Spend five minutes researching therapy advertising or healthcare marketing and you can rest assured you’ll be inundated with a truckload of acronyms: SEO, PPC, CTA, CTR, etc. And unless you’ve got a background in advertising or marketing, the only acronym you can think about is OMG.
If that’s how you feel, good news. It’s completely okay and it’s completely normal. Remember, your expertise is in offering high-quality care to your patients and taking care of your staff. It’s what you do best. Web marketing and advertising are not the core focus of your skillset. But, unfortunately, offering the best care in the area is no longer enough to drive new business through the door. In order to stay relevant and reach the people that need you most, you have to reach them where they’re looking for you—digitally.
Today, we want to look at two of the strongest ways to reach new patients digitally: SEO and PPC. We’ll first define and then compare the two healthcare and PT marketing strategies to help you decide which is right for your organization.
First, What is Healthcare SEO?
Healthcare SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is the process of making changes to your website and web content to increase the likelihood of higher rankings in popular search engines.
Here are some SEO strategies that can help grow your chances of outranking your competition:
- Target the right audience and optimize your content by using medical keywords through your page headings and subheadings
- Use Meta Data to your advantage by utilizing SEO tools like ahrefs or Moz
- Adding videos and pictures to your webpages will cause people to spend more time on the page, which will boost the rating and decrease bounce rates
- Make sure your site is optimized for mobile. A fast loading site will beat your competition and be favored by the search algorithms
What is Healthcare PPC?
Healthcare PPC (Pay-Per-Click) is the process of bidding on relevant keywords to place ads at the top of search engine results. Pay-Per-Click platforms include Google Ads, Microsoft/Bing Ads, and other search engines.
Here are some PPC tips that can help your website grow in popularity:
- Use Google Analytics or another service to figure out who your customers are, so you can target your specific audience
- Try location targeting to advertise in specific areas
- Using ad extensions helps your advertisers get more information on who’s clicking on your site
- Research your competitors, so you can optimize your website
- Utilize responsive ads, to help your advertisers with images, headlines, and descriptions
- Using a tool like Google Analytics helps you track interactions visitors had with your website before a conversion
- A/B testing helps you figure out which ad, webpage, or email to use by giving people two different versions of the desired page and narrowing down which one converts the best
- Try a keyword research tool like the one included in ahrefs to get a ton of information on specific keywords and your competition
Both of these two strategies work to achieve the same goal of sending more clients to your website. From there, clients can enter your revenue funnel and ideally convert to a paying patient.
What Healthcare Organizations Should Know About SEO
Whether you’re doing therapy SEO, wound care SEO, physical therapy SEO, hospice SEO, or home health SEO, the premise and the processes are all the same. The simplest explanation of SEO is that it’s the process of identifying what your target customers are searching for on Google (and other major search engines) and then setting up your website and your content to rank higher up and on the first page when they conduct that search.
Here are the key facts about SEO:
- SEO is a long game. Don’t expect immediate results from an SEO campaign.
- While the results may take a while from SEO, they’re much more sustainable. One SEO campaign can produce results for years without much additional work.
- SEO requires more skilled operators to know how to produce results.
- SEO needs to work hand in hand with conversion optimization. In other words, getting the prospective patient to your website is not always enough. The website needs to be set up in a way that compels the prospective patient to take the next step.
What Healthcare Organizations Should Know About PPC
Where SEO serves as a longer-term investment for the future, PPC is often referred to as the quick-fix. And while that phrase usually carries a negative connotation, that’s not the case here. PPC campaigns are all about managing what you’re spending versus the revenue the campaign is bringing in. If it costs you $100 through PPC to get a new patient but you turn around and make $1,000 from that patient, that’s a successful campaign.
Here are the key facts about PPC:
- PPC is the short game. You should expect immediate results from a PPC campaign.
- While the results from PPC are immediate, they cease immediately once you stop spending money.
- PPC is much easier for beginners to set up. However, a skilled PPC operator can be the difference between a successful or failed campaign.
- Much like SEO, PPC requires a website optimized for conversions. You can drive all the traffic in the world, but if your site doesn’t compel the prospective patient to take the next step, it’s not worth it.
So, Should You Use SEO or PPC?
The budget-dependent answer is that the most effective way to drive new business through the door is to use both strategies simultaneously. Use PPC to get new clients rolling immediately while leveraging SEO to build a sustainable and long-term plan.
These are just the first steps, but it’s the ideal way to begin strongly positioning your organization for success in the digital arena. If you’d like to learn more, we’d highly encourage you to check out our free e-book titled From Digital Waiting to Digital Marketing right now.
From Digital Waiting to Digital Marketing
Actively Finding Audiences Who Need You