Research shows that 77% of patients conduct an online search before making an appointment with a physician. Does your website, social media profiles and blog accurately reflect what you do and offer to your patients? It’s no longer enough to have a tepid social media presence and a website that reads more like a brochure. Consistency and engagement are crucial to creating a positive experience with current and future patients—sometimes before they even walk in the door for the first time.
If you are in the healthcare industry, forming a comprehensive digital marketing roadmap is more important than ever. Here are four key components to help form a successful digital marketing strategy.
1. User-Friendly Website
As you now know, many individuals will be visiting your website before making their first appointment. Your website is your first impression, so you’ll want to make sure the user can quickly and easily find what they’re looking for. If they can’t find this information, they are likely to search for a different provider.
Users expect when they visit your website that they will locate contact information, medical information and be able to make an appointment online. In an effort to decrease friction or barriers to booking, your website should offer these options either on the home page or in the main navigation allowing quick access to the information they need the most.
2. Active Social Media Presence
Take some time to review the ‘about; sections of your social media profiles.
- Are your hours listed correctly?
- Are your address and phone number up-to-date?
- Have you been responding to the messages in your inbox from current or potential patients?
Social media is now the preferred method of engagement for many users, so it’s important to keep track of these conversations and respond to them in a timely and thoughtful manner.
3. Proactive Review Strategy
Users are interacting with their social media accounts to talk about everything in their lives, including health and medical information. Many people will visit Facebook or Yelp to read reviews about medical practice professionals. It’s an easy and fast way for people to get an idea of what your practice is all about before they make their first appointment.
It’s important to keep track of these reviews and respond as necessary. If someone is forming a first impression based on these reviews, you’ll want to make sure you engage with your followers as often as possible. Healthcare is all about trust and this relationship begins at the first impression.
Current and potential customers want to see if your organization is active, informative, helpful, and genuine through its online communications. Respond to both positive and negative reviews within 24-48 hours and have a plan moving forward to garner additional reviews from patients.
4. Informative Blog
According to a study by WEGO Health, over 40% of consumers say information found on social media affects how they take care of their health. An active blog is one factor that allows a website to be found when a potential customer conducts an online search. If you’re regularly posting on your blog and including pertinent keywords, you’re one step closer to reaching that potential customer that’s looking for answers. Relevant blog content captures people’s attention and encourages them to visit your practice or hospital for their healthcare needs.
Digital marketing is especially important in today’s market and allows for local private practices to compete with larger hospital systems. Whether you’re selling a product or providing a service, there are several digital marketing tactics for maximizing the reach of your healthcare organization (we’ve just named a few).
If you’re interested in learning more about how you can improve your online presence and expand your digital footprint, contact us—we’d love to hear more about your business!