Marketing in healthcare has changed drastically over the past decade, and continues to evolve. Physicians are communicating with patients in new ways thanks to technology. Reaching new patients no longer means relying on just referrals. Nearly every aspect of marketing your practice looks different today than it did 5 years ago. And in order to stay competitive, you must make sure you’re up to speed.
Patient feedback is vital to maintaining a healthy, growing practice. Feedback is no longer just for you and your records, though. Today, patient feedback should be a part of your online presence; 86% of patients conduct a health-related search before booking a doctor’s appointment. Patients are looking at reviews, and without them, your practice is losing credibility. The more reviews you have, the more trusted you appear to be to patients. Getting great online reviews is also easier than you think! Read our previous blog post for details on how to do this: “Getting 5-Star Online Reviews For Your Practice Has Never Been Easier”
Communicating with Patients
Staff used to spend hours every week calling patients to confirm appointments, schedule new appointments, or follow-up after an appointment. Unfortunately, many of those calls went unanswered and unreturned. Patients are busy, and it took up a lot of your staff’s valuable time. Patients are becoming increasingly busier, though, and with quick access to text and social media, they’re even less likely to answer a phone call. Today, you’re now able to communicate with patients when and how they want to be communicated with, and save a lot of time in the process.
Text messaging is quickly becoming patients’ preferred method of communication. There are some interesting statistics that lead us to believe that text messaging will play an increasingly larger role in the future of healthcare. Between text messaging, social media, and email, you’re now able to automate a lot of your patient communication, saving you time, but also creating a better overall patient experience.
Reaching New Patients
Referrals are no longer your only option for reaching new patients. Patients are searching online before deciding on a new physician. So, creating and managing your online presence is essential. Your online presence should consist of social media profiles, patient reviews, and a website. Unlike 5 years ago, these are no longer options for a practice; they’re a necessity. They’re also essential pieces of marketing your practice and reaching new patients.
Referrals can be a headache for your front-office staff; they spend hours calling to set up appointments, unable to make progress. Patients are busy. They’re not always available when you call and many won’t answer calls from unknown numbers. Today, there’s no need to waste hours making dozens of phone calls, though. With text messaging, practices can now automate the entire process and get better results overall. That’s why we created our Referrals product. This Luma Health customer was struggling with referrals, and after implementing our product, they were able to convert 91% of their incoming referrals.
Marketing within healthcare continues to change and evolve rapidly. It’s time to hop on board and make sure your practice won’t be left behind.
Stay up to speed with Luma Health! If you’re ready to take your practice to the next level, we offer automated waitlists, cancellation management, appointment confirmation texts, referral management, patient recall, and more. Get started with Luma Health today!
Tashfeen Ekram, MD, is a radiologist, self-taught coder, healthcare innovator and Co-Founder of Luma Health. Contact him on Twitter at @tashfeenekramMD.