1.Use branding for healthcare sector – It is important to know what your brand is all about and what makes it unique about your practice. Is it the way how you will treat your patients? There has to be at least one thing that will make the team unique and this will enable patients to remember your practice.
It might take some time to determine what will work the best for your particular brand. But your healthcare marketing strategy will come smoothly as you know how to represent your own brand in the best possible way with different marketing tools.
2.Assess experience of patients online – In the past, it was sufficient to build your website and impress patients to search for your healthcare brand. Nowadays, a website is believed to be the front door only for patients in the healthcare sector. It is the first thing seen by the patients and unless you optimise your site for user experience, it might be the last time for patients to consider your practice.
User experience is a vital consideration in website designing process. But designers are so focused in making your site appear good that they forget to focus on patient experience. Often, it is found that websites should be completely redone but it might make small changes such as positioning “Contact Us” form higher up on the page.
3.Make your website responsive – According to professionals who work in healthcare marketing in London, a responsive website is the one that automatically adjusts with the size of a screen so that users have same experience for accessing your website on a computer, mobile device or tablet. It is the latest standard in website design today but this is something that search engines consider when crawling through your website to improve your site ranking.
The biggest search engine, Google cares a lot about user experience that will prioritize competitors with an optimized website for mobile users. In general, responsive sites will be working the best for mobile experience. But if you have a responsive site at present, then you need to check if the content and images are loading properly on mobile devices.
4.Test loading speed of your website – Online marketers who study user behaviors have shown that patients are not ready to deal with slow loading speed of websites than before. It only requires 5 seconds to lose a prospective patient who will finally decide to navigate to fast loading websites.
It is another issue of user experience that can cause your medical site to appear in search engines. You may test loading speed of your site at Google’s PageSpeed Insights. If the loading time is slow, talk to your web developer about different ways to improve the speed of site.
5.Optimize search results for probable patients – Search engine optimization is an effective way for getting your medical practice on top in search engines. However, it is quite complicated than most marketing professionals might even realize. You just cannot use a particular term several times in your website and aim to rank on top in Google for your specific area.
A major part of SEO services consists of using the right keywords so that Google may know about your website and rank your website for proper and relevant terms. But it denotes using the terms naturally throughout the content, as Google considers readability to be the foremost priority. Thus, this is the beginning o of healthcare marketing best practices for SEO consisting of the following:
6.Use display ads and PPC for healthcare marketing – Search engine optimization is considered to be an organic way for increasing online visiting of your medical practice. Even though your website ranks number one for a particular search term, there are still 3 or 4 paid advertisements above number one search that people will find at first.
These pay-per-click advertisements and paid advertisements are laser-targeted that will appear on top for a set of search terms. With pay-per-click advertising, also called paid search or PPC, you will be able to deal with your budget and decide on what you would like to spend for keeping your website visible on top in the search engines. Your return on investment is defined with display ads and PPC ads that are visible on the sidebar or top of other websites.
7.Leverage social media properly – Nowadays, different healthcare practices depend completely on organic social media for their digital marketing strategies. Organic social media is all about posting latest photis, events, updates and much more to Facebook or Twitter. This is a smart strategy for building your brand online and letting patients know more about your practice.
Alternatively, paid advertising on social media is believed to be a suitable option for reaching out to the right people who want your services, even though they are not connected. Paid social media is about pressing “Boost Post” option that is found when you want to post from business page. Unlike display advertising and pay per click, it consists of strategizing as well as budgeting for your targeted audience.
8.Go through reviews of patients – Generally, patients share their reviews when they feel motivated or when they have extremely poor experience. Unless you ask them to write reviews, you will actually miss a suitable opportunity to get positive feedback from patients who had felt satisfied with their visit. It is recommended automated reviews as a part of any practice for healthcare marketing strategy.
Professionals who work in healthcare marketing agency have said, patients use a computer or tablet at the office for rating quality of service they have obtained on a scale of 1-10. Higher scores automate a follow-up email by asking patients to share review on their website. The positive reviews will be seen directly on your website and may potentially counteract any negative reviews shared elsewhere online. Poor scores give the medical practice a suitable chance to ask patients for reaching out and solving the problems quickly.
9.Follow up patient feedback in marketing efforts – If patients hold a bad opinion about your practice and share negative reviews, you just cannot help it. What you may do is follow up with the patient feedback and show you work on the same problem. Some sites enable to respond directly to the feedback of patients. By right follow up, patients will be motivated to update their review and enable others to know the problem had been resolved on time.
Reputation management is an important part of healthcare marketing strategy, however this does not mean you should feel defensive about the negative reviews. It indicates upgrading processes as well as equipments for ensuring the best possible experience of patients to move ahead based on the feedback of patients.
10.Consider traditional media options – Many healthcare groups and practices don’t want to invest in external media opportunities such as – television, newspapers and billboards. They are a vital investment and you need to be careful about where to spend money for getting the best possible results.
With reliable healthcare buyers for taking the right decision, your online advertisements will be visible by maximum number of people at the right time. A billboard in the middle of almost nowhere does hardly anything for patients, however a television advertisement running on a channel with demographics representing your patient can actually perform wonders for your ROI.
11.Create doctor referrals in the marketing plan – If you do not have a physical connection with the doctor, then you won’t get what you actually require. Doctor referrals are believed to be among the best organic strategies for getting new patients to your medical practice.
Your physician must be visiting different hospitals and medical practices every day, scheduling appointments with probable referral bases and staying in touch with potential sources who offer healthcare marketing services.
12.Check with the present patients – The word-of-mouth referrals is a vital part of your healthcare marketing strategy, on the whole. You will have to follow up with your patients after scheduling an appointment or procedure to know how they are actually doing their work.
Ask their families or send birthday cards with a personalized touch. You can also drop emails and mail reminders for the follow-up appointments and maintain long term relationship. Patients would be appreciating you spend sufficient time and even recommend you to friends and family.
13.Becoming an authority in the field – The probable patients will remember your service when you establish as a representative in the medical industry. Your public relations strategy should consist of reaching out to appropriate media outlet when there is something to share for advertising your brand.
You need to stay updated with the latest trend of the industry with LinkedIn groups and other online forums. Also, submit press releases from time to time and consider taking help from outside to improve online visibility of your website.
14.Keep a track of the marketing strategy – You need to monitor constantly how the medical marketing strategy will pay off for ROI. Every year, the healthcare marketing budget needs to adjust with what you would like to focus this year depending on the study of your metrics. There are different ways to perform for this tracking:
Use customer relationship management system or CRM to maintain a track of how patients want to engage in the campaigns through call centers, emails or landing pages.
Use Google Analytics to know the search terms you need to rank for in the search engines and the phrases that are actually missing out.
Keep a track of pay-per-click campaigns through Google AdWords.
Use a HIPAA compliant phone tracking system for knowing how paid advertising will be assessing front desk and then paying off.
15.Audit front desk’s response to healthcare marketing tactics – You need to have the most effective healthcare marketing strategy for anyone in your area. In case your front desk staff cannot accept calls properly, then you will end up losing money as well as suitable opportunities. An audit of healthcare patients’ front desk or call centers might denote any of them:
Long holding time for probable patients
Misinformation given to the patients
Slow patient scheduling system
Inability on staffs part to discuss, or sell your healthcare services
No strategy for getting patients and booking appointment