Should television ads, direct mail, and digital display ads be in your healthcare marketing budget? Marketing Your Hospital explored where hospital marketers should spend their marketing dollars in 2020. We’re sharing what we found in this three-part series. In this third installment, we take a closer look at the latest trends in digital advertising. And be sure to check out Part 1: Is TV advertising dead? and Part 2: Should You Invest in Direct Mail?
Keywords, semantic search, meta descriptions. Over the years, you’ve become accustomed to writing for your hospital’s website with SEO in mind. But if you’re not optimizing your images, then you’re leaving rankable assets on the table. The good news is image SEO is fairly simple. Here’s what you need to know.
We’ve all made at least a few jokes about seniors and technology. We ask children to help grandpa find Netflix on the TV. And we laugh when grandma signs her texts “Love, Nana” like we don’t know they’re from her.
These endearing examples give the impression that older adults aren’t technology savvy. And because adults 65 and older make up a large segment of healthcare’s target market, you feel the need to rely heavily on other mediums. But baby boomers and above are using technology—at the highest rates we’ve ever seen. Here, we take a closer look at the statistics of tech use among seniors.(more…)
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Hospital marketers have been conditioned to think in keywords since SEO became a buzzword in the late ’90s. But it’s time to go back to thinking—and writing—like a human. That’s because, today, semantic search reigns supreme.(more…)
Yes, it would be incredible to rank on the first page of Google for “total knee replacement.” But chances are, that’s not going to happen unless you work for Mayo Clinic. (Or Johns Hopkins, as it turns out.) And that’s OK. Because what you really should be focusing on as a community, local or regional hospital is improving your local SEO.(more…)
Every hospital and health system wants to grow its patient base. That is the job of hospital marketing: to increase brand awareness and build positive relationships between the hospital and potential patients.
There are a lot of methods that hospitals currently use to market themselves. From buying billboards to airing TV commercials, creating a Facebook page, and even sending out direct mail, marketing strategies can work together to create a total-package approach that targets a patient from multiple angles. (more…)
Hospital marketing is competitive. Only in rural areas do you have only one hospital provider, and even those systems have to compete with private practice. So, in all markets, hospital marketing is essential – and yet it can be difficult to differentiate.
By understanding the latest trends, you can outperform your competition that may not be following those same trends. There is a lot going on in the marketing industry now that is exciting and effective – and your hospital needs to take notice.
Live Video Is Becoming King
Video has long been a major player in marketing. Video creates more engagement than any other format and creates positive associations between a brand and viewers.
The latest trend in video comes in the form of live, real-time, streaming video. Whether you see it on Facebook, YouTube, or an individual website, live video is dominating because it generates a lot of engagement.
Hospitals can take advantage by streaming health-related content, which is enormously popular. Just look at the fact that WebMD is the 129th most popular website in the country. Video can be better at communicating information because it naturally captivates people and catches – and holds – their interest better than text alone.
Consider the health experts you have at your disposal. Find personable, relatable, camera-friendly personnel to go live and present the latest findings and tips in medicine to help your target audience.
Telemedicine Is Becoming More Popular
For years, hospitals shrank away from telemedicine because it was expensive and limited. Now, those barriers have fallen away, and telemedicine has become more accessible to hospitals – and more in demand from patients.
If you can create a telemedicine service, that gives you a huge advantage from a marketing standpoint. There is also a natural synergy between telemedicine and digital marketing. People who are prospects for one are natural users of the other. Put another way, if someone can be reached effectively through Facebook, Instagram, or mobile search, they are more likely to enjoy the benefits of telemedicine.
We encourage you to at least consider and evaluate telemedicine as a service option, not just for better patient satisfaction, but for more effective marketing options.
Location-Based Marketing Is More Important than Ever Before
Hospitals depend on geography for their patients. Patients tend to go to the closest hospital. That is not just dependent upon where they live, but where they are at that moment.
Location-based marketing, through geofencing, can deliver the right message at the right time to the right place. If someone is in a particular area, you can target them with your message and ads through their mobile device while they are on the move. You can also target them through other methods if they are in a home or office within your service area.
You can even target specific neighborhoods if you want to increase the number of patients you see from that neighborhood. A rigorous analytics approach at your hospital can tell you where your patients live – and where they don’t live. The same goes for where they work. You can then use geofencing to market accordingly.
What are some ways you can use these trends in a creative manner to get better results?
TotalCom is a full-service hospital marketing and advertising agency that believes in getting great results from telling great stories. Contact us for more information and see what stories we can tell for you.
We’re at the beginning of a new year.
Now is the perfect time to take a step back, analyze the what you did over the past 12 months, and build a strong plan for 2018.
This may seem like a daunting task. That’s why you should start planning now. We’re giving you a checklist of the most important things you should do in the coming weeks.
- Ensure business listings are accurate
If you’re not already on top of this, potential customers may end up someplace other than your healthcare facility. Don’t let old phone numbers or former street addresses drive your customers to the wrong hospital or clinic. Fix whatever data errors you can this year, and make a New Year’s Resolution to keep an eye on it during 2018.
- Add special hours to Google My Business
With the end of one year and beginning of a new one, hours can change. Maybe your clinic is changing hours in the new year. Either way, add your new or extended hours to your Google My Business page. No customer wants to show up at your clinic and find you are closed for the day when Google says differently. Negative brand impressions lead to negative reviews of your healthcare business, so check these hours twice.
- Social media ready to go
Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, or Pinterest that your customers rely on most, start brainstorming ideas for healthcare content in the new year. Don’t leave it to last-minute scrambles to think of something to say. Make a spreadsheet and schedule days and content for your posts.
- Website pages updated
Been putting off updating your site’s blog or adding that new employee to the site? Get on it now to ensure everything is crossed of your list when January rolls around. Customers like a completed, up-to-date site, and you will too.
While many people are cherishing this time of year and in the jolliest of moods, there will still be unhappy reviews coming in. Be prepared for reviews, both good and bad, in 2018. Come up with a strategic plan on how to handle and respond reviews about your facility in a timely manner. Make sure everyone in your company who handles reviews is well versed in the plan as well.
The start of a new year is a great time to get started on these healthcare marketing resolutions. But get ahead of your digital resolutions now so they don’t get pushed aside until 2019. If this list seems too daunting to handle on your own, let TotalCom help! Contact us today.
You took the plunge about the iPhone X and you’re not even sure if you’re supposed to say iPhone X or iPhone ten.
But what’s the big difference between this model and the one you had before collecting a new monthly payment added to your stack of bills?
Facial recognition is the big difference. Are you unlocking your phone or is it unlocking you? This could bring in a new era for marketers. Since the announcement of the iPhone X, facial recognition has quickly become the topic of dinner conversations everywhere. Facial recognition used to be reserved for top secret labs or something you saw the President use in a movie. But now we have access to it as well (celebrities, they’re just like us!)
While this feature is marketed as a security function for unlocking your phone, a consumer device used by the masses is a seriously powerful technology.
It is said 90% of personal communications is nonverbal. Every day there are instances where we don’t understand the nonverbal cues of the person on the other end of our screens. We use emojis and GIFs to try and share emotion within our digital interactions.
For all of us in the communications business, we know good experiences lead to trust and loyalty while bad experiences lead to brand rejection. So what could we do as marketers if we were able to obtain real-time reactions from a consumers? Imagine a world where we have access to consumer’s facial expressions and emotional cues in reaction to products and brands?
If we could access the facial cues from patients waiting for an extended time in the emergency room? The excitement on someone’s face when they try out a restaurant’s new dish. Or the skepticism on your face when you’re indulging in a purchase you shouldn’t be.
Currently, Apple is keeping detailed facial recognition data local on the phone and not storing it on its servers. App makers can use the iPhone X, with the user’s permission, to read a rough map of a stream of facial expressions. While Apple may never store this information for public use, it’s interesting to think about a world where we design advertisements based on the most unique human feature. This technology would tell us more about our consumers than we’ve ever known before.
These days, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media platforms are changing the way patients interact with their healthcare providers. Social media is certainly something that you can’t afford to ignore.
Paid social is having a banner year in 2017. Analysts from HootSuite predicted that social ad spending will top $35 billion this year. Judging by the past several years, which have each seen consistent growth, that growth will continue into the future.
As long as you do it right – paid social is an excellent investment in your healthcare marketing plan. Here are 3 reasons why.
Paid social is a necessity if you want your brand to be seen on social media.
When you post something on social media, you’re competing with what feels like 1,999,999 other healthcare businesses- and we’re just talking about ones that are advertising. Realistically, there’s no way that your posts are going to get engagement from more than a few people unless you pay to promote them. With social media algorithms becoming more and more complicated, it makes it even harder for current and potential patients to see your content.
Organic social is still important, but if you want your posts to be seen, it’s time to set aside some budget for paid social ads.
Paid social allows you to target users with incredible specificity.
It’s really amazing how specific you can get with your ad targeting these days.
Look at Facebook, for example. You can customize your audience by everything from level of education and field of study, to online activities, to simple demographics.
This ultra-targeting means that you’re a lot less likely to be wasting your ad dollars. Instead of showing your ad to people who almost certainly aren’t going to buy what you’re selling anyway – men and gynecologists, for example. Through targeting, you won’t be annoying people with ads they would never be interested in and you’re cultivating an audience that may eventually lead to a loyal customer.
It’s highly resource- and cost-effective.
When you’re just starting out with paid social advertising, you don’t have to know it all. You can create relatively basic ads with a relatively basic audience and budget. You also don’t need a huge budget to begin with. Base your budget on factors including your company size, the number of people you want to see your ad, etc… This is especially helpful when your hospital is just starting out and not sure where to begin.
The key is to be patient and be proactive. Watch your analytics, stick to your goals, and don’t be afraid to experiment when needed.
Social media can be hard to navigate, to improve your chances of succeeding, allow TotalCom to help you.