How Can Urgent Care Clinics Market to New Patients
Marketing is just as crucial to urgent care clinics as it is to dental or ophthalmology practices. However, several marketing tactics are different. Since your urgent care clinic depends mostly on walk-in patients, your goal is to maintain top-of-the-mind status for your prospects. Meanwhile, the buyer’s journey is short, and patient retention is extremely low.
Marketing is just as crucial to urgent care clinics as it is to dental or ophthalmology practices. However, several marketing tactics are different.
Since your urgent care clinic depends mostly on walk-in patients, your goal is to maintain top-of-the-mind status for your prospects. Meanwhile, the buyer’s journey is short, and patient retention is extremely low.
The following are just some of the tactics available to urgent care clinics.
6 Ways to Market Urgent Care Clinics
Marketing an urgent care clinic requires a comprehensive approach to available marketing tactics coupled with an in-depth understanding of the local patients’ needs. The following are effective ways to establish top-of-mind status and generate leads.
1. Create Physical Reminders
While most medical practices are moving away from offline marketing, urgent care clinics should pay close attention to the impact of physical reminders on top-of-mind awareness.
For example, swag with your contact details on it:
- Refrigerator magnets
- Business cards
- USB flash drives
- Newsletters delivered by regular mail
When a person needs urgent care, they may have trouble thinking clearly. An intelligent reminder system removes the need to search for help, ask around, or even google. With your clinic’s swag in front of their eyes, a patient isn’t likely to look elsewhere.
2. Establish a Local Digital Presence
The entire audience of your urgent care clinic is local. When you design a digital marketing strategy, your SEO tactics must also be local.
Local SEO aims to put your clinic on top of the SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages) in response to such queries as “urgent care clinic near me.”
More than 25% of users click on the first search result. People in need of urgent care are less likely to look further. That’s why staying on top of the SERPs is vital.
Google Business Profile
Regarding local queries, 42% of the searchers click on Google 3-pack. Without a well-maintained Google Business Profile (GBP), your chances of appearing on this 3-pack are low.
Creating (or claiming) and maintaining a high-quality GBP improves your website rankings and brings more patients to your doorstep. Meanwhile, it provides a place for patient reviews that drive word-of-mouth marketing.
Besides GBP, it’s essential to list your clinic on other local directories, such as Yelp, and national directories, such as the Urgent Care Association.
3. Make It Easy to Set Up Appointments
While patients understand that urgent care may require waiting in line, they aren’t happy about it. If you allow them to make an appointment online, these people are likely to choose your clinic over a nearby competitor.
Adding real-time scheduling to your website can increase the number of appointments, reduce waiting times, and improve patient satisfaction.
If you run PPC ads, ensure the landing page includes real-time appointment scheduling options. This can significantly shorten the patient’s journey.
4. Convert Website Visitors
When a potential patient lands on your website, you only have a limited amount of time to catch their attention and drive conversion. To improve on-site conversion rates, it’s essential to:
- Implement clear calls to action.
- Provide high-quality medical website content.
- Make it easy to make an appointment.
- Ensure intuitive navigation.
More often than not, website visitors have questions about your clinic and services. If answers aren’t straightforward, potential patients are likely to leave. You can consider implementing a managed chat to avoid overwhelming visitors with content or creating complex Q&A sections.
A medical managed chat allows visitors to speak to specialists who receive training in supporting medical providers. These specialists will answer questions and convert patients 24/7.
5. Set Up a Referral Process
In urgent care clinics, the patient lifetime value can be low. In many cases, it’s a one-visit relationship.
Instead of trying to retain patients who may never need your services again, you can focus on turning them into brand ambassadors.
- When patients leave the clinic, give them two business cards, one for them and one for a friend.
- Send out emails that ask satisfied patients to refer others to you.
- Provide gated content or swag in exchange for social media mentions.
You can set up a referral program that, for example, gives a patient a gift certificate to a local restaurant or gym in exchange for five referrals. It’s also possible to partner with other clinics or doctors in the area and refer patients to each other.
6. Pay-Per-Click Ads
Pay-per-click (PPC) ads are digital ads that appear in front of visitors when they search the web or browse related websites.
This type of paid advertising yields quicker results than referrals or SEO. Patients will come to your doorstep if you design these ads well and work on landing pages.
Besides bringing patients to your website where they can schedule appointments, PPC ads can also help you collect contact information. You can use this data to set up email lists, nurture leads, encourage referrals, and collect valuable reviews.
How Much Should Urgent Care Clinics Spend on Marketing?
The amount you spend on marketing depends on the competitiveness of your zip code and local demand for urgent care services. To discover the competition, you can use the “near me” searches.
Figuring out local demand is more complicated. For example, you can cross-reference census information from Census.gov with Google keyword volumes. This will reveal missing revenue opportunities.
If you don’t want to pull the data yourself, you can use DoctorLogic’s free, instant local demand analysis.