In addition to providing good medical care, retaining patients is key to the success of any doctor's office. Advertising your office can also help you attract new patients and grow your practice. Advertising isn't a doctor's expertise, so many medical specialists wonder how to get started.
Here are ten of the best tips for how to advertise your medical practice.
1. Take Risks With Your Marketing Plan
Just as you wouldn't turn down a high-risk patient, you shouldn't take a risk-averse approach to your marketing strategy. Between equipment and operating costs, running a private medical practice is expensive. A patient's well-being should still be a priority, but you must remember that you are also running a business. Keep in mind that a top-notch marketing strategy can also attract patients who need immediate care.
Marketing has a lot of risk involved, but as you develop your strategy, that risk decreases as you establish your footing. Once you have a better understanding of who you’re marketing to, as well as analytics and data about your advertising effectiveness, you’ll be able to expand and strategize with more confidence. Risks are necessary to find new markets, and while that’s daunting initially, it’s a worthwhile venture.
2. Develop a Solid Strategy
Some see marketing only as an optional expense, but it's an incredibly useful tool to track growth and revenue. As you take risks with your marketing, you can track your KPIs to figure out what's working and what needs improvement. Tracking useful KPIs like organic traffic and customer acquisition costs can also help you formulate the most accurate marketing budget.
Your KPIs show you how your marketing is performing, which gives you crucial insight into how to make your future campaigns. By building your strategy around KPIs, you see how your campaign is performing in real-time, making a more efficient campaign and improving your ROI.
3. Help People to Help Your Business
While you should market your doctor's office to be as appealing as possible, it's also important to stay realistic. Patients don't visit a doctor's office looking for the fanciest equipment or most attractive waiting room. They want good medical advice for their illnesses and be treated with compassion and expertise. When advertising your medical practice, emphasize the many ways your staff helps people.
Medical issues are incredibly stressful for the people dealing with them. Highlighting your compassionate approach or straightforward expertise in your advertising reassures people early. Then your medical care can back up any claims you make with your advertising. By establishing patient trust early, you increase ROI by reducing the amount of advertising necessary to convince people to use your practice and make it more likely they’ll recommend you to your friends and family.
4. Create a Website
A user-friendly website is essential for attracting new patients, especially those who frequently use technology. It may be more convenient for them to schedule an appointment online rather than over the phone, which is more efficient for you since you won’t need someone watching the phone so regularly. A website can also give your practice some added legitimacy in the eyes of new and existing patients.
An online landing page is an excellent place to list your medical practice's locations, hours of operation, and services. Letting people know what you offer upfront improves efficiency, as well as your ROI, by creating a smoother process. Your medical practice's website should be easy to navigate and updated regularly. You want it to be new and inviting for any patients coming to your page.
5. Expand Your Services
Offering extra services or alternating times of current services can differentiate your office from competing practices and help your patients at the same time. It could be as simple as providing after-hours consultations or serving walk-in appointments on certain days of the week. That accommodates people whose jobs or schedules don’t afford them the time to go during standard business hours. It also helps when people have sudden illnesses or flare-ups where they’re more comfortable going to their regular practitioner instead of a fully walk-in clinic.
People may also appreciate vaccination clinics or prevention services. The best way to find out what your patients want from your practice is to ask them directly or through surveys. Once you know what people appreciate or what services are attracting them to your competitors, you can strategize to offer them, as well.
6. Reward Referrals
Positive word of mouth is often a contributing factor in a doctor's office's success, particularly in a specialized field. That's why many medical practices participate using patient referral programs. It's as simple as asking a satisfied patient to recommend your office to their friends and family. You can partner with other local offices in the area to encourage mutual business growth.
For instance, if your practice doesn't offer a particular service, you can refer existing patients to one that does. Likewise, that practice will refer their patients to your office for other specialized services. Be sure to reward the patients in some way as well! Having a loyalty program could be helpful, either by offering discounts for those without insurance, or educational resources, coupons to local establishments, or even invitations to social events.
7. Sponsor Lifestyle Marketing Segments
Showcasing your practice on a televised lifestyle marketing segment is a great way to attract new business. These long-format ads allow you to elaborate on the services and expertise of your medical staff. These segments are often uploaded onto digital platforms like YouTube or Facebook afterward for extended reach, in addition to being promoted on the station’s social media.
You can house segments or use your website to post podcasts or videos to address common medical issues and offer advice. That way, you can showcase your services while highlighting your expertise. That allows you to advertise indirectly, getting your practice’s name in front of people without being pushy about advertising.
8. Post Patient TestimonialsOn Your Website
New patients are often hesitant to visit a doctor's office for fear of unfriendly staff or unsanitary treatment rooms. However, most of their concerns boil down to not knowing what to expect. Reading patient testimonials on a website beforehand sets their mind at ease by providing information about the treatment they’ll receive and establishes trust before they even schedule an appointment. It's a good promotional tool without much additional effort from you. Five-star (or even four-star) reviews on Google can also be the deciding factor for patients deciding which doctor to visit.
9. Share Your Medical Knowledge
Show off your medical expertise through informative website blogs or emails, and newsletters. Providing valuable health tips for future and existing patients elevates your practice's trustworthiness. It can also encourage your patients to schedule appointments based on these tips. Early preventive care is especially crucial to catching severe illnesses before they fully develop.
Sharing your knowledge and offer advice demonstrates goodwill on your part by supporting a healthy populace. That can go a long way towards making people trust you, and it also helps patients understand what medical issues they’re facing, which lets them ask better questions and receive more efficient care.
10. Don't Settle for Good Enough
With a good marketing strategy, more positive impressions and new patients will grow your medical practice exponentially. Your marketing is an ongoing process, and you should constantly improve your strategy and expand your goals. Since many practices are small, they may not establish an in-house marketing team and may benefit from hiring a media partner. A media partner can handle your marketing goals for you and handle the creative legwork, allowing you to focus your efforts exclusively on providing outstanding care for your patients. Ideally, you should find a marketing partner with experience in advertising strategies for the medical industry. They’re most likely to understand what your requirements are and can help establish your marketing to bring in better returns.
Achieving Successful Marketing for Doctors' Offices
Like a harmonious medical office staff, marketing is a group effort. Providing good service to your patients shouldn't be limited to actual medical care. You can also address their needs through thoughtful advertising, comprehensive services, online accessibility, and ensure their peace of mind through positive reviews.