Why is Patient Follow-Up an Important Part of My Medical Digital Marketing Strategy?
In order to understand the importance of follow-up, we first need to understand that if we are offering cash-based treatments in our practice, we are running a retail business. But why? The answer is simple — because consumers have a choice when it comes to making a decision on any elective medical procedure. Additionally, when a potential patient expresses interest in a treatment or procedure at your practice, chances are they are doing the exact same thing with some of your local medical competitors. So, how do we move the needle in our medical digital marketing strategy?
If you’re intuitive enough, you probably know the answer already: by FOLLOWING UP! This is because again, elective medicine is a retail business. Therefore, all the rules of modern retail apply to you in any medical digital marketing strategy you implement.
According to the National Sales Executive Association:
- 48% of salespeople NEVER follow up with a lead
- 25% make a second contact and then stop
- 12% make a third contact and then stop
- And only 10% of salespeople even attempt to make a fourth or more contact.
Well, why does this matter?
According to the same study:
- Only 2% of sales are made on the first contact
- 3% are made on the second contact
- 5% are made on the third contact
- 10% are closed on the fourth contact
That means that 80% of sales require a minimum of five touches in any medical digital marketing initiative. When we put both sides of the study together, we can see that 75% of salespeople are not even touching 80% of the money! Take a second to digest that. Wow! So how do we avoid becoming a part of the 75%?
Being a Part of the 25% to Enhance ROI in Your Medical Digital Marketing Strategy
By this point, we should know that to be a part of the minority, you must follow up with the prospective patients who are funneling into your practice from your medical digital marketing efforts. So, how do we follow up?
Following up can be done through one of two strategies. The first is by sending automated email reminders to build value in the treatment they are interested in to encourage the next conversion step in our medical digital marketing strategy — so, how do we convert an inquiry into a booked consultation?
The second strategy is to call them with the same messaging. This should always be the first touch for anyone who fills out a form on your website or calls your practice. Each strategy boasts different benefits, but the most powerful recipe is to do both. This is how your practice will convert opportunities into paying patients from your medical digital marketing.
The Power of Email Automation in Medical Digital Marketing
Something great about email communication in medical digital marketing is that it is direct, easily measured, and immediately activated. Through our medical practice management software, Crystal Clear has developed a way to do this through simple automation. Depending on where a potential patient is at in their decision-making process, otherwise known as a “sell status,” Crystal Clear’s Social Patient Center will automatically send out value-building, targeted emails. Whether a prospective patient is in a “New Opportunity” or a “Consult Complete, Treatment Being Considered” status, the messaging will continually change — always backed with the goal of encouraging the next conversion step.
Now, let’s say someone actually became a paying patient. Email marketing is also a powerful tool when it comes to cross-selling, up-selling, and patient retention. So, think of things that would be complementary to their current treatment plans and start marketing those through your email efforts.
With email marketing being such a vital component in any medical digital marketing strategy, you also need to make sure you have internal processes in place at your practice to actually collect primary valid email addresses for everyone in your database. Getting a prospect’s email address is just as important as getting their phone number.
Lastly, as it relates to email marketing, you must have a way to measure, manage, and track your results. In Crystal Clear’s Social Patient Center CRM, open rates, read rates, and click-through rates are easily viewed with the click of a button. If you are implementing any type of medical digital marketing strategy through email, tracking software is essential to measuring success.
The Power of Phone Calls and SMS in Medical Digital Marketing
A simple phone call provides a channel to gather valuable information from potential patients quickly and efficiently. Once you connect with an opportunity over the phone, you have the ability to establish an emotional connection with that potential patient. You can answer their questions and concerns and ultimately just ask them to book a consultation!
Something we should also be conscious of is a person’s tone or choice of vocabulary. When I get on the phone and say, “Good morning, Doctor, this is Andrew from Crystal Clear!”, I know exactly how the conversation will go, based just upon their first few words and tone. It cannot be stressed enough that we need not only listen to what people are saying on the phone, but also HOW they are saying it to us! This will tell us almost everything that we need to know.
Now, let’s shift over to text messaging. First of all, you must ensure everything you do as a practice is HIPAA compliant! With the number of mobile scams increasing, some people are less likely to pick up a call from an unknown phone number. If a prospective patient is unresponsive after a couple of phone calls and voicemails, it’s important to disarm the fear of the unknown number. Sending a HIPAA compliant text is an effective strategy for doing this. In Crystal Clear’s Social Patient Center, two-way texting is built right in, which allows for practices to send and receive HIPAA compliant text messages to potential and existing patients.
Adding text messaging into your follow-up strategy is effective when it comes to enhancing your overall medical digital marketing ROI.
What to Take Away and Implement into Your Medical Digital Marketing Plans
Following up with potential patients is crucial when it comes to moving the needle in your medical digital marketing strategy. Remember that the perfect mix is a blend of email automation, phone calls, and HIPAA compliant text messages. Most importantly, don’t give up! Remember, 80% of the money is after your fifth follow-up! Go get it!
Our team of experts at Crystal Clear Digital Marketing would be honored to help your practice with your medical digital marketing strategy. Please contact us today to learn more. We look forward to speaking with you!