Marketing medical services online is a challenge. It can seem fairly easy, but you can easily fall into a pit. Learn from the errors of others who dove in and discovered the hard way what not to do. Here are the seven deadly sins of health care marketing that you should avoid at all costs:
Marketing vs. Advertising
The first mistake many make is assuming advertising and marketing are the same thing. Advertising is an attempt to deliver a persuasive message to a target audience. Marketing is more systematic, a plan to attract and retain converts to your practice in the long term.
Spaghetti marketing entails tossing ideas, concepts, and strategies against the wall until something tangible sticks. The process can be exhausting. The savvy will partner with pros that know marketing in general and the medical community in specific to streamline strategies.
The medical community is made of thinkers, a perfectly reasonable assumption. Unfortunately, too much thinking and planning will not attract the general public. While thorough strategy will be important, you need deadlines and people ready to do something.
Decide what makes your practice stand out and create online marketing campaigns that reflect this. Transparency will be critical. You don’t want consumers discovering you cannot deliver on your promises. Give your campaigns time to work, adjusting the vision as needed.
Using the Wrong Talent
You want marketers experienced in the health care industry. Using a firm with success in Fortune 100 companies may sound nice, but it isn’t necessarily a smart move for your small, local practice. You want an entity skilled in marketing strategies, not just web design. Get a team with proven results in online health care marketing.
You could certainly save money, but unless you have the criteria needed to succeed in online marketing, you are going to spend far more time monitoring the web than treating patients.
You may think you have a successful, thriving practice, but you cannot imagine what a solid online marketing campaign could do for your business. Your competitors are likely using smart marketing to get their message out, potentially grabbing a share of your market. Not using Internet marketing at all hurts you in many ways.