Happy 4th of July!
In the spirit of the 4th of July, I want to share tips and suggestions highlighted in our book, “Win With Multi-Channel Digital Marketing” to grow your practice and attract the types of clients and patients that provide you and your practice greater freedom and control.
There are 16 informative, yet easy-to-read chapters, each ending with your quick take-away notes. I will share mine from eight of them.
Digital Marketing Areas You Need To Consider
The following are digital marketing areas you need to consider, plan and implement to get maximum return from your online marketing investment. The old adage “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts,” has never been more appropriate than marketing in today’s online world. And it starts with your website.
Website Designs That Generate More Business
Your website is still the hub of all of your online marketing and is the cement of your online marketing foundation. Here are some quick suggestions to help you evaluate and improve your website to get more exposure and convert more visitors into customers.
- The look and image of your site is important, but small businesses need to focus on lead generation and conversion. Develop unique and strategic calls-to-action and “next step” links to move them through the site and into your office. Many times, simpler designs are better.
- Develop rapport and connect with visitors faster through custom photography and reduce the amount of stock photos, particularly on key, high-traffic pages.
- Don’t just think mobile, act as such. Start evaluating and viewing your website and digital marketing efforts on your mobile device. I constantly instruct practices to “ditch the desktop” when it comes to improving your website or choosing a website design agency. Embrace the mobile online world.
- Make sure you have access to your website’s Google Analytics data and identify the key data points to improve your marketing results. And use it to measure improvements monthly.
Content That Engages and Converts
Chances are, the majority of your website content is more than 3 years old. Many things have likely changed since it was written. Your industry, technology, competitors, and most important, your online visitors have all evolved and become more sophisticated and advanced.
- Most practices have not read their website content since the day it was originally posted. Even after re-designing the website, they used the same old copy. Take the time to read at least your most important, highly trafficked website pages. I promise you will likely find areas to improve.
- Content impacts your SEO results. Make sure your content is substantive and written with your visitor in mind. Go the extra mile and develop content that is not found on every other competitor site and provide more useful information. The more engaged visitors are with your page, the more Google rewards it.
- Don’t set limits on word count. Page length needs to be based on the scope of your topic. Today, it is common to condense multiple pages into one more authoritative (long form) page.
- Be sure to support your content with 1) relevant graphics, images, and photos and 2) promotion. Link to important content in social media, newsletters, email campaigns, blogs, and other digital outlets. New, fresh content only has value if visitors find and consume it.
SEO Is More Complex
For practices that have not successfully secured top listings, SEO is certainly not dead. In fact, changes in how consumer search online and search engines index content gives more practices opportunity to get in front of online consumers. No longer is SEO success limited to the handful of websites that show up for a handful of “vanity search phrases.”
- Consumers now go directly to Google to find answers that were typically reserved when they got to a practice or their website. Expand your strategy and content to the wide variety of common consumer questions. If customers ask you these questions, you can bet there are even more people online searching for your answers.
- Focus on “Local.” As consumers do more “near me” types of search and search engines deliver results based on the user’s location, local optimization (Google My Business page, business citation listings on directory websites, customer reviews, on-site schema data) is increasingly important for the online guerilla marketer.
- Creating more diverse and useful content that gets user to stay, engage and revisit is an increasingly important part of SEO. Content can also include engagement elements and consumer resources such as video blogs, inforgraphics, slideshare presentations, checklists, consumer guides, ebooks, etc.
Pay-Per-Click: Targeting Prospect Who Are Ready To Buy
Unlike other online advertising, such as display advertising on the Google ad network or “sponsored” Facebook ads, PPC (like organic SEO) reaches consumers at a time when they are active in the process of finding information, costs, providers, etc. Practices that simply dismiss PPC on principle are missing key opportunities.
- Utilize consumer search queries (question and information-related searches) and don’t simply try to outspend competitors for general vanity search phrases.
- Target specific landing pages and track their effectiveness and continually update to improve conversions.
- Daypart your campaign based on strategic conversion capabilities. If you only want to pay for visitors that turn into phone calls, limit your exposure during office hours. If you offer after hours and weekend intake, market when your competitors are closed.
Live Chat – Convert More Visitors Into Leads
Today’s online users want instant gratification. This is particularly true with younger demographics like Millennials. Live chat offers the opportunity engage visitors 24/7.
- Check competitors’ website. If they are not utilizing chat, you have a differentiator and competitive advantage.
- Make sure you customize your engagement with information specific to your practice and read the quality of your chat responses.
- Definitely utilize live chat during non-business hours and weekends.
- Text Message chats are now available and have shown to increase conversions even more.
Boost Visibility and Conversions Through Online Video
It is common knowledge that online users are consuming more video content every day and that they typically prefer video content over text, particularly when it comes to consuming it on a smartphone.
- Testimonial videos continue to be some of the most important video content you can create. Incorporate collecting client/patient videos into your business process. The key is consistency. You will find they are not only happy to help, but want to participate in the success of your practice.
- FAQ videos are an increasingly valuable resource for SEO and sales support. Short, informative videos on the questions you get asked most are also searched on the Google and your optimized video and pages can get appear on these search results. They can also be used to help communicate digitally with prospects by incorporating links to them in your email follow up.
- Branding videos can be your most important and immediate means to “connect” with new visitors to your website. What makes you different, unique, specialized and most importantly, passionate are key elements to building rapport and trust.
- Procedure videos that briefly describe what patients should expect and demonstrate your communication skills and expertise are effective at putting some initial anxiety at ease. These videos also embellish the content of the specific procedure pages and improve readability and comprehension.
Social Media Marketing
There is no question that social media is here to stay. Practices need to not only accept it, but get fully onboard and engaged. But keep in mind, social media is not a direct response, lead generation marketing vehicle and success is not measured simply by how many leads and new sign ups did you get. Sure, it can be used as outreach to attract new audiences and gain occasional leads, but there are other things to consider.
- Effective social media plays a role throughout the buying/decision-making process. From brand awareness to building credibility, rapport, connection with your growing online audience of customers, prospects, referrers, vendors, and their circle of contacts, etc.
- Check your social media platforms and make sure you aren’t just posting shared, recycled posts. Be sure to post original materials and link them to your sources on your website. In addition, invest the necessary time to engage with your community (likes, shares, comments, etc.). Let them know you see them and support them. They’ll do the same for you!
- Select the right platforms to invest your resources. Choosing the right platform needs to be based on your target audience and the platforms they engage. In most cases, that will still include Facebook, but Instagram, Snapchat, and even LinkedIn possess great opportunity depending on the goals you set out to accomplish. Each target different demographics with different types of engagement activities.
Paid Social Media Advertising
Each of the different social media platforms offers advertising opportunities and many are highly targeted and affordable, even for the smallest of practices. And even within each platform, there are different types of campaigns that service different purposes. For instance, Facebook alone has campaigns for Likes, Click-to-Website, Video Views, Local Awareness, and Retargeting.
- Not the same as search marketing; reaching people much earlier in sales funnel
- Strong brand marketing to highly targeted audience
- Can be lead generation, but need compelling offers, resources, etc.
- Develop niche campaigns; segment audience demographics, behaviors, interests, dayparts, and offers.
If you are finding these take-aways useful, download the full copy online. Or feel free to reply and request a hard copy and we will mail it to you for free (simply provide your mailing contact information).
Have a fun, and safe 4th of July and celebrate our country’s freedom and independence!