Healthcare: Use Text Messaging to Grow Your Practice
Text messaging has become one of the most popular modes of communication, and it’s not just for teenagers or young people who have grown up in the information age. Texting has also become an effective marketing tool for businesses across myriad industries.
Step up your PT marketing plan with text messaging, and take advantage of one of the simplest ways to keep in touch with clients and prospects. When you reach out to clients on their digital devices, you increase the likelihood of getting a response, growing your practice one message at a time. Read on to learn how to use texting to your advantage.
Keep it Simple
Texting is convenient because people today typically keep their phones or devices within arm’s reach. You can maximize your texting outreach campaign by keeping your messages short and sweet.
Most people react to text messages in the same way they interact on social media—long messages are generally considered a turnoff. Wordy messages coming from an unknown number are likely to go unread and be deleted. To use texting successfully, let them know who you are and get right to the heart of their needs with just a few sentences.
A down-to-earth message can go a long way in making text recipients feel like you understand them. Start with a short greeting that includes your practice name. If you’re reminding them of an upcoming appointment, be sure to tell them you look forward to seeing them. To promote a special deal, or a new product or service, phase your message as an invitation to take advantage of a great opportunity.
Incorporate Healthcare SEO
Getting more real-time engagement with your clients and prospects is not the only advantage of texting. You may also get a bump in your overall search engine optimization (SEO). As recipients read your messages and click on the embedded links, it will drive more traffic to your website and other online assets.
Be sure to include links to your articles, landing pages, and website, to entice readers to engage with your content. The more visitors you have, the more relevant your practice will appear when it comes to Google ranking.
Use a Texting Schedule
One message is not enough to nudge your recipients into action. You need to court them over time, with the right messaging at the right times. The best way to do this is to create a texting schedule. Sending messages too often might annoy some people, and sending them too infrequently may cause them to forget about you.
Spread out your text messages no more than seven days apart. If you have an upcoming event or appointment, you can temporarily increase the frequency of texting until your last reminder prior to the event.
Time Your Messages Well
The last thing people want is a marketing call or message during dinner, late at night, or early in the morning when they’re getting geared up for work. The best times to send text messages are generally between noon and 3:00 pm. Weekend afternoons are also considered especially good times, since most people are free then, and more likely to read and respond to your messages.
HIPAA: Protect Client Data No Matter What
Whenever you share your client’s data over an electronic medium, you need to maintain compliance with HIPAA standards. Texting is no different. Make your clients aware that you are doing everything you can to guard their protected health information, and be sure to include automated consent forms before releasing their health info via text.
Put Texting on Autopilot
As a business owner, you understand the power of automation and the importance of streamlining your activities. For texting, use services like Front.com that let you schedule and send text messages using your email. Automated texting makes things easy for your employees who are already online all day to send and respond to text messages without switching devices.
Front.com will keep a record of all text conversations for you, and store them all in one place for easy access. That way, if a client communicates by text with different employees, your staff can pull up their records to get all the info they need.
Get Ready to Engage
Texting shows recipients that you are available to listen to them and address their questions and problems — so long as you are responsive. Think about delegating the task of replying to texts to a trusted staff member, so clients’ messages get a response as soon as they come in.
Most people use texting to quickly volley questions and answers between parties, so provide your designated texter with a cheat sheet of quick responses. When a client requires a more in-depth response, that’s the perfect time to invite them into your practice for a consultation.
Scripts Make Things Easier
Scripts are a great tool for automation that helps you streamline text messaging with your clients and prospects. Maintain a list of common answers to frequent questions that your staff can refer to for quick responses. Provide cheat sheets or handy cue cards to make it easy for your staff to respond within the ideal 10–15-minute window.
Analyze Your Results
Use analytics tools like PatientPop to keep track of your campaigns, and to identify which links are generating the most clicks. With this information, you can see which promotions, times of day, or messages are most appealing to recipients.
Contact the Pros for Help
As patients’ preferred modes of communicating evolve, your physical therapy marketing strategy should be flexible enough to keep pace. The pros at Clever Solution are web development experts who can help you cultivate a stellar text marketing strategy that helps you grow your practice.