Is it bad to talk about patients like numbers?
If I were you, I wouldn’t call patients “customers.” But if you run a clinic, you’re not just a healer.
You’re also a businessperson.
Nowadays, it’s commonplace to have a strong email presence among customers (or patients) as part of a strong business plan.
E-commerce was the pioneer of this.
I’m sure you’ve had an email in your inbox at some point saying, “You’ve got items in your cart.”
You usually delete that email when it comes to your inbox, right? But the word “usually” is unusually powerful here.
Even though only about 20% of marketing emails get opened, think twice before letting that deter you from email marketing.
The low performers (bottom 20%) of businesses that use email marketing get as much as a $5 ROI.
And if low performers bore you, how’s a $42 average ROI for email marketing?
You’d be crazy to not get a little googly-eyed seeing those numbers.
How does this work for your clinic or practice?
1. Just email your patients. Just… do it.
When you build a relationship with patients, they come back.
And when you bring patients back, you don’t need to work as hard to find new ones.
When appropriate, what are you doing to keep your patients from disappearing forever?
A famous statistic from a Harvard study sent countless businesspeople into a frenzy when it was released: a 5% increase in customer retention led to a 25%-95% increase in profitability.
If you can staunch your patient churn, patients get the care they need and your profitability will thank you.
If you don’t know what your practice churn rate (or attrition rate) is for your practice, I’d pause right now and figure it out.
If you’re a typical dentist or chiropractor, it’s normal if 20% of your monthly patients never come back.
Physical therapy clinics normally see 20% of patients disappear after the third visit.
How much you’re not making
Let’s say you’re a dentist, and you create an email campaign to get patients back in after 6 months for their check-ups.
At year’s end, you find that your churn rate has dropped from 20% to 15%. For a practice that sees 2000 patients a year, that means you lost 300 patients instead of 400.
Congrats! You got 100 patients back in the door this year – and none of those are even new patients.
Since the average dental patient spends about $600, that could mean $60,000 in added revenue.
If you’re only retaining (and not acquiring) 100 extra patients a year, your overhead costs likely aren’t going to rocket up.
That means you have a better profit margin on your newfound $60,000.
This is where you need to do the math. You tell me how much more that means you get to take home after putting in 50+ hours every week at your practice.
But didn’t I just spend money?
The goal here is results, so make sure you’re getting quality email writing for your money.
You can write your patient emails yourself, but remember that it takes time to write persuasive and personal material.
Now, if you’re looking to take work off your hands, it can cost anywhere from $100-$500 per month to have a copywriter or agency produce follow-up patient emails.
If you’re spending $250/month on this type of email, you’re looking at $3000 a year.
Can you see how that ROI we talked about could be real for you?
If you only spent $3000 on this one method to get $60,000 in added revenue, you’re looking at a 1:20 ROI… and that’s if you only increase patient retention by 5%. I’ll let you do your own math if you increased retention by 10%.
That fits right in with the range of profitability of email campaigning. Can you think of anything else you can get a 1:20 return on investment this year?
And after your costs, can you see how that $60,000 might increase your profit by 25%-95%?
A more comfortable profit margin can help you focus less on money and more on patients.
2. Use the right content.
You might not even recognize your practice after spending as little as a year web marketing with email.
And when your retention strategy is great, you’ll be ready for a great growth strategy.
The industry is always changing, so make sure to stay tuned for the latest in building your online presence.
- Email marketing reduces patient attrition rates by building relationships out of the office
- Email marketing averages a $42 ROI for every $1 spent, the highest ROI of any marketing type
- A 5% increase in customer retention leads to a 25%-95% in profitability
- In the example given, a $3000 investment in email marketing yielded $60,000 in added revenue