Now more than ever, healthcare providers are under increasing pressure to provide high-quality services while keeping costs to a minimum. This tends to put a lot of strain on many such providers, making them seek better (and cheaper) ways of serving their clients without going out of business. Employing a tried and tested healthcare marketing strategy is one of the main ways of achieving this equilibrium.
What is Healthcare Marketing?
This is the strategic, planned way in which healthcare providers of all levels engage their consumers. From the moment a consumer seeks any medical service or product, the healthcare provider can employ different techniques to guide the consumer throughout their healthcare journey, ensuring that there is always efficient communication that benefits all parties.
The strategies employed in healthcare marketing can be beneficial for healthcare providers in the following ways:
1) Improved Patient Recruitment
Healthcare providers can also struggle to bring in new clients (patients) much like any other business. A solid marketing strategy can go a long way toward addressing this issue. Many patients are unaware of the extent and the different types of services offered by healthcare providers.
Raising awareness among potential patients can be a great way of getting them to sign up for many healthcare services. For instance, a healthcare facility can utilize content marketing to advertise the kind of medical services it offers, its benefits, and how a specific target group (if any) can especially benefit from them. A good example would be a clinic that offers fertility services. Their marketing efforts will target couples and individuals looking to conceive a baby.
2) Improved Patient Retention
It’s not enough for a healthcare facility to simply recruit more patients. Getting them to become repeat clients is equally important as it guarantees business for the long term. However, marketing in a way that keeps your existing patients needs to be a concerted effort. Just because a patient requires the services of a healthcare provider today doesn’t mean they’ll come back tomorrow.
That’s where strategic marketing comes in. By doing things to foster a relationship with existing patients, the chances of such patients coming back to the same healthcare facility are increased significantly.
An effective way of such marketing can involve having a well-trained staff as the first point of contact with every patient, new or old. Such staff should be very tactful in handling patients from the minute they walk in the door, making their appointments as smooth as possible. This, coupled with seemingly small gestures like “thank you” notes at the end of each appointment, can do wonders for patient retention.
Identifying patient pain points and addressing them is also a key part of a marketing strategy that aims to retain patients.
3) Improved Brand Public Image
Even though healthcare providers may not admit it, public image is just as important to them as any other business. The current trend is that many potential patients now look up reviews about a healthcare facility before choosing to visit it. Having negative reviews can be detrimental to getting patients.
Similarly, anything that casts a healthcare facility in a negative light will do significant damage. For instance, numerous scandalous allegations against a healthcare facility will likely make people reconsider visiting such a place. Effective marketing strategies can ensure a strong and healthy online presence, one that’s focused on the reputation management of a particular clinic or hospital. This will do wonders for their public image.
4) Improved Brand Awareness
Brand awareness is crucial even for healthcare facilities. Being identified as a facility that’s known for a particular service can help consolidate a hospital’s or clinic’s position in a local or regional market. Active community outreach, proper public relations management, and strategic advertising can help raise a healthcare facility’s brand awareness immensely.
5) Deeper Connection With Patients
The average patient has a plethora of options as far as healthcare goes. This means that gaining trust and loyalty from such patients will require considerable effort to develop a deeper connection with them. Such a deeper connection will pay huge dividends because loyal patients will always come back to a place where they feel valued. Strategic marketing can help with patient loyalty, giving a healthcare facility a significant edge over its competitors.
Of course, all these benefits of marketing strategies help ensure a great bottom line for a healthcare provider. With improved patient recruitment and retention come a lot of business. Such a boom can only mean increased revenue.