Common Pitfalls Of Medical Practice Marketing

health_tech.jpgThe medical profession as a whole has changed significantly over the past few decades. Insurance providers have standardized practice reimbursements, hospital + university groups are continuing to buyout private practices, and medical schools are teaching to follow suit.
 
While the world of medicine continues to evolve, marketing has done the same, and the integration of the two have dramatically influenced the way we find treatment providers and how we educate ourselves about the various treatments and physicians available. Although the landscape has allowed for, even necessitated, an amalgamation of medical marketing, many practices and physicians still fail to miss the opportunities available.  
The reasons are many. For those who received their medical degree and license 20+ years ago there still lies notions of the unprofessionalism with advertising your services - often bringing beliefs of “cheapening the profession” or the “unethical approach to practicing medicine” - and thus often discouraged. Then there are those physicians who understand marketing as a “necessary evil”, but lack the direction, savvy, and frankly the time to commit to incorporating it into their practice. 
 
This often creates a desire to hire outside services and agencies, or pay as little as possible for the simple notion that referrals will always be their best source of new patients. However, many practices learn both are not the best options and the need for a new plan is more than needed.

MARKETING IS A POWERFUL TOOL For EDUCATion

The problem with these approaches are simple. Marketing is not a necessary evil - it’s necessary of course, but what physicians often fail to realize is that marketing could be used for a greater purpose - to educate both the public and their referring physicians. By educating both patients and other physicians about their specialty and services provided - doctors can leverage their knowledge to dispel myths, answer commonly asked questions, and elaborate on the importance of their services all in which create thought leadership and greater brand recognition. 
 
Of course there are times when a woman in a bikini is a great marketing tool (maybe), but it really depends on your customer and what problems you are solving for them. If your audience cannot relate, you're missing an opportunity. Sharing and creating content that is helpful allows you to provide something that people understand in a way that is palatable.

FIND A MARKETING AGENCY THAT UNDERSTANDS YOUR BUSINESS, AND REALLY, YOUR PATIENTS

Another common problem that doctors face is finding the right agency or marketing tools to use for their respective practice. Often doctors either hire their friends or children as a favor and on the cheap, but end up with results that frequently reflect the fact that they made their decision lightly. While there are many companies offering a number of services, it is important to find someone - particularly if you are in a subspecialty - that gets your business, and more importantly your core customer.

Understanding what characteristics define your best customer is the best way to approach any marketing (or really any business) decision. Finding an agency that gets it from the beginning will save you a lot of money in the long run and will increase your chances for better ROI. Here is a great way to define your core customer.

DON’T BE AFRAID TO SPEND A LITTLE MONEY ON MARKETING

In no way are we suggesting that you spend considerable amounts of money on marketing (unless it provides you with great ROI), but at the same time, not spending money can be very detrimental to your practice.  It’s common for smaller practices with maybe one or two practicing physicians to be reluctant to spend money on marketing, but the truth is that referrals are no longer your golden goose.  In fact, as hospital groups continue to consolidate, many previous referral sources are no longer available and prohibited from referring outside their network. Additionally,  more and more patients are finding their doctors online. If you fail to create a strong presence online, you will lose patients - period. The other truth is that to make money you must spend some, and some of the most successful private practices spend a good amount of money on marketing and continue to grow their business accordingly.

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Inbound Marketing Guide For Physicians, Medical Doctors


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Bespoken Management started out with the simple mission of providing unparalleled marketing services to business lacking the time and knowledge to implement their own marketing effectively.

Today, we are a team with extensive experience in digital marketing, graphic design, front-end design, and website development. Our team, our client relationships, and our plans for the future are all built upon the values of transparency, efficiency, and creativity.

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