Consumer trends can move fast in many industries, and the optometry sector in particular is beginning to see the effects of hastening digital trends. Keeping up with these trends can be a big task and it can be difficult to navigate exactly how we should be engaging with consumers from month to month.
Engagement is vital in attracting customers but also in retaining them too. How we engage often determines how successful the entire consumer journey is from start to finish. In the optical sector specifically, it’s important to consider what is important to patients, what you want to get from engaging with them and also the means in which you engage with them.
We’re sure you’ll find it unsurprising that online engagement is key in keeping up with your target audience. With 6.6 billion smartphone users in 2022 (oberlo.co.uk), it would be silly not to consider taking digital methods of engagement into account. What digital avenues should we explore?
Digital advertisements boost your exposure in a multitude of ways. Utilising your social media channels allows for potential patients beyond your audience to see and interact with your content and digital ads are a perfect way to do this. As well as this, combining paid advertising with your organic social efforts will allow double the exposure and different segments of your audience to get the chance to engage with you.
Email marketing is ideal for engaging with your current consumer base but also with any consumers who have signed up to your newsletters or interacted with your social media advertisements. Using email campaigns allows you to send out targeted content to different segments of your lists allowing for maximum engagement.
Video is a growing marketing engagement tool which will continue to expand as digital content becomes the norm over other types of content. 79% of marketers who weren’t using video planned to build a video strategy in 2022 and 99% of those who are already using it are planning to use it more (hubspot.com). Video allows for you to really showcase your business and what you can offer your consumer, it’s also an engaging and efficient way of interacting with your audience.
Compelling calls to actions are what encourage your audience to really engage with you. Eye catching calls to actions that will lead to a useful interaction for the consumer are vital in encouraging their engagement. Here are some examples of intriguing calls to action from Hubspot.
Patient success stories and testimonials will ensure that you gain the trust of your consumer in order for them to interact with you. Sharing success stories are a great way to engage with your current consumer base as well as potential patients. In healthcare sectors especially, we know the patient will be looking for knowledge that they can trust your organisation before interacting with you. Nuffield Trust has stated that “there are many benefits that can accrue from a trusting relationship, including open communication of information, improved adherence to medical advice, improvement of health outcomes and better patient experience.” Therefore, attempting to build this trust through better engagement and the sharing of other patient experiences can only help to obtain the above mentioned benefits for you and your patients.
These methods of engagement are not an exhaustive list but a good indicator or where to start or where to look at refreshing or improving. IbisVision understands the patient journey and how engagement can fit into improving outcomes for our optometrist and patient users. IBIS-Engage is a part of our platform that allows for engagement before the patient has even booked an appointment for an online eye test. Find out more about this by getting in touch with our team here, or you can see more information on IBIS-Engage, here.