Recently I saw a billboard for a pediatric clinic that also offers urgent care services, and the billboard had me doing a double-take. As you can see in the photo below, the messaging is clear: the clinic’s urgent care services are offered from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturdays.

So what had me doing the double-take? Billboards are exceptionally expensive, and even urgent care centers that are open seven days a week have trouble justifying the cost of outdoor marketing of this scale. I find it difficult to believe an urgent care center that is only open one day a week is seeing a large enough return on their investment to justify the cost of such an expensive marketing tool. Marketing your urgent care center’s services is crucial to its success. After all, how are patients supposed to utilize your services if they don’t know your facility exists? However, you also want to ensure you’re maximizing your marketing dollars to ensure you’re getting the most out of your investment. Billboards may seem like an attractive marketing tool – they’re big and often flashy. However, it doesn’t mean it’s the right marketing tool for your urgent care center. When you’re only open for limited hours, there is a limit to the number of patients you can see and, therefore, a limit to the revenue it’s possible for you to achieve. It’s important to consider more than just the big and flashy when planning your marketing strategies. Utilize tools that are cost-effective, hit your target audience, and emphasize quality over quantity.What are some marketing tools your urgent care center has utilized? What worked for you? What didn’t? I’d be interested to hear about your experiences.