Discovering your Patient't Journey

From the moment a patient seeks medical care for an injury or makes an appointment with their family doctor to determine the cause of their recent symptoms, the patient has begun a journey during which multiple people may be involved.

Hospitals, physicians, nurses, and other providers, may all be, at one point or another, involved in this patient journey.

When we start to think of the “Patient Journey” we need to think of these things:

  • What they are going through?
  • What are their pain points before they get to you?
  • What are they experiencing and struggling with?

By identifying these things this helps you as a business owner be able to provide the right resources they are looking for.

In today’s healthcare landscape, consumers have more options, choices, and resources when it comes to the direction of their own care. This ecosystem shift slab that the patient transportation is not a linear one, but rather a multi-stage clause with many different channels and touch points along with the media (much like a tree with dozens of different branches).

A few stages of the “Patient Journey” –

Awareness: Self-assessment of barrier and symptoms, leading to online research and education, consequence problem on social media, etc. This is the start id their journey, they have recognized that something is not right with their body, or how they feel. Most people will become aware of their issue and then start the research process. 

This is where they will spend hours online on different tools like Google, Pinterest, Facebook, WedMd, etc. to try to identify what they are going through.

Help: At this point, the patient understands they need help with their symptoms and are looking for the correct place to go. This is where your resource marketing comes into handy because you have been building a rapport with your patients, they trust you and know you are the right person to start with. 

Care: This piece is where the “know, like, trust” factor comes in. When a patient chooses you to be their caretaker and help them with their issues or symptoms this is a really big deal. most people just think I am a doctor and this is what I am supposed to do, but you are doing so much more. You are becoming a large resource mentally, physically, and emotionally. 

Treatment: You may be on the journey with these patients for a while, or just a couple visits. It’s important to take note of their treatment so you can use that data to help other patients like them. Treatment can be anything from home remedies, physical therapy, chemo, counseling, whether it be large or small treatment it will be a world of difference to your patient if they are no longer in pain. 

Behavioral/Lifestyle Change: Changes to reduce readmissions and promote proactive health. How has your care and treatment helped them to live a better life? This piece right here is the end goal, this is what people are looking for. 

  • Do they want to be able to walk with ease again?
  • Be able to live to see their family grow?
  • Be able to overcome their fears?

Whatever that lifestyle is for them that they will be able to achieve when they are doing work with you and your practice is the first step to your digital marketing. They are wanting something better in their life, they became aware of their problem, sought help, got treatment, and now ready to live their life again.

Ongoing Care/Proactive Health: What is the call-to-action? Do they need to come for follow-up appointments, exercises at home, home remedies, physical therapy, etc.? What do they need to do to continue their lifestyle and be proactive from here on out? 

It’s important for the patient to understand their journey and continue to improve. 

WHAT IS PATIENT JOURNEY MAPPING?

Patient route mapping in the healthcare industry is a data-driven, patient-centric approach to planning marketing activity, communications, and (to some degree) even delivery care. It’s a way to gather the facts, discover the anticipation of your patient, and then line-up that information to deliver an exemplary healthcare experience.

What testament a patient excerpt map do for you?

In short, patient section maps give you a clear guide for how to improve retention and acquisition through customer satisfaction. Exceeding patient expectation benefits your saps relation convenience twofold:

  1. It increases retention rates through patient satisfaction
  2. It increases new patient acquisition through evangelism

Word of mouth is still, and most likely always will be the best form of marketing, but if you can really connect with your patient’s on a much deeper level and be able to provide information, be a resource for them and their family. This allows you to take your digital marketing to the next level and reach more people. 

Conclusion

Active listening and putting systems in place is key! You will always want a steady flow of patient’s, and as their lives change maybe they move or find a different doctor or maybe your services are no longer needed, it’s important to keep that pipeline full with new and potential patient’s that need your services.

Digital marketing is a great way to connect with a potential patient’s in your community and be more than just a provider, but a resource. Once people feel they can trust your practice and get their questions answered, that’s when the magic happens. They start talking about you online and referring you more and more.

A few things to do when you get a new patient:

  1. Collect their email address – don’t just leave this in your system and not do anything with it, add it to your CRM like MailChimp, InfusionSoft, SalesForce, MyEmma, Constant Contact, etc. an email software so you can send them monthly newsletters with valuable information.
  2. Ask them to like you on Facebook or Instagram
  3. Invite them to leave a positive review on Google and/or Facebook once they are satisfied with their treatment
  4. Then have a strong social media presence to continue to stay top of mind

Remember, you are an important piece of your patient’s journey!

Learn more about  3 Tested Tactics to Integrate Patient Journey in Digital Marketing Strategy

Understanding your patient's journey and How to market to them online

Engaging Patients and Prospects with Empathy – Interview with Rod Thomas of Scorpion

This week I had the pleasure of interviewing Rod Thomas is a Director of Regional Sales for Scorpion Healthcare, an award-winning digital marketing partner that has helped more than 250 hospitals and healthcare providers improve their digital presence and achieve their business goals.

Scorpion Healthcare

Rod has consulted on digital strategy for healthcare organizations of varying sizes and services – including individual provider practices, private orthopedic groups, addiction treatment centers, small rural hospitals and major health systems.  He is a graduate of Northwestern University and lives in the Chicago area with his wife and two amazing children.

In this interview with Rod, we focused on tracking marketing efforts, sticking to a digital strategy, and making sure your business goals, and patient empathy, stay at the forefront of digital marketing efforts for the healthcare industry. We covered:

  • How Inbound Marketing, Web design, and traditional marketing work for healthcare brands.
  • Current trends or wellness practices with digital marketing in 2019.
  • Why you shouldn’t just track Cost Per Click and Impressions with your digital marketing campaigns.
  • The top 3 things that a healthcare center should be doing online to see a return from their SEM efforts.
  • The top strategy that should be followed, but often marketing teams get wrong.

Learn more about how to use Digital Marketing for your Healthcare center.

Biggest Takeaway from Podcast

One of the biggest takeaways I have from today’s podcast is the role that empathy has in your digital marketing. It is so important to be empathetic and everything that you do online, you need to connect with a customer, with a client, with a patient who is going through a difficult health choice.

Now, maybe the health choice seeing simple for you, potentially, you’re a dentist, and somebody needs to come in for a routine cleaning. This could be somebody who is absolutely terrified and has had negative experiences with every dentist that they’ve worked with up until stepping in your door and sitting down in your seat.

So you need to understand as we’ve talked about in multiple episodes that customer journey.

What is their patient journey as they’re going from recognizing that they might have a problem to finding a solution, to actually calling up and scheduling appointments, and how can we be empathetic to them in their situation, every step of the way?

Yes, the main goal of digital marketing and online marketing is to increase your bottom line revenue, but in order to do that, you need to make sure that your story and your marketing and messaging is empathetic to the customers who are out there.

Watch the Digital Marketing Interview with Scorpion Healthcare

 

Listen to the Digital Marketing Podcast

 

Podcast Interview Transcript

Hello and welcome to the newest episode of The Social speak Network podcast. I’m Caitlin McDonald and I am so excited to have Rod Thomas on our show today. Rod Thomas is a Director of Regional Sales for Scorpion Healthcare, an award-winning digital marketing partner that has helped more than 250 hospitals and health care providers improve their digital presence, and achieve their business goals.

Rod has consulted on digital strategy for health care organizations of varying size and services including individual provider practices private orthopedic groups addiction treatment centers, small rural hospitals and major health systems.

Rod is a graduate of Northwestern University and lives in the Chicago area with his wife and two amazing children.

Caitlin McDonald: I’m so excited to have Rod on the show today, let’s give him a warm welcome. Welcome Rod, thank you so much for being on the show today.

Rod Thomas: It is a pleasure to be here. Thank you for asking me.

CM: To kick things off, tell us a little bit about your background in digital marketing.

RT: Well, I’ve been at Scorpion for over two years now and that’s really where I got my start in digital marketing. I’ve been solely focused on health care digital marketing in those two years. I entered into the space as a corporate employee and I’ve worked over that time, I’ve worked with a lot of different organizations. I’ve worked with rural hospitals, critical access hospitals. They have a unique set of circumstances, unique challenges, all the way up to large multi-hospital systems, which is another game.

I provided digital marketing for addiction treatment centers and individual doctor practices or larger physician groups. So it’s within healthcare, but even within healthcare, even though it seems like a very specific vertical, there are a lot of different the groups, business goals, and challenges that each group of faces on a regular basis.

I’ve enjoyed learning about all of those different aspects of those groups and helping them figure out what you can do online to make connections with your community because it’s all very different.

CM: That’s right, some of the messaging that you have with all of these different types of practices has to be very different. Someone dealing with addiction is going to be very different than the customer lifetime journey of somebody who needs a knee replacement. So it’s really how do you speak to both of those?

RT: Even within hospitals, I mean you have a critical access hospital and a primary objective of theirs is just to keep their market from feeling like they have to go to a big city to get a higher level of care. They often have fewer resources than the other hospital, the urban hospital, so that’s their focus.

But if you look at urban hospitals, they have competitors down the street. They are competing against all the other organizations that serve that market.

Even those two comparisons of rural hospital trying to just maintain its market versus a larger hospital in the city that’s trying to elbow its way up with the competitors, that has down the street, shows how different your digital marketing goals need to be.

CM: So Rod your business is really a one-stop solution for technology and marketing. How does this differ from a typical approach to digital marketing?

RT: Well, I don’t know that there is a typical approach. There are so many companies out there that do digital marketing; they’re not a lot of barriers to entry into the place into the space.

You can build a website and basically say, “I’ve got experience managing Google AdWords and Facebook and Facebook campaigns.” And you’re off to the races. So there are, there’s a lot of competition out there.

I think you’ve got people who build websites, on certain platforms or whether it’s an open source or proprietary platform. Then there are other agencies like us that do digital marketing. You’ve also got agencies that are more broad-based agencies that do everything from print to TV and film, branding of all of your entire marketing service line and channels.

I’d say what sets Scorpion apart is our specialization in digital marketing combined with our history and the technology platform that we’ve built.

We’ve been in the business for 18 years – that’s a pretty substantial history, and we’ve invested over that time in our platform and our systems. We are really pushing the boundaries of what’s possible and being able to drive efficiencies with that system. Having a platform where you have the website, you have your landing pages, you’re able to track and have transparency on all of those entry points into the system, so to speak. So that if, not to get too into the weeds here, but if somebody clicks on an ad, and they look at the landing page, but they don’t convert, for example they’re not making a phone call, or filling out a form, but later they come back to your website. If it’s on our system, we actually can see them, we’ve noted them, and can narrow it down to, “He clicked on the ad,” we realized when he comes back he’s not necessarily an organic lead. He is someone who actually saw an ad, they just didn’t convert until later.

But that platform, it has a lot of intricacy built into it that gives us a big advantage in the space.

CM: Awesome, and I’m assuming you’re going to come back to talk about that a little bit more when we talk about Scorpion, but let’s keep going with these digital marketing questions. So what current trends are you seeing for health centers with digital marketing in 2019?

RT: Well, healthcare tends to continue to be slow to adapt.

I’m going to give healthcare a bit of a pass on one end because health care is just different. It’s not the same as shopping at Amazon, or Target, or Best Buy Online. You’re dealing with HIPAA issues, you’re dealing with personal or private, personal health information. So there are different obstacles in healthcare to do this responsibly.

But that being said, healthcare is just not been as advanced in terms of addressing the opportunity to connect with their community online.

And when they do make an aggressive move they often just get it wrong. So that’s a trend, that’s one trend.

The other trend I would say just in terms of digital marketing in general is video.

Video is king. That type of content is really great. People respond very differently and have a closer connection with video. We’re just seeing a lot of that’s paying dividends down the road.

If you’re investing in that video and having that open to using it, that’s a huge strength.

Utilize video to help your healthcare practice stand apart online

CM: Are there any tactics that were expected to perform well or had a lot of hype, but failed to take hold or deliver the results that they want to in 2018?

RT: I don’t know that there are tactics. I think we’re often monitoring the platforms that are in popping up online like Snapchat for example, or both which maybe not to me, people know about, but those types of platforms that are all of a sudden held up as the next opportunity to connect and they don’t really take shape or don’t take hold the way that would you anticipate. And I think that comes back to a very key component, which is understand that we can’t control consumer behavior.

CM: Yes, That’s key. We can’t force people to interact on Snapchat in a way that they’re not doing naturally.

RT: Twitter is the same. You can’t force Twitter to be a platform that it’s not. And so what we have to learn to do is just be respond to what consumers to the consumer behavior that we’re tracking online and getting a message that’s going to resonate with the right person at the right time, on the right platform.

CM: I think that that’s a really interesting point. You always want to pay attention to what the data says, but you also need to pay attention to the messaging that you’re actually putting out there and if it aligns with the actions that people are used to taking on that specific social media network.

RT: You can’t just throw it out saying, “No, this is never going to work.” Find a way, if you really want to make it work, find a way to make that messaging really stick with the people who are on that network, it and find a way that you can connect with them.

The message may be on point, but it just may be the delivery system that’s wrong.

CM: So what are the top three things that a health care center should be doing online to see a return from their digital marketing efforts?

RT: Well, first of all, you have to get your economics right you have to tie what you’re doing to your business goals and we tend to get squarely on this, we… So these are business issues. You have to consider what the lifetime value of a patient is. What does that revenue look like that you’re going to generate from a patient and what is the cost of acquiring a patient?

There is a mission to healthcare, and we hate kind of talking about the economics of it, but if you’re not taking care of the economics of it, you’re going to be out of business.

So say if you’re spending more than you’re taking in, you won’t be able to serve that mission.

And so I often kind of frame this in terms of… “Look, if you take care of these business issues, you’re going to improve more business, but you’re also going to improve the health outcomes of the people in your community because you’re going to be connecting with the people who need your service, quicker, getting them help earlier, hopefully and getting them back to their life healthier and with better health outcomes.” I went off the tangent here, but I get your economics right.

The second thing I would say is, develop a strategy and stick with it.

People often are saying… “Well, I tried it for a while, I’ll try it for a month and didn’t see anything,” but that’s not adequate.

Develop a digital marketing strategy and stick with it for your healthcare organization

If you’re trying to dip your toes in and out and trying to really make a lot of adjustments and try this and then try that and try to just pull levers to see which one’s going to work, you’re not going to see the return.

Be thoughtful about developing a strategy, and then put it on the field, so to speak, and watch it. You’re not going to get it right, right away, so it’s going to require some adjustments. Don’t give up on that.

And then the third thing I would say is that you have to track everything with digital marketing.

Digital marketing is not like putting an ad in a newspaper, in the old days, or even putting a billboard. With digital marketing, you can tie consumer behavior to a marketing campaign.

You need to be able to track a variety of items in digital marketing for healthcare:

  • How many leads are we generating?
  • How many patients are we getting in the door off of this marketing campaign?

With this, you know what’s working.

In Healthcare Marketing Look Beyond Cost Per Click

This goes beyond the number of impressions or just to cost per click. If you just know the cost per click and you’re monitoring your results based on the cost per click, then you’re monitoring the wrong thing because that’s not tied to revenue.

Track Marketing Metrics Related to Revenue

You could waste tons of money just trying to get to the low cost per click, because it’s just somebody clicking your ad, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that’s the right person.

So really making sure you’re tracking the back end, to say, “How are we doing in terms of generating patients in revenue with this digital marketing campaign investment?

CM: And I like how Scorpion, with your own system, you have a way to track it, it not only if somebody became a patient or a lead that first time that they click the ad but also if they came back a week later, a month later after they’ve already seen the ad, and they come back to your website, to then book an appointment. I think that that’s so powerful because it provides even more information about that cost to acquire a patient will bring that down and really show you the long-term effects of the strategy that you have in place.

RT: Yeah, that data is important and even with that system, it’s difficult, so it’s not perfect, but you’ve got to start somewhere.

There are a lot of different data points. It’s not just somebody clicking on an ad and I shouldn’t say it’s not always… Somebody’s just clicking on an ad calling you. And that’s a conversion. This ad may be a point that they’ve talked to their friends, they’ve looked at reviews. There are a lot of different points online and offline that go into establishing trust, and that’s really what it is, connection and trust with a potential patient but the data is important, even though it’s not perfect, it’s important to make sure that what’s happening if you’re investing that money.

CM: Yeah, absolutely, so what is the top strategy that should be followed, but often, marketing teams get wrong?

RT: The top strategy as opposed to the tactic?

CM: And I want to try making a difference here – you can answer the top tactic as well. I think both are very, very important.

RT: Yeah, I think that’s good because the marketing tactics change. The tactics, as we discussed, even with different practice vs an orthopedic group, the tactics are going to be different if you’re trying to connect with a dad or a guy who’s out to a playing softball on the weekends in in a league, that’s going to be a different tactic to connect with him versus connecting with, say somebody like my father who’s in the ’70s and golf and needs a knee replacement, but he’s not looking for it.

Those are different. So, you’re going to have different tactics for your target market and who you’re speaking to in the marketing strategy.

The top strategy that should be followed but often gets wrong is empathy, it is really empathy.

Focusing on the patient.

We think the technology is the just launching a pay per click campaign, and these tech tools are going to get the job done, but it is important to realize that it is a tool.

So it’s an avenue, it’s a way to connect with someone. It is not the connection. Google, Facebook, YouTube, these are delivery systems. And so effective marketing is not about how much you’re doing, it’s about connecting with the patient putting yourself in their shoes, understanding their fears in the moment, the need that they have at that moment, in time, and then treating them with empathy.

It’s, it’s the first chance you have to serve them as a patient and if you can serve them as a patient before they’ve even picked up the phone or set up an appointment, you’re going a long way to winning them as a patient in your office.

CM: Yes, that is so important. It’s important in any industry, you have to really know your story and those pain points of your consumers or patients. So I love that answer, thank you.

RT: Yeah, yeah, I’ll say one of the things, and something that I hear a lot when I get on a call. So I was like… We need to be doing social media are we are not doing it, we need to do it as a… It’s almost like we have to check it sounds like we have to check that box.

CM: Yes, and it’s like, well, first of all, yes, there’s a great opportunity on social media to connect, but not just to do it to do it if you’re just going to do it and say Hey, Happy 4th of July from you, the doctor group, or Happy Memorial. That’s not that check in the box.

RT: Oh yes, but it’s not really thinking in terms of where you can connect, how you can connect with someone. So that’s the difference. I would kind of specifically differentiate the two.

CM: Yeah, that’s great, that’s great. So your business, Scorpion Healthcare, is to top rank digital marketing agency for Healthcare practices. Can you tell us a little bit more about your company, and the services?

RT: Sure, we’ve been in business for us at 18 years, we actually got our start in the legal industry back in the day, so the scorpion started as a marketing… Marketing agency to help law firms develop the websites get found online through SEO and through the ads to help lawyers connect with potential clients and help them build their client base.

We branched out since then. And we do home services, and we also have done healthcare for over 10 years. Our chief revenue officer and I’m going to paraphrase what he says here, he says, “we’re in the Oh-No verticals.”

In other words, everything was fine. yesterday, something happened in day and all of a sudden… Oh no, I need a lawyer or… Oh no, I need a plumber or… Oh no, I need a doctor.

And so, those moments or people are reaching for their phones now, it’s like, “Oh no, I got a need and I pull out my phone.” So that’s where the connection point is.

So over that time, we’ve developed a… Our own system, I’ve talked about, it’s a platform that is a CMS that holds the website and from the very beginning, when we started developing with SEO. We’re doing SEO services, we’re doing paid ads where on any channel, that’s online any different connecting points. So, primarily we’re taking about Google or Facebook, but that could weigh and programmatic or native advertising and retargeting and go targeting all of those different tactics. We we’re doing listings management, we’re help in a reputation monitoring, we’re doing content marketing. So as much as we can provide in terms of one partner for our clients that will solve as many issues of their digital footprint their online presence as possible, so that they’re not trying to juggle multiple vendors and trying to get everybody to work nice together.

So that’s really as we stick to really being very specific in terms of delivering our technology and our marketing expertise.

That’s our team that knows can talk and understand what business goals a particular company are, and then develop strategies based on those goals, and then help them monitor it and optimize it over time. That’s an important aspect of what we do as regularly checking in, following what’s happening, and making adjustments as we go.

Whether the business objectives are changed or whether the market has changed, if there are market conditions that require a change, that you have to make sure that you’re just not assuming that everything is working now, the way it worked even two months ago.

CM: Yeah, and I mean really a lot of digital marketing and sponsored advertising is at the whim of whoever you’re doing the advertising through. We recently saw a change with how lead optimization campaigns we’re working on Facebook and our testing almost exclusively now using the lead form directly on Facebook, rather than sending someone to a landing page. And how does that conversion rate differ? And that’s something if the platforms never changed, then I would make marketing a little bit easier, but consumers change, the platforms change and everything, so you have to really stay on top of that, right?

RT: The rules change in… So, absolutely it.

And Google’s always makes changes. Facebook so they’re trying to optimize and make sure the… So when they make a change, you’re not going to know this, fact you may not know exactly what the implications are.

CM: Lastly, are there any digital marketing strategies that your team is currently testing that you don’t think many other agencies are implementing for their clients?

I would say this platform that we’re developing on is really unique and so the advances we’re making in terms of machine learning and it’s a form of AI, where the platform itself is tracking conversions and across multiple variables, and adjusting based on those variables.

So in other words, you have industry standards, there’s certain benchmarks in the industry and I throw out I’ve heard typically mobile devices convert at a 20% better than desktop. So let’s just say that is about average, right?

And so then, is going to track that, but it’s also going to not assume that 20% is the standard it’s going to investigate, it’s going to take a look at the specific campaign, the specific industry, the specific market and it maybe in a particular market that that’s actually higher it may actually these campaigns may convert it at like 30% on mobile or less, it could be less.

And our system is what we’re developing the system that’s going to adjust the spend and adjust the budget, based on those variables that are unique to the specific campaign, unique to the specific client. So it’s adjusting geographical targets, it’s adjusting time of day, adjusting device.

It could be keywords, it could even be on the ad to content to… We have constantly been doing AB testing and a lot people do a AB test, but I have a system that is doing it automatically, as opposed to a person coming in and taking a look and having to do that comparison. I think that, I know that that is going to change the game.

Yeah, I for our clients when this system is and we tested it in a lot of different verticals and it’s really effective when you see a machine just kind of making those adjustments and shifting tactics and shifting budgets on the fly based on the actual data that it’s seeing and that’s a very powerful tool that comes from 18 years. It’s not something that someone can put together right right a way.

And being able to bring that to someone like a sole practitioner, a small Orthopedic Group, or other verticals, a couple of guys who are a couple of lawyers, or even a plumbing company being able to bring that type of power to their campaigns – it’s going to change the game for them.

CM: So powerful, so powerful, it’s exciting, it’s exciting to…

RT: I’m excited about our team that is very good at this. We get to… Often, we have meetings where we’re talking about it, learning more about it, and it is exciting to see what they’re doing and how this could really help potential clients at that way.

CM: So is there anything I should have asked but I didn’t?

RT: I mean you could have asked about my golf day but that would have been a, I’ve been Chicago coming out of the winter and my golf game is terrible.

That’s not a good question, no, I don’t think so, I know no this has been great. And I don’t know that there’s a lot of things you could have asked, but it’s been a pleasure talking to you. I really, I get a kick out of figuring these things out with clients and so it’s, it’s always a puzzle because each office is different in each market is different. My day is never the same. It’s always taking somebody where they are, whether they are just starting out, or whether they’re already farther down the road and they’re trying to get better.

CM: Definitely, definitely. Well, thank you so much for taking the time to be on our show and to answer these questions for the interview, I know that you spend some time thinking about what your answers were going to be, so I really appreciate that, and it was very insightful in hearing all of the insights.

It was wonderful having you on the show.

RT: Thank you so much, that was my pleasure, thank you for asking me to join.

CM: So thank you again to Rod for being on our show and talking more about the insights he has with Scorpion. Now, one of the biggest takeaways I have from today’s podcast is the role that empathy has in your digital marketing. It is so important to be empathetic and everything that you do online, you need to connect with a customer, with a client, with a patient who is going through a difficult health choice.

Now, maybe the health choice seeing simple for you, potentially, you’re a dentist, and somebody needs to come in for a routine cleaning. This could be somebody who is absolutely terrified and has had negative experiences with every dentist that they’ve worked with up until stepping in your door and sitting down in your seat.

So you need to understand as we’ve talked about in multiple episodes that customer journey.

What is their patient journey as they’re going from recognizing that they might have a problem to finding a solution, to actually calling up and scheduling appointments, and how can we be empathetic to them in their situation, every step of the way?

Yes, the main goal of digital marketing and online marketing is to increase your bottom line revenue, but in order to do that, you need to make sure that your story and your marketing and messaging is empathetic to the customers who are out there.

So again, my name’s Caitlin McDonald. You’ve been listening to the Social Speak Podcast, please be sure to subscribe on iTunes or Podbean and we look forward to seeing you in the next episode.

Engaging Patients and Prospects with Empathy – Interview with Rod Thomas of Scorpion

How to Use Digital Marketing to Grow your Healthcare Practice

As a healthcare practice, it is really important to stay top of mind with your current patients and also future patients. By using digital marketing there are so many ways to stay connected.

One question we get asked a lot is:  

“How do we increase our engagement and promote our practice with digital marketing?”

Well, that answer is a little tricky since there are many different options out there. It’s more of a combination of different tools to make your digital marketing work for you. In the digital marketing world, it is about trial and error, seeing what your audience responds to the most and how to start those conversations. 

In this blog, I am going to talk about 5 ways to help increase your engagement and promote your practice. 

Word of mouth and referral marketing are still the best ways to grow your practice, but with people being able to access information from SO many places we have to be a little more creative and think outside the box to build those relationships and loyalty.

Once they have come into your practice you want to make sure you stay top of mind, more importantly, you want to make sure you have good online profiles so it is easy for your audience to refer you.

How many of you have wanted to try something new with digital marketing but just don’t know where to start or what to try?

Social media marketing is one of the most popular ways to get in front of your current audience and potential new patients.

You can do this organically or implement paid ads as well. This is not an overnight success, it does take time, but it does work!

Let’s talk about the 5 Ways to Help Increase Your Engagement and Promote Your Practice:

1. Instagram

We have been talking about Instagram a lot this year and we will continue to do so, it is one of the fastest growing social media platforms with the average age 35-65-year-olds. Instagram is all about the visuals, from building a strong brand presence on your feed, having font styles on your images, color scheme, image theme, etc. this makes your feed look clean and interesting. Let’s dive into how to master Instagram Stories

This biggest thing with Instagram right now is the Instagram Stories, these stories only stay up for 24-hours, so this is a great place for:

One really cool thing you can do with these stories is “Highlight” them, this saves them into an area about your feed pictures, you can categorize them so all your stories go to the correct boards.  This turns into a great resource for your audience, each video on Instagram Stories can be 15 seconds long, you can record a 45sec to a 1 min long video and then use this app called CutStory and it automatically cuts your video into 15-second increments for you to share.

How to highlight Instagram Stories

You can also create branded Instagram stories images with Canva, they have different themes you can choose from, you can use your own font styles, brand colors, logo, and images.

Now, you may be thinking what if I do a video that is more than 1-minute long, where should I put that? Well, don’t worry, Instagram has you covered and that is where IGTV comes into play. This is similar to YouTube but it allows your audience to watch the full video on Instagram, they don’t have to leave the platform.

A few ideas to create IGTV videos around are:

  • New mother tips
  • Birthing Plan
  • Vaccines
  • Physical Therapy
  • Counseling Tips
  • National Observance Days
  • Surgery Tips
  • New medical practices
  • Interviews with nurses and doctors

Instagram has a lot of bells and whistles you are able to tap into and really grow a long-lasting relationship with your audience.

2. Video Marketing

It’s 2019 and it’s all about the videos! Video marketing is huge and will continue to grow. Videos are great because it allows your audience to connect with you quicker. We wrote a blog a few months ago about “How to Create a Strong Video Marketing Strategy” videos are something you either love or hate.

Videos can be educational for your audience, videos with closed captions are even better. Here are a few good stats about video:

Let’s dive into the statistics behind healthcare marketing with video:

  1. About 46% of people say they’d be more likely to seek out information about a product or service after seeing it in an online video. (Source: Eloqua)
  1. Video is now the sixth most popular content marketing tactic, as 70% of B2B marketers use some form of online video with their overall strategies. (Source: Eloqua)
  1. Of the 80% of internet users who watched a video ad, 46% took some sort of action after viewing the ad. (Source: Video Brewery)
  1. The average user spends 88% more time on a website with video. (Source: Mist Media)
  1. Video and e-mail marketing can increase click-through rates by more than 90%.(Source: Mist Media)
  1. Video equals higher viewer retention. The information retained in one minute of online video is equal to about 1.8 million written words. (Source: Brainshark)
  1. Video attracts two to three times as many monthly visitors, doubles their time spent on the site and has a 157% increase in organic traffic from search engines. (Source: MarketingSherpa)
  1. Blog posts incorporating video attract three times as many inbound links as blog posts without video. (Source: SEOmoz
  1. 59% of senior executives prefer video over text. (Source: Brainshark)
  1. Having a video on the landing page of your site makes it 53% more likely to show up on page 1 of Google(Source: Mist Media)

Source Here

When you think of video marketing, most people think you have to have a studio, pay a professional, take a lot of time on editing, props, backgrounds, and more. In all honesty with the technology of the newer smartphones and HD cameras, you can really shoot your own videos in office. Actually, the more authentic videos are the ones that get the most engagement online.

A couple of things to remember when shooting a video from your smartphones when you are recording a video for Instagram be sure to have your phone vertical, and when shooting a video for YouTube, Blogs, or Facebook you will want your phone horizontal.

Let’s start recording! Be Authentic, real, give value, and have fun!

3. Facebook Groups

Facebook groups are climbing higher on the list for digital marketing, gone are the days where just having a Facebook page worked, Facebook pages work great if you plan on spending money on ads.

There are a ton of Facebook groups out there that your practice can join, you can even start your own group.

For example – Let’s say you are a women’s medical office, Your services include OB-GYN, birthing center, primary care, pediatrician, etc. But, one special thing that your office focuses on is wanting to help new mothers with education. Vaccines, breastfeeding, car seats, home care, feeding, etc. Most of your patients come from within a 25-mile radius of your office, you can create a group on Facebook called “Tips for New Mothers YOUR CITY” in this group you can invite your current patients to join, post daily, as your group continues to grow you will post two or three times a day. You are creating a community of women that are going through the same thing and want answers. You can allow the members of the group to post questions and concerns for your practice to answer. This is a wonderful way to create trust with your patients. You can then start to mention the other services your practice offers.

In this video below, I will show you how to start a group from scratch and also how to search for groups to join.

4. Email Marketing

Email marketing is NOT dead, I know some may think that email marketing and newsletters are a waste of time, but they actually work great. It is a convenient way to stay top of mind with your patients. With social media marketing and the algorithms it’s hard to really know who has seen your organic posts, then to monitor the engagement. Now, the insights and analytics on the social media platforms tell you how many likes, comments, and shares you had on posts. With email marketing, you can actually see who opened your emails, who read them, and who clicked through to your website.

There are a few ways to incorporate email marketing into your plan:

  • Content Upgrades, also known as Free downloads. This is a piece of content you put together for your ideal patient to download, in order for them to download it they have to submit their name and email. For example – if we go back to the example in number 3, you could create:
    • Newborn checklist
    • Going home checklist
    • Breastfeeding Tips
    • New Momma Myths
    • Top 10 products to have at home for your new baby
    • etc.

This pdf would then be uploaded to your website and linked into MailChimp or Leadpages to create a landing page with the form for name and email, you can then push this out to social media, your current email list of current patients. Over time you will create quite a few content upgrades. Make a list of different checklists, ebooks, resources you can create for your patients now and then you push that out to gain new email subscriptions to grow your email list. This is an example of what a sign-up form looks like:

  • Newsletters – You can send weekly or monthly newsletters to your lists, in some cases you may have multiple lists and can customize a newsletter for each list based on your audience. It is important to understand what your audience wants to know about so you can pack your newsletters with valuable content. It doesn’t matter if you do weekly updates or monthly, what matters most is consistency. Whatever you choose to do be sure to stick with it. You can also incorporate your videos into these emails, this allows you to build those deeper relationships!

5. Blogging

Blogging serves dual purposes, it is great for SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and it allows you to show your expertise. When you are promoting your practice on social media your end goal is to get them back to your website to sign-up for your email list, book an appointment, or fill out paperwork, how do you give them an incentive to go back to your website?

When blogging just like everything else we have spoken about it is all about consistency. One blog per month or two, as long as you do one each month, these are no longer 300-500 word blogs, these are cornerstone blogs which means 1500+ words per blog. We recently wrote a blog on how to share your blog, in that post there is a FREE download, a blog checklist, you can download it here.

Your blogs should cover content that your audience wants to learn about, whether this is myths around vaccines, childbirth, new momma tips, etc.

This is where you tie the above 1-4 items into your blogging. In each blog post you will be:

  • Making an image you can share onto Instagram
  • Make a “teaser” video for Instagram with 3 inside tips from your blog
  • Create a longer video for IGTV about your blog
  • Create videos to go inside your blog post – you will place these videos on YouTube then insert them into your blog posts
  • You can also create a content upgrade or call to action for your readers to sign-up for your email list. Here is an example of a great blog post

Your website/blog is your hub, you want to drive traffic to your hub. Once your blog is complete you can then share it to multiple platforms with links back to your site, this helps reach new potential patients as well.

As you can see through these 5 different marketing platforms, they each allow you to grow your practice and connect with your audience on a deeper level. They all work based on consistency and planning. This is why having a digital marketing plan is so important.

If you are ready to take control of your digital marketing and want to see how to implement these tasks into your marketing plan please schedule a FREE 30-minute consultation with us today! 

How to Use Digital Marketing to Grow your Healthcare Practice

Shannon Kuykendall podcast Interview

Shannon Kuykendall (Kirk-ken-doll) is a Digital Marketer Certified Partner and the Founder of Up Automation, Linkedin Lead Generation Services. She started Up Automation in 2015 after working in the Coaching and Personal Development industry as a Technical Virtual Assistant at Creative VA Services for 12 years.

As an agency owner, Shannon struggled to get new clients in the door. She tried building a lead gen funnel, Facebook Ads, SEO, Content Marketing; you name it. Then someone told her about using LinkedIn for lead generation. They said, “that 80% of all B2B prospects are on LinkedIn”. So she put her focus there, and her results have been tremendous. Once Shannon got the formula down, she decided to stop offering implementation and concentrate on helping other digital marketing agencies fill their calendars with their ideal prospects using LinkedIn.

In this interview, Amber and Shannon spoke about:

  • How businesses can utilize LinkedIn for lead generation
  • Current trends in digital marketing in 2019
  • The Before and After Grid as you create content that brings people in
  • How do identify your potential client’s pain points to be able to gear your messaging around them
  • Why your business needs a strong LinkedIn presence
  • The top 3 things that a business owner should be doing online to see a return from their digital marketing efforts

It was such a pleasure interviewing Shannon on our Podcast. Shannon is very knowledgeable about LinkedIn and how business owners can use it to it’s fullest potential to help grow their businesses

The 3 biggest takeaways for me were:

  1. The before and after grid – how to identify your target markets pain points
  2. LinkedIn is really about building relationships and asking questions. Your target marketing wants to know what’s in it for them when you give them time to talk about themselves and share their story.
  3. The key components you need to have in your profile that will attract your target audience
LinkedIn is a great platform for B2B and it is very important to be consistent with your strategy and one bonus tip Shannon shared was about the LinkedIn Sales Navigator, how to be able to use this LinkedIn tool to get in front of your audience!

Before and After Grid

before_and_after_grid LinkedIn Marketing

Listen to the Podcast Episode on Using LinkedIn to Grow your Business Online

Read the Complete Transcript Below

Hello everyone, this is Amber with the Social Speak Network. I’m so excited for our podcast today. We are talking about how healthcare centers can utilize LinkedIn to grow their business. We have Shannon on with us today.

Amber: Shannon, tell us a little bit about yourself and your company.

Shannon: Hi everybody, my name is Shannon and my company’s name is a automation and we specifically do LinkedIn and lead generation for digital marketing agencies.

The main reason we started focusing on that was because I myself had my own agency and we were having problems getting leads. We didn’t have a problem getting people to get calls, we just had problem closing sales, and I needed a consistent way to generate leads and so through some discovery and some conversations we started focusing on digital marketing agencies, and then I turned my business around to completely focus on bringing people in and showing them how to use LinkedIn, as well as, maintaining their own LinkedIn accounts.

80% of the leads out there or highly qualified prospects will be found on LinkedIn. And we’ve been in business for about two years, but I’ve had my own my own business of some sort online since 2005.

A: Wow, that is amazing. So walk us through – before we dive into brand messaging and how businesses can utilize LinkedIn – walk us though the process of how agencies can gain business using LinkedIn.

One of the main things is your profile, your LinkedIn profile is the key. One of the first things you want to do is you want to completely optimize your LinkedIn Profile – from the background header, all the way down through your summary.

Those business profiles or most agency profiles that I see when they’re using their personal profile, all they do is talk about themselves and quite honestly, when your prospects are trying to find you, they don’t really care about you, what they care about is, they’ve got a pain point and they wanna know if you can solve it. Does your agency solve their pain point?

You really structure your profile in a way that addresses pain points and ask questions that hit that button. That’s where you’re going to get your engagement.

When you start connecting with people the first thing they’re going to see is your Profile.

LinkedIn Profile Optimization.

I love how you were talking about these pain points because I think that that’s one of the top things that people miss because they are so worried about talking about themselves, they miss what the WHY for their client.

And so before we jump into the pain point I talk us a little bit about the brand messaging.

How can you incorporate brand messaging into that linked-in profile and are you doing that on both your personal profile and the company page or just one or the other?

We just use the personal profile, quite honestly, the company pages on LinkedIn as far as I’m concerned, they’re useless.

The only thing that we can do with a company page, is you compose articles and you can get people to engage, but we don’t have the ability to send them direct messages. That is why we use the personal profile, because that gives us the ability to directly engage with people who are likely interested in our products or services. The way that we incorporate the brand, we go through a pretty lengthy on-boarding process where we’re asking several questions, we’re really getting into the nitty gritty of what are their products and services who are the people they’ve been working with who are the people they would like to work with and what are some of the struggles that the agency deals with, and then we get into wanting to know more about their prospects, and really where we incorporate the brand is going to be when we ask a pain point or ask a question that addresses a pain point. How we incorporate the brand is when we offer the solution for that pain point.

So do you see any trends with LinkedIn, that businesses should be really paying attention to the side?

We’re going to talk a little bit further about identifying those pain points, but do you see any trends that businesses should really be following with LinkedIn?

The biggest thing with LinkedIn is don’t message somebody and start talking about yourself again. They don’t care.

I see a lot of people on LinkedIn just sending out messages talking about their podcast or talking about a service that they can offer, something that they can help them, and what they’ve completely missed is they didn’t bother to ask a question about a pain point.

All they did was just out the gate running like Me, me, me, we do this, we do this. Nobody cares. You might get a little bit of engagement, but you’re not gonna get a lot and anything you’re gonna turn people off and they’re gonna disconnect from you, so you really, you come at it with a short question.

One of my things is for example, cold calling, do you want to stop cold calling and have a consistent flow of leads coming in the door?

That’s a great question, and yes and it’s an easy question for them to reply back. Yeah, I do, or it now not interested in it, or I… And that’s a much better way to get people to engage. Then just coming right out the gate, talking about yourself.

You’re changing that whole mindset of that conversation to about your potential client. And they’re like, “Oh they really do care about me or they really do want to know what I love.” So, just asking that question and really wanting to engage with them. People like to talk about themselves. So when you ask someone a question that allows them to talk about themselves, that’s where you get the engagement.

Okay, so I am so excited when we had our call for obviously before the podcast, you had mentioned the before and after grid, so can you explain to that to a little bit more?

Absolutely, so the before and after grid. This is how you really figure out what the pain points are of your prospect.

It’s a really short little exercise, and in the podcast description there is a link to the article by Digital Marketer. And it was going through this exercise that really helped me develop the pain points that my prospects are dealing with.

What you do is you create a grid at the top, you’re going to write Before and on the next side, you’re going to write After. Then you’re going to put four lines: Feel, average, day, and status. These are the four questions you’re going to ask when you’re trying to figure out what are the pain points of your prospects? The first thing you’re going to ask is what?

So what did your prospect have before they start working with you – are they frustrated, are they annoyed. Do they have a lack of prospects?

Alright, so you’ll write that in that box, then you’re going to ask: ‘How does my prospect feel before they start working for me?’ Will likely they’re frustrated, they’re a little concerned, they’ve got cash flow issues all these different feelings. And then next you ask, so what is your prospects average day look like before they start working for you or working with you?

Well, the average day… They probably spend a lot of time cold-calling, and nobody’s picking up the phone. And again, there’s some frustration, because they’re cold calling where they’re knocking on doors or they’re going into businesses and it takes a lot of time. And then a question is what is the status of your prospects before they work with you, and the status again kind of a repeat of the first three questions to the grid.

They’re frustrated because they’re consistently trying to reach out to people and nobody’s picking up the phone or their sales cycles too, long, it’s just they’re frustrated. That’s how everybody feels before. Well then, you wanna ask, “Well what are your prospects feeling after they start working with you?”

So alright, what do they at an… They have a consistent… Now they’ve got leads coming in, they’ve got people who are interested in their products and services, and that’s a start that I… And then how do they feel after they start working with you? They feel great, that the pressure has been released. They’ve got a consistent. They’re consistently talking to people that are interested in what they have to offer. What is their average day like after they start working with you?

They’re busy, they’re doing what it is that they love to do, they get to offer their products and services to the people that are actively interested. And again, what’s their status? After they start working with you, they’re happy. They have a little more free time because this piece has been taken over and and now they can again do what it is that they love to do they can work, they can work on their business instead of in their business, and that I as a call the before and after Grid and it’s going through that little exercise that you start to develop. Okay, these are some questions I should be asking my prospects if there is. We’re cold-calling, but I would like an easier way to get leads then that’s how I’m gonna address that question.

Now that you’ve identified these pain points as far as what they’re struggling with, and what that life looks like, before working with you or individual and then that after… How do you tie those pain points into that brand message? Are you going off of the, before content or the after or how do you marry the two?

So at the beginning of when we do our write-ups for the summary and we start to develop their prospect profile in their messaging, we go out the before, because that’s where you’re going to be able to push the buttons, that’s where you’re going to get them to react and so once they react, and then they engage in the messaging that’s when we’re able to offer up the After. The after is the solution.

Alright, and again, the solution isn’t going to go in and you’re not gonna come in and be real craggy about what your company does. Again, you’re gonna talk about… So this is the solution to what also the… And if you want to talk to me and learn more about what we do, then let’s schedule a call.

I love that. I think that the whole online sales process is very overwhelming, for, a lot of it as one. But when you break it down and you really get in that space of your target market and who they are, what do they feel like, was their pain points? That sales process becomes a lot easier because then it turns into that conversation, you’re struggling with this, this, and this. How do you wanna turn it around?

So it’s a very simple process once you overcome those pain points, and really identifying what those are.

One making this sales can be intimidating anyway. So when you think of sales is we’re gonna have a conversation I’m gonna learn about you, you’re gonna learn about me. It makes the process that much easier and when it comes to whether or not someone wants to work with you, the biggest thing is they need to know you, they need to like you, and they need to trust you. And the way that happens is to that first conversation and maybe there needs to be other conversations after that but those are some three key ingredients that need to happen in before somebody decides to close with you.

I love it. And so, a B2B businesses, and really Otto crucial is it for them to have a strong line in presence and should they’re posting their content strategy also be around these, these pain points to relate with their target audience.

I highly recommend, especially when we’re working with clients twice a week. Post some content in your News Feed, so we’re consistently building up LinkedIn connections.

You want to stay in front of your LinkedIn connections. And we also make sure that when we’re creating and putting together the profile that we’ve got their brand, their logo, something that really makes them stand out is present. So you wanna stay in front of them it takes the average of seven times for somebody to see you before they actually will engage a and so get your brand out there, post a couple of things, a week and stay relevant and stay on top of it and stay in front of the people that you’re connecting with. It’s very, very important. If you don’t do it, maybe your process will be a little bit slower, but things tend to pick up when you’re consistently on LinkedIn and your active and you’re actively engaging with the people who are engaging with you, right? And what do you think that that sales cycle… We would get asked? How long is it gonna take before we see results within and really building those connections again you’re nurturing those relationships. How long should somebody give linked in to be able to see results for their business?

So six months a 100% of six months to a… We did 4-608 leads for a company called the draw shop in 1660s and that’s almost six months.

He was very actively involved in the process with us. And that’s one of the things we tell our clients as well. You can’t just come to us and then I set it and forget it. We constantly are working with you to optimize your message so that you get the highest engagement possible. I’ve seen people get engagement within the first 24 hours of us starting a campaign and I see people not get anything at all because there are some industries that LinkedIn just isn’t gonna work for, but sometimes we don’t it until we have a conversation.

And I’ve turned business away because of an industry that I’ve already worked with someone else comes to me in that same industry. I’ve turned it away, knowing that I can’t get them the results that I can get other business I think that that’s another key point is really knowing what social media platform is the best for your business because I know with us, we work a lot with the medical industries and so, LinkedIn is a big place where the doctors and office at last were there, they’re not on Facebook. So, it’s important as a business owner to know what platform is gonna work. So as… And you’re right, sometimes that’s only to figure it out is trial and error, so it… But you also… Those pain points can also help identify if your target audience is on LinkedIn, as well, right?

Okay, so what are the top three things that a business owner should be doing online to see a return from their marketing efforts?

So there’s actually a quote by a gentleman named harm and he says If you are consistent, you will get there if you were persistent, you will get there and if you are consistent, you will keep it. And I can’t stress that enough, I find that most people don’t give anything enough time to see results. Everybody wants a quick fix, and there’s just no such thing is that you have to be patient and you have to be consistent with what you’re doing at a…

I’ve been doing LinkedIn for a little over two years now and I have some weeks that are slow, and then I have some weeks that are really fast or they are really, really busy, so… So consistency been… If you’re coming into it with this is gonna be a quick fix, then first of all, you’re probably not gonna be an ideal prospect for me, ’cause you’ve got to think in terms of the long game.

Alright, most things that are quick fixes or if anybody calls it a quick fix, it’s a fly-by-night it’s only gonna last for a couple of months and then it’s gone because everybody felt on it and then it sort of runs it for everybody. So linked in is one of those things you’ve got to be thoughtful you’ve got to be mesoa.

And do you have any tools again? And I cannot agree with you more about the consistency. I feel like I’m always saying that to our clients. And you have to be consistent, you have to have a plan strategy for every aspect of your digital marketing and with Linkin and I would assume you need to know what articles that you wanna be posting as an ice. What type of post you wanna be putting up what type of videos, you wanna be doing and then that’s just the posting piece, then what that messaging piece. Who are you connecting with? So are there any tools or things that you use to help organize that LinkedIn strategy? So one of the things that we use is it’s called LinkedIn Sales Navigator, and that’s LinkedIn, social selling tool. It’s a vital piece when it comes to identifying and getting in front of your ideal prospects especially when you start connecting with people and bringing in leads.

And the reason we use sales navigators because they have a search function that is highly robust and it allows us to save the searches so that we can consistently get in front of new people, over a period of time as a… That’s one thing I… Now, there are some third party tools that help speed up the process. Like Lead Connect to or LinkedIn helper. And I think there’s a few others out there.

You need to be careful though. I don’t really endorse using those tools simply because LinkedIn doesn’t want you to use them and… And it’s too easy for people to abuse the process because they’re trying to speed things up, so definitely should be working with somebody who knows what they’re doing on LinkedIn and and making sure that they’re sending the right message on your behalf.

So in so having that strategy, and that’s with those tools, whatever with LinkedIn platform, there’s these great tools that are out there and then as soon as somebody abuses them, I pay all the fun out of it for all of us. But really… So you use the LinkedIn Sales Navigator, and then do you recommend putting a strategy together for your post the topics and curated content? And stuff as well, so we don’t typically do the posting, but we do encourage our clients to do it so, and if they have post and they don’t have time to post them, they can always send them to us and we’ll post on their behalf.

But ideally, what I typically tell them again to post a week, ideally, they can go back to previous blog posts and post those. And you can also through your content, only a certain percentage of people are gonna see your content at any given time. So you have 10 articles on your blog you’ve got five weeks of content, go back through and rotate it. There’s nothing wrong with that at… So you don’t always have to have new content, it’s just about staying relevant and staying in front of your prospect.

Okay, and how can people connect with you online, if they’re interested in your services or wanna learn more about what you do? Where can they find you?

So people can find me at automation dot com and right there, they’ll be able to book a call, they’ll be able to learn more about the services. Learn more about me and what I do or they can send me an email at Shannon@automation dot com.

Wonderful, well I really appreciate your time today than… And I’m so excited about LinkedIn. And it’s definitely kind of that hidden gem that people kind of underestimate with getting leads and really building their business, but it’s a platform that can really elevate their business to the next level.

A 100%. I swear by it. We’ve done very, very well.

The clients that we’ve worked with, that really engaged with the process and understand how we work and also done incredibly well wonderful. Well, we will make sure that we have the link to the before and after grid and the LinkedIn Sales Navigator in the description below, and if you, if have any questions or comments, we would love to hear from you, and again, please connect with Shannon on LinkedIn if you have any questions, check out on her website, thank you everyone.

Interview with Shannon Kuykendall (Up Automation - LinkedIn Specialist)
Healthcare Digital Marketing insights with Gold Medical Marketing Founder Daniel Goldberg

In this week’s podcast, I had the honor of interviewing Daniel Goldberg, Founder and CEO of Gold Medical Marketing.

Daniel Goldberg is widely regarded as a pioneer in Medical Marketing and Public Relations and was an integral part of the transition to Direct to Patient Marketing. Daniel’s unique knowledge of the business of healthcare and patient behaviors allow him to create marketing and public relations campaigns that reach specifically targeted audiences that maximize ROI. His ability to identify markets for potential patients allows GMM’s clients to penetrate new audiences and increase patient volume exponentially. Daniel has also lectured both nationally and internationally on the topic of Medical Marketing at some of the most esteemed medical conferences.

Daniel founded Gold Medical Marketing in 2012 after serving as the Director of Marketing and Business Development in a private orthopedic / spine practice and ASC. In the process, GMM has grown to be one of the most successful medical marketing firms and represents medical practices across the country.

In this interview with CEO and founder, Daniel Goldberg, we focused on web design, brand awareness initiatives, and transactional marketing efforts for the Orthopedic, Spine or Neurosurgery Practice. We covered:

  • How Inbound Marketing, Web design, and traditional marketing work for orthopedic brands.
  • Current trends or wellness practices with digital marketing in 2019.
  • Why you should create a Quarterly marketing budget for your health center rather than an annual budget.
  • The top 3 things that a wellness center should be doing online to see a return from their SEM efforts.
  • The top strategy that should be followed, but often marketing teams get wrong.

Learn more about how to use Digital Marketing for your Healthcare center.

I had a couple of great takeaways from this health care marketing interview and I’m sure that you will as well for your own medical practice.

Setting Goals for your Orthopedic, Spine or Neurosurgery Practice Marketing Campaigns

First and foremost, it is ever important to make sure your team understands the goals of the marketing programs that you are running.

Are your campaigns geared towards one time transactions and getting somebody in the door the first time they search for a specialty?

Are they built around branding and brand recognition?

Once this is clearly defined, you can have a greater understanding of how each campaign actually affects your customer acquisition cost and patient growth.

Understand How Your Patient Journey is Reflected in On and Off-line Marketing Campaigns

The next takeaway is to take the steps towards better understanding your patient journey.

It’s not just what happens online, but also their experience within your office. For example, if a prospect sees language online that grows enough confidence in your expertise to give your practice a call, is the front desk knowledgeable about the services that you offer?

Can they answer simple questions about the process, the physician, and generally show they place the patient first?

Are you making a good first impression with your website, with your social media, with that first phone call?

Set your Healthcare Marketing Budget Quarterly Rather than Annually

And then lastly, and I think that this is the most important, is thinking about your marketing budget, not as an annual budget, but rather on a quarterly basis.

If a campaign is working well for bringing clients in the door and yields a positive ROI from digital marketing for your practice, you do your practice a disservice if the budget for that campaign can’t be scaled over time. Conversely, if you are testing a new marketing campaign with A/B testing and optimization, you can’t decide after a week that the campaign is a failure. Work the systems, work the processes, and, if after 90 days you still aren’t seeing a return, find another avenue to reallocate and test your health center marketing budget.

Rather than thinking about your marketing budget as an annual budget, we recommend putting it into three-month increments and doing a quarterly assessment of how your campaigns have either allowed you to reach your marketing goals or where they leave room for improvement.

Please be sure to subscribe to the Social Speak Podcast for more interviews with experts in digital marketing for health and wellness businesses.

To learn more about Gold Medical Marketing visit: GoldMedicalMarketing.com

Listen to the Healthcare Marketing Podcast Interview

Watch the Digital Marketing for Orthopaedic Centers Interview

 

Complete Transcript for Interview

The Hello, I’m Caitlin McDonald, and welcome to the newest episode of The Social Speak Network podcast.

Today, we are joined by Daniel Goldberg, the founder and CEO of Gold Medical Marketing.

Daniel Goldberg is widely regarded as a pioneer in medical marketing and public relations and was an integral part of the transition to direct-to-patient marketing. Daniel’s unique knowledge of the business, of healthcare, and of patient behaviors allow of him to create marketing and public relations campaigns that reach specifically targeted audiences that maximize ROI.

His ability to identify markets for potential patients allows Gold Medical Marketing’s clients to penetrate new audiences and increase patient volume exponentially.

Daniel has also lectured both nationally and internationally on the topic of Medical Marketing at some of the most esteemed medical conferences. Daniel founded gold Medical Marketing in 2012 after serving as the Director of Marketing and Business Development in a private orthopedic practice. In the process, Gold Medical Marketing has grown to be one of the most successful medical marketing firms and represents medical practices across the country.

So please join me in welcoming Daniel, to our podcast.

Caitlin: Daniel, we are so excited to have you on the show today.

Daniel: Thank you so much for having me, it’s a true pleasure.

C: First to kick things off, tell us a little bit about your background in digital marketing for orthopedic centers.

D: I’ve run a gold medical marketing for about eight or nine years. My background in digital marketing started when I was working within a private spine practice, it was about 10 years ago. I was really at the pivotal point where Google Adwords and even social media started to become patient acquisition tools and there was a shift from traditional marketing. I learned, I guess, on the fly about SEM and about social media marketing and the power of those tools for patient acquisition. So shortly after I worked in that practice, I started this firm. We’ve grown ever since, and it’s been a fun journey.

C: Awesome, awesome. Isn’t that interesting how most people who run agencies got their start in digital marketing and social media just on the fly, you had to learn it while you were in it.

D: It’s funny to talk to some of our employees or some of the people who either majored in in college or are new to it, and they’ve done things like Google tutorials and stuff to learn it and they have a good grasp on, but they don’t.

It’s interesting to discuss with them some of the changes that have happened over the past five or ten years where what they’re looking at it historically how it worked, and it was a lot more difficult to track things like successes in patient acquisition. Now the data and the data tools are so much more advanced than they were even five or eight years ago.

C: I mean, even three years ago.

D: Yeah, absolutely, the more data that those tools include, the easier it is to work with clients and report meaningful data.

C: Great, well let’s talk a little bit about your practice and your view of digital marketing. So your business, Gold Medical Marketing really takes a holistic approach to marketing. You not only help manage social media or advertising campaigns, but you also encourage a review of website design for healthcare, and analysis of what happens off-line, which a lot of agencies don’t really pay attention to.

Can you describe how your process to digital marketing for healthcare centers differs from traditional digital marketing?

D: As you know, the patient experience, or the patient journey, is different. You have to understand this when you build your website to creating digital marketing campaigns. You have to understand how the patient thinks, how the decision-making process works, and then how to cater to that patient story.

How does your Orthopaedic Website Increase your bottom line?

Something with web design, a lot of times practices will have a website that they like or that they think is the best for them, but whether is it the mobile experience, or the content doesn’t suit the patient, is not what the patient’s looking for, aesthetically and outwardly for you as a practitioner.

Your site can look nice, it could be what you wanted, but the navigation is difficult to understand, the calls to action aren’t there, and those are the things that increase conversion.

So we have to look at things from a branding perspective of the practice, but also integrate the best practices for patient traffic and everything for us starts usually with the website. Whether it’s social media traffic, Google traffic, or even offline things like print and magazine ads, those calls to action on the ads are always going direct back to the website.

The front door of your practice is now your website.

We want to make sure that if we’re spending money, either in traditional marketing, or digital marketing, that we are bringing the potential patients to a place that has a high likelihood of actually acquiring that patient. That’s why we always look at the website first and say, “Okay from mobile perspective, is your website mobile responsive?”

Google started penalizing sites that were not mobile responsive, about five years ago, and still to this day, I’m shocked at the amount of practice sites that we look at that aren’t mobile responsive.

That has a huge influence on your organic SEO or cost per click for Google ads, just the overall patient experience. We need to look at those things plus the content and calls to action, first before we start any sort of marketing program.

Marketing with a Patient Journey in Mind is More than Content Marketing Online

C: And then can you talk about how the patient journey transcends offline again, back to when the person at the front desk is answering that call and scheduling that initial appointment?

D: So, we can you talk about how you bring language kind of all through that process. We’ve worked a lot with orthopedic centers to neurosurgeon practices. In those instances, patients have an inherent fear of seeing the surgeon because they’re going be told, they think they’re going to be told they need head surgery, so a lot of them try to delay seeing a surgeon as long as possible. They try other means, and finally get to a point where they know that they need to see a specialist.

When they’re calling and they’re doing the research, whether they’re getting a recommendation from a friend or family member, they’re recalling an ad, whether is a print or online, they’re going to do their research. They’re going to look at the physician and practice themselves, they are going to view the website.

You need to help these prospects understand that the practice understands their concerns, understands their some of the fears or potential misconceptions. It’s important once that patient is even comfortable enough to then call then the front desk, the reception staff, that’s the front line. The call is the first interaction that the patient has with your practice. So the willingness of the reception staff to be accommodating – to understand, to listen and to not rush the patient – is very important.

There is also the importance for the reception staff to be able to answer some preliminary questions. So, I call your practice and I say, “how does your doctor do this type of procedure” if the reception staff says, “Hold on, let me check. I’m not sure” that sort of lack of confidence translates to the entire patient journey. Now the patient starts to lose confidence in that practice.

A lot of patients are looking at in multiple different practices in the area. They’re calling and polling different practices. And in most cases are going to go see the doctor whose staff made that patient feel the most comfortable and feel like they’ve come to the right place.

That’s a very important part of marketing that I think is overlooked.

You can bring traffic to a site and increase calls to the staff, but if the staff can’t capture them or aren’t confident in making that patient aware that this is where they should be, then you’re spending money, but not getting anything out of it.

C: I think it’s so important that we don’t ever view, and I think we’ll talk about this a little bit later, but that we won’t ever view digital marketing just in its own little bubble. It really is integrating your practice from that first click to the website through to scheduling an appointment.

Digital Marketing Trends in 2019 for Orthopedic, Spine or Neurosurgery Practice

So Daniel, what current trends are you seeing for health centers and medical practices with digital marketing in 2019?

D: So those practices now have acknowledged the relevance and the importance of social media. A lot of them were late, they were concerned about some of the information they were conveying from a clinical ethical standpoint, what they can say, what they couldn’t say, how to deal with things. I’m sure you’ve experienced negative patient feedback, how to deal with those things.

We really try to position social media as a valuable tool in patient acquisition through Facebook and Instagram advertising platforms, then the organic side. Having an active and engaging presence where you’re not just posting content from The New York Times, The New Yorker, or from a Medical Journal each week. Your healthcare practice should be posting true work, and content that speaks to the patient about your experience, your opinions on certain things – that’s very important.

On the organic side, on the paid side it’s using the behaviors using the data that Facebook aggregates about people in the area to target, people who don’t already know about you.

That’s one thing we’ve seen a lot of practices come around to.

The second is with hospitals of absorbing more smaller private practices, and thus increasing the competition for market share, a lot of smaller private practice are saying, “We need to have a marketing budget and a marketing plan, a holistic plan to compete and to stay competitive and independent from the larger health and hospital systems.”

A lot of the small practices will never out spend a multi-million hospital marketing budget, but we have to tell them how they can be more agile, and how they can spend better than some of their competitors, but not necessarily more.

And the last trend I see is a lot of practices were exploring things like TV and print again.

They’re looking at publications that are specifically suited to certain demographics. If you’re talking about what Jonathan a reader of Style magazine who watches TV certain times of day-to-report TV, those initiatives are more brand awareness focused.

I think what healthcare centers are seeing the difference between transactional marketing initiatives like search engine marketing, and more brand awareness initiatives like TV and radio, and even things like YouTube pre-roll ads, social media, and more brand awareness concepts.

C: Gotcha, so these practices are paying attention to what they want those KPIS and the goals of each of these verticals to be, and then finding the way to reach the audience to reach those goals.

D: I think as a sure you will know it’s important for them to understand the anticipated results, the anticipated KPIS from each vertical not every pollution is the same. So something like Google Search Ads is more transactional. You are going see an ROI quicker and the sole intention is to garden new patient.

Other things like traditional media, social media, display advertising, YouTube pre-roll advertising, those are more brand awareness.

Brand awareness may take the longer time to convert a patient.

It’s important for us as marketers to clarify those distinctions, so that our clients have the right expectation. We don’t want them to think that social media and Google Ads, produce the same results in the same period of time. That’s important to them to understand. So when I think that’s something that either their understanding better themselves or us as agencies are better explaining to them.

C: That is so important, to make sure that we’re having that clear communication and that conversation about what to expect with each of the different strategies.

D: I think that you and I both know that we see people in the digital marketing space who sort of over-promise. They tell clients what they should do and how beneficial this will be for them. And that they’ll see an instantaneous return. And that’s sort of for us, true health care marketers, sort of sets us up that if a client has been with a less than truthful company in the past, they have an inherent bad taste in their mouth for marketing because it failed the first time. The reason it failed the first time, was because the expectations and the goals weren’t clear.

So, as true health care marketing agencies, it’s our job to better distinguish what the goals are and what the intentions of each platform are.

Top Three Marketing Tactics a Medical Practice Should Be Doing Online

C: What are the top three things that medical practice should be doing online to see a return from their digital marketing efforts?

D: That comes down to understanding the patient journey.

Whether it be at the start with engine marketing, you’re looking at patients your area who are looking for you right now. So, they’re searching orthopedic surgeon near me or plastic surgeon. What they’re telling you is they want to find a provider right at this moment, it’s an easy sort of one-to-one transaction.

Understanding your cost per acquisition and understanding how much you cost to acquire a new patient and then what the revenue derived from that patient is over 3, 6, 9, 12 month period is really going help you determine your ROI.

The other thing is brand awareness so not every patient makes decisions instantaneously.

Some people have a medical problem, but they choose to either self-manage them or they choose to better, I guess, better to ignore them. And have using data, and using behaviors, you can target those patients with things like display as peril ads, and social media.

We know that we might be need of our services. And you’re constantly showing them the plan.

When they find the point of decision making, the brand recall sets in… So now they’re not searching cosmetic surgeon any more. They’re searching for your name. When they search for your name, your cost per acquisition will always be cheaper.

Because it’s your name, that’s an important thing that they have that a practice needs to understand. Not every patient makes a decision that morning, sometimes takes three or six months to make that decision.

Then the most important part is ROI tracking for your healthcare practice, so clicks and impressions and shares, are very important.

But for most physicians, they’ll always say I’m black and white and I want to know what I spent, what I paid, and what I got after the call.

Having call tracking or form tracking in place on the website where it’s new patient tracking or new form tracking, it’s very important to say not all of your clicks translated to a patience of your website. Got 10,000 clicks month, don’t think that was 10,000 patients, right?

That’s not a fair measurement. Having things in place to track new patient calls, have a compliant or new patient forms, is really going to say, okay, for the money you spend, this is what your return was. Here are your new patient acquisitions, here was the cost, and then let’s talk about the bill charges and the receivables over a course of months. But a lot of marketing is destined to fail or not to perform as well as it could if there’s no ROI tracking.

You’re spending money now, but you don’t know what you’re getting for it, so, I’m sure you… Well now after three to six months, people, your clients are going to want to answer truly what the black and white data is, and if we can’t provide it to them a lot of times they see it as waste or intangible, so that’s important that we have those metrics in place so that they understand. Here’s actually what you’ve got for the money you spent.

C: Yes, I absolutely, absolutely it’s so important to always be paying attention to that data and really seeing what it means, compared to those pre-establish goals that you’ve already said for that marketing channel.

I love how you keep on going back to, in the short-term successes and then also the long-term branding that will lead to successes, but it just sees time.

So, this continuing to bring it back to that not all marketing is created with the same goal in mind.

D: Yeah, absolutely, there’s room for brand awareness, there’s one for transaction, it’s about to get the expectation of what each initiative is and what that initiative is going to produce. So that’s very important for us to be able to communicate it up.

The top digital marketing strategy that should be followed but often, marketing teams get wrong

C: Yes, definitely. So what’s the top strategy that should be followed but often, marketing teams get wrong?

D: So I think it with marketing teams, and one physician to discuss marketing what their internal team or external teams, it’s becoming locked into a budget per year. So practice was that okay, we’re only going to spend this budget per year.

It helps from a fiscal perspective and it helps from the financial planning perspective, but it doesn’t help when you have a campaign or something you were doing that’s working very well, but you can’t forgo that or you can’t add to that because you’re locked into this amount. You were spending $500 a month in Google ads and it was performing incredibly well and it was working very well and you were getting a free ROI on that.

So if you have a yearly budget, you can’t add to that because you are already allocated your money for 12 months. So your social campaigns are incredibly engaging and they’re incredibly effective and generating traffic, which is translating to new patients. You can’t then spend more money and that’s get more engagement and more brand awareness because you locked yourself into only spending a certain amount of money over the course of 12 months. So I think what practices need to look at is quarterly, the data that they’re getting from their internal external teams, what it means, what their ROI is, and then projecting another three-month.

For a lot of things as well, at it takes time to accumulate. So especially with brand awareness and social we want look at that data and that engagement over more than just 30 days, or 30 days, 45 days, 60 days, and then make strategic decisions based on the data we you’ve gathered, right?

So, it we will run an ad two weeks through on a Facebook ad and made a decision off the data. We have a limited range and limited impressions, and thus limited data. It’s helpful if we can say, “Okay, for 90 days, we’re going to run these two ads against each other, we’re going to test these different creatives or we’re going to test these different ad copies and then at the end of 90 days, we’re going to explore what the data said and then make decisions based on that.”

But it’s hard when we know the next day that we have the exact same amount of money.

If we knew that something was producing and we knew that something was effective, and it was producing an ROI. Why not poor gas into that fire? I think a lot of partition restructure is how they look at their marketing budgets. January first, your budget shouldn’t be allocated through December 31st, it should be a quarterly strategy.

C: Yeah, and you know you hear about this much more with e-commerce sites that are selling products. It’s easy, very easy to measure with that first purchase, dollar in dollar out if you’re getting that dollar and dollar-out with follow-up, purchases afterwards, adding to the customer lifetime value. It’s easy to scale, but with medical practices often having that set budget. And it’s holding you back in the long run. And because if you’re getting client in and it’s a it’s converting well and that ratio between customer acquisition costs, and lifetime value is working in your favor, keep pushing that, absolutely.

D: And a lot of times, especially in healthcare, a patient acquisition has different values of or a simple example, if a patient comes in with a season position one time for an acute injury or A to condition the provider may be 200 or 100-500. So if their class probation, a patient was 40, and their return was 150, it’s about three to one for the… That needs to undergo a complex surgery that the bills are not tens of thousands of dollars.

Well, that’s a whole different metric now.

We have to look at one e-commerce where everything has a flat rate, a flat sort of cost, produce, and then your income, all of that medical practices don’t have.

It’s so much in what the revenue generated, it’s been from the procedure itself, the insurance company to everything. There are so many variables that you can’t just sort of say, “Okay here’s your flat ROI for every new acquisition. Some acquisitions have a three-to-one is some 300-1 ROI. That’s why quarterly we need to look at things like revenue and bills charged to us to say, “And here’s what it’s actually produced in which is important.”

C: Actually, in a previous podcast episode, we were talking about how when you’re creating these marketing campaigns and thinking about the customer journey, or that prospect journey think about those follow-on services. If you’re fixing the knee, then it might be the hip, then it might be the other hip.

So, it’s one attention to all those other services and surgeries and things that your practice will be beneficial for in the future.

D: Absolutely, and then also translates to outside of just the pet practice, but any type of practice, there’s also the intangible of if you provide a good service to a patient, the referrals that will come from that patient that’s almost impossible to measure because that patient might help five with our friends to go see you and you may not be able to track that or you might not know it’s how that patient found you, but that’s ROI, as well that you can track what is important to understand. So there’s tangible ROI and there’s the intangibles as well.

There’s also the idea that if you’re a primary care provider, or you’re a dentist or you’re even someone who sees acute conditions. I have a seven-year-old son so they take my son’s the same primary care position as I see because I like him. That’s value as well to the loyalty to that practice, that’s a lifetime value. They have to look at that as well.

C: Yeah, yeah, that is so important to the tangible and the intangible and really how the network of revenue that your practice could be bringing in could stem from one person in particular and just grow out from there.

D: It’s why I think years ago, a lot of physicians went door to door to all the referring physicians, offices to solicit or for all to get there, their follow-ups are there, the things they couldn’t treat, that was the intention.

Now that’s often done a patient side where if the patient is happy you’re providing conservation good offers the patient, they’re the ones we’re going to spread the word. They are the ones who are going to refer people to you. So again, it’s an intangible that sort intangible is difficult for us to digest because we want to see the data and we want to know at everything that’s happening, but in the community, it’s very important.

Gold Medical Marketing – a top ranked agency for healthcare and medical practices

C: Great, great. So, Daniel, your business is Gold Medical Marketing and you are a top ranked agency for healthcare and medical practices and tell us a little bit about your company, and your services.

D: So we do everything from traditional digital marketing whether that be web, design Google pay-per-click, SEO content creation, social media management marketing video production a graphic design, really, the whole gamut of services for a practice. We pride ourselves and being so one stop shop for orthopedic spine neurosurgery practices, we understand that for Brand messaging and brand consistency having everything in-house is important.

I think one of our bigger distinctions is the understanding of ROI and how to quietly track ROI, and tie that down, to revenue to show a practice true growth from a financial perspective, not just from a digital perspective.

You want to take the digital data and translate that into financial data for them, so they can really understand their marketing program, and what’s being done for them. So I think we are the only from the country we specialize is solely in those three fields.

We’ve spent about 10 years figuring out not just the clinical side, but also the patient’s perspective. We like to tell a lot of our marketing around the thousands of interviews we’ve done with patients to understand how they think and then translate that to a practice, so that practice can be positioned to understand the patient and thus acquire more patients.

C: Yes, I great, awesome. And then lastly, are there any digital marketing strategies that your team is currently testing that you don’t think many other agencies are implementing for their clients?

D: I think one of the things we’ve come around to a lot more recently is display advertising. Google Adwords has gotten a lot better at where it puts this by advertising how the display network works, and we’re starting to understand better that as we mentioned earlier that not every transaction is instantaneous especially with orthopedics.

People delay seeing a specialist or delay a procedure for extended periods of time, but because of the data aggregation on Google and with Facebook as well, those brand awareness initiatives are really important.

So when that patient does make the decision were top-of-mind and then the cost per was its cheaper. I think a lot of agencies focus a lot on just search, just so just Google searches or Facebook searches. We realize that not every patient wakes out one day and says, “Okay I’m going to have surgery.” There’s a journey there.

So, it’s understanding that journey, and then using brand awareness to capture that patient is something that we’ve really… I think, one, we perfected over the last year.

C: So, rather than only targeting people at that end of the funnel, when they’re ready to make that decision, it’s about capturing them at the top of the funnel, and being there every step of the way, so that when they’re ready to finally give you a call on your practice a call, you’re already top of mind, they already know your phone number by heart.

D: That’s what we’ve seen the social for a lot of what we see the social it is very transactional we are seeing patient acquisitions, come immediately from social ads on the other side were also seen as a brand awareness tool so data we’re getting from social say, here’s the ads or the audiences that are immediately transactional and here’s the ones where they’re focused on brand awareness. It’s important differentiate those too because we do see a lot of ROI received ROI on social media marketing. It’s just depending upon what the target is, what the service line is what the focus is, that’s what we’re saying that I think for you explain it, I’m sure as you explain to your clients that not everything is instantaneous.

Yes, here’s what we’re focusing on for and warms perspective clients, here’s what we’re focusing on from a transactional perspective.

C: You have, absolutely, absolutely Daniel. Is there anything else that I forgot to ask?

D: Not that I can think of.

C: Great, great, well, thank you so much for joining us today on the social speak podcast. I loved hearing your perspective and I know it for a fact, that you guys over at gold Medical Marketing are doing a fantastic job of your clients. So thank you for being on the show today.

D: Thank you. It was a privilege to be on the show and I can’t thank you enough.

C: Wow, that was such a pleasure having Daniel on our show today.

Now, I had a couple of great takeaways from this and I’m sure that you did as well for your own medical practice. The first thing is to make sure that you understand the goals of the marketing programs that you’re running. Are your campaigns geared towards one time transactions or getting somebody in the door, right when they’re ready to come on in or are they built around branding and brand recognition, and then also understanding how these campaigns actually affect your customer acquisition cost.

The next takeaway I had is understanding your patient journey. So it’s not just what happens online in the language that they see online, but also how that translates to their experience within your office. And when they’re talking with somebody to schedule an appointment, are they knowledgeable about the services that you offer? Are you making a good first impression with your website, with your social media, with that phone call?

And then lastly… And I think that this is the most important, is thinking about your marketing budget, not on an annual basis, but rather on a quarterly basis if a campaign is working well in bringing clients in the door and that customer acquisition cost to lifetime value, or even first time value, is it leading to a positive return for your practice, you want to continue to scale that, over time. So rather than, again, thinking about your marketing budget as an annual budget, we recommend putting it into three-month increments, and doing a quarterly assessment of how your campaigns have either led your goals. Or they need where they leave room for improvement.

So thank you again, Daniel for joining our show today, and if you’ve enjoyed this podcast, please subscribe to the Social Speak Network, we are on iTunes and PodBean, and I look forward to seeing you in our next episode.

Healthcare Digital Marketing insights with Gold Medical Marketing Founder Daniel Goldberg
Medical Practice Buyer Persona and Digital Marketing Advice for Healthcare Centers

Marketing articles often talk about understanding your buyer persona or your target market, but often times you need to read between the lines to find tactics that you can implement for your health care center.

In this article we take advice from some of the top marketing experts for medical center marketing and highlight how you can tailor your marketing towards your practice’s target market by:

  • Using interactive resources
  • Creating campaigns that are specifically geared towards immediate leads and long-term brand recognition
  • Creating an in depth FAQ section on your website to address both services and conditions.

Before diving into these tactics, it’s important to understand the strategy behind your buyer persona or target market. When first considered, we often to grouping all patients together and looking at broad identifiers. I’ve heard our clients proclaim our patients consist of men and women aged 40-65+. Honestly, this doesn’t do much.  The goal should be to find sub-groups and niches within your specialties and communicate to the heart of that niche.

What is your Medical Practice Buyer Persona?

Rather than grouping all patients together, start by understanding your specialties. Let’s say you work for an orthopedic center and specialize in joint pain and back pain as two key conditions – who are the specific candidates you can target for these two specialties.

Chris Carr, CEO of Farotech, recommends thinking about what are people doing when they need your services. For example, if a specialty is shoulder pain, you could target baseball players, specifically pitchers, or you could target someone who does handy-work around the home and fell off a ladder. What other services, however, are these people going to need? You treat the individual who fell off a ladder, and they might not necessarily have other ailments. You treat the baseball player, and next thing you know they are coming back for knee pain, back pain, and other ailments they may have been putting off.

Another example is knee pain. Most people put off their decision to have knee surgery, are they grateful after they come in? Yes! After a good experience are they more open to considering intervention for their hip or their other knee? Yes! Having brand recognition for these individuals can greatly improve the customer (or patient) lifetime value, something all practices should strive to do. To understand this target market, you need to understand the emotional journey they go through as they take the steps to pick up the phone and call your practice.

The first exercise to understand your buyer persona is to write a list or create a spreadsheet with your practice’s specialties, what patients typically come in for these, and what other services they may need after the fact. Once you have completed this exercise, rank the specific buyer personas based on both low hanging fruit (or who will schedule calls quickly) and typical customer lifetime value (folks who often have more than one procedure once they schedule their first appointment).

Abby Thompson of Salted Stone recommends also performing a quarterly review of who is coming into your practice – what are their symptoms, how did they find you, etc. Actually speak with your patients to understand their journey and to further your understanding of your target markets outlined in the spreadsheet you’ve created.

Once you have a clear understanding of your patient personas, you can start integrating them into your medical practice digital marketing strategy.

3 Tested Tactics to Integrate Patient Journey in Digital Marketing Strategy

Tactic 1: Create Interactive Resources that speak to the main concerns, questions, and pain points of your niche target markets.

Thompson has started utilizing quizzes, ebooks,  and interactive video to draw prospects in, engage them, and increase ROI. To create these interactive elements, focus your attention on answering the most daunting questions and concerns of your target market.

Some ideas to think about could be a step by step guide to exercises to do at home to build strength prior to a surgery or a video interview with a physician explaining the exact process used in a procedure. Capture the name and contact information of the individual interested in the resource and send them targeted information that brings them further along in their patient journey.

Tactic 2: Build advertising campaigns that are specifically geared towards immediate leads and long-term brand recognition.

As mentioned, some prospects are ready to call your practice right away whereas others take time to nurture. Daniel Goldberg, founder and CEO of Gold Medical Marketing, tends to emphasize with his clients that you can’t have the same goals for every campaign. Some advertising campaigns should be designed to capture leads immediately, but others need to align more with the patient journey.

Your practice needs to build brand recognition and instill trust with prospects before they are ready to pick up their phone for an initial consultation. Here, specifically think about display ads and retargeting campaigns.

Tactic 3: Create an in depth FAQ section on your website to address both services and conditions.

This is one of the most common techniques, and most valuable techniques for your practice to build an organic reach, create content that speaks to your buyer personas, and increase brand recognition.

Both Carr and John McAlpin, SEO Director of Cardinal Digital, highlight the importance of utilizing FAQ sections to interact with your buyer personas. Just as Thompson and Goldman recommend paying attention to the key concerns, questions, and pain points of your target patients, creating an FAQ section of your site or an FAQ section on each specialty can increase the effectiveness of your digital marketing strategy exponentially.

Carr recommends creating short videos to answer each question in addition to a written answer. These videos can then be repurposed as you send targeted emails to your buyers and can be shared online through social media and other channels. As you map out the full buyer-journey, each video will serve a specific purpose.

McAlpin on the other hand focuses on the technical SEO benefit to an FAQ section of your specialty page. Every specific question and answer creates an opportunity for your website to rank more prominently for Voice Searches. By appearing in organic search results you can build trust, brand recognition, grow your website traffic, and ultimately reduce your patient acquisition costs.

When pooled together, these tactics work to provide the answers to questions and settle the fears of your prospects as they move through their own patient journeys.

As you are working through ways to incorporate your buyer persona and patient journey, don’t hesitate to reach out for a complementary consultation. Our team works closely with marketing directors at healthcare centers to ensure their marketing is reaching the right prospects as they progress through their own journey. We use a combination of techniques from building brand loyalty to capturing lead contact information, and systematically converting prospects into patients as we help you to grow your practice’s bottom line.

Medical Practice Buyer Persona and Digital Marketing Advice for Healthcare Centers
How to be the Go-To Health/Wellness resource for your local audience

The health and wellness industry has been booming which is amazing!  Companies and people are finally taking their health seriously and are looking for reliable resources to guide them and their staff to a more healthier lifestyle.  Though that is great, it does mean that we are seeing more and more health and wellness companies pop up.  So the question is, how do you become the “go-to” resource for your community?

Networking

Networking within your community is the best way to self-promote, create relationships, and see what your community is looking for in terms of a health and wellness resource.  There are many great ways to connect through local networking:

  • Lunch and Learns– Set up times with local businesses to come in during lunch hours and present on a topic or provide demonstrations.  Corporate health has been on the rise and companies are paying more for preventative care now more than ever.   With you demonstrating what your services are or presenting on a common health issue that the company may address, the employees and upper management will start to see you as their resource and will most likely come to you for future needs.
  • Community workshops/events– These are great events to showcase what you offer and what your specialty is.  It’s also a way to see what the local needs are in terms of services or topics they are interested in.  The more you are seen in your community, answering questions and presenting on topics, the more people will remember you as the health and wellness person.
  • Webinars– Webinars can connect you to the people in your community who may not have the option to meet you one on one or attend an event you are at.  They are can download the webinar and watch it when it’s convenient for them so you can reach a larger population and they can refer back to it anytime.  Another great thing about webinars is that you can link them to your site and social media pages from the video to help drive traffic to your sites right away.

Networking in the community #wordofmouth #networking #smallbusiness #healthandwellness

Content Upgrades

Content upgrades can give your local community a sample of what you offer.  These can work for multiple types of health businesses from health coaches to clinics through different types of content upgrades:

  • Resource Guide to your Niche- This guide can show off some of the services you offer by offering information or a go-to guide on specific topics.  People can download it and have material that will drive traffic back to your site for more information.
  • Cheatsheets, Challenges, and Checklists, Oh my! All of these are great action-based materials.  That means it gives your community something to follow up with or physically try.  Challenges get people motivated, excited, and talking about your content and business.  Checklists can be referenced over and over again. They are also easily updated to accommodate multiple topics.  And who doesn’t like a cheat sheet that can help make their health journey a tad bit easier? Add items such any numbers, conversions, quick reference points for a health topic, etc.
  • Free Trial– Get people using your services with a trial run.  This can give them a snapshot of what you do in your business and can spark interest.
  • Case Study– For more clinical businesses or businesses that want to show scientific benefits, case studies can be used as content upgrades.  They give your community facts about the types of services you are offering, but, always make sure that you site the case study and check that it’s from a reputable source.

Social Media Content

We are living in a social media time.  Most people, once they meet you, will look you up on social media.  The content you post can have a huge impact on their impression of you and your business.  Create an engaging and education-heavy environment through your media content:

  • Engaging Instagram stories– Using Instagram and Instagram stories can be an amazing way to engage your community.  You can utilize IG Stories to post personal messages, ask questions, and create a buildup to an event.  Followers can comment on your stories or you can respond in real-time when doing a Q&A session.  To see how to use IG Stories more in depth, check out our previous blog:  Using Instagram Story Tools to Engage your Viewers
  • Tagging other Resources– A great resource knows other resources in the area and since we can’t be an expert on everything, we need to work on gaining other reliable resources.  You can tag them and lead your followers to other reputable resources in the area which builds relationships with residents as well as local businesses.
  • Videos to showcase your specialty– Social media videos can connect you with your followers through your work.  You can post demos of what you do, testimonials of successful past customers, or anything that aligns with your specialty and what you are trying to accomplish through your business.

Professional Networking

Building relationships through community events is very beneficial but there is a whole other community you may be missing- the professional networking community.  Corporate health and reaching the working community can open other doors for your business.  There are also really fun ways to network with local businesses:

 

  • Trade Shows– These events can give you an insight into what the needs may be based on questions asked.  It’s also an opportunity for you to meet locals and other business owners and while building relationships.
  • Hosting a Lecture Series– Hosting a lecture series for local businesses can give you a way to present what your business  can offer their employees and why you should be their contact for all things health related.  By setting up a series, you can display what you offer and continue to bring in new topics of interest when you come back.  As a health resource, people will probably have many questions so following up the series with a Q&A can have a great impact on how you are received as an expert in your field.
  • Industry Happy Hours– These are fun ways to get business owners out in the town and be able to connect outside of work.  These are great events to build relationships, see what the needs of businesses are, and have a little fun while doing it.  They are low-pressure but be sure to have business cards or samples of what you do.
  • Join Organizations– By joining local organizations, you are showing the neighborhood that you are invested in the community and care about what happens in it.  You will also get opportunities to be more involved in the local events.  The more you can get out into the neighborhood, the more people will get to know your face and what your business stands for.

These are just some of the ways to that you can build up relationships, get involved in your community, and support the local people in their health journey.  Relate to where your business is and fulfill a need.  Once people start to see you around more, see that you are invested in the community, and see your passion/knowledge of what you do, you will start to become the first person they think of when they think of health topics.

Professional Networking #networking #businessnetwork #supportlocal

Content Upgrades for networking #cheatsheets #checklists #freetrial #challenges #promocode

 

Social Speak Podcast chris carr with Farotech

Farotech is a comprehensive, growth-driven digital marketing agency that implements a systematic approach to lead generation, nurturing and conversion by utilizing scalable web design, cutting edge inbound strategies, and creative video development.

In this interview with CEO and founder, Chris Carr, we focused on inbound marketing, web design, and video marketing for the healthcare industry. We covered:

  • How Inbound Marketing, Web design, and video for large orthopedic brands relate to short-term and long-term strategic marketing decisions.
  • Current trends for wellness practices with SEO marketing in 2019.
  • Tactics that were expected to perform well or had a lot of hype, but failed to take hold in 2018.
  • The effect of video on digital marketing for healthcare.
  • The top 3 things that a wellness center should be doing online to see a return from their SEM efforts.
  • The top strategy that should be followed, but often marketing teams get wrong.
  • Marketing strategies Farotech is currently testing that many other agencies aren’t implementing for their clients.

Please be sure to subscribe to the Social Speak Podcast for more interviews with experts in digital marketing for health and wellness businesses. To learn more about Farotech, click here.

I had a blast during this interview with Chris, and was blown away by how in depth and actionable the information was that we discussed. Some key takeaways included:

  1. Don’t just change your website if you think it can work better to reach the KPIs you’ve identified for your practice. Install software to create Heatmaps. These heatmaps show how prospects are engaging with your site and allow you to test different layouts and understand how design effects conversions. [6:50]
  2. Dive deep into your buyer personas or patient personas. Your goal is to create content that creates an emotional connection about how their life can be after they come into your practice. Cast a wide net, but also tap into individual niches. [14:23] and [27:01]
  3. Though you will benefit from a professional video on your homepage, lower cost, authentic videos for asset pages or pages that answer commonly asked questions about your specialties. These can then be repurposed for a variety of uses. [16:45]
  4. Dive into both Local and Traditional SEO tactics. First consider the commonly used, but less competitive keywords to grow your domain authority, then progress to the more competitive keywords when writing your blog content. Additionally, create and follow an editorial calendar to be more Proactive in your marketing rather than reactive. [32:11]
  5. Hiring a scalable team of specialists can be less expensive that hiring employees in house. [3:18]

Transcript of Podcast Episode with Chris Carr

Hello and welcome to the newest social speak podcast episode. My name’s Caitlin McDonald and I am one of the co-founders at Social Speak Network and today we are joined by Chris Carr, the owner and founder of Farotech, a Gold Star HubSpot partner. Farotech, is a comprehensive growth-driven, digital marketing agency that implements a systematic approach to lead generation, nurturing, and conversion by utilizing scalable web design cutting-edge inbound strategy, web design, and creative video development. So, let’s give Chris a warm welcome as he joins us on this podcast episode.

Caitlin McDonald: Chris, thank you so much for joining us today.

Chris Carr: Yeah, thank you, thank you for having me.

CM: To kick this off, tell us a little bit about your background in digital marketing.

CC: Well, I started Farotech in 2001, so it’s been nearly 18 years and we started out just as web development company. It was just myself and then, eventually one other individual. Now we have about 50 people working for our agency and we service companies throughout the United States in healthcare who are business to business, business to consumer, you name it. We started about 18 years ago, it started out as a web development company. And then the natural progression would be “Hey you know what, you guys create a really great website but nobody can find it.” And so we went from a web development company to really getting into SEO. And then the next progression after that was, “Hey, you create really great websites. I’m on the first page of Google, but for some reason my phone isn’t ringing, my email is not blowing up, what do I do about that?” And so we spent the latter half of the last 18 years really, talking about conversion science.

Hitting traffic at the wrong part of the buyers turning they’re not going to convert. So it was really important for us to solve the actual problem that they had not just give them marketing ease or marketing answers because that’s easy to do. The sales are down. I’m like, “Yeah but I got… Yeah, 100 Facebook likes.

CM: Right exactly, those vanity metrics aren’t going to cut it anymore.

CM: Your business, Farotech, focuses on inbound marketing, web design, and video for large orthopedic brands. Can you describe how the three of these relate to short-term and long-term strategic marketing decisions?

CC: Sure, well let me share my screen.

One of the things we try to do is, we try to really affect the hiring decision and reason why I’m saying that is that the average orthopedics practice usually might have one person who’s in charge of marketing. And when you see on the slide here, you can see my computer, correct? [3:18]

Marketing is moving extremely fast. The expectations have never been higher. Most marketing directors expect their health practice to be on the first page of Google. They expect it to be a thought leader. They expect you to have a social presence, you name it … Basically, the list goes on and on and usually what happens is orthopedics go and they hire a marketing professional or CMO or something like that, and we call that person, it’s a HubSpot term, but they call a Marketing Mary a Marketing Mary wakes up one day and realizes that all of this stuff is more than a one-person job. And so they need support.

And so what happens is, is that Mary usually finds a content writer and then they maybe tap on the shoulders of a social media vendor or something like that. All the PowerPoints and all design stuff still needs to be created. So maybe they might have a project manager doing that.

Then you have a web designer and basically you’ve stressed your web guy and everything has to look pretty with graphic design, what happens is you wake up one day and you got a lot of money going out the door. We sort of got the niche is we do what’s got a team-based solution and the team-based solution allows your marketing person to still stay in place, but we become your team behind that marketing person.

And so what happens here is with the really large or small practices need to scale, but they don’t want to hire five people to do so. So what they do is, is they hire an organization like ours that is scalable and we’re able to do all the things that they don’t have time to do.

A lot of times we bring our expertise and our approach to it, but sometimes it’s just that we have the time that they don’t have.

How does it affect the short-term, in the long term? Well, the short term is, is that we try to implement a strategy, but the long term is that we hope to be your solution to scaling your marketing team.

CM: Great, great. So providing those the quick positions that need to be filled, but also long-term growth of the team when the organization is growing as well.

CC: Yeah and then they like it because if they don’t like their writer, we can deal with it.

CM: Well let’s jump into trends. What current trends are you seeing for the health industry with inbound marketing in 2019?

Current Digital Marketing Trends for Orthopedics Practices in 2019

CC: There are a lot of trends and one of the things that I wanted to talk about is fighting the trends first and then adopting the trend second.

So usually what happens here is, let’s pretend like it a website company or a decision to basically take on a marketing campaign.

Usually what happens is that if you see you on the bottom left corner, you go and you create a really great website, right? [6:50]

Website Evolution for Orthopedics Clinics

And then what happens is, is that a lot of Orthopedic practices get really busy, and then they don’t continually evolve their website. And so a couple of years later if someone’s like, “Oh well, you know what, we really need to create a new website” and they do. Maybe two to five years later. They create another website in another website. But if you were really ask some hard questions, like What did you learn from website number one that made you decide that you needed website, number two, what about site number three?

And usually what happens is that they don’t really have a clean answer they just know that it has to be better than it is now, and obviously graphic design ages with time.

It’s pretty funny. I can look at a website and think oh look 2007. What our view is that every time you change that website or that campaign, it’s like reinventing the wheel.

But if you can basically be in a scenario, like you’re seeing here, you can develop a system and a foundation. If you look at the orange line, we recommend that orthopedic practice develop a strong foundation and then make micro adjustments along the way. learning and learning and learning and learning. And so, let me show you how we do some of that continual adjustment.

CM: And just for everybody listening to the podcast I will create a link that goes directly to this place of the video so you can see that graphic as well, so that will be down in the description. [8:20]

CC: So usually what happens here? So I go and I built that website. It’s the foundation, right?

I usually recommend that orthopedic practices put on heat mapping. This is about one of my clients, but this is their old website. You’ll notice that one of their critical buttons had no… Basically, no high balls on it. Or basically people’s mouse proofs as were going there, and they spent a tremendous amount of money and effort on these videos, but the people go into that, so they had to make adjustments, on the website and they did. Other things that I got graded on is how many appointments could I get for this organization?

You notice 15% of the audience. Did they scroll down far enough?

We do the same testing and mobile.

You look at all the clicks that they’re going to do, of a variety of different filters such as search terms. What part of the country or how long are they take to click? So the ore in a new drip marketing is going to be better to know it at 6 O’clock at night or 10 AM on a Tuesday morning.

  • We look at every KPI that they do, and we basically try to make adjustments on each of the smaller goals too.
  • We look at mouse movements to find out what parts of the website are confusing. We look at your forms to figure out why people aren’t converting.
  • We look at pages that aren’t converting and try to create attribution pages, and then later on, we’re going talk about video, but I’ll talk a little bit about it.
  • What we try to do is as we try to look at videos and we have a scale to figure out our videos too long or people dropping off at certain points.

So when you know all this usability data about your website essentially what you’re able to do is you’re able to create basically a system that if you imagine it’s like a spear you’re making this spear sharper and sharper.

Heatmaps help your practice to understand how you health center website helps you reach your digital marketing KPIs.

CM: That makes sense that absolutely makes sense. So creating new heat maps is actually something that any website can have on them. There are different apps out there, different softwares and programs out there that your team has access to and can just install a code on your website so you can start gaining traction and insights into how people are actually acting and reacting to your own website.

And so Chris, thank you so much for bringing that up. It’s so important, rather than having a new person, a new marketing director come in and say “we need a new website,” really think clearly about what those goals are and see how your websites currently performing compared to those goals. because you might be surprised that the thing that you think everybody’s clicking on not getting a single click.

CC: Yep, we’ve adjusted words on the home page and a five to 10% up-tick. Honestly, sometimes we did it by accident” on for measuring and so we’re like, “Okay good.”

CM: Exactly. And it might not work the same way the next time, but for that one center it works great.

So, you brought up video, so let’s jump into a video. Can you tell us how video effects, digital marketing and what you’re seeing with video right now?

Video Marketing for your Health Clinic

CC: Sure, well, I think the first thing you want to probably say we are using the word orthopedic practice but if you’re a healthcare and let’s just say it’s interchangeable, but I’m going to keep using that word.

So they were on a level playing field. Essentially, what you’re kind of doing here is, is that in terms of video, you need to realize that each practice is unique.  So a lot of times it comes down to the quality of care, the quality of outcomes, the resources as the technology provided all that stuff. But at the end of the day if I tore my ACL I need my ACL fixed that. So one of the things that’s going to be really important is that you are not only your home page, but also your specialty pages really trying to display differentiation.

And so, we do this in a couple different ways. The first thing we want to be able to do a video is you need to know the way the audience thinks.

And what I mean by that is that there are different parts of your buyer’s journey, such as the beginning stages, you are in the awareness stage, and then later on, as the pain lingers on or you’re really in a spot where it’s critical, you’re in the decision level stage.

What we try to do from a video perspective is a video that’s neutral to each of those stages, but that explains how you’re different from other practices. Very simply – as simple as we can.

Use simple videos for your digital marketing – our attention span is only 7 seconds.

There’s this running joke that I tell our beat to death is that the average goldfish has an eight-second attention span and the average human has a Seven second attention span.

Essentially… we’re losing to gold fish.

So what that means is that it’s really important when they come to your website that you give them the information they need as quickly as possible, and in different formats, because some people are readers, some people are video watchers.

I personally am a video watcher, I don’t know what it is, but one of the other things that video gives you the power to do is, in my opinion, if you were to say what is in marketing is a race to emotion.

And earlier I can get you involved in that process, the more likely I’m going to get you to convert. So of course, they want to get their ACL fixed, that video is going to say, “Do you want to dance at your daughter’s wedding?”

It doesn’t matter why you’re here, what you want to be able to do is life beyond treatment.

So we try to create videos that are going to do that, but we use the technology in a really cool way as well. The first thing we do is we use a technology like this to find out how long videos should be. [14:23]

You’ll see that on the top right-hand side, you’ll see that this graph is dragging down to the right. Alright, you’ve seen the video over to the left. But through critical calls to action, whether it’s at the beginning of the video, the end of the video or even 15 seconds into the interview, I’m able to collect people’s information into our database, so we could drip market to them.

What’s really cool about this is I’m able to find out who’s watching my videos by name. So if you have these two case studies here you have Oliver, who watched 98% of the video.

Utilize drip marketing and remarketing to individuals based on how much of your video they watch

So if you’re going to talk about treatment options at the end of the video, Oliver knows the full story, now, 10 Bailey as you can see here an OR and she’s wrong a couple of times but he’s only watched 59% of the video.

So what our system will do is is that when Tim leaves the website, we’re going to be able to deliver emails about features and benefits and cost of progression in testimonials, things like that.

Yeah, there’s going to be this blanket statement. I do need to make early and so I do. You’ll get comments and crazy stuff, but I… Obviously, HIPAA does apply. So make sure that you’re getting counsel on how you communicate. We’re well versed in this but just know that we know, that heaters, not only to you but also to us as your agency, yes, is that an important thing to point out? You need to make sure that you are HIPAA-compliant with everything that you’re doing when it comes to collecting names and email addresses and re-marketing to them. But this is pretty incredible that you can even tailor that follow-up series based on how far they’ve watched that video.

CC: Look at kind of explain a little bit more on video.

So let’s say a patient is your site map in the buyer’s journey that I explained before using an ad, you’re going to have awareness, consideration, little content and decision level content.

We do something and lead core in which basically means we give visitors a certain level of points for every time that they come to our website, and they embrace it. Engage with marketing. So, what we’re able to do is we’re able to… We’re able to find ways where individuals come to our website and so they go to our hand and wrist page, assuming they’ve got a cookie on their computer, when they leave, the website and email automatically gets kicked out to them and that email we’ll have a video in it, that’s 30… 60 or 90 seconds long.

So what we’re trying to do is get video in the hands of as many people as possible, and if they haven’t gone deep enough into our website to get the critical assets, we create a system that if you’re not going to come down so we’re going to get it to you.

One other factor that I would say here is we also to try to develop these asset pages. [16:45]

What asset pages are, are all the most frequently asked questions or common objections about a certain treatment, area or something like that, but they’re all on one page. But what happens, this is the one they click on that answer that question we have a video that plays for them that is maybe 60 or 90 seconds long. What we’re doing is we’re giving them quick and simple information in a format that is digestible. Because it’s a video format I can use that asset on my website, I can use it in my social media, I can use it in my drip marketing, I can use it in apps, you name.

So the more video assets that I can create sort of the better scenario, that is a better outcome, I can have.

CM: And so, I’m going to stop you right there. So one thing that we hear time and time again, is to re-purpose content so video Chris is describing that video is such a great asset to have in your database because you can use it over and over again, you can use it on the website to answer question, social media, email marketing, and apps, really all of all of the different channels that you could be marketing on video fits in there. So thank you for bringing that up. Is so important to reiterate that don’t spend your energy trying to recreate something new for every single channel, you use the same thing that you’ve already created.

CC: That’s right, yeah.

I think one of the reasons why we always say that is because the research and the original writing is the most expensive part of the journey. So why do you keep repeating the most expensive parts when you’d rather be really solid on one critical area and then be in a scenario you’ve created great content that I can scale rather than just constantly… We use a phrase here we call “making the no nuts.

We were in a spot in 2015-2016 when the Google hadn’t totally grabbed a hold of quality versus quantity, we were at a spot as a company, we were putting out about a thousand content pieces a month.

And what I mean by that is that Don’t do what I did. My point is focus on great content.

CM: Okay, so were there any tactics that were expected to perform well or had a lot of hype but failed to take hold in 2018?

CC: Yeah, and nobody’s going to like this, but social media.

So if you were to check out some of the largest orthopedic brand in the States a ton of money goes into social media. [20:24]

This is a Forbes article and this talks about the… And if you’ll notice right here and he calls it the reach Apocalypse. A Jason was on to something. And it’s something that we’ve experienced essentially, what it means is, is that we go and we really try really, really hard to get Facebook likes or things like that, right?

The reality is, is that Facebook is a publicly traded company. And so let me read this one line here.

It says basically, organic reach. Which you’d think I’ve got a 1000 people to like my page everything I post a thousand people are going to see it. And you are in for a wild ride here. You would be lucky if it’s like 11% of the people seeing the content.

Organic Reach on Facebook Moves Inversely to Facebook’s Stock Price

I’ll read this. As organic reach dropped from approximately 12 to 6% (and now often at 1%) Facebook’s stock moved from nearly $50 to nearly $70, adding billions of dollars in marketing capitalization.

What does that mean? Facebook wins when they show your audience less of your materials.

The result  is go on Facebook, go on social media, we’ll get your content to your audience. You just have to pay them to do it.

So all these companies, all these practices go, we have to get really big and social media.

Well, for what? Unless you’re willing to pay for social media, you’re not going to see results. Now, you absolutely have to do it, but you do not bet the farm on it.

I’d much rather my double my energy on SEO, paper advertising, content marketing, establishing yourself as a thought leader, PR, all that stuff, rather than resting all my hopes and dreams on social media.

CM: It’s one of those things that you still have to be on social media, but just don’t think it’s going to change your practice.

CC: This is the approach that we use [23:22].

Alright, so we believe for all practices that you need to know who your buyers are inside and out – your ideal buyer patient personas, then you want to be able to do a thing we call usability conversion notes. It was all that heat mapping stuff didn’t show – How are your clients resonating?

SEO, content strategy, lead nurturing, which most practices do not have. And I can talk about that social media, but only if you were on the pay-to-play, then you still do it but you just don’t do it nearly as hard. Have a really firm grasp on your analytics and your data.

Some value –added services, I usually call this video, and pay per click advertising budget provides it, yes, what you’ll notice here, as I’ve mentioned, almost everything in the marketing circle, if you believe in silver bullet marketing that says, “You know what, I’m just one SEO campaign away from it,” you’re wrong, you need the whole thing.

So if you were to make a cake and you just… I don’t know, I’m not a baker .. focus on one ingredient, but everything else was horrible. It’s going to taste terrible.

Yes, but we do it all the time, in marketing, because it’s sort of a path of least resistance type of stuff.

Don’t rely on just one marketing effort to grow your orthopeadic practice

CM: Yeah, and you hear of that one case where just focusing on email marketing transformed the practice, that’s one case, it’s not everybody. So maybe you’re going to find that one email sequence or the one way that you can use email to really transform your practice and I do believe email can transform your practice, but at the same point, you’re going to have to do all this other digital marketing to see what combination works for you in your own business.

CC: I would I couldn’t see it any better.

CM: Okay, so what are the top three things that medical centers, orthopedic Centers, should be doing online to see return from their digital marketing?

I think you kind of just nailed it on the head with this description right here, but are there three bullet points, things that marketing team should be focusing on?

CC: Yes, I… Let me show one [25:35] and then I’ll talk about two.

Obviously with orthopedics, you’re going to have a wide net, right, you’re going to… Let’s say, daily, you have multiple specialties at your organization, so that’s hips and joints, and spines, and other stuff like that. You want to cast as wide a net, as many patients as possible it.

And as many patients as possible to your practice, but other things that you want to be able to do is you want to be able to find niches within or communities within your group and get really solid with those communities. So there’s one of the large orthopedic practices is low kid in Philadelphia, one of our clients, one of the things that they do is that they find these sub-groups of these niches and they communicate right to the heart of that niche. They’ll do that with a number of different things. What they do is they create marketing materials directly to that niche.

So, right, not only do that, they also so market to the influencers. Because in behind a man with the pain, there’s a wife who’s tired of her in about.

Narrow down your audience to niches and then work to build influencer relationships and created tailored messaging that fits their buyer journey

So what happens here is that what we try to do and we recommend you do, would you probably won’t because it takes time, is is that you literally sit down and you have a really hard… A really deep dive into who are your buyer personas? [27:01]

Left hand side, we want to ask were really great questions about who are it patient personas, and I want to be able to find out is how do the answers to these critical questions change from one patient persona to the next patient persona.

Because what you don’t want to do is have a one-size-fits-all marketing plan. If I have a torn ACL, I don’t want to hear about your spine center.

I start hearing about knee pain and my conversion rates are going to go way up.

We want to basically find niches in communities and we want to market to them about the things that matter to them, most rather than just blanket. Due statement marketing that we hope that resonates with all.

CM: So do you feel as though it’s best to take your time, just go through all of these different patient personas, and then choose the one that you feel is that lowest hanging create all the resources for that and then slowly create all the other resources. If you don’t have the time or the budget to have a team like yours jump in and create everything at once.

CC: Well, obviously, you want to make sure that your foundation is good. So I talked about the wide net. Don’t go in unless you have the wide net.

Let’s pretend like you do have the wide net, what I would probably try to do is try to find organizations that would fit multiple buyer personas.

And what I mean by that is, let’s say hypothetically, I’m just going to use a random scenario here. Say I want to market specifically to roofers with bad knees or climbing a ladder. It’s a tough job.

A lot of individuals who have torn their ACL or hurt their knee really bad they get treatment, from a Northrop practice. So, you’re communicating to roofers and you’ve got them for needs. What’s great about… Well, not great, but let me rephrase this a tendency that also happens, this is that once they get their new fix their hips next. Same with baby boomers. Same thing with student athletes, or athletes.

So that the… Yeah, so if I market to a niche of baseball players because I’ve got a really great shoulder department, that’s a really great idea.

CM: So what are the next two things that you recommend?

CC: Obviously, we talked about video. What I would recommend you do is have a really strong home page video, but the other videos that you do well, it might feel like you’ve really lowered the bar. I would rather have a lot of content, even shot with an iPhone right that is very authentic.

Then you saving up all year long to create a 1000 videos over and over and over again, so you can buy a 20 microphone from Amazon, you connect it with an iPad, your iPhone. What I even recommend again, is there’s 15 the disease gambles so you don’t have shaky hands-on I but what I do is, is that I would just have these candid interviews with doctors in your practice or physicians.

Start to talk about just issues better in relevant at the time or tendencies that they say, “You know what, let’s say Lindsay Vohn, she takes a nose dive at the Olympics, right?”

Get a doctor, and says, “You know what, looks like your knees really banged up it’s like, “Well let me tell you, this is something the tendencies that we see with skiers because your feet are clamped in it. torques and then it’s the first thing to give because it’s a, it’s a pliable it’s plantings, like that. go a long way in a in…

So we talked about buyer personas, know your ideas, we talked about video. And then the other thing I would probably say that you would need to do is that you want to be good at two forms of SEO.

One is local SEO with your pin packs and your maps and then the other one is more organic SEO, and let me give you a real quick, I’ll give you my hand pitch on SEO real quick. [32:11]

Alright, I usually… What happens here is that if I’m a knee specialist I need to be found locally with these local impacts, and then I also want to be found organically.

Understand the difference between Local SEO and Traditional SEO

Now what happens is is that there’s a different science for local SEO than there is for traditional SEO, so if you’re going to work with a vendor make sure that they know the difference.

Okay, so, so when I’m talking about… obviously you want to be in a scenario where you’re getting the best keywords.

These are the keywords that everybody wants. Everybody’s going to type in to find your services.

The problem is, is you’re probably not the only orthopedic practice in town and there’s also national providers or at least real providers that have much deeper pockets than you, so they’re going to try to gobble up the sky screeners. These are the really big key words, right?

Yes, so what we recommend is to try to get found on the first page of Google for a number of other keywords, keywords that have really high visibility but with less competition, and what we’re able to do is that you’re able to reach a tipping point.

So if I’ve gotten clients on the first page of Google for hundreds of keywords, I’m increasing what’s called my domain authority. And then once your domain authority, reaches a certain level, you’ve essentially to earn the right to be heard in the eyes of Google.

That means is you can actually go after some of these skyscrapers later on because you’ve sort of earn that klout.

Other things you need to know is if there’s algorithm changes, and if you cheat to try to get to the top, you’re going to wake up one day and you’re going to see something like this.

CM: Now, when you are focusing on as is this in addition to the site structure, are you creating content that’s tailored directly towards those long-tail keywords that aren’t those big skyscrapers, but kind of those lower-tier ones that’s right, some longer-tail keywords are sort of the smaller buildings.

CC: Yeah, I so what happens here is, is that when you start to go after a lot of keywords here, I blocked out the name of this client, but when they found us, I basically they were promised around a 25% increase in the number of keywords on the first page of Google.

We’re able to increase that to 247%. It translates to traffic.

Yeah, no work word. You do the better to where you do it. Basically, it works.

So, this organization just their blog alone, we were able to get them to increase in entrances by 856% or 63000 people were reading their blog to now over 607,000.

I might say, “Well how do I know that’s even quality traffic? Well, I increase their pages by 639%, so people were staying on online 700% or 600% longer. What we believe is the more educated consumer usually converts.

CM: Yes, now with this, I can hear a lot of Marketing Directors seeing these numbers and saying, “Oh my gosh, there’s no way that I can do that.” Can you give us a perspective of how many new pieces of content you created for this organization?

Utilize Editorial Calendars to remain Pro-Active rather than Re-Active with your Inbound Marketing Efforts

CC: Yeah, now this was over three year. The first year, I was the mill. We do about three blogs a week.  Those are all SEO optimized blogs, and stuff like that.

We write everything in collaborative documents.

Everything should be connected to an editorial calendar.

You would know, what’s going out in the next 30 days, 60 days, 90 days, a year or whatever it is. So you are proactive rather than reactive.

One of the major problems I see what practices they start out, they can get all fired up to get into marketing and then fires happen and then you look at their blog and it’s like the last blog was in 2017.

No, it just gets away from you. But if you live and die by an editorial calendar, you’re going to create content.

But what’s great about the content that you produce, is that a lot of companies will have technology that will allow you to optimize for a certain keyword and, you’re probably not going to have the in-house, but vendors basically marketing companies will say with technology like this that I’ll say, “you know what, before this contents even published Live to the web, I can see the rating here is poor. I can see that the readability is below the target, and just even the number of words on the page is less than the 840 where Target wooly using two out of the 20 keywords that need to be used.”

If I loaded this I published this piece of content I should have no hope that it’s going to be the competition, right? So this software is going to basically look at the top 10 results and it’s going to say, “You know what, you’re going to have to be critical adjustments.” It’s better to know this early rather then publish and pray.

CM: Yes, and that is one of the reasons why that editorial calendar is so important is that you can write that blog a month two months, however long before it needs to be published so that you have the time and you’re not feeling that “time Prince before you click Publish to actually look at these stats and everything, to say. Oh, you know what, if I just click publish, it’s not going to do anything for my business correct, yeah, right. So what is the top strategy that should be followed? But often, marketing teams get wrong?

CC: They try to do it all in-house.

Even if she’s working 180 hours a week, or is that possible at Ellen in A, the I alone the Lorimer is she doesn’t go home, she just works, right?

Yes, I can be able to be a specialist in SEO. It changes every day. She is not going to be a specialist in social media. It changes every hour. So what happens is, is that you need to make sure your marketing person is the quarterback who’s running a team of specialists and those specialists only focus on their area of expertise.

You can get a team-based system for the price of hiring one other employee.

If you imagine that Mary marketing is one employee and then the whole team is just another employee, the price you’re paying an initial team is about comparable to hiring a second employee, it’s scalable.

It’s profitable, and it’s fireable.

CM: Yeah, I oh yes, absolutely. shift the blame to someone else.

Oh goodness, let’s see… And I just have it just a couple more questions for you. You’ve shared so much valuable information for our listeners.

You founded Farotech and it’s now a top ranked inbound marketing agency. Do you want to just dive into your company and services a little bit, give a little pitch?

CC: I think the sales pitch that we would say is, is that we are truly partners. By being true than partners is if you’re looking at you, the company, you’re hiring to do your marketing as a vendor right, you’re always going to treat it like a vendor and the results are going to act like a vendor.

Now a partner is responsible for the things that you are responsible for. So if I’m the CMO and my job, my dependency is about getting appointments, making sure that critical physicians are seeing, you’re opening up a new practice, making sure that I have enough walk through traffic, digital traffic, whatever it is.

I want to make sure that as a partner that they’re on the line for the same things. And that is what we do and I, we sort of put ourselves in the line, we find out what matters to you most we bring strategy, we bring people but we bring accountability.

Yeah, and that’s the critical part for us is that our butts are on the line too and so if you’re going to walk out on the ledge we’re going to walk out there with… So you yeah, and so how do we plug ourselves? Would you really great work?

We obviously see we had really very results we work a really large brands, but we also work with some medium such brands as well.

But what’s exciting for us is just the transparency we have with our clients. It’s funny I got married and I had clients that weren’t even invited to the actual wedding come to the actual reception. I’ve got clients that call us and say, “Hey, what do we say about this particular treatment area?” We’re so ingrained that you know what I mean.

And so, then they do a critical they say they’re going to expand they come to us first, because not because we’re getting the commission, but they come to us first so they know what data they need to know before they make decisions, and that’s what I live. A good partnership looks like. And what I believe a good vendor looks like, and I think that’s what a good marketing company looks like.

One other thing is, is that I hire, I love the 99.9% of all my employees. I hire really great people that are passionate about their clients. That’s important because you’re going to spend, you spend most of your waking hours behind a desk, so right, so if you don’t love what you do don’t work here at Farotech and don’t work for my clients.

CM: Yeah, great, I love that. And then lastly, to wrap this up, are there any marketing strategies that your team is currently testing that you think other agencies might not be implementing for their clients?

CC: Yeah, one of the things that we’re trying to do right now is being a scenario where we’re doing a little bit more outbound email.

So here’s what happens. Let’s say, hypothetically, on your patient intake form they work for a really large provider, say a pharmaceutical company, right?

So oftentimes, we don’t go back and look at our database as the source or the well of where people are. And so what happens is I can go back and I make sure that I ask “Who is your employer?” And I also ask what your business title is. And the reason why I’m doing that is because if I know your employer and I’m able to get email addresses to your employers and do lunch and learns at your employers.

That’s a really good thing. So I want to be able to go to each of the large providers in my area and be that guy that practice, or that organization.

I want to be in a scenario where, let’s say, the medically, it’s a C-level executive, I can’t guarantee it. The people at the bottom of the totem pole are in the same place as the C-level executive is. So I want to know how quality is my list. And if their middle-of-the-road, or the title feels been on the road I freeze it.

Other things that it does is it says, you know what, if this guy went to my practice and his insurance basically he’s covered by his insurance at my practice basically his insurance is valid. I know that everybody else in that company.

That’s right, that’s right, and right. So I’ve been doing orthopedics for a long time, my wife has to drag me to go to the doctor’s office, drag me like literally, I know better. I know you have to figure that for every patient you have, there’s 10 patients that have nagging pain that are just like me, that just refuse to get there.

So if I’m going to get you a market and create really critical arguments for an idiot like me.

CM: Well Chris, thank you so much for your time, thank you for the valuable insights and information that you’ve been able to share. Are there any questions that you feel I should have asked that I didn’t?

CC: No, I think usually what happens is, is that the first question I get is, “How long does it take?

It really depends on how much do you want it? If you’re willing to put it in the hard work, and get your foundation straight and get your blogging straight and consistently stay proactive not reactive, and you can see how your results work by the 90-day mark, and you can know how it should progress.

If you are sitting in the dark, if you are not in a scenario where if you’re a reactive marketer we’ll never know when this is going to pay off.

Get that editorial calendar, get focused, work hard, and know what the next 90 days, six months, one year.

CM: Thank you again, Chris, it’s been such a pleasure having you on the show, thank you, I appreciate it. It was wonderful, it was a wonderful experience for me to know right I so thank you again to Chris with barite for joining us today it was such a pleasure hearing about his expertise and about some of those tactics that you should be implementing for your own health center.

So again, my name is Caitlin McDonald, and please tune in for a next episode of The Social speak podcast.

Podcast Interview on Inbound Marketing in 2019 with Abby Thompson from Salted Stone

This week we have the privilege of speaking with Abby Thompson from Salted Stone, a Diamond Tier Partner with Hubspot. Salted Stone is a global agency with an award-winning team. They provide end-to-end solutions for clients focusing on strategic marketing programs, tactical support, and project engagements.

In our podcast, Abby and I took a deep dive into some of the key concerns for health and wellness centers when tackling Inbound Marketing.

In this episode, Abby provides insight into:

  • Current trends she is seeing for wellness practices with inbound marketing in 2019.
  • Tactics that were expected to perform well or had a lot of hype, but failed to take hold in 2018.
  • The top 3 things that a wellness center should be doing online to see a return from their digital marketing efforts.
  • What is the top strategy that should be followed, but often marketing teams get it wrong.
  • Inbound strategies Salted Stone is currently testing that you don’t think many other agencies are implementing for their clients.

Please subscribe to Social Speak Podcast for more interviews with experts in digital marketing for the health and wellness industry.

Before jumping into the transcript of the Podcast, I wanted to highlight eight key takeaways that you can implement in the digital marketing strategy for your wellness center.

8 Ways to Master Inbound Marketing in 2019 for your Wellness Center

Takeaway 1: Inbound marketing is a comprehensive journey. It is about creating opportunities for your target market to find you and interact with your brand in a way that encourages them to take action.

Takeaway 2: Current trends in Health and Wellness for Inbound Marketing in 2019 include building authenticity into how you position yourself online. For example, wellness brands are moving away from partnering with Influencers that alienate their target market and working more with people who welcomes and builds trust.

Takeaway 3: Not all technology trends played out in 2018. Salted Stone expected AI to be much more advanced for content creation, but it still is failing to create content that seems authentic to the brand. Additionally, be on the look out for more advanced functionality for Chat Bots in 2019.

Takeaway 4: Wellness centers should focus their digital marketing efforts on creating Interactive Content. Interactive content increases time on site, prospect engagement, and ultimately helps to build trust with your brand. Examples include: quizzes, calculators, dynamic landing pages, product or service walk-through videos, and more. In general, clinics with interactive content at the center of their digital strategy see a higher ROI than those who don’t emphasize interactive content.

Takeaway 5: Encourage user reviews and value the transparency and authenticity of both positive and negative reviews. Don’t hesitate to incentivize patients to leave reviews about their experience with your practice.

Takeaway 6: Track the correct KPI’s, such as your customer lifetime value to your customer acquisition cost ratio. Vanity or glamour metrics, such as the number of Likes or Shares a post receives, won’t move the needle when it comes to best marketing your practice online.

Takeaway  7: Marketing is not a one-size-fits all proposition. A health clinic in NY may find that different marketing tactics work to book appointments than a wellness center in OH. You need to dig deep and understand your ideal patient.

Takeaway 8: Don’t think you need to be everywhere online. Talk to and interview customers and prospects to find out where they spend their time. Then, focus your Inbound Marketing efforts on growing these channels. Be strategic about where you market yourself and what tools you use.

So, with that covered let’s jump into the Podcast to hear from Inbound Marketing specialist, Abby Thompson.

Inbound Marketing Tips Interview Transcript

Caitlin: Hello and welcome to the newest episode of The Social speak Network podcast. I’m Caitlin McDonald, and today I am joined by Abby Thompson. Abby is the Director of Marketing at Salted Stone, a global agency with an award-winning team of humans, and dogs, where she spends her days spearheading lead generation and strategic initiatives. Abby is a Boston native with a passion for mission-driven business development, branding, and technology. So please, let’s give a warm hello as we welcome Abby, to the podcast.

Abby we are so excited to have you on today, first to kick things off, can you tell us a little bit about your background in digital marketing?

Abby: Yes, absolutely, thank you so much for having me on. I’m excited to be here.

Prior to joining the team at Salted Stone, I was working with a sustainable and renewable energy education company based in Portland, Oregon. We offered online courses for engineers and professionals who wanted to learn more about solar and wind energy and sustainable building. I was responsible for assisting with editorial campaigns on our blog, social media marketing, sourcing, managing experts, building courses with them, and answering questions from prospective students, as well. I got a chance to handle initiatives that followed all ends of the buyer journey.

I created Inbound content for marketing purposes, and also used chatbots to qualify leads and even sell to site visitors, worked with the instructors to build a new courses, and then sold and cross-promoted to them.

It touched on marketing, sales and customer success, as well. After I left that company, I joined the team at Salted Stone about two years ago. I started as an intern and then I worked in our PR and earned media department and now I lead marketing specifically for the agency. I’m a little bit less client-facing now, and I’m really in charge of lead generation and strategic initiatives over here for our agency.

C: Awesome, I love it. So you’ve really been able to have your hands in all different aspects of digital marketing, and now you’re really just marketing the business, which is great.

A: I’ve got to work on the business and in the business which is really cool.

The Difference between Content Marketing, Digital Marketing, and Inbound Marketing

C: Salted Stone focuses on Inbound Marketing, can you describe how this differs from content marketing or digital marketing? There are so many catch phrases out there. What are they?

A: There are so many buzz words. From a high level, Inbound is a technique that really turns the old-school concept of pitching, advertising, and finding and courting leads or buyers on its head. So where in the past, you were always making cold calls, buying leads lists, trying to push your message with an outbound approach, now you’re creating opportunities for folks to find you and interact with your brand in a way that encourages them to ultimately take an action. So, of course, content marketing, content creation, and dissemination of the content that you create are a part of Inbound Marketing.

Certainly a tenant of Inbound is to write or design really helpful guides, blogs, e-books that folks will find and enjoy. And in that process, of course, they’ll get to know the product or solution that you offer, but Inbound is about a lot more than that, really. It’s ultimately about optimizing every domain you have on the web to move people closer to the point of sale, or to renew, or to evangelize your brand and come back again and tell others to come back again.

Whereas digital marketing itself, might be an umbrella in which a lot of these actions, fall, Inbound is really about creating a comprehensive journey. So say someone finds you on the internet because you have a great website that’s keyword optimized with good domain authority.

And maybe they’d spend some time clicking around, chat with someone on a live or scripted bot, look at the resources you might have to offer, download something, maybe they get enrolled in an email marketing nurture workflow and eventually, hopefully, you become your buyer. It’s really it’s a bigger picture, long-term mode of thinking for brands rather than just focusing on SEO for example, or a lot of folks, they just say, “Oh you know what, I’m going to blog…” It’s really much more comprehensive than that.

Flywheel Approach to Marketing from Hubspot

The folks over at HubSpot, who coined the term, they call it now the Fly Wheel way of thinking. Basically the customer is at the middle and then around the customer is sales, marketing and customer success alignment. So you’re making sure that from the point of time where they’re finding them on the internet to when they decide that they want to spend their money with you, you’re really making sure that they’re happy, that they love your product, still that you’re being consistent in your messaging, as soon as they become a client, and just making sure you’re investing in equal measure in all parts of that journey for them. That’s really what Inbound is about it.

Current Inbound Marketing Trends for Wellness Practices in 2019

C: Now, as you know we focused a lot with health care and health and wellness what current trends are you seeing for wellness practices with Inbound Marketing in 2019?

A: Yeah, absolutely, I think we undeniably live in the age of an elite and often unrelatable influencer or social media star, and I think prior to now, many brands have made the assumption that the star power of a person endorsing your product or your service is enough to persuade buyers. But the truth is most wellness or fitness influencers don’t really live life like your buyer does.

And I think you are sending a message with a little bit of dissonance there. And I think marketers have now really caught on that. It sends a sort of phony and unattainable message to have people who don’t live anything like your buyer promoting your product, or… So now I’m basically saying wherein companies embrace this idea, and really tailor they’re Inbound initiatives around fitting their initiatives into the lifestyle of the whole market. Not just that one demographic that can live like those influencers. And to me, that just makes business sense it. Why make your club, the club that only a few people feel they can connect to or join. Why not eliminate those sort of alienating messages and images and open your brand up to folks who want to spend money with you.

Because so many people in the past, if you’re just using sort of elite Influence or marketing, many people probably felt that they weren’t welcomed, or desired customers of your brand.

C: I love that, it’s creating a much more authentic presence for your business.

A: That’s right, And there’s so much to be set of course for using powerful influencers as sort of like an aspirational sort of token. I think that’s powerful still, of course, and there’s so many influencers that are fantastic and very real about their lives and everything, but I think I’m seeing a lot of wellness brands really understand that maybe it can be influencer with a little bit of user-generated content sprinkled in then showing real people using your product or your service ultimately, I think the best word of mouth, comes from your friend on Facebook, who’s probably not Kendall Jenner, with all due respect. I think the authenticity carries. I think people know it, and they recognize it, and they appreciate it.

Marketing Tactics that had Hype in 2018 but Failed to Take Hold

C: A great insight, thank you Abby.

What tactics that were expected to perform well or had a lot of hype around them but failed to take hold in 2018?

A: Beyond what I mentioned before, one that we’ve seen and it isn’t necessarily specific to the world of wellness or fitness, but really, it got a launch through marketing is the role of artificial intelligence in content creation, specifically.

The Role of Artificial Intelligence in Content Creation Still isn’t where it needs to be in 2019.

So I know at the onset of 2018 we were seeing all these new tools and software is being rolled out and we were expecting folks to be using more of those machine learning services that for example would turn out keyword packed blog posts or write ad copy for you.

It seems like the technology really is isn’t fully there yet, where the whole AI component, just isn’t quite sophisticated enough to write like a human and in many cases, it’s really quite expensive still.

So that’s something we figured we’d be coming up against a lot and contending with a lot and it just hasn’t taken all the way I think many people expect that it would.

C: Oh very interesting. A recent to study did just come out by co-schedule saying +67% or more of marketing directors felt like they didn’t have the technology that they needed in order to really have a robust content marketing strategy. [Actual Fact: Marketers who use automation tools say time is the biggest barrier to advanced marketing while those who don’t automate say that budget is their biggest barrier. (Openprise)]

It’s interesting that you’re talking about the AI and content creation and how it really doesn’t seem like it’s lived up to the hype. So it’s probably not the right product that the audience or the market is looking for.

A: Yeah, it’s true and we’ve seen a few examples and it’s almost the technology in some instances, when it’s applied incorrectly can create sort of no offense intended, but remarkably bad blog posts where you can tell that no human had any part in the creation of it, because it’s just a string of words that doesn’t really make a lot of sense when put together. I have faith that I’ll get there, it’s just it hasn’t taken off the way folks thought it would in 2018.

That goes back to that authentic presence too, do you want to just have a blog post out there or do you want to actually capture your voice, and your brand and draw people into your story?

C: Were there any other tactics that you were expecting to perform well last year and just didn’t live up to the hype?

Obviously, there’s still a lot to learn about, and this actually kind of still falls under the AI cannon, but there’s a lot for us to learn still about chat bots and about live chat and the things that it’s capable of. I certainly wouldn’t say that it didn’t perform or didn’t live up to the hype, but there certainly is a lot more to learn in terms of using chat bots to lead qualify and things like that. I expected that a lot of the products and tools would be a little bit more sophisticated at this point. And they still many of them still have a lot of components to be built out.

The Top Three Things a Wellness Center should be doing online to see a return from their Digital Marketing Efforts

C: Yes, absolutely a great point there. So let’s jump on to the next question, what are the top three things that a wellness center should be doing online to see a return from their digital marketing efforts?

A: Yes, great question. The first is in our opinion and what we’ve seen work for our agency and for our clients is just use interactive content.

Use Interactive Content on your website and in your marketing to see a return from your digital efforts

Offer quizzes, calculators, dynamic landing pages, blog posts with clickable interactive elements, products walk through. These have just proven to result in infinitely higher engagement. We’re seeing better conversion rates, and in some cases, they allow marketers to close more deals. Our statistics around adding interactive components to sales proposals and how that has increased the likelihood of people closing. These interactive component pieces also encourage folks to stay on your website or your page longer, and ultimately that’s beneficial for many reasons. They’re more likely to consume the information, they are likely to want to spend money on your product or service, but ultimately, time on page gets factored into how high up on a search engine results page you’re going to sit.

If folks are spending time, using a quiz or a calculator, clicking around, really enjoying that user experience, it is also going to factor into how you rank on Google or Bing, or any of those search engines.

Interactive Experiences creates an exceptional ROI for your healthcare center

So invest in interactive experiences from marketing to sales to success, it’s just an exceptional ROI because there are so many tools out there now that really enable users to make this type of content without breaking the bank.

We’re agency partners with a couple of really great tools that have enabled us to make this kind of content and do it quickly, but still make it beautiful and effective and genuinely helpful and interesting for folks who come to the site.

C: It’s almost as though five years ago or so, everyone was all about social media in order to have a conversation and to communicate with your prospects online. Now, it’s really about having a conversation with every single thing that you do online, whether it’s a calculator or questionnaire…

A: And let people have the power. I mean the cool thing about interactive content is that it enables the user to decide what they want. Blog posts and e-books have a very important place and they’re not to be overlooked but ultimately when people read them, the brand that they’re reading it through is talking at them.

There really is an opportunity for them to abandon that and just decide they’re going to do something else, but if you’re offering something like an interactive product walk through, and that’s if you have the software or if you have a physical product to great for both that’ll kind of enable folks to at their own leisure figure out what it is that they want to be learning more about.

And it also, on the back end, if you have great reporting set up, it really tells you where your visitors are spending the most of their time as well. So we’ve rolled out interactive components for software companies, or for physical products, and it’s enabled us to really see “Oh Wow. People are interested in the hardware” or people are interested in something we might not have even necessarily known would be a point of differentiation.

C: Yes, the power of data.

A: Yes, for sure!

C: Data driving every decision. So even if you have a strategy and a plan set up, the data may point in a completely different direction.

A: That’s right and you can’t fight the data.

C: We talked about the use of the interactive content. Are there any other efforts that wellness centers should really be focusing on?

Encourage User Reviews on Yelp, Amazon, G2 Crowd, and Google to Build Trust and Authority

A: The second thing I would say is to make sure that you’re encouraging user reviews on sites like Yelp, Amazon, G2 Crowd, Captara, Google and make sure you’re demonstrating those reviews in your marketing collateral. There’s remarkable power in social proof, what we call social proof. And we believe that consumers today really should look at user reviews, as a trustworthy source of insight. As marketers, we know that a lot of the content that we’re reading on the Internet has been funded or branded by a company looking to sell a service so it’s really important that consumers, today, take a look at what actual users are saying.

So we’ve been crafting review strategies on behalf of our clients, and for our own purposes for a while, and as long as we’re asking for honest feedback, and showcasing all truthful testimonials, even the ones that don’t really make you look like the best brand in the world.

Those bad reviews will happen, of course, we’re all people, but as long as you’re asking for that honest feedback, there’s no reason not to incentivize reviews as well. You can show them off on paid ads, and emails, on your web pages. People trust people, way more or then they trust brands and if authenticity is kind of the unintended theme of the day, there’s really no more authentic route to go than to just give people the choice, and the opportunity, to talk about your brand from a real-world perspective.

Make sure you track the correct KPI’s (Key Performance Indicators) to truly understand success in digital marketing

And then the final one is really to make sure that you’re tracking the right key profit indicators, KPIS, or Key Performance Indicators. We found that it’s so easy to pay close attention to what we would consider more like glamour metrics like engagement on a social post or identifying which of your email campaigns garnered the most clicks, but ultimately some of the more technical metrics will help you glean a solid picture of the return on your investment and really figure out where to invest that money going forward.

One of the ones we’ve been paying closer attention to now is looking at your customer lifetime value to your customer acquisition cost ratio. Which is kind of a mouthful, but it’s really important because it measures the relationship between the lifetime value of a customer, how much they’ll spend with you over time, and the cost of acquiring that customer. It’s pretty easy to determine with just a little bit of math. You just divide the average lifetime value in dollars by the average cost it took to get most customers through the door.

C: This is so powerful. Let’s take a step back for a second. So let’s say you are a marketing director at the healthcare group down the street.

A: Yeah, this seems like something very difficult to transact.

C: And for me, I love data, so I’m all were just jumping in. What tools should these health centers use?

Most health care centers do have some sort of custom or software where they are able to see and how many times somebody comes in the average cost of their visit, so that’s really adding that up over the whole life cycle of the patient that’s coming in. That would be the customer lifetime value correct?

Customer Lifetime Value to Customer Acquisition Cost Ratio = Average Lifetime Value of Patients / Average Cost to Get New Patient Booked

A: Yes, exactly. So that is going to be, whether it’s a service or a product, it’s really going to be throughout the lifetime of your customer. And that usually obviously, I mean life time with your brand, not the entirety of their life, but that value that they’re going to add in the entire time that they choose to work with you.

If you sell the products to see and how many times they’ve bought that product, if you tell a service, that’s how many times they’ve renewed or upgraded, it’s really just the amount of time that an individual is going to spend with your brand over the course of the time that they work with you.

C: And then in that acquisition cost is something that say they came through a paid advertisement, right?

A: And then there was a, the depending on the length of the selling cycle because of course it… It’s drastically different if you’re “B2B or “B2C it’s drastically different if you’re a software versus a service. That’s really going to vary quite a bit, but figuring out how you acquired that customer. We do this often by persona, we won’t look at an individual that it would be hyper-granular and a little bit difficult to make the patients so we’ll do it by persona. I will take a look at how much a certain group of people have made our clients and then we’ll pay attention to how much it caused to bring those people on.

And if it’s an instance where we know that a huge group of folks came through, say Instagram advertisements, we can break down the cost that we allocated towards Instagram ads, and compare that to the customer lifetime value by just dividing those two numbers.

C: You don’t need to have a person-A, person-B, person-C really, you’re looking at your practice as a whole, just to get a sense of what that percentage breakdown looks like in the ratio looks like there.

A: Exactly… And so we, for a real world example, we at Salted Stone, were a HubSpot Diamond Tier Partner, so we get a lot of leads and a lot of interest coming through the HubSpot partner directory. So if you know that a certain segment of our leads come through there and they spend X amount of money per year with us or over the course of their lifetime with us, we could take a look at what it cost us to have that directory listing at HubSpot, and to keep it maintained, and we can figure out that ratio. That to us has lead to some incredibly important business decisions. I mean, in a situation like this, it’s “Okay. We know that we have a lot of money coming in through that great partner directory. How do we make sure that we’re still adding value there? How do we make sure that we’re allocating our funds to keep that active?” So it’s really, it’s helped us inform some of the bigger decisions we’ve ever made.

Salted Stone as your Trusted Inbound Marketing Agency Partner

C: Yeah, that’s great. Now tell us a little bit more specifically about what you do as a Diamond Tier Partner with HubSpot. Tell us about your services and your company.

A: Yeah, absolutely. So I’ll give you the higher level picture of Salted Stone first and I’ll talk a little about our involvement with HubSpot, as well.

So we’ve been around for over a decade now, we’ve got to all over the globe, we have FAO teams in Australia, in the United States and in the Philippines, and hopefully within the coming year we’ll actually be spreading out even more. So that’s kind of exciting. We call ourselves, a lot of people ask what it means to be a full service digital agency, and we call ourselves that because ultimately we really do everything for our clients and we do it all in-house. So if you need a website, a marketing video, a custom CRM integration, I mean a direct mail campaign sale systems, even training for your business development, everything from logos to booths decor for a conference. You can come to us and we’ll take care of it all with the team that really gets to know the context of your industry and is deeply familiar with your goals, and that’s the benefit, really. I’ve also working with teams that keep everything in-house, is that they can share that information with each other.

For example, if we have a designer creating an infographic, for you that designer has been working with the account manager and the people who are focusing on your brand voice and the folks who help you identify what your new fonts are going to look like. I mean everything, we keep it all within the team, and that’s led us some really, really cool brand experiences for folks. Additionally, we scale our services up and down in terms of that scope size, so we can either be your fully embedded strategic partner where we’re basically your marketing agency of record or we can just produce a one-off deliverable for you.

So that’s a very long-winded just about Salted Stone, and we’ve been a Diamond Tier Partner, I want to say for about three years now. But we’ve been involved with the Hubspot ecosystem for closer to six or seven. Basically our CEO when we started off, we were just a Search Engine Optimization agency, we were doing a lot of work, but just making sure, websites were getting in on that early algorithm for Google and ranking highly, and then, we like everybody else, noticed the shift where folks for getting pretty tired of constantly being advertised too, and wanted to instead learn more and make decisions for themselves. That really empowered consumer mindset took hold at Salted Stone, for sure. So we decided to invest in Inbound and invest in HubSpot as a tool that we use and that we deploy for clients. And it’s been a really, really fantastic partnership. They just have an exceptional team, and exceptional product, and it’s been amazing working with them.

We certainly work with companies outside of HubSpot, as well, part of Salesforce, Marketo, really whatever folks need we’ll take care of it. So we’ve talked a lot about Inbound in this episode, and HubSpot is the parent of Inbound it’s where it all came from. So we’re really so thrilled to be connected with that with that organization.

Unknown Inbound Strategies that can put your Practice on the Map

C: Wonderful… And as a business, as a whole, are there any Inbound strategies that your team is currently testing but you don’t think other agencies are really implementing for their clients?

A: Yeah, a good question, and I actually, I talked to our strategist, all the time now that I’m not as client-facing as I used to be I talked to our strategies all the time, about some of the more outside the box initiatives, or things that they’re doing that they’re really excited about that’s working for their clients, and what always emerges is really one central theme and that’s Salted Stone works from where our clients’ businesses are at, from a maturity perspective, to move forward.

A lot of agencies take a sort of one-size-fits-all approach to strategy.

When you do that, you’re really not immersing yourself enough in the context of what needs to happen next in order for a company to grow. So we’ve worked with some B2B companies to combine what would be considered kind of more analog modern call center tactics with hyper-personalized, email workflows or retargeting.

We’ve done direct mail campaigns, we’ve been crafting strategic event or activation campaigns that use micro-influencers, so thought leaders of specific to spread a message. And those are folks would say, 20,000 followers, not 6 million followers, so we’re constantly gathering context, we’re constantly meeting companies where they’re at in their development and trying to set all these really realistic, but often still really aggressive goals instead of just making it a sort of canned approach to marketing and that’s not at all to put down those agencies that are taking that approach because of course, in many instances, is absolutely going to work. But I just… One thing that our team is really, really good at is making sure our clients understand where they’re at, and we do that through ways that I think sometimes surprise them a little. We do really comprehensive stakeholder and customer interviews, we talked to thought leaders and influencers in the industry sort of independent of our clients, we make sure that we paint a really complete picture of exactly where they’re at and make those steps really tangible for how they can be moving forward in a way that’s smart. That way they’re allocating budget towards things that have staying power towards growth that is sustainable and scalable, and I think that that’s one the… A lot, I see a lot of agencies not do quite quite as much, and maybe that’s less so a differentiator and it’s just me being very proud about the fact that it’s worked really.

I think it’s so important. I didn’t really understand where customers are now, and where they want go, understand their unique customer set. It is something I feel like a lot of agencies talk about, but don’t necessarily do.

I think often, even happens with sort of in-house marketing teams, as well. Where it’s kind of viewed as a nice-to-have, and not a need-to-have to keep refreshing your understanding of where you’re at in the market and who you’re selling to, and what they want. So I, I think there’s this idea in marketing that your key selling points are fixed and your buyers are always going to be looking for the same thing and your differentiator is always going to be the one that resonates, but that’s simply not the case. And you have to be constantly asking for feedback, for reviews, for honest discussion about who you are in the market, and ways you can be better reaching people and meeting their needs and I think… And taking that bespoke approach to work with our clients has just been better in the long run as well for a relationship with them too, because it garners trust when you’re able to just be honest and say “Here’s where you’re at, here’s what we suggest, let’s work together to make your goals or reality.”

C: Absolutely, that’s a breath of fresh air that you do that. Thank you to everybody in the industry.

A: Oh no, thank you, thank you so much.

The key marketing strategy most wellness centers get wrong

C: I meant to ask this earlier, actually. What is the top strategy besides not doing these customer reviews frequently enough, but what some… One strategy that should be followed by a Wellness Center, but often marketing teams just get it wrong or decide that it’s not a priority when it should be.

A: Yes, absolutely. So I would say the sort of top strategy that I see happening a lot, we do get a lot of clients who are very concerned with and rightfully so, because they’ve been showed messaging that indicates they should be, but they’ve been very concerned with making sure that they’re on every platform, all the time. That they’re pushing out content, that they are absolutely churning, they are investing in the newest technology, they’re on every feasible social media network, and that’s a message that we understandably take in and think we need to apply to our business, because all of these social networks, all of these tools, they’re trying to sell to us.

Of course, you’re going to believe that if your Pinterest profile and your YouTube account and your everything is not immediately up-to-date, you’re going to believe that you’re going to fall behind. But the truth is taking time to genuinely identify the channels that your leads are coming in by, or that your ideal audience is hanging out around that is so important and it leads to much better decisions for how to use your bandwidth and how to use your budget.

It’s easy to fall prey to the idea that if you are a software company, you have to be doing webinars.

It’s easy to open the idea that you need to be advertising on LinkedIn, but that might not necessarily be how folks are going to find you and how they want to interact with you.

I would say that a one-top strategy is just making sure you know your customer and you’re constantly updating your customer.

But be strategic about the way that you invest your money and your time and do it all feel like you need to be everywhere across the internet.

Don’t try to be everywhere online – choose those channels that already engage your target market and fully invest in nurturing relationships there

There are many markets where it doesn’t really make sense to keep an active Pinterest profiles, and there’s many markets where it makes sense to not run advertisements everywhere.

Just be strategic, how I have a really strong vendor evaluation in place as well. We certainly do in-house here, but we just have a checklist of things that If we’re deciding to work with a vendor, either for ourselves or to use with our clients, we’ll go through rounds of phone calls, demos, we’ll bring in different members of our teams, we’ll have comprehensive checklist to make sure that this investment we’re making is one that’s intelligent, scalable, and going to work for everybody. It’s so easy now to find all of these companies that claim to really be a the solution that’s going to get you a head, when the truth is if everyone saying, that it certainly can all be true. So, be strategic and don’t feel like you have to be everywhere.

It’s something that we see brands do a lot and while it often doesn’t necessarily hurt to have platforms everywhere, it’s just a lot of time and often a lot of resources and a lot of money that you could be directing towards something that brings in way more value and get you in front of the right people.

C: Yes, absolutely, and something just to tie on to that as well. If you do decide that Instagram or YouTube or LinkedIn, is going to be the place where you’re going to reach your customers stick to it, don’t just… It works, the strategy for two weeks or a month or even three months. Stick to it and pay attention to the data.

A: And hear people out, always trying to make sure that a lot of our e-commerce clients, and a lot of our B2C brands, we always make sure that, say if they are running a Facebook, is it integrated with marketplace is an integrative with shop.

If they’re running ads, are they doing it in a smart way? Are they constantly responding to messages from a customer support perspective? If folks have questions about a product or they need to return something, is that omni-channel operation set up correctly? Because if you’re going to be investing in something, social media marketing is just a great example because there’s so many things you can do, is it now if you go at any… So, if you are an ecommerce brand and you’re going to be investing in something like Instagram or Facebook, just to make sure you are truly doing it right, you’re listening to customers, you are constantly running searches for your brand name, and any sort of sentiment, run sentiment analysis, use listening tools just pick your avenues and make sure that you have made them as robust and sustainable as possible.

C: Great, great well… Abby, I am just blown away by the answers that you gave. Thank you for being so transparent about what your team is doing for clients as well as what clients should be doing for themselves with their own in-house marketing teams.

Is there anything that I should have asked but I didn’t?

A: No, this is perfect. I think it’s all really comprehensive grouping of questions, and it’s made me think so much about our business in a way that’s really cool. It’s been really fun to step back and think through how we do things here. So thank you so much for having me. This has been really great.

C: Wonderful, well we really appreciate you coming on the show, as a guest, and I will be sure to add the link to Salted Stone to the description as well, so listeners, if you want to go check out Salted Stone, I do urge you to. They are a great, great agency and as you know they take care of their clients.

Thank you again to Abby for joining the show from Salted Stone. We talked about a lot of really important topics for your healthcare practice, and your marketing team to follow. Really it is all about creating an authentic presence and tailoring your Marketing Strategies, directly towards the consumer and directly towards your ideal target market persona.

One of the things I loved, is tracking the correct KPI’s – What is that customer lifetime value? This is something in your tracking software, you’ll be able to pull that.

Just take even the number of clients that come in over the course of a year, and divide that by your profit or your revenue for the year, then take a look at all of your marketing expenses. This is just such a simple way to find that ratio between the customer lifetime value and the acquisition cost.

Go out there, make sure you’re focusing on a strategy that makes sense for your unique clients, your unique target market, and don’t try to do everything. Focus on what’s going to really make a difference and have an impact for your business.

So, thank you again to Abby and I will see next time on the Social Speak Podcast.

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