One of the biggest challenges for private practice marketing is determining the effectiveness of your campaigns, promotions, and channels. How can you track patient lead generation and your return on investment (ROI) from different marketing initiatives? Most practice owners use a combination of business statistics, such as # of patient visits and # of physician referrals. Plus, data from new patient intake forms and registrations. Business stats can be a great, quantitative metric that shows spikes in volumes, which can be linked to different monthly and promotion campaigns. For example, if you mail a monthly newsletter on the 15th of each month, you should expect to see a spike in patient visits about 3 weeks later. Similarly, if you host an open house for local physicians, you might expect to see an increase in the # of referrals in the days and weeks following the event.
Patient lead generation is the ability and quantity of leads (or prospective patients) produced as a result of marketing campaigns, promotions, and channels.
When it comes to tracking your patient lead generation, however, the process may not be nearly as linear. For a patient to become a lead, they typically must see your marketing at least 5X before they “convert” into a patient. Sounds technical right? Essentially, for someone who is not aware of your practice, they need to see your marketing (newsletter, advertisements, postcards, website, social media etc.) at least 5X before they will consider becoming a patient. Once they decide to become a patient, they “convert” and this conversion takes place when they check in for their first appointment.
This conversion moment or at new patient registration is the precise time when you should determine where and how a patient become a lead or heard about your practice.
Most clinics attempt to determine lead generation by asking, either on a form or in person, “how did you hear about us?”. This is definitely the right question to ask, but are you asking it in the right way? Check out our patient lead generation strategies…
In-person lead generation and confirmation:
First, ask what marketing (campaigns or channels) the patient has seen: Have you received our newsletter or visited our website?
Next, ask where the patient first heard about your practice: Where did you first hear about us?
These in-person prompts accomplish two main business and lead generation objectives. First, you can determine what marketing the patient has interacted with. Second, you can determine which campaign or channel prompted the patient to convert and book an appointment for PT.
Form-based lead generation:
Ask patients Have you received or visited the following? (select all that apply)
- Include check boxes for all your primary marketing resources (but keep the list manageable at around 4-7 platforms). Examples include:
- Practice Newsletter
- Online search (Google) or reviews (Yelp, HealthGrades etc.)
- Physician Referral (include a line for the physician’s name)
- Social media
- Include a free response or write-in section Where did you first learn about our practice?
- This question should follow the “Have you received or visited the following? (select all that apply)”. This ensures that patients realize the full scope of what marketing they have engaged with and will help them determine where they truly first heard about your practice.
- By having this question be a free response, you also avoid any traditional survey biases, such as ordering bias, by allowing the patient to dictate their response.
When it comes to accurately determining where your patients are coming from, we strongly recommend in person lead confirmation. This allows the dialogue to be more fluid and engaging and allows your front desk to connect with the new patient. Many practices also already have a similar step in their intake process, resulting in only an incremental change to the business flow.
To learn more about patient lead generation, conversion strategies, and marketing analysis, sign up for our free webinar today.