Apart from Marketing What Should be the Focus of Healthcare Marketers?
No doubt, healthcare marketing is important. If people don’t know about medical practices or facilities, they might not know about them or what they do.
But healthcare marketers could also consider doing other things to build medical practices and assist the patients who visit them.
Inform Staff Members About Developments
Using marketing is a good way to inform current and prospective patients, but do your staff members know what’s happening?
Say you’ve been promoting some of your services in advertisements and social media. Share these ads and social media posts with the staff and discuss what you plan to promote in the future.
When staff members have this knowledge, they’ll be better prepared to discuss these services themselves and answer patients’ questions about them.
Discussing marketing efforts with staff members could also help modify these campaigns and generate ideas for future ones. It could encourage collaboration and remind staff members that you’re all a team working together to achieve common goals.
Discuss Developments With Staff Members
While promoting medical practices is important, promotion is useless if staff members aren’t on board.
Informing them about your practices and marketing initiatives is one way you can help them.
So is discussing other healthcare-related developments with them. In the course of marketing, you’ll be learning about other healthcare practices and what they offer.
Why not share what you’ve learned about these competing strategies? Studying and discussing competitors could highlight things you may have overlooked or want to do better.
During these discussions, you could decide if competitors are doing things you’d like to incorporate into your own practice or if there are other developments your practice would like to explore.
Update Your Website and Social Media Accounts Regularly
Speaking of doing things correctly, how current are your website and social media presence?
Your web presence says a lot about your practice. Up-to-date web pages and current social media posts indicate that your practice cares about its work and is eager to share.
People might believe that outdated sites are the products of practices that are outdated themselves. If your practice hasn’t contributed to social media posts, people might think your practice doesn’t have anything to contribute in terms of a conversation or health care.
Check and revise your website every six months or so, or preferably more. Add things, remove outdated content and broken links, and try to post regularly to your web pages and social media accounts. Doing so shows that you care about web presence and your practice as a whole.
Keep Your Website Safe
While you’re updating your website, make sure you’re also keeping it safe.
You’ll also want to make sure your electronic health record (EHR) software is secure.
Use other security software and keep the contact information for your EHR and PM systems handy. These people could show you how to save information safely and restore it if something goes wrong.
Preparing for data breaches and other problems isn’t being pessimistic, it’s being realistic.
Make Your Website Accessible
As you’re updating and securing your web pages, also ensure that they’re accessible.
Making your website as accessible as possible means creating pages that comply with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations.
To make your pages ADA-compliant, add text descriptions to your images and include alternatives to forms saved in the .pdf format.
Allow users to change the colors of the text and backgrounds on your pages and include audio or video descriptions for videos or other content. Providing these options allows as many people as possible to enjoy your web pages and learn about your practice.
Help Patients Interact With Their Records, Your Website, and Your Practice
Also, consider making your patients’ other interactions more accessible.
Healthcare marketers might use electronic health record (EHR) and practice management (PM) software to reach a practice’s patients, but do they allow patients to reach a practice?
Patients who don’t know how to create accounts or easily log into them aren’t able to retrieve information and communicate with practices, so they might not be receiving the healthcare assistance they need.
Creating a sample account and pretending to be a patient could help medical professionals determine if their offices really reach patients. It could help them see if it’s easy to send and receive messages or if communicating or other procedures need adjustments.
Answer Patients’ Questions and Fulfill Their Needs
One major reason why medical practices should study their communication practices is that such work could help them ask and answer patient questions.
Patients visit consult professionals to ask questions and receive answers. Healthcare marketing could reassure patients that the people they’re asking do in fact have the answers they seek.
On the practices’ websites, marketers might want to include links that say things such as, “Have questions? We can answer them” and link this text to a chat box, online form, or page that includes phone numbers, email addresses, and other contact information.
Reassuring people during in-person visits could also be helpful. Staff members could post signs throughout their offices saying that they’re available to help. The signs could include phone numbers that patients could call, online links they could visit, or other useful ways they could get in touch.
Create Marketing Campaigns That are Accurate and Help Everyone
Marketing campaigns should seek to engage and inform, but they also need to be accurate.
For one, depending on what you say in your campaigns, it could be illegal to make specific claims or depict things in certain ways.
But honesty is more than a legal issue. It’s also an ethical one.
If patients learn that your marketing materials include lies, they might stop visiting your practice and tell others about your dishonesty. They may question all the work of your practice, not just its marketing.
Honesty reflects well on you, your staff, and what you do and want to do. It could help you build and keep trust, which could ultimately help your practice.