Potential patients are bound to check your practice out online – what are some ways you may be turning them off?
This question is more important than ever before – having a strong online presence is quickly going from being an extra advantage to being an expected necessity. Your current patients as well as your potential patients will do their best to learn about your practice and your credentials, and the web will make it easy for you to impress them – or not. There is actually a wide variety mistakes a medical professional can make with his or her online marketing efforts, and there is also a wide range of online marketing opportunities that many medical professionals are still failing to tap. This article just looks at five of the biggest examples:
Overlooking Possible Lead Generation
Medical professionals do an especially great job of networking with each other and generating referrals from another as well as from current or past patients. However, many medical professionals fail to respect the fact that the online world can drive new patient leads as well. If a person in your area is trying to learn about a medical service specialize in, why would you not want them to know about practice, and why would you not want them to come in and see you rather than your competitor?
Neglecting to Update Your Website
Obviously, you can and should consider adding Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising to help your practice show up when a patient searches for diseases you treat and services you offer. However, you should also be using your valuable expertise to generate a ton of useful content to drive up the value of your website. Most online audiences are not really searching for a doctor – they are searching foremost for information on their conditions or needs and then for possible solutions. The biggest search engines favor the best information providers for users’ search terms – if your website does a great job of ranking well by providing the information potential patients need, you can easily generate new leads.
Ignoring the Power of Social Media Platforms
There’s more to healthcare than information: it has to be personable. Social media platforms are the perfect way to easily add a more personal touch to any small business. Your practice can use contests and freebies to generate likes and follows, and then use the platforms to showcase anything from a patient of the month to a success story you have permission to store. You can also use social media to keep establishing your expertise by throwing in practical tips that your online followers can actually use. Considering the fact that most of your potential patients are already online on social media, there is no good reason for your practice to not be online as well.
Failing to Highlight Positive Patient Experiences
Even the medical professional with a beautiful, well-ranked website and a strong social media presence may forget the importance of focusing on patient experiences. Successful doctors can ensure that their clients receive the best care possible, but they must also remember that, as businesspeople, they ought to learn about patients’ full experience. Find out how helpful they felt your staff was and where they think your practice needs to improve. With online tools like email lists free survey generators, at the very least you can validate patient concerns by hearing them out. You can address negative feedback by making changes at your practice and you can ask patients with positive feedback if they would consider letting you add their reviews and testimonials to your website or social media pages.
Forgetting to Monitor and Fine-Tune Progress
Finally, you can employ your own range of analytics to improve your online presence. Find out how many online visitors converted into patients – simply repeat the strategies that resulted in more conversions and avoid repeating the mistakes that lost you potential clients. By remaining proactive with the mistakes you’ll help boost your practice across the board: generate more leads, come off as more personable, and improve patient experience.
Dr. George Grant is a specialist in Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery and is a diplomate of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery. Dr. Grant practices at Austin Oral Surgery and is confident that a strong online presence is important for the success of any medical firm.