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In most cases, marketing is a misunderstood field and underrated at nearly every chance. Marketing is often the last to be considered during economic crises or simply during a practice's financial trouble. Ironically, when a medical practice is doing very well, marketing is also often the first to be cut. However, marketing campaigns are actions of communication that produce conversions in time. Although you may consider your circumstances now, marketing is the operations of your business that ensure your business's long-term stability and growth in the future.
If your business practice is in trouble, it's easy to conclude that you'll need to strengthen or improve your practice through technology, employees, real estate, etc. However, although enhancing your practice may be required and evaluated, it's your marketing campaigns that provide growth regardless of improvements that could be made. Therefore, by ignoring or cutting down on your marketing, you ensure a decline of your business's profitability and success at some point down the road.
As our society advances, the marketplace becomes more competitive. As a result, what was done through word-of-mouth years ago has changed. Marketing has become an integral part of communicating medical services and reaching new audiences to maintain business operations. Unfortunately or fortunately, only those who find themselves in very underdeveloped rural areas may get by with little marketing effort.
Marketing is a form of communication that introduces services and products to various audiences. Marketing communication is designed to entice audiences to make a purchase. And, it works! Only in and through communication can our society interact.
The forms of communication presented by marketing take time to see results. What took 1-3 enticing adverts now takes 5-7 enticing advertisements for conversions to occur in the medical field. Unfortunately, immediate results are few and far between. Most business practices will see the fruit of marketing over 6 to 12-month campaign increments as the campaigns gain momentum.
We often hear the term A/B testing when considering "testing" your marketing strategies. A/B testing is a marketing experiment wherein you split your audience to test several campaign variations to determine which performs better. Unfortunately, this tactic, too, is often misunderstood. First, A/B testing works with one campaign. The campaign is then divided into two variations. A/B testing is not something where two separate campaigns are tested against each other. Although it's very appropriate to compare various campaign strategies, in order to receive the best insights in comparing two campaigns, both campaigns must be deployed fully for a least 12 months. A/B testing, on the other hand, can see results immediately as both campaign variations are deployed simultaneously and data is obtained.
The top 5 forms of marketing for any medical and dental practice will be:
Sure, TV, radio, and other media can be included in marketing efforts, but on the whole, the five significant forms are marketing are listed above.
In global economic crises or personal crises, most medical practices spend less on their marketing resources. In some cases, practice owners may experience "times of plenty" and are overwhelmed with patients and feel the need to cut back on marketing. Whatever the reasoning, understand that doing so will only reduce your chances of obtaining new patients or maintaining your current patient base at some point in time. In short it’s never recommended to cut back marketing, rather evaluate and alter marketing campaigns to fit your needs and goals.
Every medical practice owner with a dedicated patient base must understand that attrition is normal and natural. Natural attrition occurs due to death, transferring, moving, growth, competition, etc. To combat attrition, practices require a steady stream of new patients. Obtaining new patients is only done through the communication resources of marketing. Of course, healthcare practices that require ongoing new patients need continuing marketing - even in times of plenty.
Although it's appropriate to evaluate your marketing budget and goals, act smartly; analyze your resources and relocate them to suit your context- pricing, advertising and communication, and service development. Ignoring or tossing out all marketing strategies might leave you shipwrecked without any resources to guide you back to success when storms of life pass through.
In most cases, every healthcare provider's bread and butter becomes, at some point, friends and family referrals. Internal Marketing should never be discarded. And the best part is that Internal Marketing virtually costs you nothing. Second, having a well-curated digital presence is key to the longevity and success of digital campaigns. We recommend always keeping your digital presence up-to-date and maintained.
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