How to Acquire & Get New Patients For Your Dental and Medical Practice
Your overall healthcare marketing strategy should be based on best practices and on a pattern of success of other similar medical practices. It should not be based on trial-and-error, and waste of your hard earned money. This is why PatientGain has created many services to benefit healthcare providers.
4 step process used by top healthcare practices is outlined. Costs $699/mon with no long contracts (GOLD service). Whether you have a dental practice, surgeon, primary care or any other healthcare practice, these strategies apply to you.
There are 4 prerequisites before you launch on your journey to get new patients for your clinic:
1. You must focus on providing high quality patient care, and genuine focus on high patient satisfaction.
2. Understand there is no “quick solution” – and that anything that is going to produce long term success, is not simple and easy. It will cost time and money. Basically there is no free lunch in the business world.
3. You must have an excellent website, the website must be intelligent and focused on conversion.
4. Build trust and loyalty with patients. As the practice owner, your patients and your staff want your attention, your focus, your gratitude, you are an example in their eyes. Listen to your patients, be patient with your patients, don’t interrupt your patients to “get to the point.” Listen to them, ask clarifying questions, and pay attention to nonverbal cues like body language.
Question: Where do new patients come from?
Top sources of new patients: (Online, digital)
1. Google PPC ads (immediate results – costs money and is complex)
2. Google Organic SEO (takes time to establish – costs money and time and is complex, but produces the best ROI for your marketing dollars)
3. Google Local SEO (depends on your presence on directories like 1. Google Business Page 2. Facebook Business Page 3. Yelp Business Page. 4. There are additional 10 key websites )
4. Facebook ads (immediate results – costs money)
5. Instagram ads (immediate results – costs money)
6. Online ads on related sites (for example HealthGrades, RealSelf, Psychology Today)
Top sources of new patients: (Offline, traditional )
1. Simple Human Touch. Simply speak with patients. Listen to them. Build relationships and your staff should make them feel welcomed in your practice. Technology and automation has its place but caring and empathy has no replacement.
2. Referral Marketing (slow results – costs time and effort and constant relationship building)
3. Networking (slow results – costs time and effort and constant relationship building)
The 4 Step Process:
Step 1. Getting patients to your dental or medical website
This refers to digital advertising, SEO and social media activities to let potential patients know that you exist, and that you offer an important service for patients who are looking for your services. Google ads, medical SEO for your website are probably the most important 2 steps you can take. Without proper online advertising plan and robust medical SEO, it is simply hard to grow. This is a very good page that covers good medical advertisement examples.
Here the top marketing channels to get a potential patient to visit your website.
- Google advertising – primarily PPC ads for medical practices
- Facebook advertising – visual targeted ads help you acquire new patients (depending on your practice)
- Instagram advertising – visual targeted ads help you acquire new patients (depending on your practice)
- Google SEO – very effective, but it takes a lot of time, money and effort
- Google local SEO – Google promotes and ranks local businesses in maps and GMB listing – so it will take a very long time so show up higher in local SEO results
- Targeted ads and presence on certain websites. For example, if you offer mental health services, then displaying your ads on websites very specific to mental health will help you.
- Referral websites – For example, if you are a physician who offers pediatric urgent care services for children after normal business hours, you may want to partner with local pediatric and primary care doctors who are not open after normal business hours and weekends.
- Schools and other organizations. Everyday, thousands of children get hurt in schools. Many times it is sufficient to have a telemedicine session with a physician, rather than sending a child to a physician. Not every school has a “nurse” available.
Step 2. Conversion
Once a patient lands on your website, then the website has to do the selling. Many doctors and practice managers naively believe that once a patient lands on your website, they will automatically take an action to contact you. In real life it does not work like this. Only a percentage of the patients who visit your website, will actually request a an appointment, telemedicine session, or call you. Fewer will pay you. An even fewer will show up, even with pre-paying you and even with “confirming” the session. It is a human (patient) behavior.
9 Examples of a patient conversion on your healthcare website:
- Patient calling you from the phone number listed on the website
- Patient requesting an appointment from the website
- Patient registering for the patient-portal account
- Patient starting a ChatBot session from the website site
- Patient sending a Text/SMS from the website texting app for a 2-Way texting session
- Patient clicking on “Directions” app (for an urgent care or a walk in clinic)
- Patient filling out patient registration form on the website
- Patient signs up for your monthly newsletter
- Patient redeems a promotion from the promotions app
Best conversion medical websites are based on A/B tested software and algorithms. It is tiresome and expensive to create a high conversion website for doctors. Best conversion medical websites have these qualities:
- Intelligence – this refers to conversion intelligent apps on your website to cause the person to take an action. One example is HIPAA compliant medical chatbot.
- Content – The content of your medical website should promote three main areas 1. Your medical practice 2. Your patient services 3. Your providers, doctors and staff. Content should be written as you are speaking to the patient. Focus of the content should be to provide useful information for a patient AND it should also mention and softly “sell” benefits.
- Layout – and structure of the website should be designed with A/B tested layout and design. If you have a pretty website and you are not getting good leads, it could lack of A/B tested design.
- Allow patient to select a time for the telehealth session. Appointment app is a good option.
- Allow patient to fill out the paperwork online (digital intake forms), upload insurance card etc.
- Allow patient to make a payment online using online payment app.
Step 3. Delivering the service to the patient
As a medical provider or a practice manager, this is your responsibility.
Most providers deliver in-person healthcare services, however telemedicine is on the rise also.