5 Tips to Ethically Upsell Ophthalmology Patients
Upsell is typically regarded as a dirty word in healthcare, as it gives the impression that the practitioner is primarily out to make money instead of helping patients. However, there's nothing inherently wrong with offering premium as long as you do so with the patient's best interest in mind.
Upsell is typically regarded as a dirty word in healthcare, as it gives the impression that the practitioner is primarily out to make money instead of helping patients. However, there’s nothing inherently wrong with offering premium as long as you do so with the patient’s best interest in mind.
If you’re wondering how to upsell your patients ethically, the following guide will get you started with some helpful tips.
5 Tips to Ethically Upsell
There are several ways you can upsell ophthalmology patients while remaining ethical. These methods include:
1. Plant the Seed During the Initial Phone Call
You can start by gathering patients’ individual goals and details about their medical history. This will illuminate candidacy for appropriate potential treatments or upgrades.
Consider having a patient coordinator help direct patients toward elective procedures over the phone. The patient coordinator will serve as the primary source of information for patients to optimize their experience. They’ll essentially act as a salesperson to represent your practice and help lead people toward an upsell.
For instance, you might have a patient who qualifies for a cataract procedure. In this case, your patient coordinator could educate the patient on the procedure, including preparation, anesthesia, follow-up, and results.
Be sure to outline the features and benefits of each level of procedure, including their price ranges. Ask your patients which level of improvement they are leaning toward; what would they like to improve?
Your patient coordinator can repeat the appropriate steps when the patient enters the practice. These could include reconfirming the patient’s desires, re-educating the patient on the specific procedure, and regaining commitment to a course of action. Taking these steps will help reassure the patient and make them feel heard.
2. Outline a Plan Using the Patient Chart
You should never consider upselling if it won’t benefit the patient. The patient’s well-being is always a top priority, but specific additional procedures may contribute to it and be worth the upsell.
You can use treatment and product history to predict other applicable procedures or products. When questioning patients about their needs and desired outcomes, you can use the patient chart to supplement them.
3. Nurture Patients Digitally
Remember that patients may want more in-depth knowledge about specific elective procedures. They’ll want to learn as much as possible to secure their decision when determining whether a procedure is right for them. This is especially the case when a lot of money is at stake. This is where content marketing can come into play.
Great content marketing will not only attract ophthalmology leads through search engine optimization (SEO), but it will also retain and upsell existing patients. There’s no limit to the types of content you can create and share to help upsell patients. For example, you can create informative blogs, videos, case studies, social media posts, and other forms of content. As a result, patients will feel more confident in additional procedures and be more inclined to commit to them.
4. Be Direct, Not Aggressive
Following the digital nurturing process and the initial phone call, it’s up to the doctor to make the final recommendation. This will entail striking the right balance of communication. It shouldn’t be passive in the sense of “choose either option. It’s up to you,” nor should it be aggressive because “you have to choose the upgrade.”
Instead, be direct with your patients. You should communicate that “you’re a great candidate for this procedure, which is why I’d recommend it.” Be open in your discussion with patients about the benefits of the procedure.
Also, be prepared to answer any questions the patient is likely to have about the procedure. Ophthalmic procedures such as cataract surgery and LASIK often involve specific preparation steps and risks that might concern patients. Alleviate these concerns by further discussing them and reassuring your patients.
5. Waiting Room Collateral
Education about additional procedures doesn’t stop once the patient is in the office and waiting to see you—it can also continue in the waiting room.
From posters to brochures and videos, you can use all four walls of the waiting room to further educate and inform patients about the various options available.
You could have a section of the waiting room stocked with brochures that provide more information about specific procedures. These brochures could outline the advantages of the procedure, along with other details. Meanwhile, a video on the room’s TV can grab patients’ attention regarding elective procedures, with a friendly representative advertising them.
While you should make your patient aware of the many options available, please don’t overdo it. If you give your patients too many options, they may experience choice overload, making it harder for them to decide.
Instead, stick to a few key options that you want to focus on, including procedures that most of your patients could benefit from undergoing. You can make more personalized recommendations with other options based on each patient’s unique needs.
Making your waiting room an in-depth resource for additional information will make your practice more accommodating and comforting. This is crucial in helping your patients relax when visiting your office, making them more comfortable returning for future procedures.
Upselling Ophthalmology Procedures Through Content Marketing
As mentioned, healthcare content marketing is critical in upselling patients and establishing a solid connection with them. When used correctly, website content of all types can be invaluable in maximizing profitability while reassuring patients.
Content marketing serves two primary purposes:
- Attract new leads
- Retain existing patients
Creating content that serves both needs requires professional expertise. While ophthalmologists may want to create content based on their expertise, this is highly inefficient. If ophthalmologists spend too much time generating content alone, they’ll have less time on revenue-generating activities such as cataract procedures.
In addition, you can’t depend on prospects finding your content by browsing your website; you must ensure that people can find you via search engines like Google. This requires good SEO practices that supplement rich, well-written content on your website.
The most efficient way to upsell existing patients through content marketing is to work with a healthcare digital marketing agency like DoctorLogic. We understand what ophthalmologists specifically require to achieve optimal results.
At DoctorLogic, we provide our clients with a comprehensive patient acquisition platform. Using this platform, you can attract new patients, grow your practice, and retain existing patients through content marketing, SEO, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, and HIPAA-compliant lead management. As a result, you’ll be able to use DoctorLogic to dominate your local market and stay ahead of competing practices.
Discover our platform’s capabilities by scheduling your free DoctorLogic demo today.