In 2018, healthcare digital marketing grew to a $2,84,000,000 industry: a 17% increase from 2017. A growing number of patients are open to virtual healthcare methods and the majority of consumers do internet research on healthcare providers before making a decision.
If you want to craft an effective digital marketing strategy for your healthcare business, now is the time to take action.
Unfortunately, many healthcare businesses are unaware of the modern solutions. They continue to use the same methods that were popular thirty or forty years ago.
The good news is that you can gain an edge over your competitors by creating a modern healthcare marketing strategy. This can help build trust in your service, drive traffic to your site and get you new patients.
Use these five effective solutions to maximize your online reach and see your numbers climb.
1. Optimize Your Site’s Usability
Potential patients will shop around for the best deal. That means you need to make their experience of your website easy, accessible and with flawless presentation.
Attention to detail is vital, as patients will be far less forgiving of sloppy web design than they will for other product websites. If your site doesn’t look professional, how can they trust that your approach to medical care is going to be the very best they can get?
Here are some quick wins:
- Put your main CTAs on the front page above the fold – these should include your Book An Appointment, Register Now and Contact links
- Do a website audit and correct any broken links, confusing menus, spelling mistakes and any other flaws
- Take a little time to optimize your formatting (allowing for white space, using headers and sub-headers, bolding appropriately etc.)
- Make sure your site loads quickly by using plugins to compress content and stripping out anything unnecessary
A well-designed site should reduce your bounce rates and build trust in your brand by providing an excellent first impression.
2. Invest In Mobile Optimization
Most web traffic comes from phones. Mobile optimization is one of the easiest and most effective ways of marketing in the healthcare industry.
Most of that traffic is also from app usage, so building an app is an obvious move for anyone serious about marketing effectively.
There are several ways to do this and which method you choose will probably depend on budget.
For a simple solution, you could go for a progressive web app. This isn’t a true app, as it’s accessed via a browser. It will provide a scaled-down version of your existing site that will behave like an app and load fast on mobile.
This is a great option for a small budget. However, it will need patients to already know about your site to find it (i.e. it won’t be available on an app store). It also can’t integrate the same level of special functionality as a native app.
Investing in a native app that lives on the customer’s phone is an excellent way to keep patients engaged. You could also offer services like virtual appointments or chatbot services.
3. Optimize For SEO (Including Voice Search)
According to Google, search engines are by far the biggest way for patients to find healthcare providers online. To drive traffic to your site, investing in Search Engine Optimization is the best thing you can do.
As a healthcare provider, your business is likely to be tied to a specific area, so do these things to maximize your SEO for your local area:
- Target specific locations with geofencing
- Publish location-specific content to drive traffic to your site
- Optimize for local keyword searches
Voice search is also on the rise. Brands are responding by making their own audio content for voice assistants like Google Assistant and Alexa.
By doing the same, you can give your customers a flavor of what they can expect if they engage with your brand, which can be fantastic for building trust.
4. Retain Your Audience With Great Content
Trends in healthcare marketing are moving towards prevention and maintenance rather than the “crisis management” approach of past decades. In this climate, healthcare businesses have a fantastic opportunity to build and retain an audience.
Create helpful health-based content that your customers will keep coming back for. This will help you gain more business from your existing patients and develop excellent word-of-mouth.
Here are some ways to produce engaging content.
Blogging is a key marketing strategy for businesses in 2019. Health and fitness content online has exploded in the past two decades as gym memberships have increased 50% in the US.
Blog consistently and provide helpful, actionable content that will make your customers want to come back to your site.
5 billion videos are watched on YouTube every single day. It remains the most popular search engine in the world besides Google.
Video content should be in your marketing plans if you want to reach more customers.
Story-based content is extremely powerful from a healthcare perspective. Think about including this in your marketing strategy, as well as videos about the services you offer.
Keep your customers engaged with a patient newsletter. Ask for their feedback and opinions, let them know about new services you’re offering and link to your best content from your blog.
5. Use Pay Per Click To Engage With Customers On Social Media
Social media marketing is an easy way to build brand familiarity and fine-tune your marketing strategy.
You can use Pay Per Click advertising to filter your ad’s audience by device, location, interests, background and more. If your service caters to a very specific type of client, this is a great way to test how effective your marketing methods are for the particular customer persona that you have in mind.
It’s very cost-effective, as you only pay when someone clicks on the ad. Because you can see clear, quantifiable results in real time, you can also make adjustments while the campaign is still running.
Stand Out With Effective Healthcare Digital Marketing
By embracing the modern techniques used by digital marketers in other fields, you can tap into a market that many of your healthcare competitors are neglecting as they continue to follow old methods and trends.
However, for the best results in healthcare digital marketing, you need to understand how your business differs from other types of brands and how to adapt these methods to suit your unique audience.
Invest in mobile optimization to reach the widest audience possible. Use social media marketing like PPC to build brand familiarity. Maintain your patient base by providing useful, reassuring content that will keep them coming back.
If you’re ready to take action, take a look at our service plans to see how we can help you craft a fantastic digital marketing campaign.