For a lot of people, going to the doctors is viewed very similarly to the stereotypical view of going to the dentists.
Now add on top of this initial mindset, the idea of going to a private doctor that they have never used before from a specialism that they have never interacted with. Anxiety, fear, and apprehension can all be commonplace when looking to use someone new; these emotions can create barriers that may stop a potential patient from coming through your doors, or send them to someone else who has made more of an attempt to break them down.
Having a great reputation, as well as stellar reviews online are all well and good, until you are put up against someone with a similar reputation and credentials. At this point, the service that they are receiving and the outcomes of this service, in their mind, will be exactly the same. So what is then the differentiating factor that makes them choose you over your competitor?
Here is where your external communications become vastly important! They will then go and look at your website, your social media channels and anything else they can find about you on the internet. When they go on this search, if they are met with videos and images of you as well as any other mediums of content, where they can see who you are, your personality and what you’re about, they can start to picture what their experience will be like with you, feeling like they already know you before they even come in for their original consultation.
When they can imagine this experience, those barriers will start to crumble, their fear will begin to dissipate, and the decision making process becomes a whole lot more simple. It becomes especially simple if your competitor feels that their reputation, along with one staged photo and a bio on their private hospital’s website is enough to get patients through the doors.
Sounds like a fair amount of effort right?
It does to your competitors too, which is why there are so few private doctors taking advantage of the arbitrage that is basic communications strategies within the environment of Private Practice.
Now we’re not suggesting that you should become some social media whizz, or Britain’s next top video blogger (also known as vlogger, for those who don’t know), but when it comes down to it, if you have even 2 pictures of you on the internet for your potential clients to see, that is probably twice as many pictures than most of your competitors, and if you have 1 video, then you will likely have infinite times the amount of video content than most of your competitors. This will still make you more attractive to the potential patient, and will hopefully allow you to start to develop trust and a relationship far better than if you had next to nothing.
When it comes down to a cost/benefit analysis, you can get vast amounts or returns for very little effort… have a think about it, then start breaking down those barriers to entry!