When a patient books an appointment or leaves your hospital, you’re required to provide them with a comfortable experience and keep them engaged. How?
Healthcare email marketing is what you need to:
- Decrease the chances of missed appointments with automated reminder emails.
- Engage patients before and after their appointments.
- Build trust with patients to grow your practice.
- Provide comfortable, personalized experiences to your patients.
If you’re a marketer in a hospital, doctor’s office, wellness, or healthcare center, you have to adopt healthcare email marketing strategies to engage your patients and grow your practice.
Don’t know where to start or how to optimize your existing strategies? You’re at the right place.
In this article, you’ll learn:
- 4 benefits of healthcare email marketing you must know
- 6 tactics to grow your healthcare contact list
- 7 inspiring healthcare newsletter ideas and examples to send to patients
- 5 tips for creating effective email marketing campaigns for hospitals
- How to create your first healthcare email marketing campaign
Let’s get to it.
4 Benefits of Healthcare Email Marketing You Must Know
As a marketer, you might’ve heard or read somewhere about how email marketing is dead. It’s been a common myth for many marketing teams.
Well, I’m here to let you know that you don’t have to worry because healthcare email marketing is still going strong.
The average email open rates for medical, dental, and healthcare email marketing is 21,72%.
And these are the 4 main benefits of email marketing for healthcare.
1. Maintain communication
Healthcare email marketing is the number one channel to maintain communication with patients. Here is why.
One of the most significant benefits of emailing patients is that nearly everyone uses email. 92% of online adults use email, with 61% of daily users on average.
Unlike social channels, people aren’t using email to connect with family and friends. 61% of email users prefer to be contacted by businesses and organizations via email. And this is good news for healthcare email marketing.
The point is, email is your patients’ favorite communication channel.
Leveraging healthcare email marketing allows you to:
- Decrease missed appointments with automated reminder emails
- Keep your practice top of mind with your patients
- Maintain consistent communication
- Reach your patients on a communication medium they check daily
2. Deliver important information
Patients are concerned about their health, and as a doctor or a practitioner, your duty is to deliver important information to ease their concerns.
In healthcare email marketing, important information can be:
- Test result
- Appointment confirmations and reminders
- Tips and remedies
When doing healthcare email marketing, every email you send matters.
For that, make sure to monitor and reduce your email bounce rates so every important email is delivered successfully.
Also to avoid landing emails in spam/junk folders consider the following tips:
- Personalize your emails
- Rephrase template content
- Use a real reply-to address
- Be aware of spammy phrases
- Keep the content and subject line short
- Avoid using too many or big images
- Include an unsubscribe link
- Miss out obscure fonts
3. Save time with automated emails
Healthcare email marketing helps you automate your most important communication and repetitive email tasks to get some of your time back.
You don’t want to confirm each patient’s appointment manually. That would be a waste of time when there are tools like Calendly that help you manage your patients’ appointment booking.
Then you can connect Calendly to Automizy email software to set up email automation to:
- Confirm appointment booking for your patients
- Send automated reminder emails
- Deliver important information prior to the appointment
- Follow up on patients
The whole process from the moment a prospective patient visits your website until they visit your healthcare organization or center can be fully automated.
Automating your appointment setting can be beneficial in multiple ways:
- You reduce the risk of forgetting to send emails
- You don’t miss patients because you follow up on their booking
- Save your and your staff’s time
- Engage your prospective patients and build trust
4. Engage patients
Delivering your audience the information they need creates a positive connection and increases trust.
By creating a healthcare email marketing strategy, you create and keep a link between you and your patients even when they don’t need your medical assistance at that time.
Unlike commercial email marketing, where the objective is to convert and sell, healthcare email marketing is leaning toward informing and engaging.
You’d want your relationship with your patients to be authentic and trustworthy.
Make sure to incorporate these objectives in your medical marketing for doctors:
- Raising awareness
- Delivering relevant information
- Being a trustworthy source of information
- Solving patients’ issues
- Facilitating the process to get in touch with a practitioner
These objectives are what makes healthcare email marketing different from commercial emails.
6 Tactics to Grow Your Healthcare Contact List
Are you just starting your healthcare email marketing? Firstly, you need to start with growing your contact list.
Your contact list can include:
- Existing patients
- Prospective patients
- Website and blog subscribers
Here are 6 tactics that you can start using today to grow your contact list.
1. Obtain your patients’ contact information
This tactic is self-explanatory. It’s the most obvious and a must-do to start feeding your list with new contacts.
If you manage your appointment booking online, then of course, you will be obtaining email addresses to send follow up emails.
But if you have an option that newcomers can book an appointment on-site, still ask them for their email address so you can import this list manually to your email software.
I recommend asking your on-site newcomers to enter their email addresses using a tablet or on a laptop to avoid typos during the importing process.
Typo mistakes can increase your hard bounce rates when you send emails.
2. Allow website visitors to book appointments online
Online appointment booking is a fast and effective way to allow your prospective patients to book available services.
By making your healthcare service accessible online, you’re making your practice available 24/7.
Just make sure to connect your appointment booking tool to Automizy to automate emails to new patients.
3. Promote free consultation calls
Promoting free consultation calls with healthcare professionals is an immense value that can convince your website visitors to register and share their contact details. In return, they receive professional advice.
By doing so, you grow your contact list, and at the same time, you build trust with your audience.
Even prospective patients who are deciding whether to choose you over another healthcare center will see the value in choosing you.
4. Host webinars
For healthcare practitioners, webinars are an opportunity to present information in a more digestible format and grow their audience base.
When you announce an upcoming webinar, those interested in the topic would be happy to register and learn tips and remedies from professionals.
Create a form or a landing page so your audience can easily sign up. And don’t forget to set up a webinar email sequence to welcome and nurture registrants.
5. Create a weekly/monthly newsletter
If you don’t have a blog, you should.
Publishing healthcare-related blog articles help you increase your ranking on search engines and build your authority on a particular topic or industry.
A blog page also allows you to turn your readers into contacts to share with them a weekly or monthly newsletter and then try to upgrade them to paying patients.
Here is an example of a weekly healthcare newsletter that I subscribed for.
It’s great for older people because they don’t like to consume content and spend too much time in front of a screen. Also, a family member can download and print it out for them.
Branding should be present at least on some pages so they will connect the content to your institution and to raise brand awareness.
Healthcare organizations run under the umbrella of HIPPA compliance regulations (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act).
It mainly sets the standard for sensitive patient data protection.
Make sure you’re fulfilling the HIPPA requirements when doing healthcare email marketing to avoid non-compliance issues.
6. Offer topic-specific lead magnets
To provide valuable resources for your website visitors it’s best to offer lead magnets on a specific topic.
Your lead magnet can be:
- Downloadable pdf
- A podcast
- An explanatory video
Here are few topics to inspire your next lead magnet
- Guide for Type 1 Diabetes Patients
- eBook on how to cope with COPD symptoms
- 5-Day meal plan for IBS & gut health
- Weight loss & detoxification
It’s great for older people because generally, they don’t like to consume content and spend too much time in front of a screen. Also, a family member can download and print it out for them.
Branding should be present at least on some pages so they will connect the content to your institution and raise brand awareness.
7 Inspiring Healthcare Newsletter Ideas and Examples to Send to Patients
Now that we’ve seen how to grow your healthcare email list let’s see what kind of emails hospitals and healthcare organizations send to their patients.
To inspire you, we’ve put together 7 healthcare newsletter ideas and examples that you can copy and send to your patients.
1. Verify new patients’ email addresses in a thank-you email
If your hospital or healthcare organization offers online registrations, this is an opportunity to welcome your new patients and thank them for choosing you.
Here is a healthcare email template that works as a double opt-in to verify new patients’ email addresses and thanks them for registering.
2. Onboard new patients
As your patients are worried about their wellness when they book an appointment with you, I recommend doing the best you can to make their experience comfortable.
Onboarding your new patients provides them with the necessary guidelines they need to have a comfortable experience visiting your hospital or institution.
This healthcare email example shares the guidelines in details:
- Location of the testing
- Payment options
- Process on-site
- Test results duration
3. Appointment confirmation emails
If you ask your friend to meet for lunch on a Friday at noon, and s/he doesn’t confirm. Would you still go and wait for him or her?
I thought so.
The same with appointment confirmation emails. If you don’t confirm your patients’ appointments, most probably they won’t show up.
If you’re running email marketing for dentists, here is a straightforward appointment confirmation email for patients to confirm their booking and share with them a form for medical history.
One thing I would have done differently in this appointment confirmation email to add an “Add to Calendar” call-to-action button right in the center of the email.
4. Share educational content and tips
A common email marketing strategy that is valid across industries is to share educational content and show people that you’re there to help and share.
The healthcare industry is among the top concerned industries to share educational content.
Publish helpful articles on your blog in which you share tips and resources to help your patients. Then you can promote these resources and guides in newsletters to engage your patients.
HealthLine takes advantage of email segmentation to promote content specifically to contacts who are interested in similar topics.
5. Update your customers
When significant updates or circumstances happen within your organization, your team is the first to know. Yet, patients don’t have any way of learning about the updates unless you share them.
For that, it’s recommended to share major updates with your healthcare patients and customers, especially if this update concerns them directly.
Here is a heart-warming healthcare email example shared with customers during Hurricane Florence.
They mainly told their customers that the circumstances would affect their orders, and they’re here to help those affected by the hurricane.
Such a healthcare email example shows that you do care about your customers and builds trust.
6. Send birthday wishes to your patients
Healthcare email marketing is about building a long-term relationship with patients.
Sending an automated birthday email is by far the easiest way to let your patients know that they’re important.
In Automizy, you can easily set up an automated birthday email and send out personalized emails automatically throughout the year without repeating the work.
Here is a birthday email example sent to patients from Dr. Bennet.
The email includes a sincere birthday wish, a website link, phone number, and social media channels.
7. Confirm orders
Order confirmation emails work like a safety net for online shopping.
It informs customers that their order was successful and their products are being handed over. Reassuring shoppers for their order and telling them about what’s next.
Here is a healthcare email example for an order confirmation. It’s sent to customers who buy wellness products on their website.
The email is personalized with the customers’:
- First name
- Ordered products
This is a smart healthcare email example to learn from for 3 reasons:
- It confirms the order and shares important information
- Includes a call-to-action to upsell products by promoting the monthly subscription program
- Provides delivery date estimation to set the right expectations for the customer
5 Tips for Creating Effective Email Marketing Campaigns for Hospitals
An excellent healthcare email template does engage your patients, but that’s not all you need to run successful healthcare email campaigns for hospitals.
Here are 5 tips to consider when running email marketing campaigns for hospitals.
1. Test your subject line before sending
It’s no surprise that your email open rates depend significantly on your email subject line.
What if there’s a system that tells you how good is your subject line before hitting send?
With Automizy’s Email Subject Line Tester, you can get a score on how good your subject line is based on data and performance of over a million email subject lines.
Here is a preview of how it scores your subject line and provide you with suggestions to optimize it.
Testing your email subject lines before sending allows you to base your work on data rather than gut feeling.
Your healthcare email newsletter content doesn’t matter unless you make your contact open the email in the first place.
And to get your contacts to open your newsletter, you need a great subject line that convinces them to do so.
2. Send reminder emails
When managing healthcare email marketing campaigns, you’ll work a lot on appointment emails.
It’s best to schedule reminder emails to your patients to make sure no one misses an important appointment.
I recommend you include an “Add to calendar” call-to-action in your reminder emails so contacts can add the appointment as an event to their Google or Outlook calendar.
3. Segment your patients
Your patients are there for different purposes, and that’s enough reason not to treat them all the same when running healthcare email campaigns.
You can use contact tags and fields to label your patients based on:
- Their illness
- If they’re first time patients or returning
- Age, gender, and other demographic data
Segmentation allows you to send relevant content to patients that match their interests and provides the value they actually need.
If your hospital or healthcare center hosts multiple departments for different illnesses, it’s best to use email software that provides sub-accounts.
This way, you can create a tiered account structure and manage multiple departments under one account.
Each department will have separate access with templates and data that only concerns that specific department in your hospital or wellness center.
Register to Automizy email software to manage your hospital’s departments under different sub-accounts.
4. Personalize your email copy
Today, we can’t talk about email marketing without talking about personalization.
Regardless of how many contacts you’re sending emails to, you can still make each email feel personal, as if you sent it manually to a specific patient.
Because of the extensive data disposed at your side, email marketing for healthcare can be highly personalized.
Here are few personalization opportunities to consider when sending emails to patients:
- Use contacts’ first name
- Write email content based on contact tags and information
- Send personalized emails based on interests and opt-in source.
For example, if I have a list of contacts who opt-in on a blog article named “How to gain weight in 8 weeks”, it wouldn’t make sense to send them emails about weight loss.
And vise versa.
Personalizing your emails based on the opt-in source allows you to put the right content in front of the right contact to increase your email engagement rates.
5. Optimize for mobile
47% of all people across demographics use a mobile device for checking their email.
Are your healthcare email campaigns optimized for mobile users? If not, this is something to start with today.
To optimize your emails for mobile, consider the following tips:
- Don’t use large images
- Use responsive email templates
- Be brief and straightforward in your email copy
- Break up paragraphs
- Use call to action buttons instead of text links
How to Create Your First Healthcare Email Marketing Campaign
A significant part of doing healthcare email marketing is about providing your patients with a personalized experience.
This helps them have a more comfortable experience interacting with your healthcare organization.
To run email campaigns for hospitals, you’ll need a suitable healthcare email marketing software.
Register to Automizy email software to create your healthcare email campaigns. Using Automizy allows you to:
- Grow your contact list with forms that you can embed to your website
- Send newsletters to engage and inform your patients
- Set up autoresponders and automated drip campaigns
- Measure and optimize the performance of your campaigns
After you register to Automizy, you’ll need to import your patients’ contact list to be able to send your first campaign.
1. Import your contacts
In Automizy, you have three main option to add your contacts:
- Manual import: To add contacts manually.
- CSV import: To add contacts in bulk by importing a CSV file.
- Integrations: Connect Automizy to your other marketing tools and sync data.
If you’re just starting with healthcare email marketing and don’t have any contacts yet, you can use our form templates to create opt-in forms to embed on your website or share on your social channels.
Here’s a preview of a customizable form that you can use in Automizy.
You can use Automizy forms to create a lead magnet campaign and provide incentives for your website visitors and increase your lead generation performance.
3. Set up confirmation email
As mentioned before, a considerable part of your healthcare email marketing strategy consists of confirming appointments and follow up on registrations.
In Automizy, you can set up email autoresponders for hospitals to confirm a successful booking.
You have to select a trigger when to send your confirmation, thank-you, or welcome email. Here is the list of email triggers that you can use in Automizy.
Once you select your trigger, you add your autoresponder email, and you’ll have the process automated.
4. Nurture prospective patients with drip campaigns
You’d want to build trust with your new patients and collect information about them prior to their appointment.
To do that, you can create drip email campaigns to nurture your patients and deliver important information.
Here is a typical case of a drip campaign when doing healthcare email marketing.
Right after new patients book an appointment, you’d want to:
- Email 1: Welcome new patients
- Email 2: Ask them to fill a form about their medical history
- Email 3: Share more details about your team and organization
- Email 4: Send follow up email after the appointment
This process can be automated and personalized to new patients easily in Automizy. Here is a preview of how similar automation looks like.
The most prominent parts to look after when doing healthcare marketing emails is:
- Providing a comfortable experience for your patients
- Delivering necessary information to patients
- Automating important communications like appointment emails
Once patients leave your hospital or healthcare center, your medium to keep them close and engaged is email marketing.
Register to Automizy today and start building a long-term relationship with your patients and watch your practice grow.