Seasonal Marketing for Your Private Practice
Adjusting your marketing based on upcoming seasons and holidays allows you to build a responsive and personal strategy that capitalises on different trends. Campaigns based around calendar events can be an opportunity for you to exercise your creativity and cement your position as a flexible and quick-to-practice practice. The following tips should help you to co-ordinate your strategies.
1. Pick the right Opportunities
Ensure that any marketing strategy that you adopt is in tune with the time-based interests and needs of your clients. You need to know who your target audience is, but also understand their motivation and purchasing decisions. Do not go overboard with your campaigns, but hone in on opportunities that are relevant to existing and prospective clients, then focus on doing a few things very well. Take some time to understand the psychology behind the activities, and think how these apply to your business.
2. Explore Weather-based Strategies
Different climates represent a host of different healthcare complications and benefits, so identify those which are pertinent to yourself and your practice, and attempt to single some out as areas to focus campaigns around.
You could consider more generic campaigns that are based around the seasons, breaking these down into Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter. Summer for example brings with it the promise of better weather, hopefully anyway! This can lead to increased sun exposure, travel and changes in behavior and diet habits, so think about what related messages you could communicate to clients. Colder weather can represent a health hazard, especially with icy surfaces and winter sports holidays leading to an increase in falls and exercise-based conditions. You may wish to raise awareness through newsletters or social media messages, and encourage existing and potential clients to contact you with questions and concerns.
3. Explore Holiday-based Strategies
Focusing on calendar holidays or events represent a more specific opportunity to market to your clientele, giving you a smaller but more exact window to capitalize on specific days of the year. As a health or wellbeing provider, you could seek to offer gift cards or offers for events such as Valentines day, Father's Day, Mother's Day, or Christmas. Holidays may also see increased availability for appointment booking, so sometimes offer special discounts for those who book on their days off. New Year, for example, is always associated with self-improvement, so you could think how the phrase "New Year, New You" could apply to your practice and your clients
4. Explore Specialty-based Strategies
As the majority of healthcare professions have a dedicated day, week or month, you could use this as a vehicle to raise awareness about your services, or any diseases or conditions that could be related.
5. Get your Timing right
When planning your strategies, it is essential to strike the balance right between leaving enough time to prepare, but not getting ahead of yourself. Strategies based around the weather could not go to plan, so your "summer sunshine" marketing campaign could have been very ineffective if the weather is a washout (particularly likely in the UK!). Ensure that you have a contingency plan in place, and that your strategies form part of a larger, overall marketing plan for your business.
6. Include Actions and Deadlines
Once you have decided on your marketing opportunities, determine exactly what you are going to do and how you are going to achieve this. One of the most successful strategies involves including a call-to-action in your materials, such as encouraging clients to contact you via email, telephone or social media. Due to the temperate nature of your campaign, ensure you adhere to a deadline to encourage people to connect with you in a timely manner. You can always announce that you are extending any offers for additional time if uptake is not as expected.
7. Use all Available Platforms
Ensure that your campaign achieves it's widest possible audience by taking advantage of multiple platforms over an extended period of time. If you are offering a discount code or offer, ensure that you communicate this out across social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and LinkedIn. If you have dedicated website page for the campaign, you could also recycle this into an email newsletter.
8. Reuse, Recycle
Often your campaigns can still be relevant for cyclic events, so consider repeating a successful campaign the following year. If your strategy was not successful, attempt to discern why, then make any required changes before launching it again. Ensure that you keep your content "ever-green" and avoid time-specific references so that you can use that content again in a timely manner.