Patient Recruitment During the Holidays, Part II
Now that we have pin-pointed the most prominent pros and cons for patient recruitment during the holidays, we also want to provide some insight from our own experience in recruiting patients at this time of year. Not every tactic will be successful, but here are a few that we feel confident will work best for attracting new patients, as well as how and when to use them.
Radio – If you flip through the radio stations in your area between Thanksgiving and Christmas, you are bound to find a station that plays Christmas music around the clock. The stations that temporarily switch to all holiday music between Thanksgiving and Christmas see huge increases in ratings at this time of year. It is not unusual for listenership to double on holiday stations. The ratings boom that Christmas music stations experience applies to all demographics. This boom in audience often comes with a premium price tag, and spiked rates.
Radio stations that stick to their regular programming see fluctuation in their audience, losing some listeners to holiday stations and others who are busy traveling or celebrating the holidays. The volume of bids decreases spots and in many cases stations are willing to decrease rates aggressively to fill their spots. Radio ads can be produced very quickly and can be targeted to a specific audience based on the format and genre of the station.
Social Media – Advertising through social media definitely has its advantages over other mediums. It is an inexpensive alternative to other advertising methods and a great way to find people easily by targeting based on interests, age, or demographics, if needed. There are many different style ads and formats to choose from to appeal to your target audience. Facebook provides insights to your organic and paid activity to help you better analyze your marketing campaigns.
Google AdWords– As we mentioned previously, with users having time off, they are usually taking this time to book end of the year appointments with doctors, but also are taking the time to search symptoms that they have been ignoring. From a central recruitment campaign for an ADHD study we ran last year, we found that during the week of Christmas, spending remained consistent and while ad positioning increased a bit, it still remained under the 2.0 parameters we strive to stay under to be successful.
Your recruitment campaign can go far, even during the holidays. These are only a few of the tactics that we would recommend based on what we have seen work in our prior experience. Our team starts planning for holiday campaigns as early as June and July! If you are not sure where to begin, give us a call or contact us below by asking one of our "Experts" how ClinEdge can help you with your clinical research studies from start to end!