Whether you attribute the increase to an aging population, to Obamacare or something else, there’s no denying the growing demand for health care services in the United States. New clinics, practitioners and competitors are springing up everywhere. In fact, if you include alternative health care options in your competition analysis (and you should!), there’s never been a noisier time in healthcare marketing.
All the more reason to turn to proven, tactile, personal forms of marketing, like direct mail. Here’s what you need to know about why direct mail marketing is a perfect fit for the healthcare industry – and how you can capitalize on it.
Create Measurable Campaigns
One of the best things about direct mail is that it’s so easily measurable. When you are marketing your healthcare services in a direct mail campaign, make sure you take advantage of that.
Instead of simply sending out a postcard reminder to your existing patients, or a general offer, include a percentage-off coupon. Since you will know how many direct mail pieces you send out, you can easily gauge your success by calculating how often they have been used.
Use A/B Testing
A/B testing in direct marketing refers to the practice of sending out two different campaigns and then tracking the success of both. If you want to use this type of campaign, the process is simple:
- Decide what type of campaign you want to use. Do you plan to use an every-door campaign for one or more neighborhoods? Do you mean to send mail to your own list, or will you purchase or rent one?
- Decide how you want to split your direct mail postcards or pieces. By area? Alphabetically? It depends how your list is set up and how and what you want to measure.
- Create two different offers. They don’t have to be vastly different to be measurable. For instance, you could offer one group a fixed amount-off coupon while the other gets a percentage, or a free exam to one group and a discount to the other.
- Send out your campaign and then measure which version gets the better response.
Make It Personal
One of the reasons direct mail marketing is such a perfect match for the healthcare industry is that both direct mail and health care are highly personal. Healthcare professionals deal with their patients in the most personal way possible, and direct mail lends itself to the same approach. It’s so much more personal than email and so much harder to ignore. Use that in your direct mail campaigns.
Send out addressed mail to your list, if you have one, or share personal success stories (with patient permission) about how your treatment has improved their lives. Invite patients to contact you with their concerns, and create offers on treatments and programs they want and need.
Reach Out to Patients Where They Live
The simple fact is that direct mail campaigns have a much higher open rate, conversion rate and ROI than email marketing. As long as you’re offering customers a great deal, sending out postcards, coupons or even letters can and will increase the bottom line for your health care business. After all, this line of work demands a personal touch.