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MARKETING


UntIl A CUStoMER DEAlS WItH YoU DIRECtlY AnD ACtUAllY BUYS YoUR PRoDUCtS oR SERVICES, YoUR ADVERtISIng MAY foRM tHEIR fIRSt IMPRESSIonS of YoUR BUSInESS. ADVERtISIng CAn CERtAInlY AttRACt nEW CUStoMERS - BUt onlY If It'S DonE PRoPERlY. otHERWISE It CAn DEtER PotEntIAl CUStoMERS…


MARKETING


tHE PERfECt MEDICInE foR A HEAltHY BUSInESS


By Jason Andrews A


dvertising is an important part of your marketing strategy. the aim is to promote your


business and communicate your message and reach your audience. the end goal is usually to increase awareness or sales.


there’s an old saying, ‘if you open the doors, they will come’. Although this may be true in some situations, you shouldn’t depend on it when it comes to getting new customers to your pharmacy. opening your doors and implementing innovative programs is only half the battle of pharmacy ownership.


If you want new customers, you need to be proactive in getting them to your store. Do not assume your customers only come to you when they are sick.


Huge UK grocery retailers have put the squeeze on small independents, but there are still opportunities, especially within pharmacy, where you and your staff can offer that personal touch to your customers.


54 - PHARMACY In foCUS


Marketing is an important aspect of operating any successful business, but you may be reluctant to market your pharmacy. Maybe it’s because you don’t want to spend money on marketing, or is it a case of you don’t know how to get started?


Regardless, it’s essential that you overcome any obstacles so you can compete with the national chains and the potential threat of online pharmacies. Many businesses have felt they did not need to advertise and, ironically, the only time they spent money on local newspaper advertising and window graphics was for their ‘closing down’ sale.


learning how to effectively market your pharmacy is a process, and it’s not something that will happen overnight. It takes a bit of trial and error while you figure out which tactics will resonate with your customers and prospects. However, you shouldn’t be discouraged when something doesn’t work the way you anticipated. Instead, learn from the situation and try something different.


Do you need some ideas on how to best market your pharmacy?


Here are some tips:


1. Create a helpful and informative website In today’s digital age, people spend a significant amount of time online doing research before making a purchase decision.


Customers, who are looking to switch pharmacies, will spend time online figuring out which pharmacy is right for them. If you don’t already have a website, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity to gain new customers.


If you already have a website, spend some time reviewing it, and think about how you can make it more helpful to your visitors. great pharmacy websites include information about services offered, store opening hours and much more.


think about what questions potential customers may have, and do your best to answer those questions on your website.


Your pharmacy’s website is an essential element of your marketing toolkit which can help you reach more people, gain new customers, and increase sales.


2. Sales and promotions Sales and promotions are a great way to attract new customers to your store and promote your business. You might consider offering discounts on over-the-counter medications or giving away free, useful items such as reusable shopping bags with purchase. Another idea is to host monthly or quarterly health-related promotions like free health screenings or gift card giveaways for flu shots.


3. News releases for new programs and products Whenever you implement a new program or offer new products, consider sending out a news release to local media outlets announcing the launch. news releases can help you gain news coverage, helps raise brand awareness, and gets your name out in the community.


focus on sending out news releases for programs that benefit your community, such as free vitamin programs and free health screenings. Additionally, send out news releases whenever you host an event at your pharmacy. news releases help get the word out to a larger audience and will attract local people to your store who aren’t already customers.


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