April 5, 2018
Inside: Drive more business to your independent pharmacy through pharmacy email marketing. It’s a powerful marketing tool for small businesses.
When it comes to marketing, the inbox is the next best thing to talking to patients face-to-face.
Email marketing can help your pharmacy tell patients about updates at your pharmacy, describe your services, and sell your products.
Although you may be looking into email marketing for the first time, the format has been around for years. And, it’s only growing more important.
In fact, 91 percent of U.S. adults like to receive promotional emails from companies they do business with.
Today’s savvy technology users expect to receive regular emails from businesses. And they like when they’re helpful, compelling, and related to subjects they care about.
Email can serve as a powerful marketing tool for your pharmacy. It gets into your patients’ personal space through their inbox. And with the right email, you can drive patients to take an action, like visiting your pharmacy for an immunization or buying a product.
Before you can get more business with pharmacy email marketing, you need to make sure you have the email marketing basics down. Here’s an overview of what to do.
Instead of emailing patients directly from your business email address, use a reputable email marketing service.
An email marketing service will:
Before you can send emails, you need to get your patients to opt-in to receive emails from you.
Ways to get people to opt-in:
Businesses that send promotional emails have to follow the CAN-SPAM Act, a law that sets the rules for commercial email, establishes requirements for commercial messages, gives recipients the right to have you stop emailing them, and spells out tough penalties for violations.
But the law isn’t difficult to follow.
Check out this CAN-SPAM guide from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
You have to provide your patients something of value when you email them. Or, why are you emailing them in the first place?
Types of emails to send:
Send regular emails so your pharmacy stays top-of-mind with patients.
Finding the right frequency requires a delicate balance. Use the metrics provided by your email marketing service to gauge if you’re sending too many or too few emails.
Look at your open rates to see if they’re holding steady or increasing (you’re sending the right amount of emails.) And, check your unsubscribe rate. (If it’s increasing, you may be sending too many emails.)
Now that you understand the basics, you can use pharmacy email marketing to drive more business from new and current patients.
Email marketing can engage your patients, help them feel more a part of your pharmacy, and get more business from them.
Make sure to give patients an equal dose of education and promotion in your emails.
Try these five ways to use email marketing to get more business from your current patients.
Send patients personalized emails based on the products and services they use with your pharmacy.
For example, send patients flu shot reminders this year if a patient received an immunization at your pharmacy last year.
Send patients personal coupons they can print out and bring into your pharmacy for a discount on front-end merchandise.
For example, send patients an offer on vitamins that reflects their age or gender, such as a discount on women’s multivitamins or a coupon for buy-one-get-one-free calcium supplements for seniors.
Thank your current patients for their loyalty. Send them emails with exclusive coupons, promotional codes, or offers. Be sure to incorporate any promotions with your loyalty rewards program.
If your pharmacy is experiencing a lull, use pharmacy email marketing to move people to action.
Create an email with a front-end offer if you’ve experienced a slump in front-end sales to drive immediate foot traffic. Or, send an email reminding patients to get a flu shot when numbers dip toward the end of flu season.
Hosting an event, like a customer appreciation day or immunization clinic?
Build excitement for the event with pharmacy email marketing.
When you tell your patients about the event in advance, you’ll likely get a better turnout.
Besides connecting with current patients, you can also use email marketing to drive new business to your pharmacy. Try these three ideas.
Send your current patients an email requesting that they review your pharmacy on popular review websites, like Yelp or Google.
Often all your loyal patients need is a reminder that they can help out your business by posting a rave review.
Send a friendly email to current patients asking them to refer your pharmacy to their family and friends.
Remind them that their hometown pharmacy relies on referrals from happy customers to keep the doors open.
Use email marketing to gather information about your current patients, so you can better market to new patients.
For example, ask current patients how they learned about your pharmacy. If you find a lot of your current patients found your pharmacy through Facebook, then ramp up your marketing efforts through that platform.
Now you’re ready to use this powerful marketing tool to drive new—and repeat—business to your pharmacy.
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