Imagine your friend refers you to a restaurant that serves the best steak in town. You drive there, excited for this new experience, but when you walk through the doors, the chairs are sticky, there’s menus scattered around the floor and the wait staff don’t acknowledge your presence. You’d probably question the quality of the steak, right?
Well the same concept applies to your waiting room. You know you provide quality services, but a first-time patient might have second thoughts if the place is unkempt or the receptionist is busy painting her nails. Whether you like it or not, your patient is judging your quality of service from the second they step in your office. Here are some ways your waiting room can enrich your marketing strategy:
- Consider your branding. Do your written materials convey a slick, professional tone or a fun, casual conversation? Is your patient population largely children or mostly seniors? Design your waiting room to cater to your patient population and to build on the reputation you’ve already established.
- Keep it clean. This is a no-brainer, but sometimes waiting rooms can be tidy one minute and trashed the next. (Again, do you specialize in pediatrics?) Schedule hourly rounds with your front desk staff to clean up, especially after rush hours.
- Advertise all your services. If a patient is visiting your clinic for their allergies, they might not know you also treat hearing loss. One effective way to convey this is through a multi-screener at intake. You can also invest in a big screen TV and advertise with branded Mediplay slides.
- Encourage your front office staff to be engaged. Warm, friendly smiles are only the first step of this. Be sure the patient leaves the front desk with all their questions answered. Strong engagement is also important if you’ve implemented a multi-screener. Follow up is key to bringing patients back in.