Medical practices have to learn how to market to the modern-day patient, which is not easy when they are already overworked. Outsourcing is the answer.
Medical practices face a common challenge: they need a way to attract new patients, yet they often lack the time and extensive marketing expertise required to reach today’s modern-day patient. Consider this:
• As of 2016, there were more than 326 million people in the U.S. Each one of them with their own personality and each one of them a potential patient.
• 52 percent of smartphone users gather health-related data from a smartphone.
• 91 percent of adults have their smartphone within arm’s reach 24/7.
• According to recent Facebook data, the number one most asked for recommendation is a doctor or a healthcare provider.
• There are 8.2 billion health-related video views on YouTube.
So, what do all these stats mean? Potential patients consume healthcare-related information in a variety of ways - both online and offline. This means that there is no one right way to market your medical practice. In fact, a recent ReachLocal survey revealed that on average, local marketers use 10 different types of digital marketing activities (e.g. search, email, social ads, etc.) and they use nearly three different partners to do that. This shows that local marketers are testing the waters to see which marketing programs work best, as well as which programs perform well together.
This is exactly the situation that Dean Mitchell, MD, of Mitchell Medical Group, who practices holistic and immunological medicine in New York City and Long Island, NY, found himself. Dr. Mitchell knew that he needed to attract new patients through modern-day marketing techniques, but he didn’t have the time or resources to do it in-house. He also didn’t know what mix of digital and traditional marketing programs would yield the best results. So, he decided to heed his own advice and turn to a specialist to meet his practice’s marketing goals, which included:
• Getting found by prospects on top search engines
• Reaching new patients through Facebook advertising
• Establishing an effective lead management strategy across the practice
With the help of marketing experts, Mitchell Medical Group devised a comprehensive plan blending traditional marketing programs with cutting-edge digital marketing programs that now includes search advertising, Facebook advertising, listings management, lead management and the management of his Website. The results have been nothing short of astonishing. Since deploying this initiative five years ago, Mitchell Medical Group has realized:
•500 percent increase in web traffic from SEO
•400 percent increase in total leads
•69 percent reduction in cost per lead
Most recently, Mitchell Medical Group added Facebook advertising to their marketing strategy to retarget website visitors on Facebook. Dr. Mitchell believes that local businesses can’t afford to ignore Facebook due to the number of users and targeting capabilities available. And, although this is a newer venture for them, he knows it can be successful in driving more leads to his website to become patients.
Mitchell Medical Group is also using a dedicated lead management solution that helps them prioritize leads as they come in and track where they’re coming from so they can determine what marketing tactics are working best. The solution also has a built-in HIPAA-compliant call recording function, so Mitchell Medical Group’s staff can listen to calls and analyze where a lead may have dropped off. Based on this information, they can address any internal processes that may be hindering lead conversion.
Today, there are many ways that a medical practice can approach their marketing strategy. Creating and executing a successful marketing strategy is a time-consuming endeavor, not an option for many already overloaded medical practices. Just as patients seek help from physicians for their medical ailments, medical practices should rely on marketing experts to help achieve their business goals.
Vanessa Vollman is Director of ReachLocal’s national healthcare division.