Smile Exchange Group Practice Improves Team Efficiency and Patient Retention Using a Kleer Membership Plan
About Smile Exchange
Smile Exchange is a 6 location, group practice that provides affordable, high-quality and modern dental services in a friendly, relaxed environment. Care and comfort are Smile Exchange’s top priorities. The team goes above and beyond to ensure patients are happy and well cared for. Patients enjoy the conveniences of extended practice hours, advanced treatment technologies, onsite specialists, online scheduling, and even 24/7 assistance. Smile Exchange further differentiates by offering price transparency, so patients feel in control and informed about their treatment options.
Smile Exchange was no stranger to a membership plan. The group had offered their own paper-based plan for years. Patients loved the plan, but it was very difficult and costly to support. Patients had to complete paperwork to join the plan and the office teams had to manually enter the information into spreadsheets and their practice management system. Many patients complained about the paperwork, the office teams complained about the administrative work, and the entire group faced a major challenge when it came to tracking and renewing memberships.
The renewal process was manual, time-consuming, and inefficient. Team members would call patients to discuss the renewal. It typically took multiple calls to reach a patient and a considerable amount of time to have a discussion. Patients would often decide to wait until they came into the office to renew their membership and then would not follow through. Smile Exchange could not track the call or renewal activity easily, so they could not follow up with the patients effectively. As a result, 75% of members did not renew their subscription, office teams grew tired of trying to track down patients, and patients grew tired of receiving many calls from the office teams. Smile Exchange decided it was time to research automated membership plan alternatives. They wanted to provide a modern solution that would benefit patients, the office teams, and the group.
After careful consideration, the Smile Exchange leadership team chose Kleer as a partner for their membership plan. Kleer was very easy to use for patients and office teams. Kleer included a simple, online self-serve patient purchase process, a portal where offices could easily track patients and manage their plan, automated electronic payment processing, and dedicated customer support. Perhaps best of all, Kleer included an automated renewal process that would ensure a high renewal rate with little work for the office teams. And Kleer really stood out from its competitors due to its extensive list of features built specifically for groups:
- Customized care plans for each office
- Customized fee schedules for each office
- The Kleer Group Portal which makes it very easy to track and manage a multi-location membership plan and add new locations and dentists as the group grows
- The Kleer Dentist Portal that makes it very easy for office teams to track results and downgrade/upgrade patient care plans, change payment options, cancel memberships, and provide refunds
- Kleer Version Control which makes it very easy to make changes to a membership plan at any time
- A modern, online patient experience that includes a simple sign up process and a Patient Portal for tracking benefits, managing payments, and reviewing notifications.
- The Kleer Advantage which includes the Kleer Success Team and an extensive list of marketing and support tools to make a membership plan successful
Implementing the Kleer Membership Plan
As a first step, the Smile Exchange team conducted a consultation with the Kleer Success Team to review their current plan. This included a review of the care plan design, pricing, payment options, and determining what options and exclusions would work best for their group. As a result, Smile Exchange decided to offer three care plans for children, adults, and periodontal patients. They also chose to increase their subscription price, offer a monthly payment option, and adjust their fee schedule. Each care plan includes preventive care visits, emergency exams, and discounts off needed treatment, but the treatment protocols varied to meet the unique needs of children, adults, and periodontal patients. They also set some simple, but important goals:
- Make it easy for their uninsured patients to get affordable, high-quality dental care
- Increase patient loyalty and visits
- Increase practice revenue and profitability
- Improve the membership plan renewal process and renewal rate
- Reduce time spent on managing the membership plan
Smile Exchange branded the plan, “The Smile Exchange Patient Loyalty Program.” Training with the Kleer Success Team was set up for their six offices to ensure the entire group understood the membership plan and was able to properly promote and sell it in their offices. Smile Exchange augmented their existing marketing efforts using the customized marketing materials provided by Kleer including patient emails, direct mail cards, print ads, and digital ads. They also added the Kleer Widget to their website homepage. The widget leads patients to a customized landing page where they can learn about their membership plan and make a purchase.
Smile Exchange launched its Kleer membership plan in January 2018. They sold 727 memberships in 8 months, generating $191,592 of recurring subscription revenue and $761,505 of other treatment revenue. They were able to get these results because their membership plan patients are visiting 72% more than their uninsured patients, accepting over twice the amount of treatment, and generating 265% more revenue. Best of all, the office teams are spending very little time managing the plan, enabling them to spend more time caring for patients!
We’ve always recognized the value a membership plan brings to our uninsured patients, yet managing a plan manually proved to be highly inefficient and was not cost effective. By moving our existing plan to Kleer, Smile Exchange, our offices, and our patients are now in a better position to recognize the full value of a membership plan.
- Andy McKinley, CEO, Smile Exchange