Increasing patient volume can be challenging in today’s digital market. Many patients take the time to research their options, but others choose the first practice they see an online ad for. How can you reach the right audience, at the right time, while presenting an outstanding message that achieves your marketing goals? It starts with an essential part of your inbound marketing toolkit: email marketing.
Even though social media and online marketing are growing marketing channels, email marketing is still a very powerful and effective tool for capturing patients’ attention. But sending generic emails with the latest promotional offers or healthcare news isn’t enough. Instead, your emails need to be innovative. Put these five techniques into action to start creating disruptive emails for your healthcare practice.
1. Encourage Engagement
Healthcare Brands must engage their customer base. This is often emphasized regarding your social media, but you need to create the same level of engagement in your email marketing too. Instead of the normal updates and industry news, focus on giving your current or potential patients a voice. Some techniques include:
- Incorporate a survey or quiz about their likes and dislikes
- Host a contest or offer an enticing prize
- Create a captivating poll that gets readers to respond
For example, poll patients to find out what services they’re most interested in learning about or are most unfamiliar with. Furthermore, using these email marketing techniques allows you to more accurately measure consumer engagement.
2. Optimize for Mobile
This is no longer an option. Peter Brooke at Business.com notes a study from Litmus stating, "55% of your email subscribers are opening your email on their mobile device." This means that more than half of your patients may not even bother opening and reading your email if it isn’t formatted properly for their mobile device. Optimizing for mobile devices simply means making your emails readable and actionable in any format.
3. Segment Your List
Segmenting your email list allows you to send targeted messages based on a group’s specific needs. You can offer certain segments relevant information, special discounts, or invitations based on certain criteria. Segmentation helps you avoid cluttering or overwhelming your patients with information they’re not interested in.
To successfully segment your email list, you need to understand who you’re sending emails to based on their age, interests and unique needs. For example, retirees and college students don’t share the same need for information; therefore, sending a college student an email about new programs for seniors through AARP isn’t going to trigger the response you need. Sending relevant messages to each segment of your target market will drive higher open and click-through rates every time.
4. Retarget Emails Based on Patient Behavior
A prospective patient visits your website and reads about the services and programs your healthcare Brand offers before determining if your solutions are a good fit for their problem. Track their behavior while they explore your website and then use that information to your advantage. With the information you gather, you can retarget these visitors. Retargeting brings patients back to your website by presenting them with information you know they want and need. For instance, if a patient previously browsed your website pages about refractive lens surgeries, target your email to address frequently asked questions about LASIK.
5. Connect Using Real People
In the healthcare industry, patients want to connect with an individual. When sending emails, ensure they come from a real person from your organization. To do this, consider these tips:
- Make sure your emails come from a real person’s email address - avoid “no-reply” emails
- Place a recognizable member from your organization, such as the chief physician, at the bottom of the email with their contact information
- Instead of asking the reader to call the office, offer something more engaging and personal like, “Please call me if you have any questions about our treatment options, and I’d be happy to help you”
Using these email marketing techniques increases patient volume. They give your practice the ability to reach more patients, effectively engage them and utilize their responses to nurture growth.
Start increasing patient volume with your email marketing strategy. For more email marketing insights and tips, download our free eBook, Anatomy of a Five-Star Email.
Integrate your current strategies with fresh inbound marketing ROI based ideas to attract more patients to your Brand. Let’s touch base and I will put the Hult Team's experience to work for you. We can connect at 309-673-8191 or firstname.lastname@example.org, and together, we can create a better focus on your healthcare Brand.