The healthcare industry has always been rapidly evolving with new methods of treatment and the most advanced in technology. So has the modern world. Gone is the day when phone directories were the source of getting the information needed, now Google does that and so much better. Smart phones have changed the way people now access information. The healthcare sector has seen this change as much as other sectors but has been slower to take advantage of this. The stats show that healthcare consumers and patients are making decisions often based on online resources both during initial research and during treatment.
- With over 460 million internet users, India is the second largest online market, ranked only behind China.
- One in 20 searches on Google is related to healthcare
- Patients primarily search on symptoms and condition on digital medium before visiting a doctor.
- 83 % patients visit the hospital site to know more about service offered.
Many medical professionals are recognizing this as an opportunity and are injecting the necessary vitamins to design a suitable digital marketing strategy for themselves. Here are some essential digital marketing trends that will be a game changer for healthcare professionals.
1. A Professional Website
A website that is modern and easy to navigate is important. It is also important to present the information the visitor is looking for in an easy to assimilate manner. A majority of physicians are on social media in their personal capacity but statistics show that hardly 15% have their own website, This is in contrast to 50% of consumers who are researching online before meeting a doctor or a hospital. A website that keeps the limelight on the doctor and the treatments inspires a patient’s confidence. A Google maps listing also is invaluable in making it easier for a patient to get directions.
For the first time 2017 saw more users accessing information on the mobile rather than the desktop. All the more essential that your website should be responsive and load quickly on smartphones. The information should also be easily understood and presented in a way that makes it easy to read on smaller screens.
2. Search Engine Optimized
Setting up a great looking website with blogs and videos and informative content is not enough if the consumer cannot find it. One in five searches on Google is related to healthcare and Google gives priority to websites by medical professionals. This is because the content is considered as more reliable compared to the plethora of information that anyone can post. Search Engine Optimization is the process of driving consumers to your website without paying for it. So making sure your site is optimized and easily found among that sea of confusing information.
This is where a SEO specialist is essential. It’s good to make sure that the professionals creating your website have a SEO specialist. There are at least 200 ranking factors in Google’s algorithm that need to be set on your website. This includes tagging a page with relevant keywords that have a high search volume, strategic HTML titles, writing informative page descriptions that will show under your link on Google search and many more techniques.
3. Informational Blogs
Rich content online is always a goldmine both in terms of SEO as well as well as in drawing more patients and both these are interrelated. Having more pages/articles of high quality and original content on your website means that search engines will index your website very frequently. In layman terms this means that Google will give your site a higher ranking because of higher number of pages with unique content, this in turn will drive more people to your site and this traffic will make you be shown up higher than other similar websites.
It cannot be stressed enough enough that up to-date content with a doctor as an author or editor is worth its weight in gold. Writing may not be possible for every medical professional as it can take up time. However they are agencies that can take the rough skeleton provided by the doctor and write a blog that is in a style that internet consumers are looking for while still being factually correct and retaining the unique style of the healthcare professional. There also are often videos of the talks the doctor might have presented at medical conferences. Videos resound even better with an internet audience and a digital company will help you set this up.
4. Social Media Presence
Within the next 3 years, the use of social media to connect with individuals is expected to increase by 256%. If you or your organization is not utilizing social media and its opportunities then you could be missing out big. 60% of active social media users trust social media posts by doctors over any other group. Creating a page without frequent posts will not get social media users to follow you. As a medical professional if it takes up too much of your time to plan and post a variety of content to your page then you might consider hiring a digital marketing agency to handle your page. It does not cost a lot while the advantages are far reaching.
5. Ad Campaigns For Targeted Reach
The two big digital marketplaces for advertising are naturally Google paid ads (72% share) and Facebook ads. Google has strict guidelines about what can be advertised in the healthcare industry and your digital marketing agency can advice you on that. Search Engine Marketing or SEM are the paid searches that come above the free listings and are related to the search term the user has entered.
On Facebook they are the sponsored posts that come up on every member’s page. The advantage of digital advertising is that you pay only when there is a click on the advertisement and the cost of the click can vary depending on the competition for the keyword. The other advantage is that you can target the city and demographics you want the ad to appear in. Facebook has even more advanced targeting capabilities as in you can select who sees your ad – by location, sex, age and even those who like specific health topics. This enables you to reach those who are in need of your healthcare solutions that your hospital or practise specializes in
Interested in knowing more about how digital marketing can help your practise? Contact ZenithReach’s digital marketing specialists to devise a customized marketing strategy or mail firstname.lastname@example.org to request a free digital analysis today.