It happens occasionally with most of us that we send an email to someone but receive no response. That leaves us wondering if they even opened it; and if they did open it, did they simply delete it? The same uncertainty also happens when it comes to email marketing campaigns.
The recipients of your marketing emails may sometimes mark them as spam, delete them, or just ignore them. When this happens to emails you send out, it is time to evaluate why.
It could be because you are not able to hold your audience’s attention. Maybe your subject lines are not catchy enough, or your calls to action are fail to prompt your readers into performing a task.
Email marketing is an effective means of transmitting messages straight to your prospective patients. It reinforces relationships and prompts your prospects to contact you. Let us take a look at how you can strengthen your email marketing strategy.
12 Tips for Successful Email Marketing for Doctors
1. Compile a list of subscribers
Do not stop adding to your list of clients and prospects even if you have a substantial line-up already. It is not difficult to do this. You can ensure that your list keeps on growing quietly through a sign-up option on your medical practice’s website.
Be sure to incorporate subscription forms wherever you can, including the blog page and home page without overshadowing any important content.
Traditional methods are of equal importance in building your list of patients. For instance, when you are at an event that involves prospective patients, be sure to provide people the option to subscribe to your newsletter. When someone signs up for your newsletter, there is always the possibility of greater engagement with them in future.
2. Motivate your readers to respond
What distinguishes email marketing from direct mail is that it opens avenues for worthwhile conversations with people who have an interest in your practice.
Simply providing promotional information to patients will not achieve anything.
Ensure that you keep the following elements in mind:
- Captivating subject lines: Address your readers directly and assure them of something that is unique from other emails they receive. An ideal means of doing this is through automated solutions that customize your emails.
- Use an enjoyable and exclusive tone: Once users open your email you need to make sure that recipients will read it. Ensure that your message appears to be from an actual person instead of an automated marketing tool.
- Focused content: Splitting your email list based on reader demographics makes it convenient to come up with messages that are relevant to their interests and requirements. This increases the possibility of readers using an offer, interacting with you, and passing on the information to other prospects.
The intention here is to prompt recipients to respond in some way. At times, they might just click on a link in your email. However, your aim should be to have them actually reply to your emails.
3. Personalize your emails
As far as possible, append a personal detail to your emails. A majority of email tools permit you to input short codes that can be substituted with the recipient’s name when the email is dispatched. Try to make it fun and creative.
In addition, you can divide your mailings to target specific segments of your audience. If your business works with various industries, you could think about emailing separate versions of your email with each one containing information related to that particular industry.
4. Make sure your emails do not end up as spam
All your efforts will have been wasted if your painstakingly crafted emails are marked as spam. So, start with ensuring that your recipients have chosen to receive your emails and you are not in violation of any regulations such as the CAN-SPAM Act. Also, steer clear of using all capitals, hyperbolic expressions, and excessive exclamation marks.
If your email contains HTML that is poorly formatted, it can also have an adverse impact. Spam filters vary, so an email that passes one filter might get singled out by another.
5. Keep emails crisp and neat
It might seem to be the obvious thing to do, but a large number of marketing emails look quite amateur and unprofessional. When someone opens your mail due to its catchy headline, it is essential that you retain their interest. You can do this by:
- Use photographs with phrases and keywords of relevance to your audience highlighted.
- Include bullet points to enable people to glance at the content and absorb the important points.
- Just a few selected graphics that illustrate your message instead of being a substitute for your content. Certain email providers block such graphics and images or take them to be spam.
6. Incorporate riveting calls to action and links
The purpose of email marketing is usually to draw more traffic to a website or a particular landing page. If there are no clicks, then it means you have zero customers.
Try to put in buttons that are visually appealing with text that offers your audience more than one chance to interact. For instance, ‘Download Now!’, and ‘Read More Here’.
The key is writing calls to action in an exciting and compelling manner. The better your description the greater the chance of captivating your audience.
7. Keep the unsubscribe option simple and easy
This might seem that you are disengaging from your client by providing them the option to cut off the connection. However, if you do not provide your readers an easy option to unsubscribe from your list, they are likely to flag your emails as spam which does not bode well for you.
8. Ensure that your emails are mobile-friendly
A lot of people reach for their phones first thing in the morning. Many people now access their emails via tablets or smartphones. So, by not optimizing your emails to be viewed on these devices, you stand to lose a large number of clicks.
9. Test and retest
Ensure that your email newsletters are working as they should. Confirm that your messages appear the way you intended by first emailing them to your staff. Try viewing them on Yahoo, Outlook.com, Gmail, and various mobile devices before you finalize the draft.
Make sure that all links are functional and none of the personalization short codes are failing. Sending an email without confirming that everything is as it should be equals attending a business meeting wearing an outfit you chose in the dark! Mistakes will make you look unprofessional and silly.
Apart from testing content on various platforms, be sure to test various subject lines, body text, and calls to action to pinpoint what interests your readers the most.
10. Monitor your data
Monitor your data closely to track undeliverable emails or estimate the time of day when people accessed your message. These small details will provide you with a good deal of information about how your email is performing and what you can do to improve engagement in the future.
If your website uses Google Analytics, you can use custom campaign tracking to tag your emails. This will help you determine how they are attracting traffic to the landing pages as well as provide you with a sample of visitor behavior once they are on your site.
Armed with these details you can customize your marketing message to target individuals who will use it.
11. Do not inundate subscribers with messages
Once you have all this information, you may be raring to start off emailing. However, you need to exercise caution when it comes to the frequency with which you send emails. Don’t bombard subscribers’ inboxes with marketing messages as this can irritate them and lead them to unsubscribe.
12. Provide value
The key to good email marketing is providing your audience with something that remains with them. Educate your readers about any new medical services or products that you may have introduced at your practice. Provide tips and information about common health concerns or related industry issues that may be of interest.
This is only the start. As with a majority of digital marketing efforts, achieving success through email marketing is a long-term process. It requires a blend of astute planning and analysis of data and reader feedback to improve your campaigns. But the only way to excel at this is by being out there and emailing to your prospective audience!
About the Author:
Naren Arulrajah is President and CEO of Ekwa Marketing, a complete internet marketing company that focuses on SEO, social media, marketing education and the online reputations of doctors. With a team of 180+ full time marketers, www.ekwa.com helps doctors who know where they want to go, get there by dominating their market and growing their business significantly year after year. If you have questions about marketing your practice online, call 855-598-3320 to speak one-on-one with Naren.