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Best Practices for Reactivating Patients

Reactivating Patients

Reactivating patients is key to building a loyal group of clients that both visit your clinic and that refer their friends and family to your practice. There are two key strategies for reactivating past patients—including targeted messaging or content in routine marketing campaigns, such as your practice newsletter or on your website, and creating specific promotions to drive reactivation, especially with a monthly patient newsletter as well as a postcard or incentive program. Let’s look at the best practices for both strategies to see what is a good fit for your clinic. And, when you should use different tactics.

Reactivating Patients with Monthly Marketing Campaigns

One of the easiest ways to grow your practice is by reactivating past patients. These individuals have already experienced great care and PT with your clinic and are significantly more likely to return for future needs. Think about a patient like a car owner—most people will continue to buy the same make of car if they have a good experience with their previous model. And, if they receive good customer service at a local dealership, they will be much more likely to purchase another vehicle from them. The same goes for physical therapy, if someone has a good experience and feels better after PT, then they will be more likely to seek PT over other treatment options in the future. And, if they receive quality care and customer service at your clinic, they will be more likely to return to see you for PT.

Your monthly marketing campaigns should also include content and messaging that capitalizes on reactivating past patients. But, you need to be sure to refresh that marketing occasionally to ensure the message stays current. Try these ideas to keep your reactivation marketing fresh:

  • Use seasonal imagery and messaging (think snowflakes for winter or gardening photos for spring)
  • Change the incentive bi-monthly to attract different patients. You can offer a Free Screening, 10% Off, or a Free Exercise Class—each will resonate differently with patients.
  • Move the layout and placement. If you usually feature the reactivation marketing on the last page, try moving it to the exercise section or the main panel.

Your monthly marketing campaigns almost always reach past patients and are the perfect place for promoting reactivation.

Reactivating Patients with Promotions

Look back at last year’s monthly stats—when did your practice experience a dip in patient volumes? Now look 2 months ahead of that dip, that is when you want to start running a promotional campaign to reactivate past patients. Promotional campaigns can take on a variety of tactics. One consideration is that you should be able to execute these promotions quickly and without a lot of effort or costs. We recommend newsletterspostcards and email marketing as two easy and inexpensive options.

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Postcard promotions should include eye-catching imagery, simple text, and a big Call-to-Action (CTA). Reactivation campaigns can perform well with pain imagery, really driving home the need to go the PT. Lighten up the tone with positive copy “Ready to be Pain-Free?” to keep the messaging positive. Use your practice’s brand colors to create a big CTA and include an expiration date. The date encourages people to mark their calendars and get into PT sooner to be able to take advantage of the offer.

Emails can also drive reactivations especially for practices that do not have monthly email marketing campaigns. These almost act like a digital postcard. Keep the messaging and content short and sweet. Try using healthy imagery and positive messaging for emails. Patients tend to find negative or pain messaging discouraging online and often respond best to a happy photo and encouraging message, “Get Back in the Game” with a picture of grandparents playing ball with the grandkids for example. Include a big CTA “Click to Book Your Appointment Today” and include an expiration date.

Want more best practices for physical therapy marketing and business management? Check out our blog or call us today!


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