Why should inbound matter to healthcare?
According to the Pew Research Center, one third of U.S. adults are turning to the internet as a diagnostic tool via their phones and computers. Out of the 81% of U.S. adults that use the internet, 72% have looked online for health information, beginning their search on Google, Bing or Yahoo.
With so many potential patients online, healthcare organizations have great potential to benefit from inbound marketing. Two key reasons:
- Gaining market share. The success of inbound hinges on attracting prospects via useful web content. Blogging is an easy way to consistently post fresh content, and helps your organization get found via search engines. In fact, marketers who focus on blogging are 13 times more likely to increase ROI year-over-year (Hubspot State of Inbound 2014). 80% of your site visitors aren’t ready to act, so new content keeps them coming back for more, builds their confidence in your expertise, and starts the process of winning potential new patients.
- Lead generation. One way to boost ROI is to lower patient-acquisition costs, and inbound helps with that. Inbound not only build leads organically and affordably, the good news for nonprofit healthcare organizations is that nonprofits enjoy nearly twice as many leads than other B2B and B2C companies combined through inbound.
Convinced? Here are 5 tips to get you started.
1. Know your audience.
Buyer personas represent groups of people within your target audience sharing the same characteristics. For example, “Athlete Alex” was a varsity soccer athlete who continued to play soccer into his older years though not as frequently due to pain in his knees. Instead he coaches the local children’s soccer team when not at his 9-5 job.
2. Optimize for SEO.
Another aspect of “getting found” online is to put search engine optimization at the forefront of your digital marketing strategy. Work backwards by thinking about what potential patients might type into Google to find solutions to their problem. From there, generate a list of specific keywords and blog topics. In healthcare, long-tail keywords help – as they are 3-4 word phrases such as “athlete ankle pain management.” Having a few targeted keywords will make sure those needing care now find you.
New to SEO? Learn more on our blog.
3. Develop content.
Whether it’s pulling topics from patients’ frequently asked questions or repurposing content related to the problems that patients are turning to you for, having helpful, relevant content ready to post and post often cannot be emphasized enough. People search online to be educated and in the healthcare world, find a trusted source. Be that.
Take an orthopedics practice for example. Some blogging topics can be:
- How to prevent orthopedic injuries in aging athletes
- What to expect in physical therapy
- 5 steps for recovering from a torn ACL
4. Assess website functionality.
When was the last time your organization did a website functionality assessment? If so, was lead generation a component of the assessment? To be helpful, websites need to be responsive and easy to navigate. If health information is buried under five subpages, users are going to look for their answer elsewhere.
5. Use lead capture forms.
Capturing data on your leads will give you additional opportunities to grow and nurture them. It allows you to personalize relevant content to each individual over time, moving them ever closer to becoming a new patient.