How to Market your TympaHealth Service for Pharmacy
So, you’ve signed up for the TympaHealth service. You’re kitted out, you’re trained and ready to go…
Now, you need to acquire some ear and hearing health customers.
Unless you’ve done some serious prep-work on marketing your service, the likelihood is you may be relying on people walking into the pharmacy and complaining about earache. There is a large unmet demand for ear and hearing health services, so this approach will work to some extent, but in order to attract as many customers as possible, we have some handy tips and tricks to fill your ear and hearing health clinic.
This handy guest blog from our partners at Pharmacy Mentor explores all the ways you can spread the word about your new Tympa services.
What do Pharmacy Mentor know about marketing TympaHealth Services?
Pharmacy Mentor work with independent pharmacies all over the UK (and beyond), helping pharmacists just like you to digitise their pharmacies and grow their business. Driving private clinic bookings like the Tympa service is one of the primary focuses in many of our marketing campaigns. We’ve had some real successes for many pharmacies, as well as a few challenges. The tactics outlined below are all tried and tested in the real world, in real pharmacies, with real patients.
What do I need to get started?
This guide is a recipe for success. You need ingredients.
For example, it’s going to be tricky (though not impossible) to run your service without the help of a modern website. You’ll also need to sign-up for various accounts (e.g., Facebook pages, Google Ads) depending on which approach you want to take.
Marketing your TympaHealth service
Let’s start with the basics. You want people booking appointments in your pharmacy.
However, many prospective patients have never heard of you. Most people wouldn’t even think to go to a pharmacy for earache, or earwax removal. Most people still call their GP and wait many months to resolve their hearing health issue.
This guide is about understanding the current journey a patient is taking and putting up signposts directing them to your pharmacy – offering a better solution to their problem.
What’s the current patient journey?
Whilst every patient is different, but the average patient journey looks something like this:
The typical journey, especially for patients used to going to the GP for services like microsuction.
So, your first step in marketing your TympaHealth service is…
Speak to your local GP’s
Let your local Practice Manager or GP know you’re running the clinic. Getting GPs to redirect patients to your pharmacy directly is the most reliable way to drive new patients. It’s a win-win situation because you are helping reduce practice waiting lists whilst gaining new customers for your business.
If you don’t want to have to manually book appointments for every single patient, consider adding a booking calendar into your website, and getting the GP to refer the patients to your website. Many people prefer checking availability and booking appointments themselves over speaking to someone on the phone, so this is a handy option.
Building a relationship with your GP allows you to jump the competition.
Optimise Your Website for Search Engines
Nowadays, lots of people go to “Dr. Google” as their first port of call. The NHS website has information and a Find a Pharmacy tool which ranks at the top of the results page.
But all that does is show you pharmacies nearby. None of the pharmacies listed in my area had ear treatment in their list of services. As it stands, it’s an extremely frustrating process from a patient’s point of view. Most people will go back to Google and look for a website where you can view available treatments and services and book easily…however, it’s probably worth updating your NHS Choices profile to include your new service, in case people soldier on looking for it.
The modern patient journey is increasingly becoming the norm.
- Get a modern, easy to use, website design. If people cannot quickly and easily find the information they are looking for they will continue their search elsewhere.
- Create a simple journey on your website where it’s quick and easy to book an ear and hearing health appointment. This means using a booking calendar, with plenty of links to it in relevant places from across your website.
- Fill the page with the content (information) people need to understand whether they should book or not. When creating this content, it’s often useful to think of the FAQs your customers ask when speaking to you about hearing health appointments.
- Optimise your content for your local area. (See the Pharmacy Mentor complete guide to pharmacy SEO for help on this)
- For bonus points, you can even add a pre-assessment form and payment options, which will save you from doing them on the day, and makes no-shows far less likely.
Do these things and your website will rise to be one of the top results on Google. And when people search for “Ear Health Clinics” / “Hearing Health Services” near them, you’ll be one of the top results.
It’s important to understand that your competition for ranking on Google is localised. If you’re creating a web-page in Carlisle, you aren’t competing with websites in London. Being ranked at the top of Google can take time, however. During this time, you can utilise Google Ads to pay to appear at the top of Google.
Google Ads: Paying to Win
You can create the world’s greatest web-page, with an informative article, great keyword optimisation and lots of lovely referential links. Despite this, someone can simply come along and pay Google and they’ll appear above you in the search engine results page. This is how Google primarily makes their money, and it’s highly effective if done correctly.
Now, not everyone clicks on Ads. Some people understand that the organic results are usually better quality and more trustworthy sources. But lots of people do click on ads. If a patient has a problem, and one of the ads seems to have a solution, they will click on it.
You can’t stop this. Some savvy people are already advertising “ear and hearing health services” on Google. If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.
Whilst Google Ads can be expensive if done incorrectly, if done right they will generate more through clinic bookings than it costs you to advertise. If you Google “Ear Wax Removal” or something similar right now, you’ll likely see Google Ads there. That’s where your Google Ads appear (if done right.) Check out the Pharmacy Mentor full guide to Google Ads if you want more detail.
That isn’t the end of the conversation when it comes to advertising either.
Facebook Ads and how to use them
Facebook Ads are what we’d consider a supplementary tactic to your marketing strategy. That’s partially due to the differences in targeting an “active” vs a “dormant” audience.
Facebook Ads reach people who weren’t even thinking about ear health.
Firstly, what do we mean by “active” and “dormant” audiences? The active audience are aware of their need for an ear and hearing health service and are in the process of actively looking for an offering to suit their needs. The dormant audience needs your service, but either doesn’t need it right now or don’t realise you offer a solution to meet their needs.
Think of Facebook Ads as a billboard that you can show to a specific audience. What are the odds that a person walking past a billboard with a burger on it happened to be looking for a place to buy a burger? Pretty low. And whilst it might influence their choice of where to get a burger the next time they want one, they might just as easily forget all about it.
However, a consistent Facebook Ad strategy can keep your pharmacy at the forefront of people’s minds, so that when they do need the service, remember you and return to purchase.
What’s more, compared to billboards/leaflets, Facebook advertising is cheap. Because you only pay for the people you want to see it, and there aren’t any printing costs. Let’s say your prime audience is over 40. You can’t solely target 40-year-olds and above with a billboard advertisement. You pay for everyone who walks past it. Facebook charges less, because it only shows the ad to specific people, those who may require your Tympa services.
All these tactics we’ve highlighted work best in conjunction with each other, as part of a wider strategy. A Facebook Ad, for instance, can grab people’s attention, but without a great landing page to send people to, you’ll struggle to convert.
Will these tactics definitely work for me?
There are a wide range of variables that can affect the success of any marketing campaign. Marketing isn’t a magic wand. Otherwise no business would ever fail.
One of the biggest benefits of digital marketing, however, is that everything is tracked. So, if something isn’t working, you can learn why it’s going wrong, and put it right.
This guide is simply to highlight the opportunities available to market your ear and hearing health clinic. These are the ways real pharmacies, like you, are making successes of their clinics.
We understand as a pharmacy owner you are extremely busy. If you don’t have the time to put these tactics into action, click below to find out how Pharmacy Mentor can support you and ensure your ear and hearing health clinic is never short of customers.
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