To Every Thing There is a Season

Written By Laura Allen, VP of Sales & Marketing on September 23, 2019

To every thing there is a season. Retailers are all about seasonal marketing...and it irritates some of us! Halloween is still a month away, but walk into a big box store and you'll think Christmas is upon us. Valentine's Day cards, candy, and gifts will be on the shelves before the Christmas sales end, and the Mother's Day promotions will start before the Valentine's Day marketing is over. It's a revolving (and overlapping) seasonal merchandising extravaganza. 

Healthcare providers don't usually jump on that bandwagon. While you might see a Christmas tree or other holiday decorations at the doctor's office, you're not bombarded with sale signs. But there are plenty of ways to do seasonal marketing in an ethical and professional manner, no matter what kind of practice or business you have. 

Today, for example, is the first day of Autumn. The changing of the seasons is always a marketing opportunity. It may not be as obvious as July 4 or Christmas, but it's a good time to remind people to get their annual physical, flu shot, or schedule an adjustment or massage appointment. Almost every healthcare provider nowadays has a website, and many have social media pages as well. Many providers now use online booking, and for massage therapists, spas, and day spas, that often includes online gift certificate sales. It's a nice service to offer the public, and it's time-saving and convenient for all involved. 

Other than the obvious holidays, there are awareness months--such as Breast Cancer Awareness Month (October) or Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month (April)--to take advantage of. Reminding women to do self-care examinations, and reminding all to schedule their checkups is a timely thing to do. 

There are also numerous appreciation days and weeks. You might offer discounts or special services, or give a small gift to the populations those honor. It could be something as simple as a flower or a pen (with your business name imprinted on it, of course). Law Enforcement Appreciation Day is January 9. February 15 is Caregivers Appreciation Day. Teacher Appreciation Week is May 3-9 in 2020. During the years I owned a clinic, we gave free chair massage all day to veterans on every Veteran's Day, and set up a table with coffee and cake for them to have while they were waiting. It was always a great experience. 

One of my favorites, for many years, has been "Silly Holidays." It's a fun update to add to your social media or e-mails. 

The hallmark of good marketing is consistency. Invite people to sign up for your newsletter (and if you don't have one, get one!) and to follow you on social media. Be diligent with e-mail campaigns, but strike a balance and avoid e-mailing so often that it's irritating. Make regular posts on your social media, and keep your website updated with specials and announcements, and links where they may follow you or your business on FB, IG, Twitter, or other platforms. Encourage reviews, and give the kind of service that inspires good ones. You can always share those testimonials. Word-of-mouth is the best advertising, and it's free.