In today’s market, your target audience rarely responds to traditional forms of marketing like print advertising, yellow pages, cold calling, and direct mail postcards. Why? Because they are outdated techniques that consumers—which includes your prospective vein clinic patients—now avoid.
So, if traditional marketing is losing its effectiveness, you’re most likely wondering how to get new patients interested in your services. Here’s the key—they already are, they just haven’t found you yet. Your success lies in capitalizing on the most common way patients now search for, and choose, medical services like a vein clinic.
Essentially, the internet has made accessing important information and treatment options quick and easy, and as a result your patients have become more knowledgeable. In fact, a study by the Pew Research Center revealed that seven-in-ten (72%) of adult internet users say they have searched online for information about a range of health issues, the most popular being specific diseases and treatments.
As a result, to stay competitive in today’s medical marketplace you simply must put energy into three fundamental aspects of online marketing—consider it a triple-play strategy for winning the marketing game.
1) Tune-Up Your Website
Think of your website as a digital representation of your vein clinic. When people first visit your site, they begin learning who you are and what services you provide. Your website allows you to share your vision and services, and most importantly, is a tool to show prospective patients how you can solve their medical problems better than your competitors.
Showcase photos of legs before varicose veins were removed, for example, and then after the procedure. Adding testimonials of how patients lives were greatly improved by your services creates a motivational story that prospective patients can relate to.
The bottom line is that search engines like Google allow your patients to research health care provider and treatment options rather than simply accepting a professional recommendation. When these patients conduct their searches, they should be able to find your practice’s website easily. Once they do, your website needs to be up-to-date with relevant information and must also have a way to request information or schedule an appointment online.
Case in point: a regional surgical group had an outdated website which had no option for prospective patients to request an appointment online. Just adding that one key element resulted in 36 inquiries within the first 3 months.
2) Create Compelling Content
By providing your patients with free information to address their medical concerns, you’ll establish your practice as a valuable resource they can trust. The key to creating relevant content is to think of it from a patient’s perspective.
While you may find the new changes in ultrasound imaging extremely interesting, your patients are likely to be more interested in how you can help them relieve leg pain from varicose veins, for example, and which treatments you provide that have worked for others who’ve had the same problem.
If you’re unsure of what topics might interest your patients, start with the questions you are asked most frequently. For example, “How are varicose veins removed?” can turn into a blog post: “5 Ways Today’s Varicose Vein Procedures Are Easier Than Ever Before.” Use your patients’ questions to then create engaging content across various platforms, such as:
- Blog posts, articles, and white papers
- Downloadable eBooks, checklists, guides
- Interactive offers such as assessments or quizzes
- Videos, podcasts, and webinars
- Infographics and slideshows
- Online conferences and special events
3) Promote Your Content On Social Media Platforms
Because healthcare is a regulated industry, many medical practices have avoided incorporating social media into their marketing strategy. But your patients are on social media and they expect you to be there, too.
Consider this: The number of followers of the Mayo Clinic rose by 76,000 after the clinic began using social media to promote their podcasts. The clinic was already distributing these podcasts as valuable content, however, the number of listeners did not significantly increase until they began using social media. It’s that important!
Set up a system so that you’re promoting all of the website content you create on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, at the least. The more you promote your practice across social media platforms, the more you’ll drive traffic to your website which in turn builds how easily you show up on the first page or two of Google searches.
These three fundamental practices—making sure your website is up-to-date, creating relevant content, and promoting that content on social media—are the building blocks for helping prospective patients find—and then choose—your vein clinic. If you’re not sure where to start, or if you’re wondering if you’re implementing these practices correctly, we can help!
Over the past several years, Baker Labs has worked closely with doctors, medical groups, and their patients to better understand the marketing dilemma in the healthcare industry. Our experience has allowed us to create customized digital marketing strategies through which medical practices like vein clinics can attract new patients, build strong relationships, and grow quality patient-to-patient referrals better than before. Contact us for a free marketing assessment of your medical practice.