Here is a good story (From KevinMD) about how one doctor was able to move his practice to a new city and re-build a profitable patient base:
How was he able to do it?
Pretty simple really. He, unlike a surprising majority of doctors out there, has a website and understands the power of the web, nurturing his ‘social presence’ and engaging with his patients who have taken the time to write a review. This is something that can be done in a short amount of time and can have a hugh impact on prospective patients searching the web for a doctor with your specialty.
Where are all the doctors at?
When we first got into the business of helping doctors master their revenue cycle and increase the profitability of their practice I was amazed by the vast number of doctors out there that do not have a web presence. The doctors that do might have a profile on Vitals or one of the many other doctor directories out there but very few of them are paying attention to the profiles and the reviews these site list. A simple ‘Thank You’ replying to a favorable review can have a lasting impact on how that patient feels about you that will pay dividends in the long run with return visits and referrals.
The New World
Like it or not the world is changing (Has changed?) and Social Media sites like Facebook and Twitter will continue to dominate the space. Creating accounts with these sites, adding a occasional update or link to a relevant article you found useful is a great way to start. Creating a website, updating a blog, and encouraging patients to become involved in their lifestyle & health can only help, because lets face it, they are going to to Google their symptoms before they show up to your office. This can be frustrating so why wouldn’t you want to steer the conversation? Then, once you build a small following, you can engage your patients directly through a HIPPA compliant patient portal or messaging system (We use AdvancedMD).
Go out and create a Facebook page and Twitter account for your practice. Don’t know how? I bet someone on your office staff does! You shouldn’t ignore the popularity of these sties, with over 500 million members, they have become powerful business tools that can help you drive revenue and, most importantly, patient care.