15 Hospital Marketing Strategies to Grow in this Digital Era
While the primary concern for most hospitals is to provide quality care to its patients in the most efficient amount of time possible, having a small patient base can be a huge problem for the operation and growth of the hospital. In this blog, we will cover 15 hospital marketing strategies that will be the key to the success of your hospital in this digital era.
1. Highlight What Makes Your Hospital Stand Out I’m sure you know why your hospital is worth going to rather than your competitors. But do prospective patients know what makes your hospital different? You might have the best patient experience, qualified doctors, or a technologically advanced facility, but no one will know that unless you tell people. Throughout your entire hospital marketing strategy, be sure to consistently state your brand and unique selling points, so that your prospective patients know what makes your hospital different.
2. Optimize Your Website for Search Engines If you have a question, are unsure about something, or are researching a specific topic, Google is where you will be searching to find the answers you need. The same thing goes with patients trying to find the best hospital that suits their needs. Optimizing your website to rank at the top of search results is a key strategy to implement in your hospital marketing plan. If your website appears first on a Google search, then you are going to see more traffic to your website and increase your chances of acquiring new patients.
3. Nail Your First Impression with a User-Friendly Website Since one of the first times that a person will encounter your hospital is typically going to be online, you will want to have an updated website that gives people a satisfying online experience. Be sure that your website is loading quickly, and your pages provide people with the relevant information they are looking for as well as an easy way to contact your hospital.
4. Utilize Paid Advertising to Increase Online Visibility There’s no denying that being a top-ranking result for organic search results is essential for the success of your business. However, appearing above those organic results by using pay-per-click (PPC) advertising can be a game-changer. Utilizing PPC ads in your hospital marketing strategy can reach your target market much more quickly, as you have control over which searches they can appear for. It’s one way to target the exact patients you are looking for.
5. Keep Your Online Hospital Listings Accurate When patients search for you online, make sure they see the correct name, address, and phone number (NAP). Search engine crawlers want to make sure all of your contact information is accurate across the web. Inconsistent NAP will detract from your search engine optimization strategy and make it difficult for patients to find you online.
6. Increase Your Social Media Presence If your hospital is not active on popular social media platforms, then you are missing out. According to a study conducted by Pew Research, 72% of the public uses some type of social media. Patients will conduct extensive research on a hospital, and looking at your social media accounts will be one of the ways they will learn more about your hospital. It’s also a way for you to interact with patients and increase engagement.
7. Stay Connected with Patients Through Email Something that is often overlooked in reaching prospects or current patients is email marketing. A monthly newsletter is a great way to increase patient engagement. Share updates, health news, and any other relevant information. This could be hospital events, fundraising opportunities, or even to just let your patients know that flu season is coming up.
8. Incorporate Mobile Marketing into Your Strategy Whether they are looking up what is new on social media, checking their emails, or browsing the internet, the majority of people are using their mobile phones or laptops for their daily tasks. A recent study showed that 80% of people searched using a mobile device back in 2019. Make sure that your website is responsive on mobile devices as it will allow for a user-friendly experience for your patients when they are searching for the right hospital for them.
9. Provide Engaging and Relevant Content Establishing a trusting relationship between your hospital and prospective patients is vital to growing your practice. Creating quality and relevant blog posts, email newsletters, video content, or any other kind of content marketing can grow those relationships. By providing free healthcare content and an in-depth library of information for your patients, you will stand out as a leader in your field and will assure the patients that they can trust you with their health concerns.
10. Take Advantage of Video Content Marketing For some patients, reading a whole bunch of text on a blog post could be tiring enough to the point where they might end up leaving your website. Using videos for content marketing could mitigate that as it brings an easily digestible and attractive form of content for people to learn from. Work with physicians, nurses, and other staff members to create informative video content. It could even be something as simple as a healthcare professional explaining the importance of vaccination or sharing preventative care tips.
11. Get Patients’ Feedback Patients are not typically vocal about their patient experience, especially while in the office. Create a process where you are collecting feedback consistently. Following up with your patients about how their appointment went will give you insightful information on your hospital’s communication, professionalism, atmosphere, and appointment handling. It will also signal to your patients that you are invested in their care and are willing to improve the patient experience.
12. Ensure Your Online Reputation is Accurate Patients want healthcare professionals who they can trust to provide great care. They will research and look at online reviews of the hospitals they are considering before making any kind of commitment. Whether or not the reviews are positive will be a vital factor that helps prospective patients choose their hospital. Your star ratings, review recency, and the number of reviews will factor into decision making. After all, most people are more likely to choose a hospital with hundreds of reviews with high ratings than one with a handful of ratings. Utilize online reputation management tools to generate reviews and address your customers’ concerns.
13. Reach Out to Unhappy Patients with a Retention Strategy While it is tempting to ignore the negatives that patients bring up when providing feedback and to focus on positive reviews solely, you must address those bad patient experiences and reviews. Coordinate with your team members to ensure there is a process for patient outreach. In the end, addressing negative reviews can save you from losing out on valuable patients.
14. Build Strong Relationships with Your Current Patient Base Along with getting feedback from your patients, it is also important to keep in touch and establish meaningful relationships with them. It will make it more likely that patients will return to your hospital in the future and refer your hospital to friends and family. Ensure your staff and providers are building friendly rapport with patients. Send birthday cards and holiday cards to show you are thinking of them!
15. Hire a Specialized Hospital Marketing Agency Running your hospital, providing excellent service to your patients, and creating a high-quality hospital marketing plan could be overwhelming. Hiring a specialized hospital marketing agency is a great alternative to relieve some of your stress. They can bring in more leads and manage your online presence while you focus on bringing the best service to your hospital.