By Stewart Gandolf
Chief Executive Officer
How many of these ideas can you use to win new patients from businesses down the street?
A large or dominant employer in your community – or the business across the street – is an excellent target of opportunity for new patients and cases, especially if you’re already serving some of those employees. Here are ways to get better acquainted, demonstrate value to those employees, and attract new patients from nearby companies.
Let’s call them your “favorite local companies.” You know who we mean. Just about every hospital, doctor, dentist or medical spa has a mental list of businesses in the local community that are (or could be) a source of new patients or business.
You are currently seeing some employees from these companies and there are good reasons why you would welcome others. Perhaps they represent the right demographics for you…upscale, or families, or young singles. Perhaps it’s a local company that provides insurance that you like. Or maybe it’s a company that’s just across the street, or they are a large or dominant employer in the community.
There may be more than one reason, and there may be more than one company that’s “your favorite” for different reasons. The point is that you have identified select groups of employees that you can target specifically and effectively attract to your practice or hospital.
A rich source of new patients.
Begin by putting your mental list of local companies on paper. Some company names will be top of mind, and the General Manager of XYZ Company might be a member of your Rotary Club. Take the time to check with the local chamber or business development group to identify the bigger and/or better businesses in your practice area. (You might be surprised.)
And don’t fail to talk this through with your staff—chances are they have good ideas and grass roots connections through friends, family, neighbors or social acquaintances to help grow the list.
Consider the following tactics, and keep in mind that one or more idea might be appropriate to more than one target group:
- Talk with existing patients from the company (or companies) to point you to the right decision-makers within the business. Maybe it’s the company’s general manager, but it could be the personnel or human resources chief. Always remember to discuss the benefits you provide to BOTH the employer and employees. This is key.
- Make an appointment to meet with that person and discuss opportunities to present talks, participate in health fairs or appropriate employee activities such as a “lunch-and-learn” presentation.
- Offer to write informative articles for the corporate newsletter. This type of publication is usually starving for interesting editorial material, especially when you can offer value to the employees. Newsletters typically don’t accept paid advertising, but good articles will be more effective—provided they are interesting and specifically about the benefits you can deliver.
- Create a special page on your website just for employees of XYZ Company. Include text and pictures that relate to this group, and include a special offer expressly for them. Ask patients from that company for referrals and forward a link to the special page to them.
- If the company is large or dominate in the community, direct some of your general media advertising to target these employees specifically.
- Make brochures available as a “take one” in company common areas. Or—if you have a really good relationship-insert them into pay envelopes or mailboxes. Be sure to include the special offer “for employees of XYZ Company.”
- Provide posters for company bulletin boards which present educational, healthcare information, promote specific events such as the “lunch-and-learn,” or feature the special website page for XYZ Company.
- Is there an opportunity for your staff to meet with key company people? Arrange an exchange of tours to get better acquainted and bring people of influence at XYZ Company into your office (and for your people to see what’s inside XYZ.)
- Bounce ideas off business reps that visit your office. They may be a valuable resource for special offers or provide sample products for health fairs or presentations.
- Depending on your specialty, consider conducting ergonomic evaluations, work hardening programs, anger management classes, women’s health classes, fitness programs, eye safety, wellness programs, expectant mother programs, etc. You get the idea.
If XYZ Company is a source of new patients that you want to attract, target them specifically with the message that you and your practice consider them to worth special attention. Keep the message—in talks, flyers, or web page—focused on how THEY can benefit. It’s not about generic “good health,” nor is it about “what you do,” – the message is the value for them.
Through any of these approaches, the message for these employees is exactly how and why your practice or healthcare organization is uniquely capable of understanding and serving the specific needs of XYZ Company employees.
After all, it’s your favorite local company.
And for more ways to make yourself a winner in the local community, visit with us in person at a 2-day healthcare marketing seminar. Reach out to us today at (800) 656-0907 to claim a seat. Discover the secrets of doctor marketing here.
Note: This article was adapted from one we wrote for Dental Economics earlier this year.