The Benefits of Digital Signage in Medical Waiting Rooms
Patients spend a lot of time in medical waiting rooms, well, waiting. The waiting room experience can be nearly as important as the experience during medical treatment, and for many people, the waiting room experience significantly influences how they perceive the following medical treatment.
Thus, people in charge of medical practices and hospitals would do well to optimize the waiting room experience, because the waiting room is not only a place in which certain measures can be taken to improve the patient experience, but it is also a place where medical practices can do their version of in-store marketing, both of which can have a significant positive effect on the businesses revenue.
One of the best tools that owners of medical practices have at their disposal is the revolutionary technology of digital signage. As we will show in this article, there is a wide range of benefits that a medical practice or hospital can get from integrating a digital signage system into the working of their establishment. When waiting room digital signage is done right, both the patients and the business benefit.
What is Digital Signage?
Digital signage refers to the use of digital signs in conjunction with a digital signage solution to display varied forms of content. Digital signage solutions typically come with digital signage hardware, such as a media player, and digital signage software with which you can do content creation, content management, playlists, scheduling, and much more.
The types of content that are available with high-quality digital signage solutions like that offered by loop are many and varied, which is one of the main reasons that digital signage is such a dynamic and powerful tool. The types of media can include images, text, videos, animations, social media feeds, promotions, digital menu boards, and much more.
Moreover, the types of screens that a business can utilize for digital signage are also extensive. Digital signage screens can include consumer-grade TVs, commercial-grade screens, LED walls, tablets, interactive touch screens, digital signage kiosks, and even billboards!
As you can see, there are a lot of options when it comes to how your business can strategically utilize the dynamism of both the digital signage software (and content) and the digital screens to be most effective for your business. And now that we have covered what digital signage is, let's move on to some of the most significant benefits of digital signage in medical waiting rooms.
Benefits of Medical Waiting Room Digital Signage
1. Display Your Services with a Digital Menu Board
Many might think that digital menu boards are only useful for businesses in the service industry like restaurants or bars, but many different kinds of businesses can benefit both themselves and their customers by displaying their services on a digital menu board. So what is a digital menu board and how does it differ from a traditional menu or list of services?
The distinction is pretty simple. Traditional menu boards, either made of some paper or cardboard material or metal are static and cannot be easily changed without replacing the menu entirely. Digital menu boards, on the other hand, are a type of digital signage which allows your business to display your services on a digital screen.
Digital menu boards have the advantage that they can be customized easily and changed when prices or services change without having to replace the digital sign. Many medical treatment facilities employ neither traditional menu boards nor digital menu boards because they think that they do not need them.
However, this decision not to make use of menu boards means that medical care facilities are missing out on a great way of keeping patients informed of all the services offered by the business or clinic and ultimately making more sales. When people go to a medical treatment clinic, whether it be a dental clinic or a general practitioner's clinic, they often do not know all the services that are offered there.
This is a shame because people care a lot about their health, and often, if they know about certain services that will benefit their health, they will jump at the opportunity to add on more services to their visit or make future appointments for these services.
Take the example of a dental clinic. Someone might come to the clinic for a general cleaning appointment. Then, as they are in the waiting room, they may glance at a digital menu board that shows that the clinic offers teeth whitening services and shows the price.
Many patients will not know that this service was offered at this clinic, but once they see that it is offered, they are far more likely to ask about the service and make a future appointment to get teeth whitening. This same idea applies to tons of other services that medical treatment facilities offer, and for that reason, it is a great idea to start making use of medical digital menu boards.
The waiting room is the perfect place for medical digital menu boards because people are sitting around looking for things to occupy their attention. If the menu board was placed somewhere else, the patients might not look over the whole thing because they are preoccupied with other activities.
However, in the waiting room, there is often little to occupy a patient’s attention, so they are likely to give the menu board a good look and think about what they see.
2. Increase Customer Engagement with Social Media
In this digital age, it is essential for nearly all businesses to have a web presence, and this goes for medical treatment clinics as much as any other type of business. It is a good idea for medical businesses not only to have a website but to also have social media accounts.
This does not mean that your business needs to tweet funny content or memes. Medical clinics can use their social media accounts to keep patients informed about promotions, hours changes, and new services, and they can also use social media to conduct polls to get feedback from their business.
With digital signage, your medical clinic can link the physical clinic with the web presence. Using digital signage solutions, medical clinics can display their feeds on screens inside the waiting room. Many patients will likely not know that your business has social media accounts, so this will be great exposure.
Moreover, if they see that you are posting useful content, then they will be much more likely to follow your accounts. Once you gain followers on your social media accounts, this opens up new paths for marketing and customer engagement, which is important for spreading brand awareness, fostering customer loyalty, and ultimately booking more appointments.
3. Another Way to Increase Customer Engagement: Interactive Polls and Feedback
It can often be hard to get good feedback from patients both before and after an appointment. However, with digital signage in waiting rooms, you can be sure to increase the amount of feedback you get (especially for the appointment booking process and the waiting room experience itself).
You can do this by installing interactive digital signage touch screens in your waiting rooms. These can include commercial-grade screens installed in the walls, but they can also include tablets and other touch-optimized devices. On these devices, you can display interactive polls, asking patients about their experience and how they might want the booking process or waiting room experience changed.
This is far more effective than sending follow-up emails, which is traditionally the way that medical clinics get feedback. The fact is that many people ignore these emails unless they have very strong opinions that they want to be expressed, but this leaves many people who do not have as strong opinions (whose opinions are still just as important) unheard of.
The waiting room is the perfect place to get this kind of information from all types of customers. Most people simply do not enjoy doing nothing but waiting, so they will see these interactive polls as a way (maybe even a fun way) to spend the time that they have to wait.
This benefits both the patients who have something to occupy them and also feel like they are able to participate in how the clinic functions because their opinions matter and it benefits the clinic because the clinic gets to increase the amount of feedback so that they can optimize the patient experience.
4. Improve the Patient Experience by Helping them Relax
Medical waiting rooms can be incredibly stressful places for patients. Many people get anxious from visits to the doctor even if they do not have any serious health conditions. This is even more the case with patients who do have serious health conditions. Thus, to improve the patient experience, clinics should do everything that they can to help patients relax.
One of the best ways to help patients relax is by using digital screens to display relaxing content. One example of relaxing content can include nature documentaries, which also offer a significant amount of entertainment value. Another option is to play relaxing music with relaxing visuals displayed on the digital screens.
The digital signage solution from loop has incredible playlists of music and videos specifically geared toward making people relax. If you decide to play relaxing music, which in many cases is highly recommendable, you will definitely want to go with a service that offers streaming like loop.
This is because organizations like ASCAP ensure that music from member artists cannot be played in commercial settings without due compensation. If you simply play any music that you feel like, there is a good chance that you will run into copyright problems, so going with a service like loop is certainly preferable.
5. Let your Patients Market for you with Patient Testimonials
When it comes to a lot of services provided by medical clinics, many patients are skeptical. They can hear all sorts of good things about the treatments from the clinic and its staff, but nothing will convince people better than the words of other people who have undergone the same procedure. This is where digital signage can truly thrive.
With digital signage, you can let your patients do the marketing for you with customer testimonials. Since they will be on digital screens, they will be far more eye-catching than traditional signs. Of course, it is possible to print customer testimonials on traditional signs, but then you are stuck with just a single testimonial unless you want to cover all the walls of the waiting room with testimonials (you probably don’t).
With digital signage, you can create a playlist of testimonials that change after a certain amount of time has passed, allowing you to display multiple patient testimonials without taking up too much space.
6. Show Customers you Care with Health Tips
When people go to a medical treatment facility, they most often really want to believe that the clinic and its staff really do care about their health, rather than just making money from them. There are a number of ways to assure patients that you really do care about them, such as the quality of customer service and the attitude of the medical professionals.
Luckily, digital signage also offers a way you can convey the feeling of care. On your digital signage screens, you can display helpful health tips. These could include tips about exercising, proper diets, regularity of checkups, and much more. The message should be “We want to see you but we hope that your health allows you to see us as little as possible.”
Optimizing the Waiting Room
There are tons of ways that medical facilities and clinics can make good use of digital signage, and one of the most important places for clinics to have digital signage is in the waiting room. People don’t like waiting around, and the time spent in the waiting room can be highly stressful.
With digital signage, you can help keep your patients entertained, give them useful information, advertise your services, and increase customer engagement. The result? More bookings and more loyal customers.