Have you ever spent a lot of money on a ‘sure thing’ digital marketing campaign and ended up with a report of thousands of ‘impressions’ but no new patients or return on investment? Have you ever felt overwhelmed by social media and in awe of businesses that show up consistently seemingly at just the right time? Are you frustrated by the constant social media algorithm changes that tend to thwart your best efforts? I have been there for sure!
But what if I told you there was an easier way for you to show up consistently and authentically to attract the types of patients you want to work with the most? Even better, it wouldn’t cost you much money – just expertise from you and an hour or so from one of your team members each week. And best yet, your efforts also bring your practice into the top organic (not sponsored/paid) first page results when people are searching online for what you have to offer.
I am in the trenches just like you. I can attest that while the following steps don’t always result in immediate results like some paid advertising, this method does work beautifully over time. One good reason why is that your efforts don’t disappear as soon as your paid advertising campaign is done, your content (assets) continue to serve you month after month. Like it or not, consumers are searching online for their practitioners and you must have a presence both with content and positive online reviews.
While I could get much farther into the details, I won’t put you through that. Instead, I invite you to implement these tried and true simplified organic marketing tactics and turn online confusion into consistent patient leads, outstanding patient education and ongoing patient engagement.
- Pick a platform and start there. For patients, Facebook, YouTube and Instagram tend to work best. If not already created, start your page/channel on that medium – name it by your practice name or however people search you and your practice out.
- Find someone on your team that loves social media, is creative and trustworthy. In my experience consulting with practices, there is nearly always someone internal that meets these criteria. If not, you can hire an inexpensive virtual assistant to help or even use one of your teenage children if appropriate!
- Over time, posts will become second nature and more fun to create. In the beginning, just pick a theme for 3-5 days/week such as Monday Motivation (graphic post with a motivational quote and your logo), Transformational Tuesday (testimonials), In the News (link to a pertinent article or your take on something happening in the news), The Doctor is In (quick video of you or a team member answering a commonly asked question you get in your practice), Product/Team Member Highlight and the like. Contact me if you ever run out of ideas!
- Don’t overthink the tech! Personalized graphics can easily be created in Canva, Publisher or many other software products. Video can be made with your phone or computer right in Facebook or Instagram (and shared between the two) or created on your phone then uploaded to your very own YouTube Channel. It doesn’t have to be perfect. Patients like to see the real you!
- VERY IMPORTANT: Use keywords people are searching for regularly on the internet. Use this search phrase in the title of your post and in any description under your post. Not sure what people are searching? Just do a search on Google for your topic and the search bar will automatically show you the most common search phrases.
- About 80% of your posts should be helpful/educational and 20% sales oriented. You want to build trust and be authentically helpful. However, be sure each post includes some sort of CTA (call to action) even if it is just how to reach out to you if they want more information.
- Use your content in multiple ways. I shoot a video and then have it transcribed and post it on social media, on my YouTube channel, on my Podcast channel as appropriate and blog.
- Over time you want to increase engagement (comments) on your posts. Invite people to like/join your pages on social media.
- Once you see your highest performing posts, you can even convert them into advertisements (your proven research was organically done for you) and take it to a deeper (more successful) level.
- Over time, you will build many written, graphic and video ‘assets’ that you can re-use in multiple ways. You can even turn blogs into a book or patient educational ‘lead magnet’ to attract more patients. The sky is the limit!
I realize these are simplified steps, but these tactics can be a lot of fun and VERY effective! The practices I work with and my own channels are living proof. Make this year your very best year full of success growing your practice and enjoying the journey along the way.
Karol Clark, MSN, RN is the best-selling author of 5 Profit Engines of a Successful Bariatric Surgery Practice: Your Blueprint for Building an Enjoyable Business that Creates Healthy Patients and a Healthy Bottom Line and CEO of Weight Loss Practice Builder. She has over 20 yrs. of experience working with surgical and non-surgical weight loss patients and assisting physicians build an enjoyable weight loss practice. She partners with Nutritional Resources (d/b/a HealthWise- www.healthwisenri.com) for creation of educational programs/articles for weight loss practitioners.
Previously posted on Chiropractic Economic 4/29/20