Patient retention: How to keep more patients happy and referring new patients

Whether you’re a physical therapist or medical doctor, the happiness of your patients should always be your priority. In addition to sending them on their way after successful treatment, it’s important to focus on your relationship with them in the future. That’s what patient retention marketing strategies are all about. 

Retention strategies through digital marketing can make sure that you’re the first place a patient thinks of when they need help by keeping you in mind between visits. Not only does patient retention lead to consistent income, but it also boosts the possibility of being referred new patients by those who know and trust you. 

We’ll talk about what factors contribute to patient retention and referrals. Then we’ll discuss a few patient retention marketing strategies worth considering.

Factors for patient retention that you should keep in mind for marketing strategies

The thing about healthcare is that people don’t often go to a doctor’s office or physical therapy clinic until they have a problem. That’s why you want to ensure that when those problems arise, they keep returning back to you, no matter how much time has passed between appointments. Between 60% and 70% of your current patients will continue to return to your practice in the future.

Here are some contributing factors to patient retention and referrals. You can keep them in mind while designing your digital marketing strategy:

  • A strong patient-provider relationship.
  • Personalized patient experiences.
  • Feedback integration. 
  • Flexible and optimized scheduling.

Patient retention strategies to keep in mind

It’s easy to constantly focus on patient acquisition. But it’s up to five times cheaper to retain a current patient than attract a new one. If you’re trying to find new ways to retain your current patients, there are many patient retention marketing strategies that are worth incorporating into your medical or physical therapy practice. 

These marketing strategies bolster your current patient-provider relationships. They’re also reasons why your retained patients will refer you to others.

Here are a few marketing strategies to consider for patient retention:

  • Optimize appointment scheduling — Very few things make a patient more upset than being unable to schedule an appointment quickly or for the time frame they’re available. Optimizing and streamlining your scheduling process can go a long way. Using online appointment management systems, such as through your website or a mobile app, will not only help your patients book appointments, but they can also send out reminders as the appointment approaches to reduce the risk of no-shows.
  • Conduct post-visit surveys — If a patient is unhappy with your services, it’s not uncommon for them to never return without letting you know what the problem was. Encourage feedback after an appointment through automated post-visit survey emails. That way you can see where your strengths are and where you need to improve. It increases patient retention because they will know how much you value their opinion. Thank them after the survey is completed, regardless of what they say.
  • Send automated holiday emails — Patient retention is all about making sure your patient knows that they’re still important to you, even after they leave your clinic. That’s why sending them a bit of positivity can improve the provider-patient relationship. You can send automated celebratory e-cards for birthdays and holidays. It’s a personalized gesture that will keep you in their mind.
  • Practice social listening — One of the most important avenues of digital marketing is social media. Social listening refers to paying attention to the engagement on your social media posts and determining how you can analyze it to understand how you’re viewed by your patients or followers. For instance, a post about a particular service that garners a lot of comments and likes shows how that service is a selling point that you can capitalize on in future marketing campaigns. 
  • Improve brand reputation — How your brand is perceived online can influence current and prospective patients. If a current patient is seeing an avalanche of bad reviews that aren’t being addressed, they may try a new provider. They also won’t refer you to others as they don’t want to be associated with a poor reputation. By monitoring your online feedback, responding to reviews and offering solutions for grievances, you can increase service recovery while showing people how you’re working to provide the best care. 

Want to retain existing patients while bringing new visitors to your website? BURG+CO. can help

Increasing traffic to your website plays a role in increasing conversions and leading to new clients. However, it’s difficult to attract visitors to your site when you don’t know what to do. Fortunately, this is what we specialize in at BURG+CO.

Our team has years of experience in helping businesses improve their digital presence to attract new leads and retain existing ones. If you’re looking to perform better in search engine results and attract more visitors to your site, we’re ready to talk to you to see how we can help. Contact our team today for more information about digital marketing or to schedule a complimentary consultation.

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