How do you go about attracting patients to your medical practice?
Well, there is no one correct answer to this question.
What may work for you may not work for another practice.
Having said that, for you to attract more patients to your practice, be willing to experiment.
Here are 5 low-cost steps you can take to increase the flow of patients to your practice.
1. Nurture Strong Relationship With Your Current Patients
In business, it’s easy to be carried away in focusing on the new and forgetting what is already working right in front of you.
While allocating your resources to spend in acquiring new clients, spare some resources for your current patients.
You can begin by reversing the scheduling process by following up with your patients for a new appointment time.
Also, you can send email reminders to remind them of a scheduled checkup.
Take a step to start doing a follow-up email to remind patients you have served to leave a review or stay in touch with health tips, best hygiene practices, and updates about your practice.
Alternatively, if you are a specialized practice, e.g. gastrointestinal centre, invite a patient for a colonoscopy when they turn 50.
Similarly, if you prescribed medicine to a patient, follow-up with them to find out their recovery progress. This step, as small as it may appear, can mean something great to a patient as it shows that you truly care about their health.
This will help keep them around for a long.
2. Ask for Referrals and Reviews
This is a typical practice that has always worked.
A person’s health is a critical matter to them. To make sure that they are treated by the right practitioner or doctor, they will search for patient reviews of your practice to find out how they describe their treatment experience.
This is likely to happen if a person has moved to a new city or country and is not too familiar with the area.
Since you now know there will be a ‘demand’ for reviews and referrals, make sure you get the supply from your patients.
You can send a follow-up email to thank your patients for their visit, then include a link where they can leave you a review online. Some popular review websites out there include Google reviews.
You can also incentivize feedback, reviews and referrals by hosting contests with giveaways and prices or offering discounts or free services.
Meaningful giveaways such as heart rate or blood pressure monitors can reaffirm a good relationship with your current patients.
These little gestures will make your current patients happy, which will convert to more positive word-of-mouth referrals and reviews, and hopefully, more revenue for your business.
3. Build an Active Online Presence
If you aren’t online, chances are high that your patients will not know you exist – sad, right?
Take your first step and create a practice website.
Don’t worry, you don’t need to know coding to make a website.
Our in-house team can help you create a simple but elegant practice website at a small fee. Get in touch with them @ +254711221173.
As you create your website, make sure it is beautifully designed, easy to use, informative of why your practice is best, and finally, mobile responsive.
Additionally, an online presence is not limited to having a website only. You can also try the following:
- List your practice on Google
- Submit your practice to online directories
- Create a profile on major review sites
- Utilizie social media marketing.
Our in-house team can guide you through building an online presence for your medical practice. You can get in touch with them @ +254711221173.
4. Start a Blog
Technology has made it possible for people to access information online. How about your well-written blog posts giving answers to queries that people are searching for?
You can write on a variety of topics such as thoughts on certain treatments, case studies with current patients, wellness tips or updates about your practice.
But don’t worry if you are not the best writer. Our in-house team of writers will be glad to help you with your writing needs at a rate of KSh. 3.00/Word. You can reach out using +254711221173 (WhatsApp/Text/Call).
By updating regularly and penning original content, you will boost your search engine ranking and make it easier for patients to find you.
You can then promote your blog through your social media accounts to engage with current patients and potentially discover new ones.
5. Upgrade to Modern Technology
We live in a digital age. And it is time for healthcare organizations to embrace technology.
Most medical practices are hesitant to embrace technology because of the perceived intimidating costs.
For starters, you can make your practice more email friendly.
Allow your patients the flexibility of booking appointments via email or asking a quick question.
This convenience will save time for both your patient and staff.
For in-house operations, consider having an electronic check-in when patients first arrive.
As they wait to be attended to, offer complimentary WiFi or have a TV playing with Netflix or another streaming site.
You can even splurge for a massage chair or pillow if you find that your waiting times are getting longer.
Who knows, patients may prefer to wait longer if they can get massaged along.
Making your waiting area a pleasant experience for patients will definitely cause them to talk to their family and friends about your practice. And this is great marketing.
Alternatively, you can also offer after-hours virtual visits.
Not everyone’s schedule allows them the time to come in person within the 9 am-5 pm practice time.
With after-hour visits, you can squeeze more appointments in one day, keep patients coming back because of flexible appointments, and position your practice at an advantage over practices that are not open later in the evenings.
Nonetheless, working extra-hours is strenuous. In stead, offer after-hour virtual visits from your home or replace after-hour calls with reimbursable video visits.
This will give you room to increase the number of your patients, earn compensation for after-hours time, and keep a work-life balance.
Ready to Take a Step?
You can try these simple ways to attract more patients and monitor to see what works well for your practice. Be open to experimenting. Also, keep in mind that results may not be realised overnight.
Regardless, any of the above best practices are sure to improve your practice and patient experience. All the best!