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Even if your practice is brand new, become visible everywhere patients are searching online.
I was spending $10,000-15,000 per month on Facebook and Google Ads to find new patients for my practice.
When I did get phone calls, it was unclear how new patients had heard about us.
I got frustrated with the spaghetti-against-the-wall method and decided to fire my marketing agency.
I said, “I can do a better job learning this myself,” and I started Digitalis.
After years of training and testing, I developed a complete marketing system to get consistent, low cost growth for specialty practices.
The first practice website my team built with my new system immediately had over 1,000 new local visitors and hundreds of phone calls per month.
It works so well for me, I wanted to share this to help other practices grow too.
I know exactly what terms people search for in each geographical area, down to the city and zip code.
Most people will plug random words into their website, like “doctor in Phoenix,” without knowing whether people actually search for it, or whether another term is more popular.
The first critical step in choosing the right terms, also known as keyword research, is picking the terms that have the highest search volume but also are attainable for your level of authority with your website category.
It’s unrealistic to try to compete with WebMD or another massive medical website when you really just want local people to find your exact type of specialty.
So if you’re an urgent care in Phoenix, “Phoenix doctor” would not be the best keyword to choose.
According to KWfinder, one keyword research tool, “children’s urgent care phoenix” has 3,300 searches per month on average, which is nearly 10 times as many searches per month as “urgent care phoenix az.”
“Children’s urgent care phoenix” ALSO is less competitive of a keyword, so you’re much more likely to reach the top of Google using that keyword.
I learned this the hard way, but with training and experience, now I get 2-3X the results I used to by properly choosing the right terms.
Also known as Google My Business optimization, this technique makes your practice more visible directly through your local Google profile.
The updates we make cause Google to directly promote your practice over your competitors.
Your Google My Business profile is like a miniature website, but because it’s on Google’s domain, Google wants to promote it above other websites on the internet.
It also has a website builder built in, so that gives you basically like a bonus website that Google will actively promote also.
It’s important to build the description and services out for a maximum impact using the correct keywords described earlier, because this is basically free parking for your practice.
Another useful feature is the posting feature which rolled out several years back when Google was phasing out Google +.
Basically it uses your Google my business profile as a social media, but the power of it is this: when you create a Google my business post that links to pages on your website, you create a loop of link authority that will make you stand out in two places: the local Google algorithm, and the organic algorithm where your actual website is.
Here are the results of the technique with one of my clients, a local aesthetics practice.
This client’s local Google profile went from being seen 1,700 times per month when we started, to 9,000-13,000 times per month through 2021.
Phone calls directly from their Google profile (not including the website) went from 51 calls in the first full month of working together, to over 120 calls in the most recent month that was recorded.
Process: Technical and Content optimization (Making your website Google-friendly)
Many websites have code in the backend that tells Google to ignore some of their pages, so their website is invisible! The technical part of SEO is a time-consuming process, but the results are well worth it to build a solid foundation to build your practice on.
Google has an internal tool called Search Console which shows you which pages from your website are being indexed by Google and if there are any issues with them.
We set Search Console up and ask Google to crawl the website for any potential problems, then fix any issues that come up.
Whenever we update content or publish a new page on a website, we also submit a request for Google to recrawl that page so it can give the page the attention it deserves.
Process: Optimize meta data (title tag/title description/alt text)
Metadata is information inside the HTML of a website that tells search engines how important specific terms are.
Basically this is telling Google which words on a page are priority.
This makes a huge difference in how website his structure to the Google bot, determining what terms your website will be visible for on Google.
The most important terms are the title and H1 header, along with meta title and meta description, which make up the information you see when you find a website on Google.
Optimizing these factors alone can increase the amount of traffic that ends up on your website as much as 20 or 30%.
Key areas above the #1 position on Google are affectionately called the “Zero Position” by marketers because it makes a website visible everywhere.
We insert code into the back end of a website to reach these positions, which make your images, information about your website, and other information highly visible and easy for Google to display to people, especially when using voice search or searching on a cell phone.
When you’re constantly creating written, video, and/or audio content that interests people, Google will reward you with more website traffic.
Search engines don’t want to bother listing any website or page that’s not important for visitors, so it’s critical to have information on your pages that are really helpful for people or searching for information on the internet.
We use artificial intelligence tools and hire professional writers to craft some of the best healthcare content on the internet, which is really helpful for people.
We write in a way that tells Google it is authoritative, important, and that it should be listed at the top of page one.
One of the key factors Google is looking for here is content length, so important website pages should be at least 500-1,000 words if not more.
Articles should also link out to other important websites in the industry like cdc.gov, WebMD, or Medscape.
Search engines also love websites that have a combination of different formats, not just a bunch of long paragraphs.
Example from our Healthcare Marketing Plan page:
So it’s important to have numbered list, bulleted lists, and different forms of media like images and Youtube videos embedded.
These factors also keep people engaged so they don’t feel like they’re reading a novel while they’re browsing the website. They’re more likely to make that important decision of scheduling a phone call or submitting a form on your website.
Process: Authority link building – gives your website a boost everywhere on the internet
People use local directories like Apple Maps to find practices like yours when they’re on the go on their phone.
These directories also have a review feature, which is a very important for the right local people to find your practice.
We create a customized link building strategy to make sure none of these important listings are being missed, and that all the details are accurate on each one.
88% of patients looking for a provider will search online reviews before deciding which one to schedule an appointment with.
Sadly, many patients visit practices with inferior experience or skill, simply because they believe what the online reviews say.
On top review sites like Google, Facebook, WebMD, Vitals, Healthgrades, and others, get 5-star reviews from your patients regularly and automatically.
Make it easy by getting those 5-star reviews automatically after patients visit your clinic.
Here’s how it works:
We’ve partnered with Gatherup, a HIPAA-compliant review automation system.
The practice front office uploads a patient’s name, phone number, and email securely into the review system.
The system send a text message that looks like this:
Hi, we’d love your feedback on “Happy Feet Orthopedics.” Please click on the link.
The patient clicks on the link and gives their feedback.
The nice thing is that people who rate 8 or higher are prompted to review the practice on an online review site like this:
That ensures your practice is mainly getting high-quality reviews posted publicly.
Another great advantage of this system is getting accurate feedback on the patient experience. Patients give real insight into the areas the practice can improve.
If the patient rates the practice any number lower than an 8 out of 10, the system takes them to a screen where they leave feedback.
This shows your practice’s genuine concern for the patient, and gives you the ability to talk to them about it and remedy the areas where you fell short.
Over time, your practice improves the patient’s experience, and patients actively leave more 5-star reviews on the websites where other patients are looking for providers.
Process: Content promotion and Direct Lead Generation
Social media is a great tool for healthcare practices to advertise, and to broaden their online footprint.
They are very high authority, and it’s often possible to automatically cross-post new website articles onto them without having to rewrite the article through automation tools.
So every new blog post can automatically produce a dozen or more articles across the internet, to maximize its impact.
This triggers search engines like Google to recognize the original blog post more quickly, and boost its authority and traffic more quickly than other similar blog posts on the same topic who aren’t being promoted on multiple sites.
Do you get reimbursed better for some services or procedures? You can target your ideal patients with ads promoting those exact things.
You can advertise to your ideal patients according to their personal interests, income level, age, gender, profession, homeowner status, location, and hundreds of other traits.
Target your ideal patients where they spend their time (on their phone), with ads on Google, Youtube, Facebook, and Instagram.
Why are today’s digital ads different from TV, radio, and print ads?
Google Ads have 300 different variables, and Facebook has 25 different types of ads.That sounds overwhelming, but our team obsessively tests different ad types to maximize your results.
Do they tend to have any of the following traits? These are just a few traits that we can target in our advertising.
These are the words used in the ad, and they make the biggest difference in the results.
We test 4-15 headlines side by side to see which ones perform the best, and continue updating the ads accordingly.
This gives you double or triple the results within a few months, compared to just creating some ads and letting them run.
Images and videos are huge, and draw your future patient’s attention to what your ad has to say.
We like to use imagery that
Different ad formats work really well for different people or services, depending on your goals.
For example, if someone has had a recent injury and needs to follow up with an orthopedic surgeon this week,
Google Search Ads would make that ortho specialist highly visible for the patient to make that urgent appointment.
If you’re an aesthetics practice or plastic surgeon, social media ads would be excellent for promoting a new age-defying procedure.
We test several ad formats side by side until we clearly have a winner, and move forward with the winning combination.
You can expect to get 200-500% return on your advertising investment within 2-3 months. The nice thing about digital ads is that they give you results within the first couple weeks.
Also, you get immediate feedback on which language and imagery resonates with patients the best. Using that knowledge, you can update your website, marketing materials, and future advertising.
Right now, like no other time in the history of healthcare, we are being forced to focus on ONLY WHAT REALLY WORKS.
We don’t have the convenience of attending week-long conferences or going to 17 different networking events.
Will you get the help you need to make your practice thrive automatically?
Schedule a 15-minute call to get a complimentary Digital Marketing Blueprint, so you can build your practice.
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