The COVID-19 Pandemic
The global economy has slowed down during the past few weeks due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Not only are people being quarantined by staying in their homes but also most manufacturing, trading operations, and local businesses have had to close their doors.
COVID-19 has suddenly disrupted how the world operates and for many businesses, it has been a game-changer. To survive during the lockdown, has been a challenge for most business owners. But businesses must adapt. It isn’t the time to crumble and surrender but to find ways to overcome it.
Online Opportunities During COVID-19
While the world is in a lockdown, online searches have continued to increase. In fact, online traffic has surged tremendously due to everyone seeking online solutions for what they cannot get by going outside. Online connectivity is in demand more than ever.
hat does this mean? While competitors are pausing their digital campaigns, there is no better time to outperform them, so that you can have an extra digital edge when things get back to normal.
The Reality of COVID-19 for Medical Practices
The COVID-19 effects are impacting medical practices as they rely heavily on in-house patient visits. Medical practices have been extremely affected due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as they can only take an emergency new or existing patient appointment.
Yet COVID-19 has called for medical practices to be attuned to the challenge. Their services and expertise will still be needed during these uncertain times. Somehow, they still need to be present and continue to serve their patients. But how? Again they are ordered to be closed unless it is an emergency appointment.
How Medical Practices Should Respond
Medical practices have been affected by COVID-19 like all other businesses, but this doesn’t mean they have to completely close their operations. Most of them are allowed to take patients who have medical emergencies.
This is also a good time for medical practices to understand their digital marketing performance. We recommended that medical practices optimize the website and Google My Business profile for search engines to see better results once the “stay at home” orders are lifted.
By using the power of the Internet, medical practices can still prosper. As Zig Ziglar once said, “Adversity is what you need in order to become successful”.
You have to see the opportunity in the chaos! For example, if you are a medical practice your GMB profile now has a COVID-19 and virtual appointment feature.
By adding your website’s COVID-19 letter (see our client’s example) to the COVID-19 feature and your virtual appointment link to the virtual appointment feature (see our client’s example) can allow you to have priority over your competition within the online search results.
For example, if someone searches for “immediate dental care” in Google and your GMB profile has these key features updated, this could allow you to show up at the top of the search results because of relevance over your competition who may have dominated the search landscape in the past.
Executing Digital Marketing During COVID-19
According to Neil Patel, the online traffic for the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries has increased significantly. This means people are now looking more for health-related information. This is a perfect opportunity for medical practices to take advantage of a strong online presence.
Now is the right time for all the medical practices to maximize their patient reach by exploring new ways through effective digital marketing strategies.
Here are some important tips that will guide you through the necessary marketing requirements during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Digital Marketing Approach During COVID-19
Inform Patients About Your Situation
It is essential for medical practices to inform patients about their availability during these uncertain times. They have to tell patients how they plan to operate during this time.
We are always on the side of over-communicating. We help our clients communicate to their patients via website pop-ups, designated landing pages about their operation hours and how it relates to COVID-19, newsletters sent via email that inform their patients, and many more communication strategies.
It is imperative to send your patients consistent updates. This is also a good time to just check on them to see how they are doing. If applicable, let them know how they can reach your practice during an emergency.
Lastly, reschedule appointments instead of allowing cancellations. Accommodate, support, and care for your patients during this time as they will need you more than ever once things are back to normal.
Be Present Virtually
While you may not be physically present to address your patient’s concern, you can be there for them virtually. Innovate within your practice and the services that you can offer now and for the future. Explore different virtual rooms to serve your patients.
A lot of our doctors are using doxy.me to offer telemedicine and teledentistry.
The US Federal government has allowed Telehealth and Telemedicine during the lockdown. Medical practices can serve patients remotely through virtual conversations. Conduct your consultations online, prescribe and provide treatment and monitor your patients through a video call, even if it is just a Zoom video chat. Use Telemedicine to continue treating your patients online and show them that you’re available to serve them.
And guess what?
You may be able to attract new patients that you may have not been able to see because of their proximity from your practice or simply that your competition has shut down completely.
Be Mindful of Your Marketing Message
It is always good to spread awareness keeping in mind the current situation, send updates about the pandemic and guidelines to book appointments.
Know that your clients are probably anxious and have been reading a lot about the coronavirus, so sending more about it can be super productive and informative.
They will look at your practice as a source of information. Staying positive and showing them you have a plan is key!
Level Up Your Marketing
As per the current lockdown, everything is going online, leveling up your digital marketing efforts will play an important role in spreading awareness and help patients to consult with doctors using telecommunication.
In addition, Google Ads may be a viable option for emergency and telemedicine / teledentistry based treatment consults or in-office visits. We could see a huge dip in Google Ads’ CPC (cost per click) because of the reduced competition, which could provide cost savings for your practice and more brand visibility in the future.
You may have a campaign that’s bringing you decent results but not high converting because of our current circumstance, so it may be a good time to rethink your strategy. It is always important to change marketing techniques depending on how things evolve with this epidemic. Think about marketing campaigns and techniques that will benefit patients during this pandemic.
During the lockdown, people are now more interested in spending time online especially on different social media channels. You can use this as an opportunity to develop your social media calendar and produce consistent creative social content. With more downtime, your creative juices can start flowing on FB, Instagram, and even TikTok. Prepare your brand to capture your audience when they are online more than ever and want to hear from industry leaders!
As already explained, the web traffic in the health industry is increasing remarkably, you should be able to capitalize by using social media channels and generating relevant traffic through organic and paid digital marketing strategies. Always be ready to make adjustments in your marketing campaign according to the outputs you receive.
There is no time to waste money, when your practice isn’t making a ton of money. If you need help, contact us for a FREE consultation!
Medical Practices Must Learn to Adapt Quickly
As time passes, medical practices need to adapt and make decisions on how they can take advantage of this opportunity. This starts with having the right perspective on their situation.
As long as your medical practice adapts, has an optimistic view, plans ahead, it will survive this pandemic and thrive thereafter.
Digital marketing, if used correctly, can make your medical practice pandemic-proof (not just for the Coronavirus).
Med Rank Interactive Can Help Your Medical Practice During COVID-19
As digital marketing is a key ingredient for medical practices to survive this pandemic, Med Rank Interactive can help you achieve your marketing goals for now and the future. We can provide you with the best digital marketing solutions targeting the right patients according to your practice’s needs and the current circumstance. We are a specialized healthcare and medical digital marketing agency.