It’s June, and the summer season is in full swing!
How’s your marketing program for the year going? Have you been seeing results? Is it hard to tell? Did you miss the opportunity to kick off some of the ideas you had at the beginning of the year?
Don’t worry, it’s not too late! Now is a great time to review your metrics and figure out what worked and what didn’t. You still have time to adjust your plan or get to work on some new ideas that will help you finish the year strong. Marketing isn’t a sprint — it’s a marathon. The seeds you plant in marketing may take several weeks or months to sprout. The key is make sure you are ready with your message at the right time for your patients.
Your community needs your service. Let them know that you’re ready to help.
Below are a few ideas to get you into the marketing swing of things and – ideally – propel your practice through the remainder of the year.
- Check your temperature. Take a look at what you’ve done over the past several months. What worked? Did you book patients off that direct mail piece? Did your OD referrals increase? Has your social participation created more interest in your offerings? Take a good look at what worked well and keep doing it! Take the stuff that didn’t work as well as you thought and give it a re-work. Ask your patients what got their attention and keep going with it.
- Get out there! It’s summertime! Community gatherings, local fairs, even a neighborhood get-together can be an opportunity to share more about your practice. Professional networking as well as simple, individual social events are great environments to have casual conversations about your offerings.
- Find a friend. Sponsorship opportunities are available in every community. Whether you’re the official ophthalmology practice of the local AAA baseball team or a sponsor of the high school chess team, there is always a niche to explore. Find a niche that you feel good about and build a relationship.
- Start fresh. A good, thorough market study is a great foundational element that every practice can benefit from. Whether you choose to do a market study on your own or hire the work out, understanding the dynamics in your region can help you go a long way to find that niche and focus that marketing. Looking inward and doing a SWOT analysis on your practice is a helpful exercise as well.
- Show that you’re grateful. Express your thankfulness to your former patients. Send your network a thank you for their patronage and let them know about all the new things happening at your practice. Patient referrals are typically the best source of new business for most practices.
Don’t forget that marketing your practice takes time. The hard work that you put in to promote your practice should pay off over time. Your patience and persistence will be rewarded.