Marketing B2B healthcare businesses is often worlds apart from marketing industrial, technology, or business services companies. The buyer’s journey may change shape, the tactics can land differently, the messaging becomes more restrictive, and for some products and services, the lives of end users may be on the line. From providers to suppliers, organizations in this industry need to invest time in medical marketing strategies that blend a variety of tactics to keep consumers engaged in their brand’s role in the health system. And for many companies, that blend is an unbalanced one. With outdated websites, little presence on social media, and few efforts to reconnect with leads online, a large chunk of today’s healthcare brands are failing to realize the success that their B2C counterparts have seen for years. It’s really because digital marketing is a must.
Does your organization understand the value of going digital—and doing so in more ways than one?
What Is Healthcare Marketing & How Is It Evolving?
Healthcare marketing is the use of marketing strategies, tactics, and tools to connect with new leads in the healthcare system and keep them engaged throughout their customer journey. This could be a healthcare provider like an urgent care center attracting new patients in need of services, a healthcare supplier like a lab equipment company selling tools to research companies, or even a healthcare technology business like an EHR provider offering software and services to practices.
For some organizations, successful healthcare marketing is a challenge due to tight budgets, old technology, or outdated marketing methods. Having too many internal stakeholders that must sign off on new marketing initiatives, messaging, and creative layouts is also a common obstacle for marketers struggling to get campaigns off the ground.
But the bigger issue for healthcare marketers at this time may be giving digital marketing the time and attention it needs to make it work for them. Providers are seeing patients turn to Google for answers to their health concerns and information on their top options for finding help—which means reviews and testimonials are becoming providers’ first, and most visible, voice. Medical vendors are being buried below their competitors on the search engine results page as consumers scour the internet to meet their product supply needs. Innovative healthcare technology companies aren’t getting the attention they deserve because their websites can’t keep up in appearance, function, or form. So what should marketers do to accelerate the success of their brands?
Blend Content & Digital to Get Results
A high-performing tactical marketing plan incorporates digital marketing, public relations, social media, and traditional tactics to move sales and brand awareness up and to the left. Your plan should effectively:
- Address specific business goals and aim to align sales and marketing teams
- Consider your market perception and meet brand awareness efforts
- Pause on tactics that aren’t working and introduce new ones that might
- Engage with the right target audiences to attract and retain clients
- Make the most of your brand’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats
As you build your healthcare marketing strategy, approach your efforts with the structure of the inbound marketing method, using awareness, consideration, and decision to guide your healthcare marketing techniques and goals for leads at various stages of their buyer’s journey. Digital marketing comes into play at the same time many content marketing pieces do. In the awareness stage, ensuring your blog posts contain relevant keywords to help your brand rank organically in search results is important. During the consideration phase, you’ll want to make sure testimonials for your practice, products, or services make your company look good; respond to reviews, manage negative comments, and set up your Google My Business profile. A well-established social media presence and a few great email and social media campaigns will place more eyes on your content and help you make connections with qualified leads. And in the decision stage, you should follow best practices for creating keyword-rich digital landing pages and ads that encourage form fills from prospects ready to buy. Paid social media marketing and retargeting are also perfect strategies that can amplify the effectiveness of your healthcare content marketing efforts.
Top Healthcare Marketing Goals for 2020
What is your team looking to achieve in the year ahead? Take stock of what truly works for your brand and what doesn’t to realign your marketing initiatives around business goals and start implementing the tactics that will bring you real ROI. Here are some of the best goals you can set for yourself and your organization in the year ahead:
- Better connect with patients and improve the patient experience
- Keep leads engaged with personalization and account-based marketing
- Become a trusted source for healthcare information in their space
- Retain clients and create advocates from loyal consumers
- Build a responsive, mobile-friendly website that performs well in SERPs
- Create a healthcare content strategy that achieves short- and long-term aims
A great way to ensure your healthcare content marketing strategy makes the most impact on your audience and performs well for your brand is to work on boosting your digital presence. Need help? Find out how to set up an effective digital marketing campaign in a free handbook that covers everything you need to know about SEO, SEM, and social media marketing—including easy explanations for the digital terminology you’ll need to know to move forward with confidence. Download it today and keep it as a handy, informative resource for yourself and your team.