Direct Mail Marketing for Physicians in the Digital Age

Direct mail marketing still works for physicians, as long as the campaign is informative, highly targeted and designed for the digital age.

Email and direct mail cam­paigns are both use­ful assets in the health­care marketer’s tool­box when attempt­ing physi­cian mar­ket­ing out­reach; how­ev­er, direct mail mar­ket­ing for physi­cians in the dig­i­tal age involves very dif­fer­ent return-on-invest­ment (ROI) metrics.

While email cam­paigns require lit­tle expense beyond the cost of the mail­ing list, deploy­ing them doesn’t mean their recip­i­ents will open, let alone respond to, them. Direct-mail mar­ket­ing entails print­ing and mail­ing costs that can vary based on scope. In most cas­es, though, using this vehi­cle to deliv­er your mes­sage vir­tu­al­ly guar­an­tees con­tact with your tar­get audience.

Accord­ing to the results of a 2012 Direct Mar­ket­ing Asso­ci­a­tion sur­vey, direct mail elic­its a 4.4% con­sumer response rate, com­pared with a 0.12% response rate for email. So despite high­er costs than email, stud­ies show direct mail is more effective—and poten­tial­ly more prof­itable when think­ing about physi­cian marketing.

How can you derive the most ben­e­fit from a direct mail cam­paign? Craft­ing your strat­e­gy, know­ing your audi­ence, select­ing the prop­er mes­sage, and being creative—among oth­er best practices—contribute to cam­paign success.

Direct Mail Marketing for Physicians in the Digital Age

To get the most from your direct mail invest­ment, keep these ideas in mind:

  • Know thy­self! Pin­point areas in which your prac­tice lacks patient vol­ume and deter­mine the poten­tial for growth. Cre­ate strate­gic goals based on your practice’s weak­ness­es and strengths.
  • Seek out resources. Read up on dig­i­tal direct mail exam­ples, types of direct mail and dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing, and oth­er resources for direct mail. These ref­er­ences will help inform your own strategies.
  • Research, research, research. What seg­ments of the pop­u­la­tion that aren’t uti­liz­ing a par­tic­u­lar ser­vice are most like­ly to (1) have the need and/or the desire for it and (2) be most like­ly to obtain it? What type of patient does med­ical staff find most advantageous—both finan­cial­ly and per­son­al­ly? These types of ques­tions will help you focus the scope of your cam­paign and achieve a greater ROI.
  • What’s your sto­ry, Morn­ing Glo­ry? Direct mail should be used as a form of intro­duc­tion between a health sys­tem and its physi­cians with new patients. This can be done with a call to action to alert poten­tial patients to a sem­i­nar, new ser­vice, screen­ing or promotion.”
  • “Gogh” the extra mile. To put it sim­ply, make it pret­ty. If your direct mail piece lacks visu­al appeal, it’s like­ly head­ed straight from mail­box to trash can. Engage the recip­i­ent by serv­ing your mes­sage on an attrac­tive platter.

Learn More!

Read the full Amer­i­can Med­ical News arti­cle for more insight­ful tips.

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