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Did you know that there’s a right way and a wrong way to email patients?  Especially prospective LASIK patients.

Let’s say you have a list of LASIK leads in your database that you’d like to reactivate into new patients.  The most common approach is to create a fancy email with a lot of attractive graphics and present an offer.  Typically you’ll add a couple stock photos of people laughing or breaking their glasses with a hammer.

But that’s all wrong.  And your response rate and ultimately your new patient rates are suffering because of it.

I’ve sent hundreds of emails and tested both ways.  And I’ll explain my findings below.

The Wrong Way To Email

After you make the decision to create a new email to your LASIK leads, you probably employ your staff or outside marketing team to do so.

The majority of the time, they’ll come back to you with something that looks similar to this:

Screen shot 2014-03-12 at 3.29.11 PM

Now although this email is visually appealing.  It does something very damaging to your efforts.  The template, images, and format all scream “SALES MESSAGE.”

You only have a matter of seconds to capture a prospects attention and if they open your email and immediately assume they’re being sold to, they’ll glide their mouse over and click “delete.”

The Right Way To Email

Thankfully, there is a right way to email patients.  And as off-putting as it may sound, its just using regular ol’ plain text.

And here’s why.

Just as the graphical email above screams “sales message.”  When a prospect opens your plain text email, they’re forced to take the time to decipher if this message is personal to them, important, or something they need to attend to.  Thus, your message is getting read.

Think about your own email inbox for a moment.  Are you more likely to respond to an EHR company trying to sell you their software or a quick email from your college friend?

You want to make your message appears as though it’s coming from a personal friend and here’s a few tips how:

  1. Make Sure The “From” Name is a Real Person Opposed to the Practice Name
    Create the email to come from either your staff’s name or your name.  Our tests have proven a bump in response rate when the emails come from the doctor themselves, labeled as “Dr. John Doe”.
  2. Make the Emails Personable
    If your email marketing engine allows, there is a function to add the prospects first name.  Addressing them at the beginning of the email by their first name commands attention.  This is tricky as you want to be sure you’re calling them by the correct name.  For example only my mother and my wife call me “Nicholas,” opposed to “Nick,” and I usually don’t like what follows.  Kidding.
  3. Tell a Story
    The best responses you’ll get is from telling a story.  Have you seen something out and about that made you think of a way to reference to LASIK?  Or have a patient hug you so hard after LASIK that you couldn’t breathe?  These are great to share with your email list as people are hard-wired to tune into stories.
  4. Don’t Forget Your Call-To-Action
    Just because we’re using plain text doesn’t mean we water down the opportunity to come into your practice.  After you tell the above story always reference how they can schedule a consult or call the practice.  Always.

 

To be honest, I get a lot of push back on this concept from doctors.  However, when they do give it a shot and start getting real replies from LASIK leads, they’re pleasantly surprised.

Now that you have this information, go ahead and give a plain text email a try the next time you’re looking to promote your services to your email subscribers.  If you’d like a second set of eyes, feel free to reach out to me at 515.707.6593 or nick@thepatientpipeline.com and I’d be happy to help you with your next email.

 

To your practice,

Nick