We spend a lot of our free time and professional time checking our emails, social media, and generally spending time on our computers. However, almost every patient pays attention to a personalized message that isn't necessarily through digital outreach.
That's why we want to discuss methods that will delight your new patients and set yourself apart from other practices. No matter how reliant we become on our digital devices, none of us will lose the sense of joy we feel when receiving a handwritten note.
Keep reading to see other small ways to make patients feel special.
How to Delight Your Patients
In marketing terms, the "delight" stage is where you build relationships with patients, promote loyalty, and show them that you appreciate their support of your services and business.
Although we encourage that every practice implement digital patient recall for appointment reminders, that shouldn't replace the handwritten note for special occasions. For first-time and long-time patients, writing a note of appreciation could be what sets you apart from other eyecare practices. If you or anyone on your team takes a special trip somewhere, you could send postcards to some of your patients. You can even send birthday cards. It's a small act that can have a lasting effect.
Most patients have to take time out of their work day or personal schedule for their eye exam. For morning patients, providing a few baked goods, tea, and coffee can show them that you understand they are busy and you appreciate them making the time for their eye health. It will also do wonders for their comfort levels, especially if they are the smallest bit nervous for their appointment.
Buzzfeed quizzes and personality tests are proof that people love answering questions about themselves. Also, finding out more information about your patients' hobbies and interests can help you tailor your messaging and brand in the long-term. Add a fun question to your intake forms to get to know your patients like, "What sport do you watch?" or "What's your favorite genre of movies?"
Visualize the data in a pie chart, word cloud, or any type of graph. Then, you can display this framed visualization in your practice. The best part is that you can change the question every quarter to keep it fresh and interesting.
Show Your Values
Show your patients what you value and they'll feel more connected to your practice (if they share the same values, of course). Collect cans, non-perishable goods, clothing, and other donation items for local charities in your practice. Publicize your commitment to eco-conscious materials and practices. If you have a personal story or connection to any charities or veteran groups, talk about them in your marketing materials and social shares. Not only does this establish a human connection, but it also brings publicity to smaller charities that you support.
For more marketing insight, check out our OD Handbook: Small Business, Big Profits below.