When you greet a patient, do you call them by name? Do you treat patients as a group or as individuals? If you’re not personalizing your patient care you certainly should be, and you need to use that same level of personalization in your content, too.
While emails with generic titles have an open rate of 11.4 percent, personalized emails have an open rate of 17.6 percent. The mere act of adding a patient’s name makes them 5 percent more likely to pay attention, giving you that much more opportunity to convey important information and nurture that practice-patient connection.
In this blog post we will cover:
- Gathering information
- Segmenting your audience
- The content creation process
Here's how to use personalized content to increase patient satisfaction and drive business:
Getting Data Straight From the Source
The first step towards more personalized plastic surgery patient content is getting to know your patients. There are certain privacy restrictions you’ll want to respect, of course, but you can cover your back and invite patients to participate by asking them to opt-in. As part of the normal registration or appointment-making process, offer patients the opportunity to be a part of your email list, receive important SMS messages (aka texts), and join your social media communities.
You can also ask questions that will help you understand what kind of content each patient is might interested in:
- What is your job title?
- What industry do you work in?
- What are your health concerns?
- What are your primary skin concerns?
- Are you interested in cool sculpting?
- What procedures are you considering?
Even their address and gender can be used to build a basic profile. Some of this information will be utilized almost immediately while the rest may prove useful for future campaigns or when partnering with a co-marketer in a related field. Remember, it’s easier to gather data at the outset than to try to get people to participate in an email poll down the line.
Segmenting Your Audience
Now it’s time to build patient lists based on the information you gathered above. This is called segmenting your audience and it serves two purposes: ensuring that patients get the content they’re most likely to be interested in and preventing them from being annoyed by the content they could care less about.
Segmentation is all about defining parameters. You might sort your lists by gender, geographic region, interest in a certain type of procedure, past procedures, or just general interest in your business.
Personalization Via the Power of Social Media
There are several online tools that can help you with audience segmentation or you can piggyback off a platform like Facebook, which helps brands create target audiences for their ads. With their tools, you can send out branded posts or ads for your new holiday Botox special to people based on their Facebook profile information. Learn more about Facebook advertising in our post, "How to Create a Facebook Ad for your Plastic Surgery Practice."
Thanks to Facebook, you can reach out to people based on:
- Life events, like a new job, a divorce, or the birth of a child
- Their hobbies and interests
- Where they live
- What they do for a living
- Whether they follow your page
- Whether they’ve visited your website (thanks to pixel-based retargeting)
Or any combination of the above!
The Content Creation Process
You have the information and the segmented lists, now… how do you use them? Frankly, it’s probably easier than you think. Forget about stuffy white papers and lengthy videos detailing rhinoplasty in medical terms no layperson can understand. What your patients want is information they can actually use.
Here are a few examples:
- Send out an email about your new laser to previous plastic surgery patients who had expressed an interest in laser resurfacing
- Make a video about fighting abdominal stretch marks and create a Facebook ad targeted to new moms
- Personalize each patient’s experience on your website by using cookies to tailor banner ads
- Use geotargeting to identify patient’s nearest practice location
- Curate blogs about topics your patients have indicated are important
According to IBM, 56 percent of marketers say they believe personalized content makes consumers engage at a higher rate. Frankly, we agree. User experience is at the very heart of content personalization – create content that puts the user first and your practice is bound to come out ahead.