5 Tips for Using Text Messaging as a Healthcare Marketing Channel


What sound notification plays on your phone when you get a text message? Maybe it’s the factory-set ding, a theatrical sound effect, or a song you like. Whatever it is, it creates an almost reflexive response when we hear it. I don’t know about you, but especially as a business owner, I instinctively reach for my phone within seconds of it calling for my attention.

So it’s no surprise that more than 2 trillion texts are sent each year, and an estimated 98% of text messages are read within three minutes of being sent. Text messaging is one of the most prolific tools that our mobile phones offer us. The fact that you don’t need a smartphone to text is a definite contribution to this statistic.

Businesses from most every vertical have recognized the value of SMS in communicating to consumers – and healthcare is no exception. Take a look at 5 healthcare marketing tips to bolster your healthcare brand.

Text Messaging SMS Healthcare Marketing 021. Stay Relevant

You can’t just go out sending text messages to your patients willy-nilly like you do with your friends and family. Segment your audience to message only those who truly need it. Time the messages well so that they sync with the patient’s behavior. Consider the California Department of Public Health. After people visited their flu shot locator, they received a text a week later reminding them to get their shot. About half of these individuals responded, and 90% of them got their vaccinations.

Text Messaging Healthcare Marketing Call To Action 03

2. Have a Strong Call to Action

Your call to action (CTA) is the most important element of the text message itself. The ability to directly influence behavior is arguably what makes texting such an effective marketing channel. What is it exactly that you want patients to do – take their medication, schedule an appointment, read discharge information online? Tell them explicitly.

3. Include a Pretty Link

In cases with a digital call to action like visiting a web article or logging into an account, include the link in the very same text message. Combining the CTA with the means to accomplish it makes for a winning duo. Be sure you use a URL shortening service like goo.gl, bit.ly, or ow.ly so that you’re not sending a massive, rambling collection of letters and numbers.

4. K.I.S.S.

Keep it simple, stupid! We’ve all heard this saying, and it continues to ring true for healthcare marketing. The beauty of text messaging is that they’re short, sweet, and to the point. So make sure that your texts stick to the specific goal and call to action, and say only what you need to say to get your audience to take the next step.

5. Use Your Powers Wisely

Nobody likes a spammer. Not only will you annoy your recipients, you’ll also run the risk of losing subscribers. Make sure that you’re staying strategic with your texts so that they don’t lose their impact. A good SMS marketing campaign will be personal, relevant, and useful.

If you’re looking to bolster your healthcare marketing efforts with a strategic SMS marketing campaign, call us today at (407) 523-0604.