People go online to do medical research—and they’re looking up more than just symptoms. Today’s patients are checking out doctor reviews, hospital ratings, treatment options, and more.
Meet your prospective patients where they are with these digital strategies:
Unless your clinic offers a treatment program that’s rare or very hard to find, you don’t need to target the entire country with your marketing efforts. That’s what makes local search engine optimization (SEO) so valuable: you can focus your attention on those who are actually likely to come see you.
Here are some of the simplest ways to boost your healthcare clinic’s local SEO:
- Tag your location
- Include your address on your website
- Have a Google My Business page (and pages on relevant databases)
Once you’ve taken those steps, it’s time to start creating keyword-optimized content.
Identify the terms your ideal prospects use to search for healthcare online. Then, add in location keywords—such as your city, state, or even neighborhood—to those queries. Even if people don’t specifically state the city they’re in, opting to use “near me” instead, search engines’ location services will be able to determine the searcher’s location, your location, and make the connection.
Pro Tip: Local SEO intersects beautifully with one search method that’s rapidly growing in popularity: voice search. Learn more here: How to Optimize Your Healthcare Clinic for Voice Search
In 2019, Google Health Vice President David Feinberg, MD estimated that about 7% of Google’s daily searches are health-related. (I’d wager that number has shot up since then.)
If you don’t have the patience for SEO, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is a quicker, albeit more expensive, way to get your clinic’s name out there.
Some benefits of paid advertising include:
- Simple tracking. Most data analytics dashboards for PPC are pretty straightforward: after all, if it’s tough, no one will use it.
- Effective targeting. The beauty of paid search advertising is that you can ensure that your ads reach exactly who needs to see them: your ideal demographic.
- Easy adjustment. Tweak your parameters to fit your needs as the data comes in. Or, turn off your campaign completely.
- Retargeting. Cookies in users’ browsers allow your digital ads to “follow” prospects around the web, keeping your clinic top-of-mind through various parts of their journey.
There are also other forms of paid advertising that aren’t based purely on clicks: you might pay per thousand impressions or a certain amount of video views, for example. The bottom line is that digital advertising offers several different ways for your clinic to meet its unique goals.
Pro Tip: Bolster your digital campaign with a landing page. Learn more here: Why Your Digital Advertising Campaign Needs a Landing Page [FREE Infographic]
You already know that your healthcare clinic needs a strong presence on social media. But did you know how effective the advertising options on social media platforms are?
“Considering that 83% of people in the US have looked up health-related information on social media and 91% of these people claim that it has helped them make a better decision, having a good social media presence is particularly helpful for healthcare professionals and institutions,” points out researcher Kasturi Gandhi. “Not only does your presence and activity on social media help you engage with people, it also helps manage reputation and build social proof.”
So why would you need to pay for advertisements on social media? “Social media has made it more difficult to reach existing followers and get new followers,” explains content manager Yagmur Simsek. “You may need to provide a budget for sponsored posts to reach more of your existing patients and reach out to other potential patients.”
Not sure where to start? Check out our guide to advertising on social media: The Pros & Cons of Advertising on Today’s Leading Social Media Platforms
Pro Tip: Yet another strength of social media is its impact on SEO. Learn more here: Is Your Social Media SEO-Friendly?
Healthcare video marketing has a proven track record of motivating patients to take action. And no matter which avenue you choose—budget-friendly or an all-out video campaign—the benefits are numerous.
Uploading videos to YouTube platforms benefits SEO, spreads brand awareness, and helps establish your clinic as a trusted authority in your field. It also humanizes your staff and can help with recruiting efforts. It’s the principle of “show, don’t tell” come to life: showing prospective patients what it’s like at your clinic is instantaneously more effective than telling it to them and expecting them to believe it. (Plus, people tend to like watching video more than reading, especially when scrolling through social media.)
There are also paid advertising strategies to be accomplished with video. For example, you can create short ads to play on YouTube videos. These ads hold a lot of power because they’re shown to a captive audience: most people are willing to sit through a few seconds of an ad to get to the content they’re interested in. All you have to do is make sure those few seconds are captivating.
Pro Tip: Concerned that video will take up too much of your clinic’s advertising budget? Check out our guide to affordable video marketing that’s chock-full of FREE ways to make your videos impactful. Learn more here: Effective Doesn’t Have to Mean Expensive in Video Marketing
Make the Most of Your Healthcare Digital Marketing Today
Ready to get started driving leads to your healthcare clinic using these digital marketing strategies? Contact Kirkpatrick Creative today. We create advertising that’s engineered to work, and we’ve helped several healthcare facilities see more patients and recruit new talent.
Photo by Karolina Grabowska