2018 is now less than two months away, and the time has come to start planning for the new year. We’ve put together a few tips to guide you through the planning process. Here’s a quick and easy guide to setting your marketing goals and determining your budget.
Schedule a Planning Session
Establishing your practice’s goals and objectives is the first key to success. Do you want to increase brand loyalty amongst existing patients? Or are you strictly focusing on bringing in new patients? Once you know what you want to achieve with your marketing, you can determine the marketing strategies required to reach them and calculate the budget you’d need for implementation.
Establish Your Target Unit Sales
Though you know sales are essential for your practice’s success, you may not know the exact percentage you need to hit in order to keep your practice growing. Your minimum growth should be at least 4% higher than last year’s total sales. Base your monthly goals on your total annual goal.
Determine Your Needed GT/NU Ratio
The Gross Test to Net Unit Ratio (GT/NU) helps you calculate how many hearing appointments it takes to sell one item or unit. The average is 1.5 hearing tests to a sale of one hearing unit. For the best results, aim to keep the ratio as low as possible.
Set the Target Number of Hearing Tests
Based on your GT/NU Ratio, determine how many hearing tests you’d need to reach your target sales. Set a total for your monthly and the annual goals and meet it each time.
Specify Your Marketing Budget
State clearly how much should go into marketing efforts. You can set a fixed amount or specify a certain percentage of your gross sales. For example, you can set 10% of last year’s gross sales as your marketing budget.
Distribute It Accordingly
Aim to have diverse methods of targeting your patients. Spread out your marketing investment instead of merely relying on only a single channel. More touch points means more opportunities to connect with exisiting patients and reach new ones.
Optimize Your Use of Direct Mail
Direct mail is known to be one of the most effective marketing strategies, as 86% of people enjoy getting mail from practices they trust (HubSpot). Start by reviewing how well your direct mail campaigns performed this year. What can you do to improve the response rate to your direct mail? Who can you send these to?
Promote Low Cost Marketing Strategies
There are several methods to promote your practice at without any exorbitant fees, such as patient referrals and patient reviews. Referrals are the most favored because of people’s high level of trust in feedback and the absence of costs involved.
Record All Costs
The strategies that work best for your practice are those that yield the most profit. It might not be obvious in the gross sales but those with the least cost. Know where your money goes. You might be spending on a strategy that looks effective but is costing you more than other methods.
Keep Track of the Results
How’s your target market responding to your marketing? Some of the things to look at are the number of hearing tests booked, the number of cancelled tests, the number of hearing aids sold, the GT/NU ratio, referrals, etc.
This is the general flow of a marketing plan. For more tips, call BlueWing Hearing today.