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Here’s The Thing…
As a physician, you have to provide great patient care – that’s a given. However, you also need to market your practice in order to thrive and survive in the healthcare industry. You see, in today’s digital age, every medical practice should have a healthcare marketing strategy. Why? Because patients look up everything online, including medical practices.
Gone are the days when patients open up the Yellow Pages and flip through the phone book looking for a doctor. Today, thanks to the Internet, looking for a doctor is quick, easy and a lot more convenient. With just a few clicks, patients can easily find all the information they need about a physician or medical practice.
Patients look up everything online, including medical practices. Click To Tweet
However, here’s the tricky part for you. There are a lot of doctors who specialize in the same thing as you. That’s why it’s important that you treat your medical practice like a business (aside from ensuring great patient care). And it’s important that you find ways to stand out and gain a competitive edge so that your practice will be the one attracting new patients, not your competitors across town.
Since you’re reading this blog, that means that you’re looking for a way to stand out and market your medical practice. That’s great! More often than not, doctors tend to lose sight of the importance of medical marketing. Some doctors think that it’s a complete waste of time and effort. However, you’d be surprised at how much it can help you with attracting new patients.
Benefits of Medical Marketing In The Healthcare Industry
Before sharing what marketing mistakes you need to avoid, let’s discuss the benefits.
#1 It can help with brand awareness
Every business has to create a brand of its own – that includes your medical practice as well. So, what exactly is branding? Well, branding is how patients will remember you. For example, when it comes to a photocopying machine, the first thing people probably think of is the brand “Xerox”. If you’re a local allergy doctor, you should create a brand wherein when patients look for an allergy doctor, they’ll think of your practice.
#2 Boost Your Patient Outreach
Around 77 percent of patients use search engines such as Google and Yahoo prior to selecting a doctor and booking an appointment. When you invest in medical marketing, you’ll have a wider patient reach. You could create blogs to post on your website and also share them on social media for a wider reach.
#3 Promote Your Specialty
With medical marketing, you’ll be able to promote your specialty. Promoting your specialty can benefit you in many ways – one of the main ways is that you are able to target your marketing to a specific audience (an audience that is interested in your specific specialty). You can take advantage of the benefits of having a website. One benefit is that your information will be readily accessible 24×7. You can put your office location, a contact number and email address on your website – you can even put reasons why potential patients should choose you as their doctor.
#4 Increase Visibility on Search Engines
Search engines drive almost three times as many visitors to hospital sites, according to Think with Google’s The Digital Journey Wellness: Hospital Selection. Say that you have a blog on your website. When you create content that is informative, and with keywords and popular long-tail search phrases, your blog gets higher search engine visibility which can attract more visitors to your website.
Search engines drive almost three times as many visitors to hospital sites.. Click To Tweet
You can reap so many benefits from medical marketing. Just by creating valuable content, you can drive so many visitors to your website through search engine sites.
Now, it’s time to discuss the top marketing mistakes you should avoid.
Medical Marketing Mistakes To Avoid This Year
- Not having an attractive, mobile-responsive website
It’s 2019! Technology is continuing to enhance and progress every year. So why would you not take advantage of the benefits of technology and create an online platform that would make it easier for your patients to learn more about you? If you’re more old school, your old-school techniques may be your demise. If you want to keep up with the new mindset and remain competitive, you to keep up with the trends and figure out how to use technology to your advantage. You can start by creating an attractive, mobile-responsive website. It’s extremely important (I can’t stress this enough) that your website is mobile-friendly because people use their smartphones and iPads more than computers and laptops these days.
If you don’t create a website, you’ll leave a big opportunity for other doctors to snatch away potential patients (and possibly even steal your current patients!). You definitely don’t want that to happen, right? And if you don’t ensure that your website is mobile-friendly, it will look unattractive when visitors look at it on their phones. And guess what – those visitors will leave just as fast as they visited your website.
- Not utilizing social media properly
Social media for doctors is a key component of how your practice is perceived by potential and existing patients. In fact, 29 percent of patients view health information online including viewing the experience of other patients who have a similar disease. Also, 24 percent of patients look up health-related videos and images posted by other patients who are posting their experience.
You have to utilize the power of social media. It can greatly influence a patient’s decision in choosing a healthcare professional. If you fail to use social media, you have eliminated a huge chunk of the possible patients that you could have gained.
You should also share your blog posts on all of your social media sites. This can drive more traffic to your website and increase visitors on your social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
If you fail to use social media, you have eliminated a huge chunk of the possible patients that you could have gained. Click To Tweet
- Not keeping track of marketing ROI
It’s no lie, marketing and advertising can be costly. You need to invest money in the onset of your marketing in order to produce results on your end. So, it’s normal that you would want a return on investment (ROI) that exceeds the money you invested. That’s why it’s important that you keep an eye on the final output and results of your marketing efforts. If you fail to keep track of the ROI, you may be losing money without even knowing it – and that will be very costly if you have to start all over again.
- Not managing your online reputation
Your online reputation can make or break your practice. That’s a fact. But, why is your online reputation important? It’s because people look up doctors on the Internet, and reading the reviews is part of that process. So, if your prospects are reading negative reviews about you and your practice online, then they will be less likely to give your practice a chance.
Online reviews can help increase your popularity online. However, managing your online reputation can be hard work. And let’s just be honest, your day is probably already jam-packed so you can’t squeeze in time to manage everything. There’s good news – you can hire professionals who can help you manage your online reputation and send you regular (daily, weekly or monthly) reports.
- Not investing in medical marketing
As mentioned above, medical marketing can drive more visitors to your website. More visitors can bring you potential leads. And, more potential leads can turn into new patients which means more cash for you. Invest a little time, money, and effort and rest assured, you can gain a good ROI. The more medical marketing strategies you do, the more chances of earning more.
- Not strategically planning marketing strategies
When you plan marketing strategies, you have to tailor them to fit your target audience. If you just plan and create digital marketing strategies without considering how it can affect or benefit your medical practice, you may be losing money instead of earning money. Marketing and advertising your clinic can be expensive. On average, you have to spend at least $1500 just for setting up a website – excluding the monthly fees. When you hire other professionals such as content writers and graphic designers, you have to spend at least a few hundred dollars on each of them. You really have to spend in order to gain. So, make sure that you strategically plan out your marketing strategies so that you won’t end up wasting money.
- Not making decisions based on facts or best practices
Going with your gut doesn’t always pan out perfectly. Before going with your gut, you have to do thorough research and get as much valuable data as possible. While your instincts are okay, without proven facts or understanding the best practices, you may be taking unnecessary risks. Yes, starting a practice is like opening up a new business – you have to take risks. However, there are risks that you should calculate first in order to ensure that you will survive in the healthcare industry.
When you invest in a comprehensive marketing strategy, you’re not just gambling – you’re playing a full hand and counting the cards. A well thought out and well-managed marketing strategy can deliver maintain dominance and can secure the lifespan of your medical practice.
A well thought out and well-managed marketing strategy can deliver maintain dominance and can secure the lifespan of your medical practice. Click To Tweet
Medical marketing requires hard work and a lot of time, effort, and money. Some doctors are very skeptic when it comes to investing in something that may or may not succeed. However, we live in a digital age and you need to keep up in order to survive. If you need help, Website4MD has experienced marketing professionals who can help you plan out marketing strategies that work.
Give us a call today and let’s start planning out your marketing strategy!