Every year on July 20th, Joe Thielemann volunteers at Northside Hospital in honor of his late father,…
Marketing Your Medical Practice Series (2 of 4)
Last month, we looked at a brief overview of the entire patient’s experience with your practice (“customer experience” in the business world). This month, we are going to take a hyper look at “Ease of Contact”.
Ease of Contact
Working inside your practice day in and day out makes it seem reasonable to assume that it is easy to find and contact you. Your phone rings constantly, patients, vendors and reps walk in and out your doors all day long. Sure, those people may already know how to find and contact you, but what about the people who haven’t met yet – your soon-to-be patient, vendor or rep?
I invite you to step outside of your world for a moment and think of things from a stranger’s perspective.
When your stranger had the first inkling of an idea (yes, “inkling” is a real word! www.dictionary.com/inkling), was it easy to find out about you?
Wherever they happened to look for you, not only were you listed, but was the description or name of your practice clear and obvious?
Remember, obvious inside the medical community, is not necessarily obvious to the rest of the world you are treating. Make sure your description uses familiar language that strangers can relate to. For example, if you are a podiatrist, many people confuse that specialty with pediatrics. Make sure you describe your practice as one that cares for treatment and care of the foot, ankle and lower extremities. And just for good cause, a good pediatrics office will make sure their brand is recognized as one that cares for infants, children and adolescents (and not the foot).
Was the information to contact your office easily obtainable and correct?
It may sound trite, but if you have recently moved, changed phone numbers or re-branded, the details of everywhere your contact information is located can be a hassle to update.
Even if those events haven’t occurred in recent months, it is quite easy to transpose a number, which will send your callers on a wild goose chase or into your competitor’s office.
Was it easy for the patient to contact your office and complete their objective on the first call? (ie: make an appointment or ask a question)
It should be quite simple for your caller to reach a person on the very first call and complete their original request.
If a message has to be left (due to lunch or after-hours), it needs to be returned promptly. Most of the business world perceives promptly as within the first couple of hours of the next open shift, and most certainly within 4 business hours.
If your website is used as part of the contact or paperwork process, is all the information correct and up to date?
Again, make sure that all your public profile information is accurate; all the links on your website are logical and operate as intended. Website software changes constantly and automatic or unmonitored updates break things. Have a staff member poke around the website every now and then, rather than waiting for a caller to bring it to your attention.
When you make it as simple as possible for somebody to reach out to you for the first time demonstrates to your caller that you are very interested in talking to them and helping them with their perceived need.
READ THE NEXT POST: “A Fresh Look at Curb Appeal and the Productive Use of the Waiting Room”
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PCMA Members can contact Laurean Callander directly for a phone consult on any tactic or idea presented in this editorial. email@example.com
Red Palm marketing is owned by Pinellas Creative Marketing, LLC (PCM). PCM is headquartered in Seminole, Florida. A full service marketing and online advertising agency that offers sustainable marketing programs to businesses positioned for growth. PCM is privately held and owned. Mailing Address: PO Box 395, Largo, FL 33779 727-230-8880 www.redpalmmarketing.com