Despite the changing market landscape, a significant number of ophthalmologists haven’t embraced digital marketing as a tool for customer acquisition. For some ophthalmologists, ophthalmology marketing is about posting fancy pictures on social media, and they couldn’t be more wrong.
The internet created a platform for business-to-person communication like never before. It would be unprofitable to ignore these opportunities to communicate and attract new patients.
In this article, you will learn why ophthalmologists need marketing, what the best ophthalmology marketing strategies are, and 5 tips to turn your ophthalmology marketing into a lead magnet. Read on to learn more.
Why you need marketing if you are an Ophthalmologist
Technological evolution, changing consumer preference, economic swings and rising competition have forced ophthalmologists to adopt non-traditional marketing methods.
An excellent non-traditional marketing strategy for an ophthalmologist is digital marketing.
If you’re focused on growing your practice, consider adopting digital marketing to promote your ophthalmology practice. The benefits of online marketing for an ophthalmologist include;
1. Wide market reach – With digital marketing solutions, you can reach millions of potential customers, depending on the platform you choose. About 69 percent of American adults use Facebook, and 73 percent use YouTube. That means using any of these platforms for marketing can give you access to over 100 million Americans.
2. Precise targeting – Internet platforms like Google, Facebook, and Twitter are equipped with features that help you reach your target audience. With these features, you can identify and market to your audience directly. For example, you can choose to show your content to people within a 10-mile radius of your eye practice or consumers searching for “LASIK surgery clinic near me.”
3. High value to cost ratio – When done correctly, digital marketing for an ophthalmology practice is super cost-effective compared to traditional marketing. With a $5 budget, you can put your message in front of 500 potential consumers. That means a low barrier to entry and a high-profit margin.
4. Availability – Availability is another excellent benefit of digital-powered marketing for an eye practice. When you publish your marketing material (blog content or landing page) on the internet, it will be available to consumers 24/7. In this case, your digital content is a 24-hour sales rep that points qualified leads to your practice.
5. Authority builder – Ophthalmology marketing strategies like blogging allows you to build a reputation as a thought leader in your industry. When putting out quality SEO content consistently, search engines will show your content to consumers looking for the information you shared.
How to get new patients for your Ophthalmology practice
At Med Rank Interactive, we believe that there are no definitive steps to acquiring customers. At best, it takes a combination of steps in no particular order to achieve marketing results that support business goals. With that in mind, the best strategies for patient acquisition are;
Content marketing – Have you heard the expression, “Content is King”? Content remains king because the internet is made of content.
Healthcare consumers come to the internet to find helpful content about a health problem. A PRC report on healthcare consumer behavior showed that over 72 percent of responders browse the internet for healthcare info.
As an ophthalmologist, you can capture this group of consumers by creating content that answers their questions. For example, what is a cataract? Can glaucoma be stopped? How do you treat eye disease?
Answering these types of questions and providing other helpful content will position your practice as an authority. You can share your knowledge via your website and other websites through guest posting and blog commenting.
Guest posting, also known as guest blogging, is writing and publishing an article on another website, such as Healthline.com. Blog commenting is simply contributing to an article published on another platform via the comment section.
Email marketing – Email marketing is another channel to communicate and deepen your relationship with your customers. Emails are personal communication tools, and a significant percentage of consumers prefer this communication channel. You can introduce your eye practice, schedule appointments, promote programs, send holiday greetings and birthday wishes via email.
Med Rank Interactive helps ophthalmologists set up email automation campaigns to nurture leads through their buying stages. These leads are captured through content marketing. For example, when a visitor subscribes to your blog newsletter, they automatically get added to the newsletter and other email marketing funnels or promotions.
Video marketing – Video is fast becoming the preferred type of content. How do we know this? Well, YouTube is the second largest search engine after Google, so it is obvious that consumers enjoy video content.
This consumer preference creates an opportunity to connect with health consumers in a way they prefer. Try creating short videos that respond to the questions that consumers search for and publish the content on YouTube. For in-depth YouTube strategies, read our expert article.
Reputation marketing – This should be an integral part of any marketing effort. In the business world, reputation management is the practice of building and maintaining a company’s reputation.
At Med Rank Interactive, we use skill proprietary technology to help our clients manage their reputation. We monitor all social reviews, respond to reviews, and dispute fake reviews. We have seen a 40% increase in new reviews for our doctors using SMS.
There are over 20 effective reputation management strategies, however; for this article, we will discuss 2 of those strategies that can build your brand.
- Social review management – In the world of digital marketing, reviews are powerful decision influencers. PWC’s global consumer report for 2019 showed that positive social reviews influence 37% of respondents’ purchase decisions.
Reviews are proof that a product is good or bad. So it is vital to get the best reviews possible.
The first step to getting a great review is providing excellent service consistently. When your customers are satisfied with your service, they will be happy to leave a positive recommendation on your social media page. We built a customer relationship management tool that sends patients feedback requests after their session via SMS. Again, this process results in a 40% increase in new reviews for our clients on Facebook, Yelp, and Google My Business.
- Create a Google My Business profile – Google is the most used search engine on the planet with an 88.4% market share. Consumers use Google to search for anything, from food ingredients to the best eye clinic in their neighborhood. You have to register your business on Google My Business to appear in local searches for your service. With a Google my business profile, you can collect reviews from customers, and potential customers can see the reviews when your business appears in search.
Ophthalmology marketing tools
You need tools to execute the marketing strategies discussed above. At Med Rank Interactive, we consider the following tools as foundational marketing tools – Google Analytics, HelloWoofy, SEMRush, CallRail, Search Console, and Active Campaign. You can research keywords, monitor conversion, manage your search engine visibility, social media, phone calls and email marketing with these tools.
Google Analytics – This tool will show you how visitors are engaging on your website and the pages that convert visitors. With that information, you can choose the sections of your website that need improvement and maintenance. Our SEO experts at Med Rank Interactive recommend setting up your conversion features to monitor your progress and new patient appointments in real-time.
SEMRush– SEMRush is a powerful tool for finding keywords, content ideas, and competitors. This tool makes our list because it provides a slew of marketing tools for a reasonable price.
HelloWoofy– For efficient social media management, you need HelloWoofy. This tool allows you to create, organize, and automate content for your social media.
Search Console – This is another Google product. It allows website managers to check index status (registration of web pages on Google) and improve their website’s visibility.
CallRail – CallRail is a tracking and analytics marketing software that helps businesses identify the marketing channels that bring callers (leads).
Active Campaign – Active Campaign serves small-to-midsize companies. So it is packed with features that can help businesses succeed at marketing. Besides functionality, this tool’s draw is its pricing plan, which starts from $9 to $229 per month.
Med Rank Interactive uses the tools listed above to run successful marketing campaigns for ophthalmologists. Also, we give our clients access to these tools to coordinate their schedules and track marketing at zero cost.
Ophthalmologist marketing ideas
Marketing tools and strategies are very common and of no particular value without proper execution. Most ophthalmologists fall short in execution because they lack expertise. If you fit the category or struggle with generating leads through marketing, pay attention to these 5 tips. Alternatively, contact Med Rank Interactive for help with your marketing.
1. Build a marketing plan for your business goals – A marketing plan is critical to business success. A good plan outlines how to achieve your business goals with specific strategies for a period, preferably five years.
2. Focus on your existing customers – Marketing experts agree that it is easier to retain a customer than acquire a new one. Before rolling out customer acquisition strategies, ensure you have a proven system to keep your current customers happy and loyal to your practice. Loyalty programs, gifts, and free treatment are some tools you can use to keep your customers happy and loyal to you.
3. Create a Referral program – Word of mouth marketing remains the most effective form of marketing. Consumers prefer getting service/product recommendations from their friends, colleagues, or acquaintances. You can take charge of the word of mouth marketing for your business by creating a referral program that rewards your customers who refer their contacts. Of course, this strategy works when you provide an excellent service.
4. Network aggressively – One of the best products of the internet is social media. Platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram allow people to connect and discuss in real-time. Your practice can leverage this opportunity to network with customers. Companies use Twitter to interact with their customers and audience in real-time.
How do you start a conversation with your audience?
- Create trends about eye care with hashtags like #askanophthalmologist.
- Participate in online community events.
- Respond to questions on popular forums like Quora.
5. Amplify your message with Paid advertising – Paid advertising will help you find your audience and connect with them quickly. This approach is proactive and produces fast results, which is better than sitting back and waiting for your customers to find you.
Are you worried that you can’t implement all these tips?
Well, that is understandable. Eye doctors are not marketing experts, and these marketing ideas require consistent execution to produce desirable results. If you want a steady stream of leads and treatment-ready customers, hire Med Rank Interactive for exclusive marketing support.
Why ophthalmologists have success with marketing experts
There is something to be said about allowing specialists to do their job. When people need eye care, they go to an optician. So it follows that when you need a marketing service, you should hire a marketing expert.
Most ophthalmologists prefer using a marketing agency for the cost convenience they offer. Healthcare marketing companies have the advantage of specialization and don’t require company level salaries to function effectively. You can set your company up for the best marketing result by contacting Med Rank Interactive.
Every growth-focused ophthalmologist must adopt ophthalmology marketing to acquire more customers. Working with a healthcare marketing agency that works exclusively with ophthalmologists can free up your company’s time and resources. More importantly, you can expect a return on investment because marketing professionals are handling your marketing.
With almost a decade of marketing experience for healthcare companies, we understand the challenge of marketing your ophthalmology practice in a competitive economy. At Med Rank Interactive, we’ve mastered the process of setting up a healthcare practice for success digitally. Our process starts with a no-obligation consultation. If you need an unbiased marketing assessment, book a consultation.