Insights on Healthcare Marketing

Rainy Day Opportunities

Rainy days. They can be pretty miserable, and we have certainly had more than our share lately in Central Florida. However, they also provide your practice an opportunity to shine and make someone’s day a little brighter through a small random act of kindness. Here are a few we’ve come across in our community:

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Four Ways to Build Trust in Your Business Relationships

I recently read where fewer Americans agree with the statement that “most people can be trusted” than at any time in the past 40 years. Yet, building trust is critical to any successful business relationship, and I would argue especially in the business of delivering healthcare. 

So how can you build trust with your patients, referral sources and even your staff? I believe there are four basic steps:

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Making the Right Marketing Choices

Every day your organization has choices:

  • Bait and switch or honest advertising.
  • Trickery or transparency.
  • Empty promises or fulfilled truths.
  • Scripted responses or genuine conversation.
  • Broken links or technology that transforms.
  • Endless phone loops or extravagant human welcomes and assistance.
  • Lengthy on-hold wait times or prompt responses.
  • Buried rules and exclusions or clear communication.

Too many organizations today make the wrong choices. The consequences? Angry patients, negative reviews, low retention and a skeptical market. They put all of their energy and resources into acquiring new patients rather than delighting the ones they have. 

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The Magical Marketing Wand

Everyone wishes they had one. And at times, it seems as if some practices believe that an experienced, savvy marketing team has the tools to make marketing miracles happen for them.  

They don’t though. In fact, there is very little, if anything, your marketing team can do for you if your practice is not personally invested. And by that, I don’t just mean financially, I mean spending time, focus and energy. 

Because at the end of the day, truly successful marketing is about relationships and experiences. And while a good marketing professional can lay out a fantastic plan, help open doors, spark connections, and provide you with creative and compelling tools, the true power of success lies within you and your team. 

 

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Seven Tips for Welcoming a New Physician to Your Practice

How does your practice welcome a new physician? Too often, I find new physicians are “baptized by fire,” immediately thrown into a busy practice after just a couple of days of “orientation.” They are provided policies and procedures, but do they have an opportunity to learn and embrace the culture of your practice? Do they fully understand expectations and accountability? Have you engaged them in practice marketing? Have you provided them the tools to market and grow their practice?

Here are a few tips to improve the on-boarding process:

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The True Cost of Not Marketing

To market or not to market? Sure it is a choice, and you can certainly choose not to make the investment, but at what cost? 

Too many practices wait to market until there is a specific problem or need — new patient visits are down, patients are leaving the practice, a new competitor has moved into the neighborhood, they lose a key insurance contract, satisfaction scores are suffering, etc. 

Successful, forward-thinking practices incorporate marketing into their everyday business, even if everything is going well, to stay ahead of the curve. They proactively and continually build and nurture relationships with their staff, patients, referral sources and community:

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Be Willing to Bend

Too often in both my personal and professional business experiences, I see inflexibility — staff members who are so focused on the rules and procedures, that customer service suffers. 

Rather then bending just a tad to meet a customer’s needs (especially a loyal, long-time one), they will stand their ground, pointing to a policy or sign. I’m not talking about customers who take advantage of the system — I know they exist. These are customers who have a one-time need or request due to a special or unforeseen circumstance:

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When a Physician Leaves

Whether it is moving or retiring, when a physician leaves your practice, it impacts patients. And often in a more personal way then you might realize.  

Patients, especially those who have been with your practice for many years, become attached to “their” physician and feel a true loss when he or she leaves. How you communicate this change, acknowledge their loss, and help them to smoothly transition their care to another provider can make the difference between retaining them in your practice and losing them to a competitor. 

Here are a few practical tips:

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Marketing is …. Educating Your Patients

Too often I find that physicians and health care workers talk above or around their patients: 

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Don’t Tell Me. Show Me.

False advertising. We all know what it is. It is when a company makes promises, and then the actual product or service falls far short of delivering on those promises. 

You can say you have expert physicians, deliver the best patient care, have the latest technology or provide the highest level of service, but if a patient comes for a visit and isn’t greeted warmly or is kept waiting too long or no one explains what they or doing or why, that negative experience will speak louder than any of your words.

Invest in showing your patients and community by:

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