Communication has changed a lot over the years. It used to be as simple as writing a note, sending a letter or talking to someone in person. Now, everything’s digital. For an eye care practitioner, this can create a lot of unknowns. What does effective communication look like these days? How do you reach patients? Why is the digital marketplace so important?
Those are good questions, but if there’s one thing you need to know about communicating with your patients, it’s that they each have their own preference for receiving communications. While some still prefer voicemails or talking in person, most patients these days prefer to receive communications from their eye care practice via social media, email or text message. Here’s what you need to know about each.
Communicating Via Email
Believe it or not, you can still effectively communicate with your patients in today’s digital marketplace via email. Want proof? Here are some eye-opening statistics from HubSpot’s Ultimate List of Marketing Statistics:
- In 2014, email marketing was cited as the most effective digital marketing channel for customer retention in the United States
- 8% of users report reading email on mobile devices
- Over 50% of respondents say they read most of their emails
Communicating via email isn’t just important; it’s necessary. Some examples of how to best utilize email for communications include appointment reminders, monthly newsletters, sending out patient surveys and birthday messages.
Communicating Via Social Media
From Facebook and Twitter to LinkedIn and Google+, patients these days are on social media more than ever. In a digital world, it’s where they hang out. To communicate with your patients, you’ll need to meet them there. Here are some more statistics from HubSpot to back this up:
- 83% of marketers indicate that social media is important for their business
- 77% of B2C companies have acquired customers from Facebook
- Pinterest is now the 3rd most popular social network in the U.S. in terms of traffic
- As of January 2012, American users spent an average of 3.3 minutes on Google+
- 43% of all marketers have found a customer via LinkedIn in 2013
Social media’s importance will only increase in the future. Some ways to communicate with patients via social media include posting regularly, maintaining multiple social media accounts and integrating social media with your website.
Communicating Via Text Message
More and more patients these days have smartphones and tablets, so they often prefer receiving communication via text message or some other channel they can access on their mobile device. Don’t think mobile devices are that important? Here are a couple stats from HubSpot that show otherwise:
- 44% of consumers say that they would like brands to deliver deals and coupons to their mobile devices
- In 2013, 55.6% of businesses say that they are using mobile as a marketing channel
To communicate effectively in today’s digital marketplace, you need to adapt to your patients’ needs. That means communicating via email, social media and text messages.