The demand for dermatological services is increasing, which is great for business, but according to Med School Insiders, dermatology is the third most competitive specialty—making the job of convincing patients to choose your practice that much more challenging. Not only do you have to spread the practice name to create awareness in the community, but you also have to appear towards the top of local search results to capture the audience who hasn’t heard of your practice before. With the right marketing tactics, you can attract new patients and generate higher revenues without spending much time and money. Here are 5 free ways you can stand above the crowd and reach your marketing goals.
Engage with Your Audience
The growing generations of patients want to feel emotionally connected to a business. Before making decisions, these patients hop on the internet—specifically social media. To reach this younger audience, you need to get their attention and establish brand credibility through an online presence. Creating an online presence also gives you the ability to broaden your reach and spread your name organically.
To start, post photos and videos on TikTok and Instagram of things that are educational and sharable, like:
- Skincare tips
- Details of different procedures
- Favorite skincare products
- Answering followers’ questions
While social media is used by all ages, you can add an extra layer of engagement for older audiences by doing interviews with media outlets, which helps to establish you as an expert.
Master Local Search
89% of patients Google their health symptoms before going to their doctor. Patients also tend to turn to Google when they need to find a new doctor. This is a huge opportunity if you have an optimized Google Business Profile (GBP). By composing your GBP with every possible detail, you can increase your chances of being the first name a patient sees when searching for their specific needs.
For example, say a patient is afraid they have skin cancer and after researching their symptoms, they Google, “skin cancer treatment near me.” If your practice offers this treatment and you added it as a Service under your GBP, your practice name will appear in this specific search result.
Need help optimizing your GBP? Review our checklist, How to Improve Your Google Business Profile to Get More Patients.
Build Trust Through Reviews
The details you include in your GBP determines what searches you appear in, but if you want your practice name towards the top of the results your GBP needs a high star count and lots of reviews. Not only does ranking higher in this list help to get more patients to see your practice, but 72% of patients want a doctor with at least a 4-star review and 80% expect at least 5 reviews before they’re willing to trust a provider.
Obtaining more reviews isn’t as difficult as it may seem. Google offers a free marketing kit that includes stickers you can put on your door or check-in desk reminding patients to leave a review. That’s often not enough though. Sending patients review request texts within 24 hours of their appointment is shown to be the most successful way to gather more positive reviews and increase your star rating because it provides an easy way for your happy majority of patients to voice their opinions. If you’re looking for an automated way to send these texts, check out PatientPoint’s Automated Reputation Management solution.
Utilize the Most Influential Touchpoint
Increasing patient exposure and education on practice services and procedures will increase service line growth. The best way to make patients aware is by providing them with this information when they’re already in the mindset to act—waiting to meet with their doctor.
Cluttering the walls with flyers about your services is unattractive and hard for patients to read. Using technology throughout your practice to mix relevant health education with information on your practice’s offerings will give the practice a modern look and is shown to increase billable claims by 3% per health service.
Don’t Forget WOM and TOM
Recommendations have a lot of power in consumer behavior, especially when they come from a trusted source like a provider. In fact, word-of-mouth (WOM) is even more effective than paid ads, resulting in five times more sales. Plus, 75% of patients say they trust products and advertisements that they talk with a doctor about or see in the practice.1
For practice growth, having a positive patient experience will encourage patients to share your practice name with friends and family. A positive experience can consist of friendly clinical staff, a modern office and an environment that empowers patients to engage in their health.
For service line growth, having a simple way to keep practice initiatives top-of-mind (TOM) for clinical staff before going into an appointment will lead to more word-of-mouth recommendations and contribute toward more scheduled appointments for the services you want to see. One of the more effective methods of sharing these messages is having digital screens in back office areas so that messages can be easily shared, updated and broadcasted at scale.
Implementing the tips above doesn’t have to be time consuming. With the right platforms, you’ll see big results without much increase in your workload. If you’d like to learn how PatientPoint programs can help you grow your practice, increase revenue and enhance the patient experience, visit our product page.