If you’re in the healthcare industry and looking to attract more patients, you know the competition is just as fierce as when you attended med school. Although taking your marketing efforts online is likely a scary thought due to exhaustive compliance regulations, doing so may be the only way to reach today’s modern patient. Digital marketing CAN and DOES work in the healthcare industry, and we’ve seen it firsthand at Pyxl. Here are 5 tried and true tips for healthcare providers when marketing to patients online.
1. Come Up With a Compelling Campaign
Take a look at the retail and service industries and you’ll quickly notice most brands live and breathe by the tenets of their current creative campaign. These campaigns are used to reinvigorate potential customers and keep them interested in a world saturated by competition. So far in 2015, the focus of many big players has been on positivity. McDonald’s for example, hopes to reinvent their image with a Choose Lovin’ campaign that is all about “inspiring people to recognize and celebrate the livin’ they share with each other every day,” according to a McDonald’s press release, while Dove is continuing to see success in shedding light on self-esteem in women and girls with its Real Beauty campaign. We may not see much creative vision in the healthcare industry yet, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t on its way. Spend time brainstorming strategic campaigns that inspire users and you’re sure to stay ahead of the pack.
2. Create a Responsive Website
Did you know that 44 percent of patients who research hospitals on a mobile device schedule an appointment? People do their homework before making decisions and their approach is no different when they go about choosing a healthcare provider. Responsive websites not only ensure your brand stays consistent across devices and the digital landscape, but also improve the overall user experience and increase your chance of staying in front of potential patients. Build a site that’s responsive to any device and screen size, and you also build instant credibility. If you want to learn more about the necessity of responsive design, check out this blog post.
3. Stay Far, Far Away from Stock Photos
Healthcare materials are notorious for cringe-worthy stock photography. How many more photos of a doctor holding a generic clipboard in a sterile hospital hallway can we take? If you haven’t already, hire a professional to shoot photos of your staff and amenities. Patients are often wary of seeing a new doctor for the first time, so put their worries at ease by showing your smiling staff. You can also ask patients to participate in recording testimonials or other user-generated content that helps bring your content to life, humanizes your organization and strengthens your marketing efforts.
4. Choose Value Over Volume
It’s no secret that modern day healthcare is shifting from a fee-for-service model to a value-based approach. Finding efficient ways to improve health outcomes and overall access to quality care is the future of medicine. But did you know this concept is also the future of marketing? When you’re marketing to patients, such as sharing information on social or publishing a blog post, ask yourself: “Is this providing value to my audience?” If the answer is no, chuck it in the biohazard bin. This isn’t to suggest you shouldn’t post regularly, just make sure every bit of content you share educates, informs or delights your potential patients.
5. Create Easy-to-Understand Content
“Doctorspeak” is perfect for medical journals and internal communications. It’s only natural; healthcare has its own distinct acronyms, language and jargon. However, if you want your content to resonate with patients, you need to make it clear, concise and easy to digest. This goes back to the principles of sound doctor-patient communication, which is essential to providing useful, high-quality patient care. The easiest way to get started? Listen to your patients’ questions and concerns, and turn your answers, suggestions and guidance into content you share online—no translation necessary.
Are you looking to achieve digital success across the healthcare spectrum but still aren’t sure you’re ready to get started? Download our free Next Generation Healthcare Marketing white paper to learn more about how you can start marketing to patients and ultimately make waves in the digital healthcare space.
Updated: Apr 13, 2022