Newsletters are a convenient way to communicate with your patients. Not only are newsletters a great way to promote specials, sales, and new procedures or treatments that your practice is offering; they can also help your practice with retention, marketing, and personalizing your office brand and patient-based messaging.
Patient newsletters have 3 main goals:
- To maintain relationships with existing patients, so they see you value them and provide them valuable information for their care.
- To attract new patients and introduce them to your service. Show them how you care about your existing patients and new patients coming on board.
- To upsell and cross-sell to both your prospects and patients:
- like thanking / recognizing those patients who gave referrals or who have been with your practice for so many years
- quality advertisements on your newsletter that promote new products or services with solid calls to action.
- use “forward to a friend” features available with most email marketing technology
Retention is vital to the success of any practice. It’s important to review the results of your newsletters on a regular basis. Newsletter open rates are a key metric to monitor. Noting the subject lines of newsletters with high open rates can help you determine what type of subject line catches your patients’ attention. Patient newsletters should have built-in reporting to understand how many patients read your e-newsletter, what key links they clicked and if they passed it along through their social media networks. But keep in mind that what might work for one group of your patients may not work for another! Luckily, we can help you understand the analytics that measure these behaviors and together we can manage and adapt your strategies.
There are several ways to personalize your newsletters to ensure you send the right message, to the right person, at the right time.
- Insert the name of a patient into the newsletter to provide a personalized experience—if their name is on it, they’re more likely to click “Open”!
- Send information that is relevant to your patients. For example, if you have patients who have been diagnosed with a specific condition, they need specialized educational information that applies to their diagnosis. Newsletters are one more educational touchpoint to help your patients understand how invested you are in their health.
- You can add hyperlinks to text, images, and buttons to direct your patients to a call-to-action, such as scheduling an appointment or referring their friends and family to your practice.
- Encourage patients to share special achievements and milestones and showcase their stories in quarterly newsletters. This is a great way to provide patients with updates to patient referral programs, contests and office news, as well as get them involved in the life and face of the practice.
Every piece of communication represents your practice. Each newsletter should be designed with consistent colors and your brand in mind. Newsletters should be written in your “office voice,” meaning it should follow the tone and communication style that represents your office. For example, a geriatrics practice probably communicates with their patients differently than a pediatric office. It’s important to remember how your patients perceive you when communicating with them face-to-face; newsletters are no different.
Here’s an awesome list of “do’s” from Venngage, an infographic design site, to kickstart your inspiration for creating attention-grabbing newsletters. These quick tips will help you get the most out of newsletters, but these ideas only scratch the surface.
Now that we’ve got you started, give us a call to discuss how to implement patient newsletters at your practice.