You know the saying, "If you build it, they will come"?
Unfortunately, it doesn't work that way with medical practices. Chances are, patients won't just line up at your office doorstep unless you get the word out about the spectacular medical services you're offering.
If you want to attract new patients, you need to get the word out there. If you're opening a new practice, that could mean getting your office listed in local print and online directories and building relationships with other healthcare providers nearby. If you're trying to expand your existing practice, you might want to focus on encouraging patient referrals, nurturing your online presence, and leveraging testimonials.
Whatever your budget or your preference, there are a few simple marketing tactics you can adopt to market your practice. Here are 30 different tips to pick from to bring in business.
Here are 30 ways you can market your practice and bring in business.
- Get your Facebook presence going. A Facebook page for your business is a place to post news about your practice.
- Tweet the word out. Post to Twitter frequently, letting potential and current customers know what’s new with your practice.
- Connect on LinkedIn. This professional social media channel is a great place to get involved in discussions and add other providers as contacts.
- Place social media advertisements. Try Facebook ads, which many have found effective.
- Publish a blog. In your blog you'll have full freedom to post content about your practice or informative pieces about medical conditions and treatments.
- Hold webinars. These should be free and highlight educational information to show-off your knowledge.
- Speak publicly. Have members of your staff line up public speaking engagements.
- Publish an e-newsletter. Allow readers to sign-up for free, and provide a publication chock-full of helpful information.
- Send email updates. Do this sparingly, but keep your medical practice top of mind by sending out individual email updates to your email list, in addition to your e-newsletter publication.
- Use direct mail. It hasn’t gone out of style. Send postcards or brochures to your mailing list to share news about your practice and advertise discounts.
- Offer special, limited-time discounts. Publicize these through your e-newsletter and social media channels.
- Hold an open house. Allow potential clients and customers to tour your offices, whether that’s an online preview or an in-person one.
- Sponsor an event. Whether it's online or in person, being a sponsor of an event (especially a health-related one) can get your name out to large audiences.
- Provide short preview consults. Allow potential clients and customers to talk with you, possibly with no fee, for a short period of time to get to know you.
- Ask for testimonials. Satisfied patients can provide some of your best marketing. Publish their testimonials in your e-newsletter and on social media (just remember to stay HIPAA-compliant and leave off their names).
- Use press releases. A more traditional form of publicity, press releases can be a powerful means to convey news about your practice.
- Think Yellow Pages. Advertise in the phone book to get tried-and-true business exposure.
- Send birthday greetings. Send each patient a “Happy Birthday” letter or card.
- Roll out the welcome mat. Send each new patient a letter warmly welcoming them to your practice.
- Express care and concern. If you haven’t heard from a patient in a while, send them a letter letting them know you’ve missed them.
- Reminders are helpful. Send patients reminders of upcoming appointments.
- Freebies are fun. Send out pens, refrigerator magnets, note pads, or other free items displaying your logo.
- Word of mouth. Give current patients a discount for referring friends and family.
- Develop professional relationships. Encourage other professionals in your field to provide referrals.
- Expand your services. Think of ways you can add new services for added business.
- Say “thank you.” Thank current patients for their business when they pay their bills to you.
- Get on the radio. Be a guest on a local radio program.
- Advertise on the radio. This can be less expensive than TV advertising.
- Advertise on television. This is usually a more expensive option, but can be a highly effective marketing method.
- Hold a summer picnic. Invite all current and prospective clients and customers.
Pick a few of the ideas in this list and get moving! Some of these tips will probably suit your practice better than others. With these 30 ideas in mind, you’re likely to see your marketing efforts pay off in a big way before long.