In recent years, we have been witnessing the undeniable process of the digital transformation of communication. The constant rise in the number of people who access the Internet every day has changed how individuals tend to talk to each other and, above all, how the company and customer interact.
The medical and healthcare sector has not been exempt from this communicative transformation and over time, there has been a transition from traditional to online marketing methods. Today, all public health facilities have a website and most of them manage a social profile. In particular, however, specialized clinics, private hospitals, and private structures accredited to the National Health Service benefited from the benefits of going online.
In the private sector, in fact, many structures have been able to increase the number of patients assisted thanks to a targeted strategy of attracting visitors to the site, subsequently transforming them into customers. In an often delicate sector such as the clinical one, what makes the difference – in addition to the quality of the work and the subsequent word of mouth – are how the company can promote itself externally by capturing the attention of those who, through a conscious, seeking a solution to their problem, often in a short time and without waiting for the times of public health.
Why is it worth investing in online marketing for healthcare services?
Today, users tend to surf the Internet searching for medical-health information and, consequently, the pages dealing with these topics have multiplied. Often several hundred sites compete for the best positioning on search engines: it is a real visibility competition in which those who have been able to structure a winning strategy control.
What matters, in fact, is to offer the right content to the right person, getting in touch with potential customers who use the network to seek satisfaction of their needs and gradually guiding them towards their structure. It is important to transform the simple initial question into an awareness of being able to find the sought-after medical advice both by placing oneself as an authoritative and expert company in the sector. Being in the first position on Google may not be enough to increase customers, as the ability to create a buyer’s journey that acts as a real guide for the user along their search path.
Is Online Marketing only suitable for large healthcare facilities?
No, there are many good examples of small businesses that have been able to increase their number of patients thanks to Online Marketing.
In the customer conversion process, it is advisable to make use of technological tools specifically designed to speed up the process, such as a call to action, landing page, chatbot, and a form. Let’s see, in the different phases, what are the different steps that the structure can overcome.
Benefits of Online Marketing Campaigns for Healthcare Mansions, Clinics, and Doctors:
The primary objective of any Online Marketing campaign is to increase visitors to the site, attracting private individuals in the various research stages, and offering content that responds to potentially feasible requests. On average, the campaign has a duration of 12 months, that is the time necessary for the contents to reach their stable organic positioning (i.e. free, without the push of advertisements) on Google.
An effective strategy predicts, before leaving, the identification of a buyer persona, the ideal type of customer who needs the healthcare facility (possibly, one of the tops or excellent services of the same), and his purchasing process (the already cited buyer’s journey, or customer journey), structured on different phases: attraction, conversion, closure, and loyalty.
4 Stages of customer behavior:
The brand awareness process is the essential step that participates in transforming a stranger to become a visitor by attracting him to be interested in your service or product.
The first phase of Online Marketing consists of attracting new visitors to the site thanks to quality content. Giving an example of a healthcare center.
The user’s action, as we said, starts from a conscious question. Let’s say that he suffers from a strange and repetitive insensibility in his arm and for this, he searches the Web looking for the reasons for his discomfort. Once the problem has been defined, the user will try to understand how to be treated and, subsequently, which health facility to rely on to solve the problem.
Well: your health facility meets the requirements inquired by the user. But will you have been able to be among the first results on the search engine?
If you have effectively exploited the good practices of the Inbound method, it is likely that the user has landed on your site. The path, however, does not always lead to an immediate final decision: for this reason, the path does not end here …
In the second phase, that of conversion, visitors to the site are transformed into contacts.
Let’s go back to the previous example. The user, suffering from the strange numbness of the arm, recognizes a specific syndrome as the probable cause of his problems. Before contacting a doctor, in all likelihood he will look for confirmation of the signals corresponding to the supposed diagnostics and will inquire about the possible treatments. It is at this point that the Online methodology occurs: it will be possible, for example, to offer downloadable content that offers all the information available, perhaps accompanied by some interesting case history, in exchange for the email address to send the mentioned above content, or offer the possibility to book a visit or a consultation directly from the website.
To this end, it will be important to insert within the contents of the blog accessed by the user to inquire about the calls to action which, through a powerful phrase, lead the same to a specific page ( landing page ) on which it will be possible to fill in a contact form on which to enter the most relevant information in order to give the contact a minimum categorization. In this regard, in the conversion process, it may also be useful to use a live chat that responds, in a fully automated manner, to the most frequent requests of users.
In the third phase, the closing stage, the visitor (who later became contact) is effectively transformed into a customer.
Our visitor decided to download informative content on the remedies that can be adopted to solve the problems related to the syndrome he suffers from. From the point of view of the healthcare company, it will be very important to thank the user, by sending a second email, for having downloaded the content and thus start a strategy of new content that will accompany the user towards the next phase of the buyer’s journey. The contact generated will then be guided to choose the company’s service in line with its needs.
To this end, it will be possible to exploit the marketing automation mechanisms to create an automated mail flow that allows you to program customized content based on the behaviors and interests expressed by the contacts, thus leading them to the final purchase of the service.
In the fourth and last phase, that of loyalty, it will be appropriate to involve customers with valuable content even after the sale. This mechanism has the function of both generating word of mouth – often essential in the medical-health sector – and encouraging customers to continue to use your services in case of problems.
For this reason, it will be essential to use the email channel also in the post-sales phase, for example:
- Send personalized content to strengthen the relationship of trust;
- Evaluate customer satisfaction through questionnaires;
- Make other services known;
- Inform about public events;
- Communicating values and telling the story of the company.
Social media monitoring will also be essential to listen to opinions about the company circulating on the Web and evaluate what people say, to assist customers in real-time and solve problems and difficulties that may be encountered following the booking activity or after the visit itself.
Inbound Marketing involves a long and meticulous process to achieve and the desired results. Private clinics and hospitals can act independently or rely on the qualified support of a communication agency specialized in Healthcare Marketing: tell us about your project and the results you want!
How long does it take to get results thanks to Online Marketing?
An Inbound Marketing strategy can lead to the first and real results hoped for in a variable timing between 3 and 9 months. The variability is given by the accuracy of the campaign.
The process of being listed among the top results varies according to the product and the online competition for this product, here comes the geographical and demographical effectiveness, which gives us a series of important questions like who is interested in what and where?
But without a doubt, if you invest your time in some quality researches regarding what to start with before you put the nail on the wood will sure get you to the targeted aim faster than you’ve ever thought.
What can we do for healthcare facilities?
We are one of the few Egyptian agencies specializing in healthcare marketing and we deal with:
- Manage Communications
- We set up a centralized system to manage all communication channels from your facility, allowing you to optimize flows. Result? You will never lose contact again!
- Online Marketing
- We study together with the right Online Marketing strategy, to allow you to increase the number of visitors to your website, convert them into new customers and retain your contacts.