Running a clinic is hard work. Not only have you got to provide top care for your patients, manage a team and make sure everything runs smoothly, but you also have to market your clinic. You constantly need to reach new patients in order to expand your business.
At Ignite, we specialise in growing practices and clinics. We’ve spent years using a range of techniques to increase new patient inquiries, and we are here to share some of this knowledge with you. Read on to follow the 9 ways to improve your marketing strategy for your clinic.
#1 – Define your goals:
Setting goals is the first step in marketing. Once you’ve got your realistic goals, you can develop tactics to achieve them.
Without goals, you can end up drifting aimlessly from task to task without measuring your success.
According to Coschedule, ‘’Marketers who set goals are 376% more likely to report success than those who don’t. And 70% of those successful, goal-setting marketers achieve them.’’
Some examples of broad goals that you may set for your clinic include:
- Getting more leads
- Increasing brand awareness
- Reaching more local patients
- Increasing social media engagement
- Increasing profits
You can also set specific goals, such as how many new patients you would like to treat in a certain timeframe or the number of leads you would like to see coming in.
#2 – Know your audience:
So, you’ve outlined your goals, and now you need identify your target audience.
- Who they are
- What they need
- What their pain points are
- How you can help them
- Where they spend their time online and when
- What type of content they like to consume
Use the patients you already have to help you. Start conversations with them and find out more about why they want the treatments and who they are. Do you have more female or male patients for a particular treatment, and are they from a particular age group? This will help you narrow down your target audience.
Once you have a clear idea of who your audience is, you can create tailored content that will resonate with them and prompt them to take action.
#3 – Develop or improve your patient experience:
Your patient experience is the big differentiator between you and your competition.
When patients feel cared for, valued and listened to, they’ll become ambassadors for your clinic and tell their family and friends in person and on social media.
Here are some quick tips on improving your patient experience:
- Be reliable
- Ensure your patient has realistic expectations of you – don’t promise them what you can’t deliver
- Engage with patients
- Allow your patients to be heard
- Analyse their experience to improve it
- Set a timeline and goals for the improvement
We’ve written an in-depth blog post on How to Unlock 5-Star Patient Experience and Reduce Churn, where you can learn more about developing your patient experience.
#4 – Use content to build know, like and trust:
Content marketing involves creating valuable information and sharing it, for example, through videos, social media and blogs. It is a great way to allow your patients the opportunity to get to know you. This should be an essential component of your marketing strategy for your clinic!
Putting good content online not only helps to attract new patients but also helps to keep existing patients loyal. You should develop content that educates, informs and engages your target audience.
To build know, your audience doesn’t just need to know who you are, what you do and recognise your logo; they need to know your values. Explain who you are and talk about your team and the work you do. Get personal and allow your prospective patients to really get to know you through what you put out there.
Once they know you, your prospect is more likely to like you! By sharing your values, your potential patients will find it easier to build a connection and find common ground. You should use the content you post to inspire your audience and make them feel good about themselves; this is a sure way of getting them to like you!
So, now they know you, and like you, you have to build trust. You are well on your way there; you just need to ensure your prospective patient feels safe. Using social proof is an effective way of doing this. Share previous patient stories and use before and after photos to prove just how good you are at your job!
#5 – Update your website:
Your website is the foundation of all your marketing campaigns. Visitors will often be redirected to your website, where they should be able to find all the information they are looking for. Slow, hard-to-navigate websites will have a higher bounce rate, reducing your chances of turning those users into leads.
Your website should:
- Load quickly (click here to test the speed of your site)
- Be kept up to date with new content
- Be easy to find with a Google search (work on your SEO)
- Be mobile-friendly
- Have high-quality images
- Have contact information that is easily accessible
- Be easy to navigate
Constantly test your site to ensure it is running smoothly, and ask colleagues, patients and friends about their user experience with it.
#6 – Use referral programs:
Nothing is more powerful than word of mouth, but the downside is that it can be unreliable. While we can (and should) encourage our patients to share their stories with friends and talk about their successful treatments with loved ones, it is out of our hands whether they actually do it.
We need to convince our patients to do this by offering them something in return, such as a referral program. The best ones reward both the referrer and the new patient, but before starting your new program, your patient experience needs to be up to scratch!
You can start by offering discounts on the treatments that you see fit. Get the word out there that you are offering these discounts. Contact your current, loyal patients before reaching out to a larger audience. This should help you get some new patients through those doors. You can also talk about your referral program on social media, so any new patients are aware of it before up taking treatment.
#7 – Use social media to find new patients:
Social media is a great way to get the word out about your clinic and the treatments you offer. The platforms are free and are ideal for building trust within your community.
Take advantage of healthcare Facebook groups and use your knowledge and expertise to help users within them. This will help you build brand awareness and increase trust.
You can also use social media for paid advertising to reach new patients that fall within your target audience. Start with small budgets to test the waters and find out what works best.
We’ve covered social media marketing in one of our blog posts to help you get started. Click here to learn more.
#8 – Use Email:
Your email list is a great way to get in front of people. But don’t make the classic mistake of simply talking about your practice or just selling treatments.
If you use your email list as a channel for helping and educating, you’ll find you have fewer unsubscribes, more engagement and increased treatment uptake. Write catchy subject lines and talk from a personal perspective – don’t just sound like every other business.
Take your time with your email, making sure to add value. You can use a platform such as Mailchimp to design and send emails to your subscribers while tracking and analysing how it does. Once you have sent a few emails, you will be able to see what works and what doesn’t.
#9 – Paid Search Advertising
Paid search advertising on platforms like Google and Bing is very powerful because buyer intent is higher. That means a person is actively researching to find a practice or clinic to help them with their problem.
This ties back to having an up-to-date and responsive website that shows you understand their problem and have social proof to reassure them of your expertise with that treatment.
In order to start paid search advertising on Google, you’ll need to have a Google account and follow the steps to set up an effective campaign.
- Finding keywords
- Creating your ad copy
- Designing your ad
- Setting up a landing page
- Analysing the results and optimising your ad
We’ve got an easy-to-follow blog on how to set up Google Ad campaigns that you can check out here.
With this information, you should be able to develop an effective marketing strategy for your clinic today that attracts new patients and strengthens your clinic’s reputation.
However, we understand that this is time-consuming, and not everyone has the means to implement all of these methods, so if you would like some help, please book a no-strings call with our growth team, who will be able to talk you through how we work and how we help clinics meet their goals.