Effective marketing achieves two goals: attracting new customers and retaining new ones. Many businesses work their way toward the first goal by raising brand awareness through traditional and digital advertising channels. But, not all put the same level of effort on developing brand loyalty, which is imperative for reaching the second goal. Those businesses may not realize that loyal customers are more than customers, but can also serve as brand advocates who increase profits from not only patronage, but referrals.
The eye care industry is no exception. According to Michael Rothschild, OD, in his article on Optometry Times, the relationship between patient loyalty and referrals is a strong one. The idea is that satisfied patients may share their positive experiences with not only with their family and friends, but also to the public by posting their feedback on blogs, social media pages, or review sites. Of course, the question is, do people pay attention to these? The answer is yes.
“There are endless opportunities to research and learn about choices available,” Rothschild writes. “But people still want a recommendation from someone who has been there.”
Potential patients can “Google” for reviews before making a decision on whether or not to go to a particular office, making past patients’ opinion on services more important than ever. But if medical offices want to leave an impact, giving quality service to patients isn’t enough — a personal touch to deliver customized service is necessary.
To accomplish this, something as simple as remembering details can make a difference in patient loyalty and referrals. If a patient mentions they’ll be going on a vacation, health care providers can ask them how the trip went after they come back for a follow-up visit. This little act shows that you listen to what they said and remembered them among all other patients, making them feel special and ultimately comfortable.
Another thing that can make patients loyal to a particular office is to ensure their comfort. optomap® helps with that by being a fast, easy, and comfortable part of a comprehensive eye exam. optomap may also help with your patient acquisition and retention by providing the ability to interact and educate your patients. Patients can “see” their retina on your computer with the interactive 3D wrap tool, and as a doctor, you can do year over year comparisons to track the health of a patient’s retina.
Happy and comfortable patients make loyal patients. For more information on how you can use optomap to help ensure patient loyalty, contact us.