5 Ways Medical Practitioners Can Make Their Referrals Work Overtime

When it comes to expanding a healthcare practice, many providers rely heavily on the tried-and-true method of patient referrals. 

While word-of-mouth will always be a vital part of growing your patient base, there’s more to referrals than crossing your fingers and hoping your patients will spread the word.

Contrary to what you might believe, referrals don’t always have to have limited scale, lack of control, and narrowed reach.

In an era where digital presence and patient engagement can make or break a practice, taking a more proactive stance with your referrals can yield remarkable results. 

Here are five ways you can increase your referrals to the next level.

Venturing Beyond Referrals: Our Top 5 Recommendations 

TIP 1: Strike While the Iron’s Hot

A happy patient is a talkative patient. 

When you have a happy patient in your office, don’t just let them walk out of the clinic!

You just put a smile on their face, so capture that moment to show prospective patients the good work you do! 

Take that moment to request a review on Google, Yelp, or any other service catalog your practice is listed in. 

This is the best time to ask since the positive experience is still fresh in your patient’s mind. This is a vivid memory that they’ll want to write a detailed and positive review about.

The best part? Running this experience back through their minds while writing the review will firmly cement it in their minds. They’ll always have strong positive associations with your practice, ensuring that they recommend your clinic to friends and family.

Requesting a review also allows you to receive instant feedback. If your patient had any concerns, addressing them on the spot can turn a potentially negative review into a positive one.

Everyone wants to feel like they’re being heard. This shows that you value your patient’s experience, and this gesture works wonders to build trust and customer loyalty.

TIP 2: The Digital Dynamo

The quarantine taught us a very valuable lesson: people love doing things from the convenience of their own homes.

Offering telehealth services does three things for you:

  1. It creates a new patient intake pipeline
  2. It lets you access an undertapped market
  3. It makes it exponentially easier for patients to find you 

Because the fact is that 80% of patients look online for their doctors and healthcare providers.

Telehealth also makes it incredibly easy to receive video testimonials and positive reviews.

First, always ask for consent to record and share these videos online.

Second, you don’t need a video editor, complex equipment, or expensive software to record your screen.

Loom has a free account that lets you record up to 5 minutes for free, and a video testimonial doesn’t need to be longer than 1 – 2 minutes.

Put these testimonials on your website, your socials, or even on ads as the creative! 

Suddenly, a one-time visit has turned into a magnet that attracts patients to your practice over and over again.

You can even do the same with in-person visits! After all, modern smartphones have REALLY good video cameras.

And if they don’t want to do video recordings, just ask if you can take a screenshot of them smiling with their thumbs up. 

The photograph and video create a personal connection between your patient and your practice. It humanizes your brand and establishes a relationship beyond the transactional nature of the business.

Keep in mind photographs and videos shot in a natural environment, like your office, feel authentic and genuine. They provide a real glimpse into your law business and the positive interactions with your patients, fostering trust.

Videos may also enable your patients to better convey their emotions and enthusiasm, creating a more impactful impression than traditional written testimonials. Videos offer highly engaging content; prospective patients are more inclined to watch a brief video than read a lengthy written recommendation.

TIP 3: The “Take Me Home” Strategy 

There are three things you can do to help patients take a piece of your clinic back to their homes.

This way, whenever anyone asks about doctors or medical help, you’ll be the first name that comes to mind.

  1. Giving away branded merchandise like pens, toothbrushes, and magnets is an easy way to advertise your practice from inside the patient’s home. Items like the above are either used every day or seen every day. Everyone brushes their teeth (hopefully), everyone needs a pen, and everyone opens their fridge at least once a day.

    If a patient had a great experience with you, then any time a question about health and doctors comes up, they’ll say “Oh I know a place!”

  2. Something else you can hand out for patients to take home is educational material. Since these things can be kept around the house, carried around, or shared with other people– they possess an inherent virality that can spread your firm’s name in close-knit communities.

    Brochures, pamphlets, and flyers can be used to disseminate information that answers your patients’ most pressing needs. Information about seasonal illnesses, how to identify a stroke, how to do CPR, and how and when to put someone in the recovery position can firmly associate your practice with expertise and helpfulness.

  3. Healthcare providers can also launch mobile apps for their practices and incentivize patients to install your app. The app could offer features like appointment scheduling, medication reminders, health tips, and direct messaging with their healthcare provider. With each push notification or daily interaction, patients will be reminded of your clinic’s care and accessibility.

    With so many patients going mobile, it’s important to keep up with their behavioral trends.

These three tips not only offer a constant visual reminder of your practice, but also provide practical value to patients, keeping engagement high and encouraging them to think of your clinic as a partner in their health journey.

TIP 4: Speaking of going mobile…

80% of patients are looking for healthcare providers online. 

Healthcare providers can utilize this stat to grow digital referrals using simple assets that patients are bound to share.

In Tip #3, we mentioned creating physical educational material for patients to take home.

If you can create physical assets, then you might as well have digital counterparts as well. 

Transform your physical assets into digital ones and host this content on your website as informative articles and downloadable resources. These can include self-care guides, interactive symptom checkers, or health trackers.

Supplement these assets with infographics and short, engaging video content that can easily be shared on social media. 

Infographics can condense complex health information into visual formats that are more digestible for the average person. 

They can also be easily shared across platforms, increasing the likelihood of being passed between friends and family, effectively spreading the word about your services.

Likewise, quick videos explaining common health concerns or demonstrating simple home care techniques can be powerful tools. They not only provide value to your patients but also offer a means for patients to introduce your practice to others effortlessly. 

These don’t have to be high production videos, either. A smartphone, stable phone holder, a clean background, and a prepared script can have you pumping out quality shorts (less than a few minutes) in under an hour.

Encourage your patients to visit your website and share this valuable content. Each share extends your reach and serves as a personal endorsement of your practice. Remember to include easy-to-find contact information and a clear call to action in each piece of content to streamline the process from information to consultation.

TIP 5: A touch of la familia

Your entire patient-facing experience should be carefully vetted to ensure that you and your staff are providing the best care possible. 

If possible, consider implementing rewards linked to positive patient feedback or high patient satisfaction metrics. 

Offer non-monetary incentives such as additional vacation days, flexible scheduling, team dinners, or recognition ceremonies to celebrate those who exceed in providing exceptional patient care.

This will cultivate a more meaningful and positive experience for your patients, offering them the utmost support and satisfaction. Content patients are more inclined to share their positive healthcare experiences with friends and relatives, leading to more personal recommendations.

By ensuring your patients feel listened to and cared for, you can make the difference between a single visit and a lifetime of patient loyalty to your practice.

But remember this very important caveat: work culture trickles down from the leadership. If you want to foster an environment that supports your team in carrying out excellent patient-care, it has to start with you.

Are you looking to see more patients every month? 🛠️

At Doctores NOW, we understand that every medical practice is unique and has different needs and goals.

We offer clear and transparent pricing, rapid velocity from ideation to execution, and custom packages tailored to your specific goals and needs.

Reach out to us today to explore how we can elevate your practice within an ever evolving market!

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