Thinking of holding an open house to introduce your new practice, welcome a new physician or tell the community about a new service or treatment you’re offering? You may be on the right track.
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Physician open houses are an excellent marketing tool to garner new patients, keep your name top of mind in the community and share new treatments and services. But you need a reason to hold an open house.
“You don’t just do an open house and give everybody canapes and a glass of wine,” says Maria Todd, strategist, consulting expert, and CEO of Mercury Healthcare International. “That’s expensive and it doesn’t give any return on investment.”
It’s the same way having a website doesn’t mean you’ll get new patients. The website is just a door, Todd explains.
Similarly, an open house is one type of marketing vehicle that may usher in new patients.
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“But there is a buying cycle and a path through the tunnel, which physicians may not see initially,” says Todd. An open house may lead to new patients, referrals from other physicians and potential long-term income—down the road.
Tell a story
When holding a physician open house, it should tell a story—the why factor. Who are you and why are you holding the event? It seems people might not care what your business is, but they always care about why you do it. That story should be front and center at your open house and it must resonate with guests so that their next step is a call to action.
That might be next week or next year, but without the story, you may never get the call to action you’re looking for. “We tried doing one for no reason once, and it didn’t really draw anybody,” says Floyd Russak, MD, an internist and medical director of East-West Health Centers in Greenwood Village, Colorado.
Russak’s seven physician internal medicine practice typically only holds open houses now to announce a new physician or new treatment, and have found them very effective in getting new patients.