Keeping up-to-date with new marketing opportunities and constantly adjusting your product to the market are fundamental competitive strategies. And even if your current patient volume is okay, you can’t keep your services without a planned medical marketing strategy to keep your healthcare brand at the forefront of people’s minds.
When COVID-19 began to spread through the world this year, healthcare practices everywhere had to quickly change from in-office appointments to Telehealth as their primary method of attending to patients. More and more Americans were finding themselves staring into a camera and talking to their provider through their internet connection. Some speech-language pathologists (SLPs), for example, might have thought that this shift and dramatic change was temporary. However, it is clear now that Telehealth is here to stay.
Telehealth market, which was worth $45 billion in 2019, is predicted to grow 19.3% from 2020-2026, according to Global Market Insights. With the popularity of remote healthcare come new challenges and opportunities. So, promoting your telehealth service as a SLP becomes more important if you’ve decided to offer online sessions. First, your patients won’t know they can see you via telepractice unless you let them know this service is now available. Second, you also need to reach new prospective clients. Below are some of the best marketing strategies for telehealth to engage with new telehealth leads.
1. Have a strong website
Include messages and benefits of your services and calls to action for visitors to connect with you. Many patients go directly to your website, so if you put a lot of information about your service, you can reach your current and potential patients to let them know about your telehealth practice. Help people understand what working with you looks like, because telehealth may be an unfamiliar concept. Include these details on your website in a simple process: a handout or a quick video of you explaining how appointments will be carried out. Remember to use blog posts to address the real problems or challenges people face rather than about your company.
2. Build a responsive website
Google cares about the user experience, so you must have a responsive website. A responsive website is one that automatically adjusts to the size of a screen. So the experience must be the same whether the site is accessed on a computer, tablet, phone, or any mobile device optimized for mobile users. In general, responsive sites work best for the mobile digital healthcare experience.
3. Notify your patients via email
If you have an email list and email platform, send a notification out to your patients about your telehealth service and direct them to your website’s new page explaining it. You may also consider contacting your clients directly, letting them know you are here for them at this time and now offering telehealth sessions.
4. Update your social media
Use your social media to post about your new telehealth service. Consider investing in ads on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or wherever your business is. This will help you to reach more of your audience and reach new people in your community that don’t know about your business. Consider using Facebook and Instagram Stories to reach more people. Google Search ads are also some of the most effective ways to generate patient volume because they get you in front of patients when they are looking for you.
5. Ask for reviews from patients
Patients only leave reviews when they are motivated to do so, or if they had an above-average experience (or a bad experience). Usually patients rate the quality of service they received. Send an email after the online session asking them about their experience. If it’s a positive review, put it in your website because it can potentially counteract any negative reviews left elsewhere online. And always remember: reputation management should be part of any marketing strategy. You shouldn’t get defensive about negative reviews, but review your processes (or equipment) and offer the best possible patient experience moving forward based on prior patient feedback.
Marketing for telehealth now is a step towards a future in which telehealth will play a larger role, mainly post COVID-19. So, it’s important to think beyond the coronavirus pandemic and create a great patient and provider experience.Telehealth may not be the best fit for every patient. Some clients may have specific needs that make them better fit for in-person treatment versus virtual sessions. And you must be prepared for it. Remember that confidence is one of the most important quality-care aspects of being a professional.
If you are interested in offering Telehealth services and you don’t know which platform to use, check out HiTalk. Our platform is a solution that combines technology with healthcare to make a difference in the lives of SLPs and patients. HiTalk provides resources that allow SLPs to work within the rules and regulations of general Telehealth services, including the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). Our platform meets all privacy requirements, including end-to-end data encryption.
We are here to serve and empower the professional SLP. The next step is up to you! Contact us!