With changes in medicine and the health insurance industry, it can be more and more challenging to make a profit as a primary care provider. That makes your practice marketing efforts all the more important. If you’re looking to expand your patient base and your bottom line, here are a few marketing ideas.
- Send press releases. If you have something newsworthy to promote, write a press release and send it to local newspapers and television news stations. Newsworthy stories could include seasonal products or events, such as a back-to-school health fair in August. Charitable events are also newsworthy. If you are involved with a community service effort such as partnering with a homeless shelter to offer free health screenings, invite news media to attend. Unique products or services may also be of interest to the media. Write a brief release and call local newsrooms to find out the appropriate email address to send it to.
- Develop your website. Few things are more powerful than a good website. With more people searching for doctors online, your website is your chance to make a stellar first impression. A visually appealing, easy-to-navigate site suggests that your practice is well-maintained and customer-friendly.
- Invite feedback. As people turn to the Internet for health care choices, they are giving greater credence to online reviews of physicians. High ratings will drive more people to your practice. After patients visit your clinic for appointments, send them an email requesting that they rate your services online. To make it easy, include links to your profiles on different customer review platforms (Google, Yelp, Facebook, Healthgrades, etc.)
- Write a newspaper column. Talk to a local newspaper about writing a weekly or monthly “ask the doctor” column for their publication. They may welcome the free editorial content, and you can get your name out there for free.
- Expand your services. You can open up new profit opportunities and better meet your patients’ needs by offering ancillary services. These might include medical spa services or environmental or food allergy treatment through a turnkey allergy test and treatment program. Your patients can get more of the services that they need under one roof, and you can increase your medical practice revenues.
- Engage your patients. While it’s good to think of ways to attract new people to your practice, don’t neglect your current patients. Keep them informed about new services and practice events through a regular newsletter. When you check patients in for appointments, give them a card listing all of your services. Have them check any that may be a good fit for their health needs. The doctor can follow-up on the card during the visit.
Today’s primary care physicians must be more innovative than ever to stay profitable. Your bottom line will thank you when you adopt creative and effective marketing strategies.