As with all services, the first place people look for a hospital is the internet. Find nearby hospitals, hospital addresses, available specialties, reviews from others, and more. This is a great opportunity for hospitals, clinics, and practitioners to reach their target audience. Having a strong digital presence for hospitals is critical in this decade.
That’s why we created this comprehensive guide to digital marketing for hospitals. And we’ll see how we will make the best out of it.
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Why do you need Digital Marketing for hospitals?
To attract patients to your hospital and provide the best service, you must reach out to them first. This is what digital marketing can do as a first step. There are several digital channels you can use to build a strong presence and get in front of your target audience; your patient. These channels include social media, search engines, email, and other websites.
As we become more digital every day, more and more people are using digital platforms to search for the services they need. This also includes hospitals and other health-related services. That aside, unlike other traditional media, digital marketing agency offers features like targeting, measurability, and re-marketing. These are essential for other advertisers looking to improve their ROI.
How to promote a hospital through Digital Marketing?
For hospitals, the following are key areas to focus on in digital marketing:
- Social Media Marketing (SMM)
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
- Content Marketing
- Email Marketing
To be successful online, you need to choose the right methods and channels and develop a solid marketing strategy.
How to create a Digital Marketing strategy for Hospital?
Before you start working on your digital presence, you need to have a strategy.
A hospital’s digital marketing strategy should ideally include
- Define your goal
- Analyze your current scenario
- Identify your audience
- Please select a method/channel
- Fix a timeline/frequency
- A recommended course of action
Define your goals
Strategy goals define what you want to achieve with your actions. For digital campaigns, for example, this could be to increase brand awareness or generate leads. Your goals also determine the next steps you should include in your strategy.
Analyze your current scenario
Before planning anything new, it’s good to understand where you are on your journey.
This should ideally answer questions like
- Already have a digital presence? If yes, how effective is it?
- Which channel are you currently using?
- What is your current digital marketing budget?
- What are your digital marketing efforts presently lacking and what would you like to improve?
Identify your audience
This is an important step in digital marketing for hospitals. Before planning your marketing efforts, you should define your buyer personas. It identifies well the characteristics of the audience. You can easily define your target audience by gathering the following details about your target audience:
- The age group of your audience
- Social class
- Residing location
- Family status (single/married/parents)
Please select a method/channel
Your strategy should define the methods and channels you will use to promote your hospital.
In digital marketing, these methods can be broadly divided into two.
Organic (free) methods include SEO, SMM, etc. All ads fall under paid methods. You also need to decide which channels you will use for advertising. This includes search engines, social media, email campaigns, video hosting platforms, and more. Within social media, you can choose the right option depending on your target audience. For hospitals, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter work well.
Decide your budget
This is an important step in building a foolproof digital marketing strategy for your hospital. Once you know which channel or method to use, you can set your overall budget and split it across channels. Or, if you don’t have an exact budget when creating your strategy, have an approximate amount and decide how much to invest in PPC, how much to invest in social media, and so on. A clear roadmap from the budget division makes executing the strategy much easier.
Fix a timeline/frequency
This includes determining when digital campaigns and activities begin and end. For social media, campaign calendars make things easier. Define when the campaign starts and ends, and the frequency of action.
One of the greatest advantages of digital marketing is its measurability. Track your campaign performance and see what your audience is doing. Usually, setting up a Google Analytics account on your website helps you see certain actions like the number of visitors, page views, conversions, etc. As part of your digital marketing strategy, you should define what your end goal is and how you will pursue it.
A recommended course of action
If you’re a marketer, you probably know certain basic tactics that can make a difference. Things like this can always be added to your strategy as a best practice. This also helps your team follow the same and get better results.
What are the important Digital Marketing activities for hospitals?
Now you know what to include in your hospital’s digital marketing strategy. Take a look at all the key digital marketing activities that can help your hospital grow.
social media marketing
Social media is a great business place. A place to find leads, build community and connect with your audience. A social media presence is very important for hospitals. Social media accounts can attract new patients and also help connect with existing clients.
Four social media accounts are a must for every hospital.
Facebook is the ultimate place to build and maintain community. You want a Facebook page with a professional-looking bio, an attractive display photo, and a cover photo. You should also list the services and specialties the hospital provides. Fill in all the fields present on the page to make it more reliable. Consider regularly posting engaging images and text on your Facebook page that will help your audience.
If you want to grow your audience quickly, try posting daily to your Facebook page. Unlike before, algorithm changes have reduced organic reach on Facebook pages. Therefore, if you want to increase the reach of your posts, we also recommend running some form of paid advertising on Facebook.
Instagram is a great platform for building an engaging audience if you have compelling images to post. Creating unique and engaging real-time content on Instagram is a great complement to brand growth. Although less engaged than Instagram, Twitter has a large user base in certain geographies. It also serves as an official channel for brand announcements. Using a verified Twitter account increases the credibility of your Tweets.
Also, create a great LinkedIn company page with information about the hospital at the organizational level. A streamlined LinkedIn Company Page can help you increase brand awareness, increase brand equity, and hire quality employees.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM)
Search engine marketing is an essential channel for hospitals. Building a great search presence only requires him to focus on one search engine like Google. Traffic from other search engines is very low compared to Google. Search engine marketing is a paid advertising method that is displayed at the top of search results for desired keywords (search words). Google offers this functionality through its search engine advertising platform called Google Ads (formerly Google AdWords).
Hospitals can target search terms related to location, specialties, treatment options, and more. For each keyword, you pay a price called CPC, or cost-per-click. The amount you have to pay (to Google) for each click on a particular keyword. A keyword’s CPC can vary by location and industry. You can turn visitors into leads by creating landing pages specifically for Google Search Ads.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Search engine optimization is an organic way to rank higher in search results. It includes specific practices to optimize your website for better search visibility. SEO is always better than SEM when it comes to driving quality traffic to your website. However, unlike SEM, SEO takes time to show results.
Similar to SEM, keywords can be found and targeted based on location, specialty, the treatment offered, and more. You can start with a Google Business Profile for local SEO and work your way up to other business listings. Google Business Profiles, it can also serve as a place to collect customer reviews for your hospital, helping you grow your online reputation.
SEO works by creating quality content and building page authority. This depends on many factors. Keywords aside, many on-page SEO practices need to be done right.
Content marketing is a long-term but highly effective strategy that helps you build and nurture an audience that can later become your customers. Content marketing involves the consistent creation and distribution of value-added content. Like many other industries, content marketing is perfect for hospitals.
Here’s a step-by-step process you can follow to get started with content marketing for your hospital.
Identify your target audience: Who is your target audience and what are they looking for online? For example, if your reader is an infertility patients, they will read a lot about options such as fertility treatment and in vitro fertilization. You’ll also need to identify the exact search terms you’re using on search engines like Google. This is the first step before working on content.
Decide the type of content: Content comes in a variety of formats, including text, images, and videos. But for hospitals, text and video formats work well. We recommend adding a blog/resources section on your site that provides authoritative articles and a YouTube channel that shares informative videos.
Start creating content: Now you can start creating content that delivers value. Viewers (see the example above) should be able to find solutions to their problems through your content. This is where content marketing wins. If you can provide patients with reliable information through your content, they are more likely to trust you and you will be added as part of your target audience.
More promotion: If your content can attract more viewers, then your content marketing efforts are headed in the right direction. You should also incorporate some SEO best practices to ensure that your content is visible in search. Apart from that, you should promote your content through other channels such as social media and email.
Create a group of trusted audiences that you can later easily convert into paying customers. That’s the idea of content marketing.
Email marketing is a powerful way to stay in touch with your audience. It also complements content marketing in a great way. If your website has interesting content, you can easily attract visitors to the website. Unlike social media, email marketing is more personal and delivers the highest ROI. You can send informative content, special treatment package offers, hospital specialty updates, and more to your email list.
Other Listing Sites
Several websites and platforms allow you to list hospitals, clinics, and doctors. These listing sites help patients find the best doctors and hospitals in their area. The listing platforms are also useful for doctors and hospitals as they attract many new patients through them.
Hire an Expert
Hiring an expert is cheap and profitable if you’re just starting. Our consulting services help you set up your digital assets before launching an active advertising campaign. This includes designing and developing an engaging website, setting up social media accounts, setting up paid advertising, and optimizing your website for increased search exposure and also help you come up with a digital marketing strategy before you implement it. Hiring a good digital marketing agency in Bangalore can give you promising results.
By 2023, there will be approximately 5.07 billion Internet users worldwide, and today all industries are making the transition to digital media. They are investing more than ever in SEO, social media, PPC, and other digital platforms. If you haven’t started building a strong digital presence for your hospital, you’re missing out on a lot of opportunities.
Do you need help with your branding/ marketing/ web development/ animated videos? Get in touch.