Thinking of Adding a New Procedure?

Written by on December 1, 2016 in Practice tips - No comments

Market It Now!

Your practice is offering a new office procedure. How do you get this message out to your current patients, prospective patients and your medical colleagues?

You need to let all your current patients know about your new medical procedure, but do not think this is enough. You will need to have a comprehensive marketing plan in place prior to the start of your latest procedure, to inform your existing patients and attract new ones.

Marketing In-house to Your Existing Patients

Making sure your staff knows what you’re trying to accomplish in marketing your new procedure. They will become your advocates inside the office and out when they clearly know your goals. Team meetings should be held regularly and all staff members should attend.  This is your chance to praise or remind staff of marketing the added procedure when speaking to patients. Use part of this time to review the new procedure and address any relevant topics that should be communicated to patients.

Create a printed practice newsletter or brochure that covers all pertinent information about the new procedure and leave copies in your waiting room/practice in several locations including examination rooms. If you have patient email information, send your patients an e-newsletter announcing the new procedure.

Even when the procedure is elective and offers obvious benefits, many patients still tend to have a fear of the unknown. The medical world can be intimidating. It’s often difficult for patients to fully comprehend how significantly a procedure can change their lives for the better.

You or your staff, in the past, have spent extended periods of time repeating the same information over and over again, explaining new procedures to patients. It can be tedious and it’s not a very efficient way to run your practice. And patients, during the short consult, are bombarded with information and can be literally overwhelmed.

Videos about a specific procedure watched in the office privately is one option for informing your patients. Another option is mobile apps, especially animated medical videos. These can be delivered right to a hand-held digital device and are the latest technology used by a large number of your patients. This has the potential to transform your new marketing plan.

Giving patients the opportunity to watch and listen to a simulated medical procedure, at their leisure, can cut through the confusion by taking away the mystery of the unknown. In effect, it is an ideal “digital consult.” And if some part of the message is not understood, the video or app can be repeated as many times as needed – while continuing to deliver the same, consistent top-quality information.

External Marketing for New Patients

Next, make sure you have a marketing plan to reach prospective clients outside your practice. Some possible tools to use to effectively achieve this are:

Revamp your Website – time for your website to promote the new procedure. Launch a professional, successful and engaging design and you’ll be on your way to reaching new patients in no time at all.

Online Marketing – there are many online options now available including Facebook Ads, Google Adwords, Local Search Tools and Email Marketing.

Referral Programs – implement a patient referral program or field marketing program to focus on patient and practice referrals.

Patient Newsletters – enhance your patient communication with a professional newsletter. Leave copies in the office or email them to patients on a quarterly basis.

You should always be networking within your community. In its simplest form, it’s connecting with people to exchange ideas, information, and resources. There are many places to network, from the local chamber of commerce, community groups, health care associations, or you can join a board or peer group. Not only will you gain great ideas to help you with your advertising your new procedure, but you can possibly connect with some new clients as well.

External Marketing Through Physician Referrals

Reach out to potential referring physicians in the community by yourself. In physician marketing, YOU are the brand, so don’t dilute it. Never send a representative or a liaison to do this job. Introduce yourself to possible referring physicians with a phone call and schedule a “Lunch and Learn” about your new procedure. 15 minutes of your time can guarantee a referral for life.

In physician marketing, the key point to understand is that you are the expert in the room, but you’re not the absolute power – you need to demonstrate that you value your referring physicians’ work before you can even demonstrate your capabilities.

After explaining your new procedure in detail, ask for 5 consultations to demonstrate the effectiveness of working together with referring physicians. You’re setting yourself up for success if you establish a team effort with them so that from the first moment of contact with a patient you can ensure the best standard of care possible.

Conclusion

While your website, your educational videos and apps, your staff and your referring physicians serve as important sources to marketing your new procedure, spend the time to educate your patients about why you are an expert in your field face-to-face. Answer their questions, provide additional resources, and ensure that a patient leaves your office with information to refer their friends, family, and co-workers. And your medical website will perform this function 24/7. Every new question deserves a new page of its own so that the answer can be easily found. 

Resources:

http://www.ampupmypractice.com/educating-patients/

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CEsQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.dayspaassociation.com%2Fdocs%2Fnews-items-library-articles%2F2011%2F12%2F29%2F6%2520Tips%2520to%2520Adding%2520Aesthetic%2520Medicine%2520Procedures%2520to%2520your%2520Practice.pdf&ei=Dy63UeSHE4-w8QT35IDADw&usg=AFQjCNHQuHKoGqPNoAy96APt4pVPCs3adA&sig2=X9raAUu50qvgf8J-07xpNQ&bvm=bv.47534661,d.eWU

By Thomas Hibbard
Creative Director, Med Monthly

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