Retaining and Growing Your Patient Base: Digital Marketing Tips for Healthcare Brands

Digital marketing can be an impressive patient acquisition driver. But the right healthcare digital marketing strategy can also be applied to patient retention. By implementing key techniques and maintaining good patient relationships, health companies and providers can ensure continuous care, foster active patient engagement, and cultivate evangelism that can help grow their brand.

This blog is the last in our series about using digital marketing to bolster your patient acquisition methods. Previously, we have written about reaching patients in the research phase and getting your message to patients who are actively seeking care. In this blog post, we’ll discuss retaining and growing your patient base. The tips are designed to help health brands achieve the following objectives:

Retention – Ensuring Ongoing Care

After providing initial care, it’s crucial to sustain support for patients who require ongoing treatment or lifestyle adjustments. Personalized experiences tailored to their needs can be created through strategies like timely reminders for updating paperwork, insurance data, or patient information. By minimizing patient churn, brands with subscription-based treatment models can maintain a devoted patient base.

Engagement with Inactive Patients

Patients who haven’t engaged with your brand for a while are categorized as “inactive.” To reignite their interest and commitment to their healthcare journey, it’s crucial to share new promotions, encourage exploration of new features, and provide valuable educational content. Inspiring patients to reconnect with your brand can reestablish their trust and dedication.

Leveraging Cross-Selling

Cross-selling enhances care quality for patients and boosts their lifetime value and loyalty to your brand. Encouraging patients to explore and avail additional products or services continually improves resources and empowers them in managing their health. This approach benefits both patients and the brand.

By implementing these tips, healthcare brands can optimize their digital presence, foster enduring patient relationships, and drive substantial growth in today’s competitive landscape.

Digital Marketing for Patient Retention

Search Engine Marketing / Programmatic Advertising

Because of restrictive retargeting policies regarding personal health and wellness, programmatic campaigns will have greater reach than paid search when it comes to reaching patients who haven’t engaged with your brand recently. Strategic segmentation best positions services and products for cross-selling to the patients most likely to convert.

Example: an online doctor consultation provider can target past customers with streaming audio, display, or connected TV messaging about non-urgent primary care services.

Social Media Marketing:

Retarget existing in-market audiences by sharing new feature rollouts or cross-selling additional products. Paid social ads that emulate user-generated content and include testimonials about new service features or products can be particularly effective.

Example: an online prescription dermatology brand expanding their service offerings can target current or perspective followers with user-generated content from customers expressing excitement for the new offerings.

Email/SMS/App Push Notifications

In addition to traditional marketing channels like SEM, social media, and programmatic advertising, healthcare brands should leverage email and SMS marketing. These channels provide a direct and personalized way to communicate with patients, ensuring ongoing engagement and fostering a strong patient-brand relationship.

Utilize evergreen engagement strategies by segmenting patients based on their engagement history or recent actions. Send push notifications to encourage patients to re-engage. Evergreen campaigns using this tactic can significantly reduce churn and maintain ongoing care. For instance, you can use app notifications, SMS, or email to re-engage with customers who haven’t made a purchase in 60+ days.

Fostering Evangelism to Grow Your Patient Base  

Satisfied patients are the most influential advocates for your brand. The goal is to inspire patients to honestly endorse your brand to others by providing excellent care and resources.

When your product or service genuinely improves their quality of life, patients are bound to sing your praises. These endorsements can manifest as online reviews, ratings, and app reviews on digital platforms.

It is crucial to adhere to HIPAA regulations and platform privacy policies when seeking patient feedback. Encouraging app reviews that align with industry standards can yield even greater benefits. By encouraging brand evangelists and effectively leveraging digital platforms, healthcare companies can amplify positive word-of-mouth and fortify their reputation.

Leveraging Review Aggregation

Patient reviews play a crucial role in enhancing your brand’s reputation as they serve as a powerful form of advocacy. To maximize the impact, it is essential to provide an exceptional patient experience that is worth sharing. To stay informed about what your patients are saying, consider utilizing a review aggregator.

Example: ADM partners with Yotpo, a leading review aggregation service, to empower stronger patient engagement and boost confidence on behalf of our clients.

Please note that if your brand’s offering falls under Google’s personalized advertising policy, acquiring product or provider reviews might be restricted due to sensitive interest categories, such as health-related hardships.

Encouraging App Reviews

To establish social proof of your services with fewer restrictions compared to Google, it is recommended to encourage patients to review your offering on any app associated with your brand. Deploy email and SMS prompts to kindly request patients to share their experience with your app.

Expertise Through the Whole Patient Funnel

Digital marketing can play a crucial role in retaining and growing your patient base. By following these suggestions, healthcare brands can maximize their online presence, cultivate long-lasting patient connections, and achieve significant growth in today’s competitive industry. For any questions you may have about healthcare marketing, don’t hesitate to contact the ADM team—and to learn more about this topic, be sure to check out the eBook linked below.