Over the past years, the healthcare industry has significantly evolved. From innovative medical ways to improve in the patient care department. Reaching out to the audience in the healthcare industry, it has vastly changed and modified over time.
The healthcare sector is progressing phenomenally and is one of the leading consumer-centric industries. But when it comes to marketing strategies it severely lacks in it. The reason is that the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) constraints marketing efforts.
They believe patient care is superior to anything else. Of course, it is never debatable that patient care is not important. But strategizing the marketing efforts is also reasonably required.
For instance, a study confirms that nearly 77% of the patients make online research over their symptoms before booking an appointment with a doctor. Recently, the Pew Internet & American Life Project confirms that 93 million i.e. approx. 80% of internet users in America searches for a health-related topic online.
It is now evident that the internet is the place where the patients and consumers look for information. Hence it is essential for healthcare industries to establish a promising digital presence for them. They need some authentic marketing plan to make themselves visible and also gain trust.
For a result-oriented healthcare digital marketing plan, you need to consider some important aspects, to begin with. So here are the top 6 aspects every marketing plan must have to reach out to their patients properly. And of course, generate leads for their ultimate survival.
Feature Rich Website
When you start to plan your healthcare digital marketing plan, the foremost step is building a website. To be a brand, the online presence paves a way towards acceptance by your potential patients. Don’t forget, a website is a principal touchpoint amidst you and your patients. Research proves that the website is a key influencer for a visitor to choose you as their service provider.
Once you have decided to make a website for yourself, make sure it is an appealing one. Your healthcare website is supposed to replicate the image of your brand. It is going to make the first impression on the current patient or a prospective one. The mind-boggling idea is not a glittering website. Just a peachy site that perfectly blends with hue is all you need.
Make sure the appearance of the website is satisfactory with easy to navigate options. Neil Patel once gave an example of a website called Digg. Due to its complex navigation panel, the site lost 26% of its traffic within a month of its launch.
No matter what niche you are targeting, difficult navigation leads to disaster. It is also necessary that your site contains strong information regarding your services, track record, expertise, leading doctors and of course your infrastructure. This information builds trust and helps them to have faith in you.
The above example is of Mayo Clinic, one of the largest not-for-profit medical related site in the world. They have opted for a user-friendly layout. Mayo Clinic has appealingly designed their website. They chose a white background, instead of distracting dark shaded colour. They preferred blue colour with white to create a soothing view.
The navigation is also way too easy. You can easily log-in to your account and go for booking an appointment with a doctor. Visitors can also alphabetically search for their symptoms. They can even easily search for more diseases and conditions with a single touch. Their navigation panel can be effortlessly accessed by everyone.
Enlightening Blog Posts
There is no doubt that a website serves as a mainstay point for a visitor. But an informative and interactive blog section has its own importance as well. It is a known fact that the healthcare industry revolves around trust and upright information. Hence covering honest information through blog posts can help your patients gain more confidence in you.
Credible news, research and data can serve as a rich source of content for your potential patients. People need information, either it is regarding some symptoms or reading medical related journals.
Did you know? 1% of all Google searches are related to medical symptoms. Every day nearly 35 million people search for medical terminologies.
Hence taking advantage of these statistics is crucial for your own brand’s benefit. You can provide information related to leading health topics or talk on different health conditions. Provide answers to medical miracles. Either it is quick tips or medical advice, visitors appreciate awareness. Plan your editorial calendar and talk about timely health awareness campaigns.
It is also advised to share the patient’s journey as your blog post. People find comfort in reading about other patient’s treatment, their experiences and their conditions. Be fair regarding their treatments and surgical procedures. This can help a lot of patients to find the motivation to visit your healthcare facility and get the treatment with faith.
The New York Times has a separate section for the healthcare blog named as Well. This site covers every information related to medical science. You can find data on the latest research and development in the field of healthcare and leading health crisis.
The site is a simple design, has easily navigable options and provides the latest blog posts. Everything enlightens the path towards trustful and honest healthcare research and analysis. They cover every crucial information, data and news in the field of medicine.
Prodigious SEO Strategy
The third most important aspect of the healthcare digital marketing plan is having a robust SEO strategy. Through this, your brand can be easily positioned at the top of the web searches. No matter how craftily your website is designed with the best navigation system or have informative blogs in them. It won’t matter if you are not able to get the desired traffic and engagement ratio.
The idea is to optimize the website content with relevant keywords so that the audience can reach you easily. Keywords optimization is the foremost SEO strategy. But keyword optimization is not the sole parameter. Other strategies include website speed as well as the responsiveness of the site. All these things together contribute to a successful SEO strategy.
The Think With Google study narrates that hospital websites drive three times as many visitors as any other source through search engines. This is a tremendous lead to getting organic traffic. A recent study confirms that nearly 44% of the patients who are browsing a healthcare website through a smartphone device end up scheduling an appointment. This means the mobile version of the site must also be equally impressive as that of the desktop version.
Through proper Search Engine Optimization (SEO) you can gain quality and quantity of organic traffic on your website. It is advised to use natural-sounding keywords in your context, smartly. Avoid overusing keywords! Now Google penalizes websites that stuff keywords and it doesn’t make sense in the context.
The above examples are from SEMrush for keyword analysis. Keywords such as ‘Coronavirus’ and ‘Cardiologist’ are taken as examples. As per SEMrush, the Coronavirus keyword has a global search of nearly 10.9 million. Whereas the keyword Cardiologist has a global search volume of 256.5k.
Through this, it is easily viewable that what keyword variations are associated with both the keywords. What related keywords are associated with it and its search volume. Through these search results, brands can easily identify the keywords they can use and what sort of content people are looking for on search engines. This can help in enhancing the SEO ranking.
Inspirational Educative Video Content
The next major opportunity to engage consumers is video marketing. In the healthcare sector, video content plays a pivotal role in educating people. Today, the audience is chiefly leaning towards more visual content as compared to contextual content.
Wordstream claims that one-third of online activity is solely spent on watching videos. This leaves an impressive chunk for the healthcare brands to make informative videos for their patients. Through this, their engagement and interaction ratio will also increase. The Eyeview Digital recently presented a report stating that by using videos as landing pages, the conversion rates can be increased to 80%.
The potential patients are today way more interested in viewing a video rather than reading a detailed context. For instance, a video of a doctor explaining their expertise or describing a treatment to a condition is more effective. This leads to gaining the trust of potential patients and increase the credibility of the healthcare organization.
It is also a good idea to use video testimonials of real patients. Share their treatment and journey towards a happy healthy life. With visual content, the potential patients feel more confident in contacting the healthcare organization and book an appointment.
Don’t underestimate the power of visual content. It can easily evoke feelings of hope, passion and courage among patients than any other written word or material.
The above example of Cleveland Clinic’s YouTube page. Cleveland Clinic is an American academic medical centre. They share videos on healthcare and bust myths related to this sector.
In this example, the video displays exercise for individuals with multiple sclerosis (MS). Patients diagnosed with MS can easily follow this 24 minutes video to visually learn the warm-up, strength, core and balance exercises.
Attention-Grabbing Social Media Strategy
It is a known fact of 2020 that social media is a place where you can easily find the majority of your audience. Thus ignoring it is a deadly mistake and doom of your brand. A healthcare organization or a provider can never expect to reach their audience without a strong presence on social media platforms.
Platforms such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are essential to engage the audience. Research proves that 60% of social media users trust those healthcare brands that are available on any social media platform. Another study claims that 57% of the decisions of the consumers to select a healthcare facility are strongly influenced by social media.
Keep posting informative and interesting information on social media to keep in touch with the audience. The core social media strategy revolves around several things. Such as participating and contributing to the community chiefly. Than networking and promotional activities that lead to awareness of health and fitness.
There are two social media strategies to reach the audience. One is organic while the other is inorganic or paid. Organic social media strategy does help in getting traffic. But the paid social media advertising is more beneficial. It helps in advertising to relevant people only.
It is always important to reach out to the audience that is looking for that certain treatment. For example, Facebook analyzes a user pattern searching for cancer treatments. It will filter out that user only while leaving the rest. The algorithm will display paid advertisements for cancer treatment only.
Drugs.com is a popular up-to-date source of drug information. On their official Facebook page, they have shared every latest information related to healthcare. They share video content, posts and links to articles or blogs to engage their audience and provide information.
The right side example is of WHO (World Health Organization) official Instagram page. They share every relevant information such as images and videos on their account to interact with their audience.
Resourceful Email Marketing
The last worthy aspect of the healthcare digital marketing plan is email marketing. There is nothing more superior to a direct communication bridge with your audience. Personalized emails pave a phenomenal passage for communication. With a proper database, personalized emails can be effectively sent and maintained.
There is no doubt that people search for the answers themselves via search engines. But what if they receive personalized emails in their inbox? Even sending a newsletter once in a month can help your patients bond with you better.
By sharing current industry trends, recent blogs, sharing developments with the audience, you can engage them effectively. Email marketing involves a thorough research and precise planning. Innovative ideas help to maintain a connection with the audience for a long time.
It is advisable to use the comprehensive patient’s data stored wisely. Try to build campaigns patient-centric more. This helps them to connect with your healthcare organization more deeply and understandably.
The above example is of Spinal Healthcare. This is their email campaign where they shared links to their services. They also have integrated an easy to click access for booking appointments.
Tying It All Together
For a strong healthcare digital marketing plan, you need to precisely strategize. Keep regular discussion with the team to monitor the progress of the marketing plan. Don’t forget to alter changes when the strategy is not providing expected results.
It is time to better serve the healthcare industry with authentic and genuine information. This can ensure a lifetime opportunity to gain trusted patients and an increase in the credibility of your brand.
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