Trying to stay on top of everything that needs to get done when you?re running and growing a dental or medical practice can get a bit overwhelming. I know from experience. ?At times I feel like a chicken with my head cut off because I’m juggling so many things at once. ?And sometimes trying to make sure that you stay top of mind with your existing patients can fall off your list of things to do when other things seem more pressing for you. However, it?s extremely important to make sure that you are taking the time to engage and stay in touch with your existing patients so that they keep coming back. ?A patient that remembers you after they have left your office will be the patient that will refer other patients to you. ?This type of internal marketing is one of the best ways to grow your practice. ?The best part about this? It’s FREE!
I?m sure that you?ve heard it?s a lot easier to get new patients into your practice by getting referrals from existing patients (we went over this in last week’s blog post. . .click here to read). And when you think about it, it makes a lot of sense. I know that I?m a lot more likely to book an appointment or work with someone when someone that I already know, like, and trust is using that person or service and recommends them to me. It’s a no brainer!
So, I wanted to share 3 ways that you can stay in touch with your patients so that they remember your practice, come back for their appointments, and send new patients to you.
1. Stay Connected Outside Of The Office Using Social Media
We live in a day and age where social media cannot be ignored and shouldn?t be for good reason. It?s one of the best ways, if not the best way, to stay in touch with your patients in between their visits and when they?re not in your office.
Here Are Some Tips You Can Implement:
- Find out where your patients like to hangout online: When you find out where they like to hangout online you can meet them there. Meaning, do they like Facebook, instagram, twitter? What’s their platform of choice? ?Maybe it’s Youtube! This can vary greatly depending on the kind of patients that you serve in your practice so it?s important to engage with your patients and ask them where they like to hangout before you begin dedicating a lot of your time into one platform.
- Once you know where they like to hangout online, create a plan to get them to follow and connect with you there: There?s no need in putting a lot of your time and energy into a social media platform if you?re not going to let them know they can connect with you there. Make sure to place signs around your office and communicate with your patients that they can follow and engage with you on your chosen platform(s). ?You can even have your front office recommend that they follow you on your various platforms.
- Make a plan and stick to it: You have to make sure that you?re being strategic with your platform choice and that you?re not wasting your time there. So, think about how often you want to show up, how you?ll respond to comments, how you?ll engage with your patients, and what kind of content you?ll post. Don?t overthink this part of getting out there too much but make sure that you at least have some kind of plan that you want to follow so that you know what the plan is for your marketing.
2. Reach Out To Patients Outside Of Their Appointments
Patients want to feel like they?re not just another patient on your schedule that you have to see. They want to feel like you truly care about them and their needs. And the best way to do that is to make sure that you?re staying in contact with them outside of their appointments. This can seem like it will take you a lot of your time but you can get creative about this kind of outreach and it doesn?t have to all be done by you to have a special touch for your patients.
Here Are Some Tips You Can Implement:
- Have your team do a personal outreach call: You could have your team do follow up outreach calls to see how patients are doing after they have an appointment. These are great to get private feedback about their visit, get any questions to you that are needing to be answered by the patient, and your team can let the patient know how they can stay in touch with you in other ways as well.
- Send personalized emails to your patients: Another thing that you could do is to send personalized emails to your patients asking them about their visit, giving tips for the type of procedure that they have had, and of course let them know how to stay in touch. The great thing with this method is that you can automate a lot of it and create templates that can be copied and pasted and customized as needed.
- Make phone calls when needed: Sometimes patients really just want to hear from their doctor and need to hear you give your advice/tips on what they should do if they are struggling with something that you have done or discussed with them. While it can take some time out of your day these kind of personal touches typically don?t go unnoticed by your patients and are truly appreciated. You want to make sure that you don?t let time get away from you so I recommend that you block off 15-30 minutes of your day to do these and if you?re super busy maybe choose specific days of the week for your task.
3. Educate Patients Using A Blog On Your Website
A blog is a great way to educate existing and potential patients about what you do, how to deal with challenges that arise, and more importantly how to make sure they are taking care of themselves in between visits to your office. Having a blog that answers the questions that you get asked a lot of the time from existing and potential patients will save a lot of time and will serve as a great resource that you can send people to when you have questions.
Here Are Some Tips You Can Implement:
- Plan out content you can write about: I?m sure that there are a lot of ideas that you have for different kinds of content that you can create that will help your patients and those who are considering booking an appointment to work with you. However, those ideas in your head won?t really get you anywhere until you actually turn them into pieces of content that people can read and learn from. So, grab a planner or whatever your scheduling tool of choice is and plan out some ideas that you can write about.
- Find the format that works best for you: You have to remember that when it comes to creating content for your blog you have to choose the format that works best for you. Are you better at writing or maybe you wouldn?t mind being on video, whichever works best for you, it?s important that you find the format that works best for you because that will help you make sure that you make the time to create content because you actually enjoy doing it.
- Get someone to help you create content: If you?re really crunched for time then I recommend that you help find someone to help you create and publish content on your blog. This way you get amazing content out for people to read without you having to do things all by yourself and rely only on your time that you have available.
There are so many different ways that you can stay in touch with your patients so that they remember your practice and these are a few great ways that can help you get started.
To help you get started with these strategies, I’ve created a free cheat sheet to guide you in the right direction. ?You can click here to get your freebie!