4 Tips to Increase Patient Acquisition and Hit Growth Goals

April 25, 2024 0 Comments

Patient acquisition is vital to your healthcare organization’s growth. However, locating and attracting new customers within this competitive landscape can pose further challenges such as patient satisfaction rates and retention.

To draw patients out of the market and establish enduring relationships with them, you’ll need a foolproof marketing strategy that sets your organization apart. With effective engagement strategies, you’ll be able to improve patient outreach—and, as a result, patient outcomes.

Let’s explore key tips to increase your patient acquisition rate.

Map the patient journey

The care management software you use should help your care team stratify patients around risk factors and gaps in care, then begin outreach to those who need intervention. As healthcare leaders gain an inside look into the patient experience through this data, they can identify potential areas to improve overall patient satisfaction rates.

Patient journey mapping helps healthcare leaders understand how patients interact with their providers by outlining each communication touchpoint. Analyze the patient journey by collecting data on the following touchpoints:

  • Pre-visit awareness: A patient determines that their symptoms merit treatment through an online ad, third-party listing, or call center.
  • Initial contact: The patient contacts your healthcare system online or in person.
  • Care: The patient is assessed by the medical faculty.
  • Treatment: The healthcare system prescribes treatment and follow-up instructions.
  • Post-visit behavioral and lifestyle adjustment: The patient follows treatment instructions and makes lifestyle adjustments to facilitate healing and well-being.
  • Ongoing care and proactive health: The patient continues to manage their care following the initial clinical visit while adhering to the necessary steps to maintain good health.

By mapping a patient’s journey, your team can determine which interactions provide acquisition opportunities, such as the pre-visit awareness stage. Pair these insights with relevant healthcare data to improve the patient experience at each touchpoint. For example, you might craft tailored communication strategies that engage patients at key touchpoints with targeted treatment plans.

Monitor your reputation

Reviews matter, especially when it comes to patient acquisition. 72% of patients look to online reviews before booking with a new doctor and prefer providers with four out of five-star ratings or higher. Therefore, maximizing your online review potential is an absolute must.

Here’s how you can do it:

  • Solicit feedback. Most patients will not provide a review unless given a significant reason to do so, such as an exceptionally favorable or poor experience. To get more responses, proactively solicit reviews through a review or rating site that sends out follow-up emails, QR codes, and individual text messages. You can then use your platform to direct patients to review your organization on platforms like Google or Facebook.
  • Monitor and analyze reviews. Dedicate time for review monitoring and organize the feedback to note similar reviews. Identify any problem areas your team should address. Remember to contextualize reviews by considering the complexity of the patient’s condition and any challenges associated with their treatment.
  • Respond to negative feedback. If a consumer posts negative feedback, respond with an apology, specific instructions for how you’re working to resolve the issue, and a request for a second chance. Responding to negative reviews is critical for reputation management and can provide a chance for patients to update their reviews due to your quick and thoughtful response.

While it’s never ideal to receive negative reviews, you can use them to learn from past mistakes. For example, you might identify a pattern of complaints among patients with similar health concerns. Using patient risk profiles, you can adjust your approach with future patients who have that concern to proactively provide a more positive experience.

In addition to improving risk scores, Arcadia notes that risk adjustment analytics empower providers to deliver a more comprehensive view of population health by gaining a full understanding of their performance and opportunities. In the end, providers may receive increased reimbursement from payers, which can go directly to supporting better patient care.

Optimize for SEO

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a tool that can help you rank at the top of search engine results pages for industry-specific queries like “top family doctors,” “local general surgeons,” or “pediatric neurologists.”

The goal of every SEO strategy is to generate more qualified leads for your website which translates to more patients, positive reputation building, and higher sales. Additionally, optimizing for SEO can give your healthcare system a competitive edge by staying top of mind within the medical industry and with patients.

Depending on your distinct practice, you’ll need to create a holistic SEO strategy that involves:

  • An accessible website: NXunite’s guide to healthcare websites suggests choosing a healthcare-specific CMS (content management system) and incorporating your branding to add credibility to your site. Next, optimize your website for aspects like navigation, page speed, and user-friendly web design. Keeping your site architecture simple and straightforward will help both Google and your customers find your site more easily.
  • Insightful, keyword-targeted content: Perform keyword research to get an idea of what your audience searches for. From there, you can create content that aligns with your audience’s interests and provides helpful information. For example, you could create SEO-targeted website content answering questions related to a patient-specific illness with titles like “Type 2 Diabetes: 10 Ways to Manage Your Lifestyle” or “Determining Your Diabetic Type: 5 Distinguishing Symptoms.”
  • Tracking KPIs: Use KPIs like qualified leads, customer acquisition cost, conversion rate, bounce rate, organic traffic, and dwell time to monitor your site’s performance. Keeping track of these KPIs will help you allocate your resources and create achievable marketing goals.

SEO results are not immediate and are largely impacted by your content’s relevancy and comprehensiveness. That’s why many healthcare organizations decide to build a robust blog roll or video series to incorporate useful content and increase their search visibility. Topics like wellness advice, industry news, and explainer videos make for exceptional content.

Invest in digital marketing

It’s no mystery that we live in a digital-first world, making this form of marketing a nonnegotiable for patient acquisition. Invest in digital marketing using the following channels and strategies:

  • Your website: Attract more patients with mobile responsive, organized, and branded website architecture. An enhanced user experience will make potential patients more likely to explore your website and complete its forms, including appointment scheduling forms and feedback surveys.
  • Email newsletters: With the right techniques, email can serve as a recruitment tool full of the latest information about your services, relevant health tips, and new technologies.
  • Content marketing: Produce high-quality content surrounding relevant and impactful topics such as health conditions and preventive care. Engage your audience through compelling images, videos, and infographics to make your educational content enticing.

A robust digital marketing strategy takes time and expertise to employ. That’s why many healthcare organizations outsource their marketing to dedicated digital marketing agencies to drive better results.

Partnering with a digital marketing agency can streamline your patient outreach process to bring in new healthcare consumers and guide them through the healthcare journey. Research prospective agencies and look into their previous campaigns. Then, assess your budget and patient acquisition goals to discover which agency may be the right fit for your organization.