How to Get Your Pharmacy’s Word-of-Mouth Marketing to Soar


For decades, word-of-mouth has been an effective way to obtain new patients, yet almost no pharmacy has a strategy to ignite those conversations.

It seems that word-of-mouth is often taken for granted, assuming that competency as a pharmacist is enough to cause chatter—it’s not.

The Pharmacy Sage will finally show you the practical framework you need to turn patients into volunteer marketers.

People don’t talk about “good,” they talk about “different,” and “superior.” Something about your pharmacy that you do differently for patients is what gets remembered and shared. It’s your talk trigger.

Here are four requirements to be an effective talk trigger:

  • be remarkable
  • be relevant
  • be reasonable
  • be repeatable

The following ideas are vital because they embrace the above criteria and demonstrate how to activate this valuable part of your marketing machine. Thus, they activate word-of-mouth marketing.

  • Remodel and create an ambience that causes people to gasp, to “ohh and ahh.”
  • Dispense information and education about dealing with chronic diseases in ways that other pharmacies do not.
  • Create a culture of excellence regarding the information and education that your entire team embraces and dispenses. Make certain that anything and everything your team says and does reinforces this culture of excellence.
  • Occasionally, do something extraordinary as described below.

Be certain to include why you’re doing what you’re doing in all verbal and written communications. Also, include in your website and blog posts ways that you will contribute to and influence your readers so that they become an army of marketers for you.

To Propel Word-of-Mouth Marketing, Put These Talk Triggers to Work  

  • Patients are exceedingly well satisfied with your solutions to their aches, pains, and other maladies.  
  • You incite them to shout your praises to the high heavens because you constantly share information regarding specific solutions to their individual chronic problems. Do it both verbally and in written form. 

Long before CVS divested itself of cigarettes, John Forlenza, whose pharmacy is located just outside Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, decided that he would no longer sell cancer sticks upfront, while purporting to cure cancer in his prescription department. Therefore, after selling his inventory down to a certain level, he decided to have “the great smokeout.”


He notified the fire marshal of his intent to burn all of his cigarettes on the street in front of his pharmacy. He also notified the cancer institute, as well as local and statewide bigwigs. As a result, the police cordoned off a four-block area and on the designated night, the remainder of his cigarettes went up in smoke.

He garnered so much publicity and attention that word-of-mouth spread like wildfire. His sales the following two weeks and the number of new patients bringing him prescriptions skyrocketed.

This stunt exemplifies the four requirements—it was remarkable, relevant, reasonable, and repeatable.

More Ways to Accelerate Word-of-Mouth Marketing

  • Phone any customer who has purchased one of your recommended solutions to her chronic aches, pains, or other maladies. Make certain she’s in compliance. You will wow her and propel word-of-mouth marketing to the highest level, especially from your phone call. After all, what other retailer, aside from those who sell large-ticket items such as a car or real estate, calls the customer to find out how a specific purchase is working?
  • Call the health editor of your local newspaper. Ask what’s important to their readers today. Then, give a carefully researched and well-written article describing solutions to those problems. You will quickly be identified as the go-to pharmacy and get you known as the resident expert each time they print another article by you.
  • Support a local non-profit i.e., your local volunteer fire department. Help them raise money and make certain your name appears in several places in which your help has become noticeable so that you engender word-of-mouth-marketing.
  • Contact the leader of each and every membership organization, i.e., The Garden Club or the Junior League. Offer a free self-immunizing program based on your higher-level nutraceutical assortments. Also, offer the same program for the mayor, city council, etc.
  • Give a donation each year to a high school graduate who has an avowed desire to go to pharmacy school. Make that donation in public and in such a way that you get a lot of free press coverage.

The first four are no-cost. The other one is comparatively low-cost, however, the free publicity that you gather as a result is the basis for some unusual word-of-mouth-marketing.

These are but five ways to accelerate your word-of-mouth marketing. There are many others.

You’ll be amazed at how you can send your word-of-mouth marketing into orbit when you devote time and energy to it. Isn’t it worth the cost of time to build your business ever-so-rapidly? 

It takes but one person enjoying immensely better health and circulating the word about how superior you are to start a stampede to your pharmacy.”

– The Pharmacy Sage


The Pharmacy Sage can be reached at (518) 346-7021 or


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