30 May Five marketing tips to help create the perfect patient relationship for your business
In our view, one of the greatest promotional tools for your practice is your patient relationship.
Like a fine wine, if you keep that relationship safe from the elements, stored at the right temperature and handled properly – it will develop into something fantastic. (Yes, we just compared a client to a wine, sorry.)
Your patient relationship starts from the very first moment you make contact and and can continue on for years if well planned.
So here are our five top tips to create the perfect patient relationship
1. Initial contact
You receive an email enquiry or a submission from your website – what do you do next? Taking the time to create a personalised response may take time but it can also have huge benefits.
Firstly let’s talk automation. Patient is on your website, fills in a form and then sends it off, not sure what to expect – BING – they get an email straight away, from YOU! It’s a pretty generic email but it’s friendly, personable and promises you will get in touch with them soon.
“Hi xxx, thanks for getting in touch. I promise to have a good read of your email and will get back to you tomorrow/xxx hours/as soon as I can.”
Perhaps you can also add a link in your email to a blog you are proud of? Add a fun image of yourself? Link through to an event you are running?
Whatever you do, try a little harder than the “success” you usually get from an online form. It shows you’ve taken the time to put a little more energy into the people you are about to look after.
2. How are you?
The usual pathway for patient/professional runs like this – patient comes for consultation, plan set, treatment, patient goes away till next appointment, treatment, patient goes away till next appointment, treatment, finish plan, patient leaves to never come back again.
Most times the ONLY communication that happens during this time is a reminder that of when their next appointment is. So few health professionals keep in touch in between! Why not schedule 20 minutes throughout your day to send a simple email patients to say that you are thinking about them and are hoping that they are feeling better with their pain/illness/program and if they have any concerns to just contact you directly?
It’s such a small gesture but can make the patient feel so much more in touch with your and your brand.
3. Celebrate success and never say goodbye
As with all good things, there will come a time when the relationship comes to a natural end. Or does it?
Why not follow up a week after the final consultation and celebrate the successes you’ve had or milestones you have reached.
“Hi xxx, so proud of you for what you have achieved/fixed/completed, great work, it’s been great working with you and we’re always here to help!”
Then you make 100% sure they are on your mailing list so they never forget you!
4. Remember those important dates
You have all the patients details on file right? USE it! What we are talking about is birthdays – we all love birthdays and we all love messages or presents!
It’s not hard to set up an automated system that will send them a personalised birthday message from you and what is even better is perhaps offering them a little birthday gift! Maybe a discount on one of your classes, some $$ off any of your products or a two for one offer.
Remembering the little things about a patient can make such a difference.
5. Ask for referrals
Don’t be shy in asking for a referral, if you have created a great patient relationship you should be able to ask for a favour or provide an offer that can help boost leads.
“Hi xxx, hope you’ve been doing well since we last saw you, it was so great meeting you and glad we could help with the problem. It would be so amazing if you could recommend us to friends and family…”
Something along these lines – make it personalised to their case and use the language that you know will suit them.
If you run classes perhaps you could include a special ex-client offer for example, bring a friend and you can come for free.
Of course, our tips are general and you have to do what suits you, your brand’s image and tone and that of your patients. However, everyone likes to be made to feel special so try and little harder to nurture what you already have.
We will leave you with a quote from Damon Richards: Your customer doesn’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.