communication with your current patient base.

Few of us welcome change and, in a dental setting – an environment where relationships are nurtured over time and with a core business that thrives on familiarity and loyalty – this is particularly so.

When changes are made, many patients comment that ‘it’s not the same place anymore’ or ‘its not what it used to be’.

However, apply my four steps to a patient-engaging approach and you will create a name that will not only resonate with existing patients, but will also secure their loyalty and may even boost business.

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