In this modern era of communicating less via direct voice and more through messaging on computers, tablets and smart phones, marketing your practice through custom emails is an absolute essential and virtual homerun when done the right way.
According to the marketing analytics firm, Custora, “Customer acquisition via email has quadrupled over the last 4 years.”
While some doctors will opt to pay a company to create a canned email that can then be modified with personal data, promotions or special announcements, not all want to spend the money to pay someone a fee to send out emails on their behalf.
Aside from the expense, pre-fabricated emails are often way too busy and generic and too much trouble to modify each month. The result is patients stop opening the emails altogether and you have lost a great marketing opportunity.
The good news is that you can send out your own emails quickly, easily and for very little expense.
You basically need 2 things:
1. A list of email addresses – Obtained from Patients and Prospective Patients met at events
2. An Email Marketing Management Service – A service that manages your email addresses and allows you to create custom emails to send to those addresses
Gathering the email addresses is pretty simple.
You can get them from new and current patients by simply asking for them and ensuring you have a blank for that data on your intake forms.
With prospective patients you will just have an ‘email address’ line on any form you use during screenings or have patients fill out during speaking and other events. You can also add an opt-in field to your website just like we use at SuccessfulChiro.com to capture the email of doctors that wish to receive marketing and business information from us.
What to Look for in an Email Management Company
So the big question is what should your email management company offer that is important in your industry – Chiropractic Services.
Has a Low Price
An email marketing service for a small business should run you between $10 and $40 a month. With most companies the amount you spend climbs with a growing list of email addresses. For example, with Constant Contact, a very user friendly service, it costs $15 a month for up to 500 email contacts. It is $30 for 501 to 2,500 contacts.
I also recommend a service that lets you try their service for free for a period of time. Most will have a 30 or 60 day trial period.
Allows you to Enter Email Addresses
This is an important one. Some email management companies do not let you upload or enter email addresses directly into your database. Without going into all the complexities of why certain companies do not allow you to do this, suffice it to say you need this capability.
Make sure the company you choose will allow you to enter email addresses directly into the database. A good example of why this is important is when new patients come into the office and provide their email address. A good rule of thumb is to have your staff immediately enter the email address into your database right after new patients onboarding so it never gets missed.
Don’t let ‘analytics’ scare you. These are just simple statistics that will let you know how well your email was received by your audience. Most email marketing services will provide you with a standard set of analytics such as how many people opened your email and how many unsubscribed from receiving your emails.
Other services will take it a step further by giving you specific engagement statistics such as the number of people that forwarded your email to others and how often any links you have in your newsletter were clicked.
With the evolution of email marketing as quickly growing business for these service providers, the competition has become fierce which drives down the price and shapes the demand for an easy to use product for small business owners.
Companies like Emma, iContact, Get Response and Constant Contact are great examples of email management providers that offer a great and easy to use service that meets the above criteria.
If you are unsure which company will work best for you and don’t want to sift through the sales and demo videos at these different sites, give Constant Contact a try. It is the service I recommend most often to clients who are just getting started in the vastly expanding landscape of email marketing services.