Social media has become a staple medium for how we access information about individuals and businesses. According to an article published in 2018 on the US National Library of Medicine of the National Institute of Health, medical practices and professionals that have online presences reported significant increases in the quality of care being given to the patients (link). Having a medical practice or professional on social media isn’t just a form of connecting with patients, but a way of validating the business as a publicly existing entity. By having the online presence, you are able to connect with patients while attracting new ones without relying on traditional marketing methods and referrals.
The world of medical practices is now starting to use social media to target their audiences, and it is working.
On social media, individuals tend to base their decisions as to who they will work with on the content of that medical professional/practice for all forms of medical needs such as high risk surgeries, laser hair removal, massage therapy, scar removal, and more. More importantly, social media is the key medium of reaching millennial and generation z patients. The world is moving fast and the average patient needs more than a website to be reminded of what your medical practice can do for them. The following are a few reasons why advertising on digital platforms is important in companies specifically Medical Practices.
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1. Create Awareness of The Practice
Social Media marketing is the easiest, effective, and cost efficient form of marketing today. For example, one paid advertisement on an Instagram story can cost you $20 to lead a few hundred targeted potential patients to your instagram page. You would be able to specify the type of patients you want such as ones that live within 20 square miles of the practice that have interests related to the various services and treatments you offer. Many doctors and small practices are now using social media to grow their businesses in ways they never would have been able to before. Word of mouth is not enough these days. Sparking curiosity and transparency is.
2. Social Proof
Social proof consists of before and after photos, case studies, reviews, testimonials, awards, and so much more. Whenever a practice or professional accomplishes a milestone with a patient that is worth sharing, social media is the medium that it’s done on. Everything can be shared directly across an omnipresent digital landscape allowing for potential patients to see the benefits of getting a similar treatment done by that practice. With all of your practices value displayed on a scrollable and readable grid such as Instagram, a consumer can get the proof they need quickly and easily right on their personal feed.
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When it comes to running a practice, automating certain tasks or jobs is essential to consistent growth overtime. Phone call appointments and consultations can now be minimized with a few simple clicks on a social media profile page. When a potential patient stumbles on your Instagram profile, they are able to select a button that allows them to book an appointment without having to speak to anyone on the phone. This allows a significant increase in the rate of receiving new patient leads without relying on paid staff being available to book their appointments. Through targeted ads, messenger marketing, and text message marketing, consumers can be reminded constantly to set up their appointment or about upcoming appointments or specials being offered.
4. Support & Community
The main point of social media is for businesses and people to connect with each other. Providing support to a patient online helps them know they are not in this alone. Being able to connect with someone who is going through a health issue related to what your practice treats is not only comforting but will build a great amount of trust in the institution. The community often has many questions and doubts about diseases, or sicknesses and social media networks can offer ways for a practice to communicate with users to help clarify these doubts.
5. Patient Targeting
The most powerful tool within social media is the ability to target who your audience is. Instead of creating a banner to appear in front of a combination of interested and disinterested people, you are able to take that “banner” and put it in front of ONLY people who would be interested in what it says. This allows you to filter out the market reach and only attract qualified leads. Now you can spend your marketing budget on attracting patients that are much more likely to convert than hoping an investment made on a traditional marketing medium gets noticed by the right lead type.