Growing your practice can be difficult. There are many methods you can choose to employ, from placing local advertisements to building a website. Many clinicians end up using multiple marketing tactics to attract new patients, but one thing every practice can and should do is dedicate time to increasing their patient referrals. This is an easy and inexpensive way to build practice awareness – and one that keeps on providing long after your initial investment.
Here are 3 simple ways to increase your patient referrals and get the patient base you want:
1. Get Social
Social media is an incredibly powerful and inexpensive way to promote your practice and increase your referrals. If you only have time to manage a single social media platform, go with Facebook – it’s easy to set up a page for your practice, and most office staff should be familiar enough with Facebook to put up daily posts for you.
To really leverage Facebook to start increasing patient referrals, make sure you tell anyone and everyone who comes into your office to like your page. Most importantly, identify your 10 best AND social-savvy patients (the ones who are your loudest digital cheerleaders!) and ask them to like your Facebook page. You may also ask them to recommend your practice page on their own pages, if you think they would be willing to. This will help extend your promotional reach beyond your current patients and allow you, and your cheerleaders, to bring in new patients.
2. Implement a New Technology
When people hear about a technology that shows promise for treating a difficult condition, they are likely to seek out someone who offers it. Get good results treating a handful of patients with the technology, and word is sure to spread.
A therapy laser is one example of a technology addition that can get you results and referrals – fast. Look for a laser with higher power ranges (15-25 watts) to give yourself the flexibility to treat more areas in less time. If your laser doesn’t get results, then it won’t bring in the referrals.
Tip: Take videos of satisfied patients to share on social media (with their permission of course).
3. Get Out in the Community
Since so much of the marketing we now do is digital, it is easy to forget about the power of personal, face-to-face marketing. Attending local events and interacting with niche clubs and organizations is another great way to get your name out into the community and into people’s conversations.
Are you looking to attract a specific group of patients – like athletes? Do some research and find relevant local clubs that would be willing to have you give a short lecture on a topic of interest to them. For instance, if there is a local running club, you could put together a short presentation about running injuries (and how your new technology can treat them!). When someone from the group needs to find a physician, you are a lot more likely to be considered when you have taken time to build a relationship with the group.
When you start fostering relationships with people, whether it’s through social media or local events, you are building a strong foundation for a referral network. When you add a new, effective technology on top of that base, you’re building a structure to support continued referrals. The goal should be to have your referrals building on themselves, so you can spend less time marketing and focus on doing what you do best – helping people get better and back to doing what they love!