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A Guide to Digital Marketing for Medical Practices

Digital marketing for doctors is a set of tactics that attract, convert, and retain patients on the internet. Since the majority of patients search for medical information and look for doctors online, the virtual realm is the best place to implement your marketing efforts.

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With 77% of potential patients researching health information online, digital marketing is a vital part of any medical marketing strategy. If the ROI (return on investment) of your medical practice’s marketing is less than satisfactory, you may not be paying enough attention to your digital presence.

Traditional offline marketing, such as flyers, billboards, and TV ads, are no longer as effective as they used to be. As patients are moving to the digital realm, so are the healthcare providers.

Let’s take a closer look at the definition of digital marketing and its importance to the success of your medical practice.

Digital marketing for doctors is a set of tactics that attract, convert, and retain patients on the internet. Since the majority of patients search for medical information and look for doctors online, the virtual realm is the best place to implement your marketing efforts.

A digital marketing strategy for doctors consists of many elements that depend on your marketing goals, budget, and the needs of your target audience. With the right approach to digital marketing, it’s possible to achieve an impressive ROI.

If you already use tried-and-tested offline advertising methods, why do you need digital marketing? Without it, you lose the competitive edge.

Potential Patients Are Online

When patients need medical information assistance, the majority of them:

  • Research their symptoms online
  • Look for the nearest practice online
  • Read reviews on doctor review websites
  • Check the list of services or working hours of the medical practice online

While some potential patients may respond to flyers and TV ads, the majority still goes online for more information about your doctors and practice.

Digital Marketing for Doctors is Cost-Effective

Digital marketing is cost-effective because:

  • It gives you an opportunity to evaluate your efforts continuously and in real-time.
  • You gain access to a huge variety of tactics, many of which aren’t expensive.
  • There are many free or inexpensive digital marketing tools available online.

You can choose digital marketing strategies that suit a specific budget and achieve a high ROI.

Online Marketing Allows You to Interact and Engage with Patients

With offline marketing, it can be hard to communicate with your patients outside the clinic. Digital marketing gives you a unique opportunity to speak with your patients, hear their concerns, and explore their pain points.

You can learn more about your target audience and design highly effective personalized offers that bring patients to your doorstep.

Medical Marketing Helps Develop an Online Reputation

Word-of-mouth is a key source of information for patients who are looking for medical services. The majority of people read reviews and listen to opinions before making a choice.

Digital marketing allows you to develop an online reputation by soliciting reviews and ratings in business and medical directories. This helps potential patients form an opinion about your clinic.

Digital medical practice marketing includes several essential elements that allow your team to achieve a high ROI.

1. Web Design for Doctors

Any digital marketing strategy starts with a website. All online marketing efforts revolve around this digital calling card. That’s why it’s imperative to create a functional, aesthetically appealing, and search engine optimization (SEO)-friendly website.

If you are handling protected health information (PHI) through patient reviews, patient portals, live chat, and patient forms, your website must be HIPPA compliant. This includes:

  • Purchasing SSL certificate
  • Using encrypted e-mail servers
  • Choosing HIPPA-compliant web hosting
  • Encrypting patient forms
  • Managing authorization for handling PHI

Unfortunately, many content management systems (CMS), including WordPress, aren’t HIPPA-compliant. That’s why you need to review your marketing tools before handling PHI.

The best way to do it is to invest in healthcare marketing technology that offers HIPAA-compliant web hosting, CMS, photo galleries, and e-mail marketing tools.

2. Search Engine Optimization for Doctors

When a patient enters a query, Google and other search engines use complex algorithms to determine which websites contain the most valuable responses.

Search engine optimization is a strategy that brings your website to the top SERPs (Search Engine Result Pages). It involves making your website appealing to both the target audience and search engine crawlers.

To create an effective SEO strategy, you need to:

  • Do keyword research
  • Build internal and external links
  • Add citations through business listings
  • Create valuable content
  • Leverage schema
  • Monitor Google algorithm updates

SEO is an excellent way to bring organic traffic to your website where you can use other tactics to convert visitors into leads.

3. PPC Lead Generation

PPC (Pay-Per-Click) ads are a part of paid advertising strategy. This allows you to bring digital ads to your target audience when they are highly likely to see them.

PPC refers to the pay-per-click payment method, which involves paying for the ad only if the user clicks on it. However, marketers often use it as a broad term to describe paid ads, including

  • Paid search ads: ads that appear on the SERPs in response to the user’s query.
  • Google display ads: ads that appear across the Google Display Network in response to the user’s prior online activity.
  • Social ads: ads that appear on social media platforms according to the user’s preferences and activity.

PPC ads are an excellent lead generation tool since they target potential clients based on their needs. This digital tactic is more expensive than organic strategies. However, it usually yields faster results.

4. Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing (SMM) is a set of tactics that you can use to attract, convert, and retain patients on social media. They include:

  • Posting valuable content (make sure not to share PHI in your feed)
  • Leveraging social ads
  • Researching the target audience’s preferences
  • Engaging with your audience
  • Soliciting reviews

The key platforms for medical SMM are Facebook and Instagram. However, the organic reach of posts is currently declining. To reach new prospects, you would need to implement paid marketing options. Today, 79% of marketers pay for advertising on social media.

5. Content Marketing

You may have heard that content is king. When it comes to healthcare marketing, it’s the entire royal family. Content allows you to generate leads, retain patients, and demonstrate your authoritativeness and trustworthiness.

Healthcare content marketing can:

  • Help with SEO tactics
  • Attract backlinks
  • Generate feedback
  • Educate patients
  • Increase brand awareness

When the internet is available, people who experience symptoms don’t call the doctor immediately. They google. By implementing strong content marketing tactics, you ensure that your website is the first source of information they find.

The most common content types that doctors use include blogs, infographics, videos, and podcasts.

6. Reputation Management for Doctors

Online reputation management is monitoring and shaping how patients view your practice. With proper reputation management, you can streamline word-of-mouth marketing, build brand awareness, and enhance your clinic’s trustworthiness.

One example of reputation management for doctors involves:

  • Claiming or creating Google Business Profile
  • Filling out all the necessary information
  • Soliciting reviews from patients
  • Replying to reviews (both positive and negative) immediately

Google reviews aren’t just a ranking factor. They help potential patients choose your clinic over the competition.

7. E-mail Marketing

E-mail marketing has the highest ROI of all digital marketing tactics. With the right approach, it can reach 4200%.

Once you have a potential patient’s e-mail, you can nurture the lead by sending out personalized offers that address their pain points. Additionally, you can use e-mail marketing to keep existing patients engaged and bring them back to your clinic.

To ensure HIPAA compliance, you need to find a HIPAA-compliant e-mail service provider. Unfortunately, many of them aren’t willing to sign the Business Associate Agreement, which is required for HIPAA compliance.

Healthcare marketing technologies as DoctorLogic’s patient acquisition platform provide HIPAA-complaint e-mail marketing options along with HIPAA-compliant web hosting and website management.

Dominate Digital Marketing with DoctorLogic

Creating an effective digital marketing strategy can help generate leads, grow your practice, retain patients, and increase revenue. All you need is a team of experts and the right HIPAA-compliant tools.

DoctorLogic is a HIPAA-compliant patient acquisition platform backed by a digital marketing agency for doctors. Thousands of physicians across the country use DoctorLogic to attract and retain patients.

The patient acquisition platform comes with all the tools required to turn visitors into leads, leads into new patients, and new patients into a loyal audience. Meanwhile, DoctorLogic’s agency can handle any aspect of digital marketing from SEO and content marketing to social media and PPC ads.

Find out how it works by requesting a free demo today!

Published on
Aug 02, 2022

Written by
DoctorLogic Employee