Online Digital Marketing For PhysiciansJan 25, 2022
You can completely transform your business and never have to think about cash flow or income ever again with a proper digital media strategy.
Online digital marketing is far more complicated than it used to be a few years ago.
I have given this lecture multiple times back in 2011, 2013, and 2014. I am making the slides available below. You can download them. Some of the statistics are really funny now that we know more.
Back then Google+ was the second most popular social media platform. Facebook only had 940 million members. There was no such thing as Facebook Ads. You only had Google Adwords (now Google Ads). If you have been around the block, you will get a kick out of the original presentation. Grab it on Google Drive.
So what do you do now if you need a real digital strategy?
First of all, if your practice is owned by a large healthcare system, you probably don't need much of this at all.
However, if you are an independent business owner in the professional service and help industry (doctors, lawyer, accountants, engineers, automotive repair, painting, plumbing, electricians, coaches, freelancers, etc), you can transform your business and never have to worry about money again.
There are two types of marketing: organic and paid. And yes, you will need both. One isn't going to work without the other.
Organic is all of your efforts online to be found when people are searching for you. This is not you looking for them. This is you being located on Google Maps. This is your website showing up on SERPS (search engine result pages). This is you posting valuable content on social media platforms to attract followers. This is content you create to be found organically with searches, shares, links, and likes.
Firstly, you will need a website. No question about it. How fancy does it have to be? Not very fancy, unless you plan on doing some really complex and intricate style marketing which we will get to later in this post. You can pay almost any designer to create a basic website. You can even do it yourself through various platforms (Wix, Wordpress, GoDaddy, etc.) It may not look too professional, but it will work.
Secondly, you don't need a website. At all. You really don't. You can still accomplish almost all of this without a website. You can set up a few landing pages, send some traffic to them and sell your consulting services, book phone calls, book appointments, and so much more. You can have landing pages give away free items (often called lead magnets) in exchange for email addresses. Then you send those prospects a series of "nurture emails" over the next few days to months, and they eventually will buy more from you once they get to know, like, and trust you!
But, that's only one part of the incredibly intricate marketing system. Let's get back to the basics of organic marketing.
You will need a website and some social media profiles. You already have a Google Map and Facebook Page created automatically for your business. You can claim those listings and update them. You will need a custom Facebook Page, Google Listing, and Google Map listing at the very minimum. If your service is more B2B (business to business), you will need a LinkedIn profile. If your business if more visual like a plastic surgeon or dentist, you should have an Instagram profile. If you have time and are great at explaining things and can earn people's trust easily by talking to them, then you should have a YouTube channel (DrAlo.tv). On your website, you can post articles like this in your blog or news section. You need to create content that can be found organically. Without you doing much to send traffic to your content.
In addition to all of the above, you will need something called SEO (search engine optimization). Most people that can design a website for you, are not also SEO experts. I have been doing SEO since before Google existed, and I know it like the back of my hand. I will often let someone else design the website, but I will do all the SEO myself. It's that important, and it has to be really good. Entire books have been written on this. It's always changing and being updated, so make sure you are up to date. It can be learned from books if you are savvy enough.
After you have done all of this, you have to wait. And wait. And wait. You have to let the search robots find you, friends tag you, people to like your page, people to share interesting posts, and so on. It's very, very slow. Some people argue that it's not even worth it.
That's the drawback to organic. It's organic. You have to wait till you are discovered and promoted or shared or liked. You can't speed it up. Which brings us to the next topic.
Paid traffic is when you pay Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, and others to find the correct prospects for you! You give them a set of characteristics that you are looking for (women over 60 with at least 2 cats and an income over $150k) and tell them to go find those people for you. They will send you thousands of highly qualified prospects that fit that exact description. Your job is to turn those prospects into customers, clients, and patients!
The nice thing about paid traffic is that it is instantaneous. You will instantly have thousands of the exact prospects you want for just a few bucks. You may even have to turn off your ads if you are getting overwhelmed with too many customers and clients.
The best of these advertising platforms currently is Facebook. There is so much you can do now with the Facebook Ads Manager platform that the possibilities are endless and unimaginable.
Just as an example, you can take your current customer or patient list and upload it to Facebook Ads and tell it to find you similar people to sell to. Who is most likely to buy your services? People similar to those who have already bought from you! And like magic, you can have thousands of prospects seeing your ads or landing pages. Thousands yes. Instantly.
The problem with paid traffic is that most people do it wrong. They send that traffic to their website. That's wasted traffic. You need to send them to a page that's singular goal is to capture their email, or sell them something. These pages are often called "landing pages", squeeze pages, or funnels.
If you are a dentist, you may run ads to a landing page that offers a free cleaning in exchange for their email address. Then they come in, get the cleaning, get to know your staff, like the way you treated them, and you can easily talk them into more services and turn them into lifelong customers and superfans.
After you get their email, you start sending them automated emails called "nurture emails" to help educate them about your services, offer more value, teach them tips and tricks, and help them learn more and more about you. Later you can make them more irresistible offers and sell more services.
The other problem with paid traffic is that most people send their traffic to pages that may or may not be compliant with Facebook or Google ad policies and end up getting banned. You will have wasted money, and can no longer use those ads platforms to turn on traffic and get leads.
The other issue with paid traffic is that the ads aren't enticing enough. Sure, Facebook is showing your ads to your exact target audience, but they aren't clicking your ads and aren't going to your landing pages. Your ad copy needs to be formatted correctly and written well so that people are actually curious and will click on your ad, watch your trailer, or want to see more. Humans are now conditioned to gloss over ads. You could be paying too much to acquire customers.
Customer acquisition funnels are currently one of the best ways to have the Facebook and Google Ads platforms find you thousands of highly qualified leads very quickly. I recommend to most business to create a customer acquisition funnel that can give them a net profit on ROAS (return on ad spend).
Obviously, this is a very long and complicated topic with tons of nuance and intricacies. I will do my best to keep adding to this article over time.
I own a digital media company that specializes in these exact techniques, strategies, and we can transform your business in ways you never thought possible.
If you want connect with me to have my media company take care of all of your online and digital marketing, please shoot me an email using the contact page above.
Here's a video I did explaining this topic:
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