There are 280 million searches for health care services every day on Google. But the good news is that patients are usually looking for a medical practice that is nearby, which greatly enhances the ability of a physician to stand out in this mass of searches. Starting with that fact, medical practices can develop all kinds of other online elements to advance their brand and their presence in the mind of potential clients. Following are the building blocks for any medical practice marketing in the 21st century.
Key Online Marketing Tactics for Medical Practices
It might be that unsolicited emails go straight to the spam folder, in most cases, but that is certainly not true when you leverage your patient list. Email marketing is an outstanding way to communicate with your clients, as marketers from all industries have found – 79% of business to consumer marketers use email to distribute content.
Email is an inexpensive and easy tool for keeping in touch with patients through personalized newsletters to targeted groups and individual patients. It’s also a great way to send satisfaction surveys, appointment reminders, and follow up emails, as well as general medical advice and warnings about flu seasons, heat waves, and so on. Chances are that a new patient might really enjoy receiving a follow up message from your practice as a demonstration of your professionalism and interest. This will increase client retention, which is, in many ways, just as, if not more important than finding new patients.
Website creation is a science unto itself, but there are a few central rules to mind when starting out.
For medical practices, the home page needs to convey essential information such as insurance affiliation, specialties, location, and hospital associations. It’s also a smart move to enable visitors to book appointments through the website and find links to map/location details. Other requisites include mobile optimization, security and compliance measures, and frequently updated listings on websites that publicize medical organizations.
Content (see below) and search engine optimization also counts, while patient reviews, linked on your website to third party review sites, are highly important when it comes to a potential client’s final decision.
Beyond finding a doctor, people search the internet frequently for all kinds of medical information. If, for example, somebody has a stomachache, they might look for a remedy online.
Content marketing allows a medical practice to brand itself by providing free information about diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation, and nutrition. Short, well written, and patient-oriented blogs, white papers, videos, and other media will improve Google search rankings and provide material to post on social media.
Sound like a lot of work? Consider becoming a content specialist in a certain area, or providing a more convenient form of information. If you are a gastroenterologist, for instance, you can provide a flowchart detailing symptoms and treatment for a wide range of digestive complaints.
Related Read: What the No-Code Revolution Means for Marketing
Another giant funnel for health care searches is social media. 90% of people access social media sites to find and share health information.
Getting people interested in your social media channels can take place in various ways. Adding social media icons to the website, using effective SEO, and encouraging your employees and patients to share/like will all drive traffic to you.
Once they arrive at your channel, keep them coming back with relevant and well-presented content. Since you are already creating content for your website, you can always adapt it to social media. Have a popular white paper, for example? Turn it into a video to post on Facebook. It also helps to set up a social media calendar to make sure you post regularly (because posting occasionally looks unprofessional).
It’s also important to be active on the right platforms. Whereas Facebook is the most popular for those in the Baby Boom and Generation X age brackets, Instagram appeals to the majority of Gen Z members. Millennials are situated somewhere between Facebook and Instagram.
Each of these platforms offers numerous advertising options that can be targeted towards a specific audience. You can often direct advertising at potential customers according to location, gender, age, interests, and many other characteristics. This makes advertising more cost effective than a mass market approach.
A Bonus – Word Of Mouth Marketing
If you take care of all the above points, your marketing effort will result in what is the most effective form of promotion – word of mouth. According to this survey, peer recommendations are trusted by 90% of people. New patients who are satisfied with your service will tell their friends about it, leading to a snowball effect that will act as a multiplier for every dollar and minute that you spend on improving your marketing strategies and tactics.
Related Read: How to Approach Different Buyer Personalities
One Final Tip – Health Care Industry Networking
Medical practices and health care firms all over the world are implementing the steps mentioned above. Put together, they represent a powerful marketing tool, but only for the companies that know how to tap into the global network that they form.
One way to get on the inside of this community is by signing up to the Air Doctor physician’s network. It is a global collection of medical professionals who provide the services requested by Air Doctor’s end users, namely, travelers in need of medical care, preferably in their native language.
Being part of the Air Doctor physician’s network can be an important marketing tool. The physician’s network allows doctors to:
- Publicize their services
- Gain clinic exposure on the web
- Access highly relevant Air Doctor patient traffic
- Brand themselves as being part of a revolutionary approach to traveler and expat health care
On top of that, Air Doctor supports travelers with convenience and confidence whenever they are abroad, delivered through an intuitive app on mobile or web that enables easy and fast medical care.