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In this episode, Barbara discusses:
Why it is important to pinpoint your contact marketing goal before you create your content?
How to analyze the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns?
How can you strengthen your online visibility and grow your medical practice?
“The most effective content marketing strategy is to identify problems that your audience is struggling with and provide solutions” – Dr. Barbara Hales
Connect with Barbara Hales:
Business website: www.TheMedicalStrategist.com
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Power to the Patient: The Medical Strategist
Dr. Barbara Hales: Happy and healthy new year to everyone.
This is Dr. Barbara Hales, your host for Marketing Tips for Doctors. Now that the new year has started, it’s time to start thinking of marketing strategies before we wind up halfway through 2023. Perhaps in the past, you considered relying on referrals from the insurance carriers that you participate in and a few colleagues that you were with.
However, if you consider converting part of your practice over to a concierge model or having side services and products, it will be crucial to let people know about them before doing anything. Sit down, relax, take a few breaths, and have a cup of tea.
Who is Your Target Market?
Dr. Barbara Hales: Lock in who you are trying to attract. This is your target market. You’ll be the consumer of your services and products. Who will be the consumer of your services and products? Pinpoint your contact marketing goal before you create your content. Figure out what your goals are and make a list of the keywords that you want to incorporate into the content. Consider how you will analyze the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns.
Parameters may be new subscribers, new patients, traffic to your website, number of podcast downloads, video views, social media shares, and engagement amongst many others. For most, getting more readers to your blog or digital newsletter and progressing to become email subscribers is key. You can then develop relationships with them and have them become loyal patients or clients of yours.
Your traffic goal is the number of people signing up and viewing your site. To achieve this, content promotion is necessary and can be done by mentions in social media with influencers or in other people’s blogs. The more you promote, the higher your traffic will be.
Pinpoint Your Content Marketing Goal
Dr. Barbara Hales: Before creating your content, figure out what your goals are and make a list of the keywords that you want to incorporate into the content. You have the freedom to make these choices at the beginning when they’re free, fast, and easy. Not later on when you’ve made commitments to other people and yourself.
Don’t wait till it’s something that you feel is not quite right, but you’ve already committed time and effort to. Consider how you will analyze the effectiveness parameters as mentioned, but also see what other parameters you may want. There are many advantages to marketing, such as attracting new patients, educating consumers, strengthening your brand, and increasing visibility.
Boost Your Search Engine
Dr. Barbara Hales: Boosting your search engine ranking and increasing revenue. When done effectively, you can see your practice grow by leaps and bounds surpassing those of your competitors and colleagues. Don’t be the best-kept secret. People are looking for advice beyond the jokes and articles sent through social media.
Be Active on Social Media
Are you active on social media? Send health professionals, to use their knowledge and expertise to inform their patients and communities. They incorporate social media strategies into their marketing to inform and engage prospective patients. The story that sticks with me and that I love is when the pandemic started and everyone was at odds as to how to live their lives and do so in a way that they would be safe as well as bring safety to their loved ones.
An internist did a quick one-minute video of what to do with your supermarket products when you bring them home. He showed how you sterilized or wiped down each one, how you categorized them and how you dealt with them once they got into your house so that you were vulnerable to any germs or bacteria that you may be bringing back. It was a simple little video, simple little instruction, and it went totally viral with more than a million views. Understandably, patients that were looking for a doctor were going to choose him because he was the one that gave a common sense to which they could relate.
Some health professionals really are not aware of the power that they have by simply relating their knowledge in a way that patients can understand. After thinking all of this over and what value you can bring, now you are ready to begin. So, let’s talk about your marketing strategy.
Know Your Audience
Dr. Barbara Hales: That’s called the demographics. Who is your ideal audience and what are they like? Consider age, gender, occupation, job title, economic status, parent and marriage status, location, et cetera. You need to know who your audience is to identify their pain points. These are what you will be addressing with your content.
Identify Your Audience’s Pain Points
Dr. Barbara Hales: The most effective content marketing strategy is to identify problems that your audience is struggling with and provide solutions just like that video that went viral where people did not know how to approach common things like supermarket groceries, and doctor-provided solutions. You want to educate, engage, and entertain. Then they will be your loyal fans. You need to address them directly and show compassion for them.
Understand the Demographics and Psychographics of Your Audience
Dr. Barbara Hales: The first step is to understand the demographics and the psychographics of your ideal audience. Demographics are the quantitative, measurable traits that your viewers have. Whereas psychographics is the unmeasurable traits, like values, morals, interests, beliefs, and attitudes.
Create Your Avatar
Dr. Barbara Hales: Visualize your ideal patient or client. By visualizing your avatar, you will have a better understanding of how you approach them and how you would speak with them. There are seven key topics that I’ve learned in my experience, helping medical practices in the last 10 years.
Strengthen Your Online Visibility
Dr. Barbara Hales: Register your location on Google Maps if you’re a brick-and-mortar business so that people know how to find the office and see which office is close to them. Appear in localized searches like Dr. Near Me or Yelp with accurate and consistent business information. If you register for them and your office hours change, or you are changing the staff that’s there, go back into these sites and freshen it up, ranking higher in search engines.
Keywords For Your Business & Products
Dr. Barbara Hales: What keywords represent you and your products? Keywords are the words that people plug into search engines to find you or someone like you that has the services and products that you are providing. Basic website keywords and organizations are constantly optimized so you appear higher in search results. Build links to convey to Google that you are a trustworthy and credible resource.
Get the biggest bang for your buck with monthly keywords, ads groups, and bid optimizations. Never miss a lead and listen back to recorded calls on your dashboard with call tracking. Stay ahead of trends with customized recommendations.
Building a Better Social Media Presence
Dr. Barbara Hales: Thirdly, how do you get found on social media? Consider which social media sites your target market is. Are they searching Google or community sites to source answers and ideas? Do they prefer attending health fairs, in-person events, or group discussions? The key is to be present where your audience already exists. Keep your social profiles full of fresh and engaging content, creative, engaging, and informative content that matches your brand identity, custom-built Facebook and Instagram pages with cover and profile photos.
Keep your social media fresh. Save time with an easy-to-use calendar to preview and schedule upcoming posts.
Set Up Your Blog or Newsletters
Dr. Barbara Hales: For most, getting more readers to your blog or newsletters and progressing to become email subscribers is key. You can then develop relationships with them and have them become loyal patients. Thirdly, set up your blog if you don’t have one already. It’s time to set up your blog and decide on where your content will reside. I recommend WordPress because you can add it to your website. Then every time you post a blog, the search engines view your website as adding fresh new content. Remember, the content will be incorporating your keywords.
Consider also adding videos and podcasts to your blog as people are attracted to a different medium. If this is not done, search engines and patients themselves for that matter, don’t see any change on your website for six months. They have to ask the question, is this practice still active? Did the doctor retire and they didn’t take the website down yet? Did the doctor die? Did the practice move? All sorts of ideas go through a person’s head when it’s stagnant.
Optimal Website Boosting
Fourthly, create an optimal website boosting you on the first page of Google searches where patients can find you. A website isn’t just a nice thing to have. It’s a crucial strategy to educate patients and attract them. Patients used to rely on recommendations from family or friends to prospective patients. They look up doctors’ information online. Remember that 8 out of 10 people search for their physicians online before making an appointment.
If you don’t have a website, you don’t exist, or if your website turns out to be on page 25 of the Google search, you might as well not be there because patients rarely look beyond the second or the first half of the second page, and never really go beyond that.
Having an effective website also saves you time. Do you answer the same questions with your patients every day? Add frequently asked questions or a FAQ sheet to your online content.
Post what makes a good candidate for your service, indications, and contraindications for procedures. Post-op instructions and videos on medical devices and techniques. Setting up an effective website and putting this information on it allows patients to view it instead of having to call you up and ask these questions over and over.
Dr. Barbara Hales: Fifthly, speak at events and neighborhood health fairs. It positions you as the authority in your field and draws in ideal patients who will actively seek you out perceiving that you have the solutions to their problems. I remember when I had a practice and spoke at the public library. At least half of the patients came up to me at the end of the talk asking for my business card and whether I was still accepting patients.
It was a great way to grow my practice at that point.
Writing a Book
Dr. Barbara Hales: Sixthly write a book. Writing a book on conditions that you treat makes you look like an authority in those solutions. Other specialists may work down the block performing the same procedures and treating the same conditions. But if you wrote the book on it, it is obvious that you are the one that people will want to consult with. You are the expert. Your book is a piece of you that they want to take home so that you are continually on their mind.
The Importance of Networking
Dr. Barbara Hales: Lastly, let’s talk about networking. Introduce yourself and your practice to professionals and health facilities in your area for referrals. Marketing isn’t just about trying to promote new services to patients. It’s also about managing your reputation and building relationships.
Hopefully, you see the value in marketing your practice, but I get it, you are already working what seems like 25 hours out of every 24. The good news is that you don’t have to go it alone. You can outsource your needs and have someone do it all for you.
Where to Contact Dr. Barbara Hales?
Let’s chat about your needs. What are your pains? What are the struggles that keep you up at night? Contact me at themedicalstrategist.com/contact and we can discuss your problem and get you on the road to success. This has been another episode of Marketing Tips for Doctors with your host, Dr. Barbara Hales.
Hope you have a happy and healthy new year coming up. Till next time.