Inbound Marketing for Physicians
As technology and communication have evolved, consumer habits have followed suit. Companies and service providers in virtually every industry have had to adapt to stay relevant. This includes marketing and outreach strategies. These changes haven’t been confined to strictly commercial entities. They have run over into even the most basic and essential industries like healthcare, government, and higher education.
To many physicians, actively marketing their practice can seem excessive or unprofessional. This is especially true for those who earned their degrees and licenses decades ago. Despite their opinions, marketing, especially digital marketing, is a necessity. There’s no way around it.
Adopting new methods does require work and resources from individual physicians, private practices, and hospitals, but we promise, it’s worth it. There are innumerable benefits to investing in medical marketing and doing it well.
WHERE DO I BEGIN?
Start thinking about how inbound marketing could work in relation to your practice. Do some research on the characteristics of your ideal patients. Begin compiling outlines of these personas. Put together summaries of their backgrounds, problems, and the things they are looking for most in their experience with your practice.
Then you can start catering your content (blog posts, social media posts, and website content) to these personas. Aim to provide them with the information they are searching for right when they set out to find it. This may sound difficult, but the inbound process will make it second nature.
MANAGE YOUR REPUTATION + INCREASE YOUR INFLUENCE
Physicians have traditionally relied on referrals to ensure the success of their practices. Today’s patients aren’t just looking for references from family and primary care physicians. They are looking on the internet, reading reviews, researching procedures, and investigating backgrounds and experience.
If you are not providing this information yourself, you risk prospective patients learning information about you from outside sources. Those sources could be competitors or under-informed civilians.
If you are providing and curating this information yourself, you will have much more control. You can have a say in how people interpret your history, your personality, and your overall expertise.
Marketing your services is the number one way to accomplish this. With a great marketing strategy, you will be able to optimize your website and provide content patients really need. You will consistently disseminate that information online share it online through social media and blogs. There’s more to it, of course, but inbound marketing is all about transparency and helpfulness. Adopting an inbound strategy will help you build trust and address your patients’ most pressing questions and concerns.
The face-to-face meetings that happen during appointments and checkups are a small portion of the relationships patients expect to have with their physicians today.
Patients should feel a real sense of connection to you and your practice. You can use your online presence to develop these relationships. Providing educational content, being active in your community, and making yourself available to patients will do wonders.
Patients gather a great deal of information when they decide which physician to go to. They want to know experience and success rates, exactly how your procedures are done, and what they should expect every step of the way. Expanding the reach of your expertise and influence online will help patients to feel like they understand you, what you do, and why you’re the best before they even walk in the door.
KEEP TRACK OF YOUR PROGRESS
One of the most important aspects of inbound marketing is measuring the effects of your marketing efforts. Those measurements should be used to refine your processes on a continual basis. This is especially crucial for groups working within limited marketing budgets.
Tracking and analyzing data from your website visits, interactions with visitors, and your social reach will provide you with the insights you need measure how your marketing performance compares to your initial goals, determine which aspects of your strategy are working well, and rethink efforts that may not be providing the ROI you had initially hoped for.