Rapid advancements in the healthcare industry and technology, in general, have led to the creation of a more competitive medical marketplace. Regardless of how knowledgeable and skilled, you are as a doctor, you’re not guaranteed to have a long queue of patients. Even hospitals staffed with highly experienced doctors cannot expect to have everyone in their vicinity to be regulars.
Medical marketing is now a must for clinics and hospitals that want to be successful. Fail to invest in it and you may end up having to shutter your clinic or hospital’s doors way sooner than what you would have ever liked.
But what is medical marketing and why is it so important? Simply put, this type of marketing focuses on educating and informing as much as it is about selling.
You don’t want to just tell consumers to try something, you want them to understand why a service is valuable, how it helps them, and why you are the party best suited to provide it. Conveying all that information properly can be done better with an effective medical marketing plan.
The next time you’re asked “what is medical marketing,” or “healthcare marketing” you can answer by saying that they are valuable services that benefit healthcare professionals and patients alike. You need an effective physician marketing campaign to bolster your operations.
Of course, crafting an effective medical practice marketing plan is easier said than done. Listed below are some pointers that should help you put together a sound strategy that involves marketing to doctors and patients alike.
1. Create a Brand That’s Easily Recognizable
Branding is important for a variety of reasons.
First off, effective branding can set you apart from your competitors. In an industry where many hospitals and clinics offer similar services, a good medical marketing campaign can make a stronger impression on potential clients. Your branding can increase the chances of a patient thinking of your medical services first.
Cultivating a memorable brand is also important because it fosters loyalty. Patients become more inclined to drop by for future consultations when they become more familiar with your hospital or clinic. Medical practice marketing is all about making your establishment more recognizable and branding will help with that goal.
2. Make Your Hospital or Clinic’s Website More Accessible
The importance of designing an accessible website when you’re in the healthcare industry cannot be stressed enough. A not insignificant number of people visiting your hospital or clinic’s website may have a disability of some kind or perhaps a medical condition that prevents them from navigating comfortably.
A poorly designed website could be a barrier that may constantly get in their way. It may also become the reason why they go elsewhere for their medical care.
Medical marketing is not just about reaching out to customers. It’s also about making them comfortable if they decide to engage with your establishment.
Taking the time to create a more accessible website is also helpful in other ways.
Redesigning your website now could save you from legal troubles. Some people who visit your website could file a lawsuit against you if it does not abide by established accessibility guidelines.
Furthermore, a website redesign can also boost traffic. After creating transcripts for their broadcasts, the Web Accessibility Initiative found that the website for the program “This American Life” turned up in more search results and welcomed increased traffic.
Those are benefits you need so remember to include this step in your medical marketing campaign.
3. Prioritize the Responsiveness of Your Website
People have varied browsing habits. Some don’t mind opening up their laptop while others stick to using their phones for browsing.
You cannot pick and choose between creating either a desktop or mobile-friendly website. What you construct using managed WordPress hosting Kinsta or WP engine must be a responsive site that caters to both kinds of possible patients.
Neglecting mobile visitors could spell doom for your medical marketing campaign.
Consider that 52.2 percent of website traffic worldwide in 2018 was generated by mobile users, according to Statista. It’s not just the number of mobile users that you have to consider.
Once again, it’s important to note that not everyone is comfortable browsing while sitting in front of a computer. The onus is on your practice to accommodate them.
By failing to make a responsive website, you could easily miss out on the majority of your potential visitors and cause them to look elsewhere for assistance.
4. Use Social Media Properly and Cultivate Trust within the Community
No sound plan for medical marketing excludes social media. For that matter, all good marketing campaigns have to include social media regardless of the industry involved.
Facebook alone boasts over 2.6 billion users while YouTube and WhatsApp clock in with over 2 billion users as well, Statista reports. Instagram lags well behind but it still boasts over 1 billion users.
When it comes to reaching as many people as possible, it’s hard to beat social media.
Creating a social media account for the purposes of bolstering your medical marketing campaign is just the start. You also have to use the account properly if you want to organically gain followers who will engage.
This is where you need to be mindful of what you post. Sharing medicine ads is fine but you don’t want to spam the feeds of your followers with them. Doing so could lead to them unfollowing your account. Keep in mind that even sending away not effective promotional emails to your followers or audience, can lead to spam folders, so you have to know how to avoid it.
Be more discerning with your medicine ads. Post them every now and again but don’t oversaturate.
Take the time to either share or write informative posts of your own that are relevant to current events. A post featuring flu prevention tips is more likely to gain traction during the fall and winter seasons. Videos are also capable of attracting plenty of attention on social media.
The bottom line is that there are many ways to use social media for medical marketing purposes. Learn more about them if you want better visibility for your medical practice.
5. Consider the Use of Non-Traditional Media to Raise Your Hospital or Clinic’s Profile
Social media is a relatively new invention but it’s not the only form of non-traditional media that should interest you from a medical marketing standpoint.
Live streaming has become hugely popular these days and it can be useful to your hospital or clinic. If you have the time, try to schedule a live stream session that’s open to your followers. Encourage them to ask about medicine and turn it into a lengthy Q&A session.
You can also reach more patients by leaning on podcasts. Purchase ad spots on popular podcasts in your area to create some buzz around your practice. Consider podcasting yourself if your schedule allows for it.
Medical podcasts are increasing in number but it’s not too late for you to join the ranks of doctors who also take on the role of podcasters.
6. Lean on New Technology to Improve Your Product and Service Offerings
Examples of new technology are often impressive. You should not shy away from using them to help your hospital or clinic.
Once you get a hold of some new medical devices, don’t hesitate to post about them on social media and on your website. Talk about what those devices are capable of and show your followers how they can benefit from them. The time of posting on social media, such as Facebook, is also very important.
Medical device marketing is a smart move and it draws plenty of attention.
You don’t have to stop there. Using automation can also be beneficial to your practice and your medical marketing campaign.
Some of the people who visit your website may have questions that need to be answered right away. You can hire people to answer those questions or use automation to dispense valuable information whenever it’s needed.
Go ahead and use other tools that can improve engagement such as online scheduling programs and apps. Make it as easy as possible for your visitors to engage with your practice via your website so that they don’t need to turn to anyone else.
7. Monitor Your Medical Marketing Campaign and Make Adjustments if Needed
Lastly, you should remember to keep a close eye on the performance of your marketing campaign. Don’t just assume that your marketing plan will deliver the desired results.
See if the campaign is performing as expected. If that’s the case, then keep moving forward with your plan while making minor tweaks to the weaker aspects of the campaign. If you notice that your website engagement is way down or another aspect of the campaign is lagging, you may have to implement more significant changes.
Tracking tools provided by Google and social networking sites will prove very helpful for the purposes of monitoring the success of your marketing campaign. Refer to them regularly and let the statistics guide you.
Continually tweaking your campaign should help you eventually strike the right balance.
Medical marketing is no longer optional for hospitals and clinics. It’s something that medical establishments have to take part in or else risk being overshadowed constantly. Use the tips included in this article to design your own campaign and see what kind of results you get.