The part of you that is a skilled and compassionate doctor feels fulfilled when you see a patient leave your practice fully healed, no longer in need of your services (for now). But as a medical practice owner, you still need a steady stream of new patients to help your business grow.
Rising health care costs and fierce competition can make it a challenge to get those new patients through your doors.
Having worked with many successful doctors and medical practice owners over the years, here’s what we’ve learned about medical practice growth.
Classic Word-of-Mouth Marketing
Directly ask your patients to refer others to your medical practice.
You especially want to ask those “good” patients, the ones who keep their appointments, pay their bills and arrive on-time. The good patients are likely to refer to you more people who are similar to them.
Another way to get those “good” patients and retain them?
Offer them a great experience. If you put a little thought into things like how patients are greeted upon arrival, what waiting room amenities you can offer and shortening wait times, then you’ll get more repeat customers and new patients referred.
Finally, you can always encourage some new patient referrals by rewarding those patients who refer new clients or patients to your practice. Incentivise referrals by offering a restaurant gift card, services voucher or coupon.
When a patient tells you that they really appreciated the quality of care they received at your clinic, tell them to share the review online for others to notice.
Keep Your Marketing Game Strong
People are still looking for doctors just like you but not in the ways that they used to.
They don’t call a number they see listed on television or in a directory. They don’t usually walk into the first clinic they see, either. Instead, people are using Google.
Your potential patients are online and typing specific words into the search engine hoping to find someone who will exactly suit their needs. That’s when your ad or piece of content needs to appear.
Online content marketing will help you get noticed and bring more patients into your practice. The right marketing techniques will make your clinic the first one that comes to people’s minds (and screens) when they think of your industry or area of specialty. Good marketing will build your potential patients’ trust, build your brand and make it an easy decision for them to schedule an appointment.
Build Great Relationships with Referring Practices
You have to do more than just send the occasional box of chocolates over to keep your referral partners happy.
Work to build trust and mutual benefit between your practice and others that can refer patients to you. Make the referral process as easy for them as possible so that you will be their first choice.
You can enhance the referral process by:
– Promoting clear communication with referring offices
– Prioritising the treatment of patients referred to you
– Drafting easy-to-fill referral forms for referring doctors to use
– Updating referral doctors as soon as possible on the status of their patients that you’ve seen
– Be readily available to answer questions that referring doctors might have
Keep an Eye on the Competition
Are there rival clinics in your area that seem to be doing better than you? Take a lesson from the champs.
Try to find out what’s making those practices thrive. Is it a killer marketing campaign? The latest technology? Special perks that enhance the patient experience? Flexible hours and scheduling?
Usually all it takes is a visit to your rivals’ websites. Scan through and see what things they claim to offer that you could copy.
Establish a Positive Image in Your Community
Get involved with volunteering opportunities both as an individual and as a team with your entire staff. Share in fundraisers and donate to important causes in your community.
Community involvement shows that your practice has strong values and keeps you connected with people in the area who need a healthcare provider they can trust. People will remember you as the doctor that cares and is truly striving to make a difference.
Ready to grow your medical practice? The team at Nitschke Nancarrow specialises in medical practice accounting and helping practices thrive.
Contact Nitschke Nancarrow, experts in all aspects of accounting for doctors – accounting, financial planning, investment and business. We operate in Adelaide, Sydney, Melbourne and throughout Australia. Managing partner Kym Nitschke is available for a free initial discussion about your situation. Call us on (08) 8379 9950 or send me an email.
– Kym Nitschke
The information contained on this web site is general in nature and does not take into account your personal situation. You should consider whether the information is appropriate to your needs, and where appropriate, seek professional advice from a financial adviser.
Taxation, legal and other matters referred to on this website are of a general nature only and are based on Nitschke Nancarrow’s interpretation of laws existing at the time and should not be relied upon in place of appropriate professional advice. Those laws may change from time to time.
Nitschke Nancarrow specialises in accounting, tax and financial advice for superannuation. Contact us now for a no obligations discussion about your needs.Tags: medical practice growth, medical practice management, medical practice marketing