Tangibility vs. Technology
Why Going Totally Digital Could Hurt Your Recall Program

From smartphones to social media, we have endless ways to speak to one another. These high-tech forms of communication have made their way into practices across the country via digital recall programs. Automated texts or emails to confirm and remind patients of appointments are enormously helpful to your staff. But can going exclusively digital hurt your business? In this post, SmileMakers explores print, and where it stands in today’s society.

Print vs. Digital
There’s no question that digital has its benefits. Emails and Tangibility vs. Technology: Why Going Totally Digital Could Hurt Your Recall Program 
texts reach patients in an instant. And with a little set up, automation can end up saving you time and energy. But there’s something beneficial to having a tangible, printed reminder rather than relying on a message that disappears when you close your computer or turn off your phone.

Think about it in terms of visibility. When patients get an appointment card, they can tack it to the family bulletin board or hang it on the fridge. A physical reminder helps keep the appointment top of mind, unlike texts or emails that can go unchecked for weeks or even months.

The Science Behind Receiving Mail
Think back to the days when you were a kid. Getting something in the mail was exciting! Whether it was a birthday card from grandma, a letter from a pen pal, or your favorite magazine, the feeling it gave was wonderful. There’s something about receiving mail that still fires off endorphins. 59% of respondents in a 2012 Epsilon study agreed that they enjoyed getting postal mail from brands about new products.

Tangibility vs. Technology: Why Going Totally Digital Could Hurt Your Recall Program 
And it’s not just about feeling good either. When we check an email or text, if we are too busy to immediately respond, it could get lost in the interwebs. Once it’s out of sight (i.e. when you turn off your computer), it’s out of mind. That tangible reminder, on the other hand, allows you to come back to it when you’re ready. In fact, 73% of U.S. consumers say they prefer direct mail because they can browse information at their convenience.

Even if only a fraction of current and potential patients respond to recall cards or mailers, statistically, direct mail is still an extremely effective marketing strategy. U.S. advertisers report a 1,300% return on direct mail spending. With stats like those, why wouldn’t your practice take advantage of postal mail? 

Tangibility vs. Technology: Why Going Totally Digital Could Hurt Your Recall Program

Even millennials are doing it
You might think millennials have a stronghold on technology, and aren’t looking back. But you’d be wrong. A 2016 United States Postal Service review found that 47% of millennials look forward to checking their mail each day. Nearly half of the least likely generation to respond to mail is interested in it. The odds are in your favor. Now all you have to do is pick a card!

Looking for the perfect mailers?
Personalize your message with custom recall cards! SmileMakers has endless design options, and will print the messages that speak to your patients free of charge! Looking for other ways to promote your practice with tangible products? Visits SmileMakers Marketing Your Practice page today! 

Dee, Denny (2013, September 06) 6 Direct Mail Stats That Can’t Be Ignored Retrieved from https://www.epsilon.com/a-brand-new-view/region/6-direct-mail-stats-that-cant-be-ignored/ 

Vinnedge, Phil – USPS & Summit Research (2016, March) USPS Mail Moments 2016 Review Retrieved from https://tensionenvelope.com/sites/default/files/2016_mail_moments_report_may_160504_1400.pdf