How to Focus on ROR — Return on Relationship

Everybody talks ROI (return on investment), but what about ROR (return on relationship)? Here are some strategies for growing your practice’s ROR.

TipThe key is to find out which networking site the majority of your patients–the ones you want to target, anyway—use the most.”

2/3 of Americans regularly use at least one social media networking site
Obviously, you can’t build a relationship unless you can connect in the first place. According to Pew Research, while newspaper readership continues to decline, more than 2/3 of American adults regularly use at least one social media networking site. That number crosses all ages, incomes, etc.

The key is to find out which one the majority of your patients–the ones you want to target, anyway—use the most. Then focus on building your community with that one first. How do you find out? Ask them in-office or survey them online.


According to Lisa Karl, co-founder of Savvy Digital Business, “Look at the big brands and you’ll see a marketing strategy that depends on cultivating and continuing a relationship (ROR). There’s a reason you think ‘Coke’ when you think of soda, and it’s not because Coca-Cola saturates everything with ‘buy, buy, buy’ ads. They tell stories and build relationships.”

Here’s some of what you can do in your own practice to grow relationships.

GOALS: Like Coke, your social media platform isn’t the place to sell, but instead to build three things: loyalty, confidence (by answering customer/patient questions), and an engaged community.

CONTENT: A great starting point is to come up with themes for each day of the week. That gives you a framework, and as you see relevant information, you can drop it into your file for the appropriate day. Though there are lots of approaches, here’s an approach offered by Savvy Digital Business:

Monday, inspiration saying with an image;
Tuesday, customer testimonial;
Wednesday, question of the day;
Thursday, what’s new or next;
Friday, employee shout-out.
If you do weekends, try a fun photo on Saturday and on Sunday a link to an article or something else your audience will value.

PLATFORMS: Find out where you customers are. How? Ask them! Marry that information to what you think is best for your business and start building. Get comfortable with one platform before moving on to developing another.

TIME: You or someone on staff needs to spend the equivalent of 30 minutes a day, according to Savvy Digital Business. Schedule it into your weekly calendar, and carve out the 30 minutes into two 15-minute segments. That’s more realistic than trying to find one 30- minute period…and sticking with it.

METRICS: Check your own metrics. Is there a pattern to times when you get responses, or are there topics that resonate more than others?

WHAT ABOUT YOU? The best thing of all is that this information is free. All you have to do is  dig into it to ascertain when and what to post and how best to target your audience.

What have you done in your practice to engage patients and build your own social media community? Have you found one platform works better than others? Please join in the conversation and share on our Facebook page here.

Erinn Morgan