When you think about your brand, what comes to mind?
Your logo? Your letterhead? The sign outside of your practice? Did you know your brand goes far beyond those elements? Everything you currently do to stand out from the competition counts. Is your practice’s annual pool party the must-have invite of the year? Are you and your staff involved in a charitable event? Anything you do to set yourself apart is part of your brand.
How can you maximize contact with patients and make sure they continue choosing you? A strong brand enhances your reputation, helps you attract new patients and keeps existing patients coming back.
Here are 10 tips for building a better brand:
- Do you have a lot of news to share? Send custom e-newsletters with fun practice news and treatment tips for patients. Include links to articles you find interesting and an “Ask the Doctor” section in every newsletter.
- Do you take pride in offering the best service to patients? Send follow-up surveys to your patients after appointments to gauge patient satisfaction. If a problem should arise, you’ll be notified, allowing you to flag hot-button issues for immediate patient outreach.
- Send post-visit follow-up emails. Did your patient just have a procedure that could potentially cause them discomfort? If so, send them a post-visit email with tips for alleviating pain. Your patient will appreciate the extra care.
- Focus on a great practice website. A practice website is one of the best ways to provide valuable information about your practice. If you have treatment news, staff changes or an event to announce, include that on your practice website! Don’t forget to make it mobile-friendly for patients browsing on-the-go!
- Send email birthday greetings to your patients. An easy and inexpensive way to stay in touch is with a yearly birthday greeting. And it can be done with a click of a mouse.
- How are you currently inviting patients to participate in your events, charitable fundraisers or holiday parties? If you’re only posting a flyer in the practice, you’re missing out a huge opportunity and hoping that during the promotion, the patient will visit the practice. Send a marketing email to your entire patient base to encourage even better participation.
- Are you “social”? Probably so. With social media sites boasting more users than most countries have people, there’s a good chance you’re tweeting or sharing your latest news. The most important thing about being social? Making sure your patients know how to find you on the social giants. Send emails inviting them to follow you or like you. After you build a strong fan base, share simple health tips, fun facts or silly cartoons. Keep it light and your patients will want to see more. Bonus Points: Your patients will feel like you’re another friend, which builds even more brand loyalty.
- Make sure your patients make it to appointments. A great way to foster brand loyalty is by seeing patients when you’re supposed to. The simplest way to do that is by confirming their visit through an automated call, email or text. Busy lives get in the way sometimes and a quick appointment reminder from you will be highly appreciated.
- Be available — even when you’re not. If a patient has an after-hours emergency, can they reach you? If a Saturday morning phone call results in a ringing phone with no way to connect with you, even the most brand loyal patients will be forced to find a “Plan B” doctor.
- Provide convenience. Patients are more plugged in than ever. People of all generations are increasingly accustomed to logging into shopping sites, review sites, etc. Why not provide the same convenience for their health? Give patients online access to their account for bill pay, insurance information and sharing treatment progress with friends/family.
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