Today, traditional marketing strategies like word of mouth and fliers are no longer enough to promote your business and attract new clients. The healthcare industry is no exception to this.
To increase patient traffic and keep your clinic profitable, you need to step up your game and use more modern marketing techniques.
On the one hand, you’re lucky because there are many different tools and channels to effectively promote your business nowadays - SEO, Google Ads, Facebook Ads, you name it.
On the other hand, though, finding the most effective way to attract patients to your clinic can be quite a daunting task with so many options available.
Not to worry, though—we’re here to help.
In this article, we’ve listed the best ways to attract more patients to your clinic, boost your profits, and promote all the services offered in your healthcare clinic.
Let’s dive right in.
8 Ways to Increase Patient Flow in Your Clinic
#1. Take Advantage of Digital Marketing
Today, web presence is a must for any kind of business.
A strong web presence can help you stand out from your competitors, drive more patients to your clinic, and overall drive better revenue.
To further attest to the importance of web presence, research done by Pew Research Center showed that at least 72% of adults alone in the U.S. look for health information online.
Considering this - and the fact the use of technology is only likely to increase with time - it only makes sense for clinics to focus their efforts on attracting clients through digital marketing.
Now, there are different types of digital marketing you could take advantage of, the most common of which include:
- Content marketing. Creating content that helps your target audience learn more about their condition or symptoms.
- Search engine marketing. Running ads on Google Search for keywords related to your clinic.
- Search engine optimization. Optimize your website in such a way that it pops up on page one when people Google “medical clinic.”
- Social media marketing. Keeping an active social media presence, running promotional campaigns, etc.
- Email marketing. Reaching out to former patients with special offers and trying to retain them as customers for your clinic.
We’ll cover each of these healthcare marketing channels in more detail a bit further down in the article.
#2. Create a Well-Designed Website
It’s hard to establish a strong web presence without a well-designed website to represent your clinic in the virtual world.
Done right, a website can help you increase patient flow to your clinic by allowing anyone who looks you up to get information about your services and expertise, to contact you, or to learn more about health-related issues straight from professionals.
Make sure that your website is up to modern standards, though. The site you made 10 years ago just doesn't work anymore. Clunky or outdated design or slow load speed are both among the factors that can cause your customers to pick a competitor clinic over yours.
Not sure if your website holds up to the test? Here are some elements that are basically a must-have for a medical clinic these days:
- Modern and user-friendly interface
- Simple and attractive home page
- Informative content
- Compatibility with all devices
- Good Content Management Software (we recommend WordPress)
While a well-built, professional website might be a bit expensive, it’s definitely well worth the investment. Better to build a single quality website once and have it run for years than have to re-do it every few years.
#3. Use Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
As we already mentioned, most people today look up information and services online, and medical services are no exception to this rule.
As such, it’s important for your website to be well-optimized according to Google best practices so that your patients can find your clinic when they look for medical clinics in your area.
Now, let’s back off a bit - SEO is the process of optimizing your website to search engine best practices so that Google (or other search engines) rank your website on top of search results for a given keyword.
The difference between chiropractic clinic websites that rank #1 as opposed to, say #20, is how well their website is optimized according to SEO principles.
What SEO principles, you might ask? Well, here are some basics:
- Mention your target keyword on the respective page. The target keyword should be mentioned once in Heading 1, Heading 2, and several times throughout the page copy.
- Make your website mobile-friendly. Google rewards websites that are optimized for mobile traffic.
- Have a dedicated page for each target keyword. For each service that you offer, you’d want to have a dedicated page targeting the respective keyword.
- Create an (optimized) Google My Business page. Having a GMB profile allows you to rank on Google Maps, making it more likely for people in your area to discover your clinic.
There’s a lot more to healthcare SEO than what we just covered. Check out our dedicated article to learn more!
#4. Embrace Social Media Platforms
Businesses have long found ways to leverage the power of social media platforms, so it’s only natural that you can also use social media in healthcare to strengthen your web presence and increase patients.
Out of the many options out there, Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin are the best platforms to engage with prospective clients.
Some ways you can use social media to promote your healthcare clinic are:
- Post relevant content. Publish articles, posts, and other kinds of content that help your target audience learn more about their health problems.
- Boost your posts. Most social media platforms allow you to run ads on them or boost your content pieces to reach a wider audience.
- Build up social proof. You can encourage your existing customers to leave reviews on social media platforms, allowing you to build up social proof.
- Organize giveaways. You can let your customer base know about special offers, promotions, or giveaways via social media.
#5. Offer Online Booking
Most people today prefer to do everything from their phones, including shopping, working, and even looking for dates. So, it shouldn’t surprise you they have the same preferences when it comes booking to their healthcare appointments.
There are 2 ways you can take advantage of this.
For one, you can start offering telemedicine services. By using a platform like Medesk, your clinic can offer online consultations to patients that otherwise would not be able to visit your clinic physically.
Alternatively, you can also set up an online patient platform. This allows for all sorts of amazing features like allowing your patients to book or cancel appointments online, check their prescription, check their diagnosis, treatment plans, and so on.
These days, online booking is so popular that 64% of Gen Xers and 58% of millennials would switch their healthcare provider for one that offers the option.
Online booking comes with a number of other benefits, such as reducing cancellations and no-shows by allowing patients to book appointments when it’s most convenient for them.
#6. Use a Practice Management Software
Modern Practice Management Software (PMS) is one of the most effective ways to improve your clinic, transform the patient experience and, in turn, improve patient flow to your clinic.
In case you haven’t heard of such software before, here’s the gist: practice management software is a suite of tools that help with the process of managing a medical clinic. Some common features include (but are not limited to):
- Online Booking & Telemedicine. Your patients can book and attend appointments online.
- Medical CRM. Your marketing team can better keep track of individual patient history and visits, allowing you to deliver a more tailored customer experience.
- Reporting & Analytics. You can keep track of healthcare KPIs and metrics via a single dashboard.
- Electronic Health Records (EHR). Your patients can access their health records digitally.
#7. Keep Your Patients Engage With Email & SMS
Delivering a quality patient experience is great, but you also need to make sure that they’re engaged with your brand even when they’re not actively being treated in your clinic.
The best way to do this is to utilize a medical CRM and occasionally communicate with your former (or current) patients. Some ways you can do this are:
- Send automated appointment reminders via SMS or email (in an attempt to lower no-show rates).
- Update your patients about clinic news via a newsletter.
- Help your patients stay healthy with a general health newsletter, sending them tips related to their health or a specific condition.
- Target patients within specific demographics with special offers. E.g. a 50% off checkup, free consultation, and so on.
#8. Get More Exposure by Appearing In Commercials
Exposure is the key to reaching as many people as possible and, even though many people prefer their computers over TVs, commercials are still one of the best ways to reach your target audience and advertise your clinic.
Similarly, sending your best doctors to participate in medical shows establishes a good reputation and patient trust in your clinic, as it shows that your staff is trustworthy enough to be invited on TV to talk about healthcare issues.
The same applies to commercials, which, although may seem outdated, work by repeatedly exposing your clinic to potential customers.
And you know what they say— “repetition makes reputation and reputation makes customers” so leveraging the power of commercials to increase patients in your clinic definitely still remains an effective patient acquisition technique.
By now, you know all the best ways to drive new patients to your clinic.
Before you go and start applying them in practice, let’s go over the main points we covered in this article:
- It is important to take advantage of modern marketing strategies on top of traditional ones like word of mouth or using flyers if you want to effectively drive more patients to your clinic.
- Some of the most common types of digital marketing strategies include content marketing, search engine marketing, email marketing, and social media marketing.
- Use a well-designed website and SEO to strengthen your social media presence.
- Social media platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter are great to engage with your existing and potential customers and build patient trust.
- Use PMS software to reap a number of beneficial tools to increase patients in your clinic, including healthcare metrics, telemedicine, and online booking!