How to increase patient retention

Justin Faulkner

How long do your customers hang around for?

Do you see them falling out of care once they have completed their initial treatment plan? Getting patients to transition from pain treatment into life long care is one of the hardest models for a healthcare centre to get right.

This problem can easily be highlighted by looking through your CRM, do you see the typical patterns of patients falling out of care within their first year? What percentage of your patients stay with you after year one? We want this number to be at least 20% of your patients.

I see two phases of care in my clients businesses:

  • Pain to no pain Symptoms
    80-100% of business
  • Maintenance to Lifelong care Transformation
    0-20% of business

You can run a business model on getting your community out of pain. They come to see you to fix their problem, then leave when they are done. But, what if you could hold onto these patients for life? Remember, acquiring a new patient is up to seven times more expensive that retaining an existing one. So this business model can be a pricey game.

To hold onto patients, you need a strong brand value ladder and a strong brand. What can you do to take your pain free patients to the next level of healthcare? You have already gained their trust through taking away the pain, but can you give them more? Getting this next part right is where you transform your patients into lifelong customers, and sets you apart from your competition.

You see, the real value of your business lies in the quality of the relationships you have with your best customers. The customers that stick around after year one. I call these customers your ‘Power Base’. Your Power Base is the group of customers that are the most valuable to your business, your “super customers” if you will. The Power Base should make up at least 20% of your business.

For your Power Base customers, you are their only choice when it comes to healthcare. They buy more frequently and they buy at higher prices. They rave about you to their friends, family, colleagues. They essentially become so aligned with your business and become your biggest marketing asset and bring in other Power Base customers.

So, what if you created your brand offer to be centric around what these customers want? Making your brand just for them. You would likely start to see these customers transitioning from initial care into life long care.

Everything you do eventually comes down to what kind of customers you have, because not all customers are going to be equally valuable. Establishing who your ‘Power Base’ is, and making your brand attract customers who align with your business is one of the fastest ways to grow in profitability, but also grow the purpose and alignment of your centre.

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