3 Tips to Help You Reach Your Patients Better Through Email
How to Be Relevant, Engaging, and Personalized (without being annoying…)
It’s a fact of modern life: no matter how many email addresses you may have or how new they are, somehow inboxes seem to fill up with spam faster than garage closets and attics collect dusty odds and ends. In reality, sifting through the junk can become such a periodic chore that some of us dazedly click through the motions so often that we retain little of the information we come across. As business owners, our goal is to make the diamonds stand out from the rough, so that patients can find the news and deals relevant to them. So how do we do that? How can you grab the attention of your patients and keep them interested, not apathetic? Here are a few tangible tips for creating a more diverse and compelling email campaign that will engage active subscribers and reconnect with lost contacts:
1. Speak to Individuals
- One of the most effective ways to create a thriving community is to give people a sense of belonging. Remember that your patients are not a list of names on a spreadsheet, they are individuals who deserve individual attention. By taking the time to be personal and friendly with each patient, even through emails, you’ll show them they are valued. For example, birthday emails and appointment reminders are a simple way to stand out.
- Make sure the foundation of your email list is built on people you know. It may sound like a no-brainer, but sending out repeated campaigns to lost contacts will only push them farther away. Set up a special campaign for your inactives with short, wow-factor special offers to hook them back in and re-establish loyalty.
2. Ask, Don’t Tell
- Which procedures are your patients typically requesting? Do they always ask for the same thing? If a patient always comes in for BOTOX® or a routine teeth cleaning, you can help make suggestions based on their particular preferences for future procedures that would complement or enhance their results. Doing so will ensure you don’t push away loyal followers and readers with irrelevant promotions or information. Find out what your patients are interested in before you tell them more about it.
- Also, using follow-up emails with a poll/survey to ask about a patient’s experience or their other interests can help them feel important and connected. Plus, as an added bonus you’ll be able to elicit information that will help you improve the quality of your care.
3. Spice It Up
- Plain, boring emails are destined for the digital trash bin. Adding a video, an eye-catching infographic, or a series of before-and-after photos can help your emails stand out in the crowd. In fact, according to a study by MediaPost, the number of businesses that plan to use video in their email campaigns has multiplied 5 times between 2009 and 2011. If you have one, provide patients with a link to your YouTube channel or a clickable screenshot with a “play” button.
- Or, if you’re active on your practice’s blog, attach some of the best posts to your email campaign to keep patients up-to-date with what’s going on at your office and to give them a reason to check back in the future.
In short, email marketing should be an extension of what you already do best: provide patients with high-quality, personalized care that can help improve their lives. While it is no easy task, creating a unique and compelling set of emails that targets patients’ individual needs will pay dividends in the future for branding your practice name as well as fostering patient loyalty and satisfaction.