Attract More Patients to Your Clinic with These Tips
Traditional marketing strategies like brochures and fliers are no longer sufficient for attracting new patients. To increase patient traffic and keep your clinic profitable, you need modern digital marketing techniques.
Fortunately, there are many different tools and techniques for efficiently and effectively promoting your practice, including updated websites, SEO, blogs, social media, reputation management strategies, YouTube videos, and Google and Facebook ads. With so many options now available online, finding the best way to attract patients to your clinic can be daunting.
The purpose of this article is to explore the best ways to attract more patients to your practice, promote your services and boost your revenue, beginning with your website.
Your Online Calling Card: A Well-Designed Website
The first thing most healthcare consumers look for is your website. It’s nearly impossible to build a strong web presence without one. A well-designed website can help you increase patient flow by providing information about your services, treatments, technology, and expertise, and making it easy for consumers to contact you.
Make sure your website is up to today’s standards. If it’s five years old or older, it’s probably not optimized to deliver the best results. An outdated design, lack of helpful, relevant content, or slow page loading speed are among the factors that can drive prospects away from your site and into the arms of your competitors. Here’s a list of must-haves if you want your healthcare practice website to be effective and successful:
- A modern-looking, user-friendly interface
- A simple, attractive home page
- Informative, relevant, useful content
- Readable fonts and font sizes
- Responsive design compatible with all devices
- Easy, interactive online appointment scheduling
- Search engine optimized (SEO) keywords
- Complete contact information
Your Key to Being Found Online: Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Your website should be well-optimized using Google’s recommended best practices so that your patient prospects can find your clinic when they search for medical practices in your geographic area and subspecialty. SEO determines your online ranking and search results
The difference between a healthcare website that ranks #1 as opposed to #21, is how well that website is optimized according to SEO best practices. The difference is often about using the right targeted keywords and phrases on their respective pages. Mention your target keyword in your page’s main header, subheadings, and two or three times throughout the page’s content.
Your website should be mobile-friendly now that Google prioritizes and rewards websites that are optimized for mobile users. That’s because more people now access online content using their smartphones than any other device.
Take advantage of your Google My Business (GMB) page. Having a complete, accurate GMB profile lets you rank on Google Maps, making it easier for people in your local geographic area to find your clinic.
Engage Patient Prospects with Social Media
If you haven’t done so already, it’s time to embrace social media platforms, especially those where your patients are known to congregate. Your healthcare practice can leverage the power and reach of social media to strengthen your web presence and attract more patients.
There are so many options available. However, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram are among the best platforms for engaging prospective patients. You can use these platforms to:
- Post relevant content by publishing articles, posts, and other content aimed at helping your target audience learn more about their health conditions and possible treatments.
- Boost your posts. Most social media platforms allow you to run paid ads or boost your content to reach a wider audience.
- Build your “social proof.” Encourage your current patients to leave reviews on social media platforms, which gives you greater credibility and helps you build social proof.
- Organize community health talks and present special offers for your practice.
Give Prospective New Patients What They Want
Most people today use their smartphones or tablets to shop, work, date, and find new healthcare providers. They have the same preferences when it comes to booking healthcare appointments. They naturally gravitate toward healthcare websites that make it easy for them to book appointments.
With online appointment booking, your clinic simplifies the patient’s life while controlling your schedule and doctors’ workloads. Online booking is so desirable to millennial and GenX patients that up to two-thirds of them will leave a healthcare provider who does not offer that amenity. Online booking can also reduce cancellations and no-shows. Patients also take comfort in knowing that you provide a secure patient portal on your website where they can access their health information, check on or request prescription refills, and review their blood test results or diagnoses.
Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, more patients now want virtual visits with their providers through telehealth or telemedicine services. These services provide great benefits for disabled patients and those who simply wish to avoid in-person contact and the inconvenience and expense of commuting to their doctors’ offices.
Manage Your Online Reputation
Most healthcare consumers today will check healthcare provider reviews as part of their decision-making processes when changing providers or searching for new ones. Providers should be aware of all their reviews as well as the platforms where those reviews appear. Too many negative reviews will cause potential new patients to avoid you like the plague. Your goal is to generate at least eight or nine positive reviews for every negative one.
Reputation management can be time-consuming, so the best way to manage your online reputation is by using a reputation management service or system that does most of the work for you. That includes monitoring dozens of review sites such as Vitals, Yelp and Healthgrades while giving you the tools to help you generate and publish more positive reviews. With your professional credibility at stake, don’t overlook online reputation management to help your practice attract more new patients.
Engage Your Patients With Email & SMS Text
Part of delivering a quality patient experience is keeping your current patients engaged even when you’re not actively treating them in your clinic. The most cost-effective way to do this is by utilizing a well-designed medical CRM and communicating with your current and former patients via email and texts.
You can send automated appointment reminders via SMS or email to help reduce no-shows. You can email patients about your new providers, services, and treatments, or help your patients stay healthy with a health newsletter, including home care tips related to their specific conditions. If you are a dentist, you can even target patients with special money-saving offers such as 50% off checkups and free consultations.
Start a Blog and Blog Consistently
Share your expertise by writing blogs or online articles about topics that would be of interest to prospective patients. You can blog about the health conditions you treat, the treatments and procedures you provide, the latest medical technology or any subject patients frequently ask about in your practice. Use keywords in your blogs to improve your overall SEO rankings. And blog as often as possible but no less than once each week to keep prospects engaged and continue to bolster your SEO results.
If you really want to attract, engage with. and convert new patients, take advantage of the marketing strategies discussed above. These modern marketing strategies will work together synergistically to drive more patients to your clinic.