This is why web and digital tools are so important. They can be used to your benefit! There are always growing pains when it comes to changing the way you do things, but embracing the latest web and digital tools can drastically help improve communication with your patients, or customers.
Here are five tools to consider:
Email communication may have been around for a while, but it’s still one of the most effective forms of communication available today. Not convinced? Here are some eye-opening email statistics from The Radicati Group, Inc., a technology market research firm:
- Almost 200 billion emails are sent every day.
- There are more than 4 billion email accounts.
- When it comes to marketing communications, 77% of people prefer email.
- Email has a marketing ROI of 4,300%.
An innovative way to utilize email is through eBlasts, a monthly email to all of your patients/customers. These emails can be news about your practice, a summary of your most popular blog posts, curated content, or something else you know is relevant to them. You can write these emails yourself or have a marketing program write and send them. Either way, it can keep your practice at the top of your patients’ minds.
According to HubSpot, “92% of companies who blog multiple times per day have acquired a customer from their blog.” Maintaining an active blog not only keeps your existing patients in the loop, but it can attract new ones. Since each blog post counts as a unique page on your website and usually utilizes keywords, active blogging is crucial for getting found, also relevant to your SEO (search engine optimization).
It also gives patients an opportunity to provide feedback and communicate with your practice through comments. Responding to comments is another great way for your practice to engage patients.
3. Social Media Posts
Literally billions of people have social media accounts these days and most of them access their accounts daily. To communicate effectively with patients, you have to go through the channels they’re already using. Your practice should not only have a presence on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+, but also actively post.
Marketing programs can also set up, design, and write content for your social media pages. If you’re doing it yourself, however, you should know the best times to post on the different social media sites.
4. Online Promotions
Even if you post on social media regularly, send out monthly eBlasts, and maintain an active blog, getting patients to respond to your communications can be difficult. They can be frankly uninterested most of the time. Online promotions are a great way to address this and win back patient engagement.
For example, you could give patients an opportunity to win a free pair of frames, lenses, or gift certificates to your practice if they follow your social media page. You could also send out offers people can use right from their smartphone. A marketing program can help you promote these offers via website slideshow graphics, a promotional section on your website, or with printable advertising.
5. Online Appointment Requests
If your patients can’t submit appointment requests from their phone or your website, it’s a good sign you need to update your communication techniques. Online appointment requests are convenient for the patient/customer and are a basic way to make your practice more efficient at scheduling them. Some of the latest digital tools can even automate the scheduling process entirely.
In the end, effective communication with your patients depends on the way you’re talking to them. Using the latest web and digital tools is a great and practical way to do it.