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Embracing AI in your SEO Campaign
 

Creating a fluid automation strategy within your company should be one of the top priorities for your digital outreach and internal processes. Make a plan to deliver personalized content while saving your business time and money by implementing AI software solutions. This sounds easy enough in practice, but grasping the full capacity of AI solutions takes a deeper level of understanding than most are willing to look into.

We’ve moved past automation being a solution in and of itself. Automation is simply a starting point to efficiently collect and analyze data sets. According to Martech, “Layers of natural language processing and machine learning enable smarter optimizations driven by predictive analytics, pattern recognitions, and evidence-based learning”. In the SEO realm, site audits, competitive analysis, monitor rankings, and other SEO tasks are made easier through automation. So, what’s the next step in implementing this data into AI processing?

With the rise of real-time data, we are now able to look at this information as it’s being submitted and apply that to an SEO strategy so that it’s geared towards predictive technology. Google dedication to AI is resulting in far more interactive search results that speak directly to the searcher's intent. The algorithm is listening to searcher cues and implementing these cues into future searches. Static websites are taking a hit on this because they aren’t nearly as adaptable as dynamic sites when changes in the algorithm occur. Our Bloom Plan works with your key information to accommodate AI and its ties to SEO.

Optimizing voice search within your strategy will help your SEO strategy. Using a conversational tone in your content helps favor your business because AI is designed to be conversational. Visuals and voice search are the forefront of AI because searchers want results as efficiently as possible. We take this into account on our website overhauls.  The more easily understood your content is, the better chances you will have at converting traffic into buyers.

Making good use of descriptive text seems fundamental but is rarely exercised in a businesses SEO strategy. When imagery and video is not an option for the searcher, your descriptive text will be the next best guide to bringing effective results. AI helps organize and highlight these descriptions to the searcher so that they can hopefully reach their conclusion.  For example, remember seeing those “ALT” functions in website builders next to your images? Use those for descriptive text to enhance your SEO strength and AI presence.

Embracing automation will be increasingly important in your ability to scale your digital efforts. AI will look to simplify these complex decision making inquiries and it’s up to you to make sure your content is optimized for search engines.

Book an appointment with our Deluge Wonderteam and we can guide you through transforming your digital assets into bottom-line results!

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Source: Bright Edge


 
3 Easy Steps to Growing your Practice through Reviews

Your Social Media channels are an integral part of how people familiarize themselves with your business. Establishing an immediate connection online will usually result in a booked appointment. Running a successful practice takes a lot of organization so it’s important to identify smart marketing strategies that can bolster your online presence. A little bit of discipline in your digital marketing strategy goes a long way. Here are 3 steps to help grow your outreach.

Patient Reviews

Make it easy for people to read and write reviews. The most prominent online review platforms will advocate your awesome practice. Consolidate duplicate accounts, make sure to update your business information on each of these platforms on a monthly basis, and connect your patients to each platform so that their feedback does not go unnoticed.

Learn How to Target Great Reviews

Set your team up before the doors open and think about who is coming in. Identify one or two patients who love your practice and would be happy to leave you a review. Make specific assignments as to which team member should ask for this feedback and have them report how it went.

Be Transparent

Nobody likes being bombarded by emails they weren’t expecting. Review requests are fine, but the patient needs to know that the request is coming. Your transparency shows sincerity and accountability. Let patients know how much you rely on reviews to improve your services. It’s worth noting that if you are not asking for reviews, chances are you’ll only get one after a bad experience.

Deluge Digital Marketing has the on of the best review software in the business. We customize the software to suit your practice’s needs. Messaging, method of contact, identifying the best review platforms, and making sure your content gets posted appropriately are all factors we customize to suit each of our clients. Learn more about our reviews services here. Book an appointment today and see how we can help your practice thrive!


Google Updates Service Area Options

Service Area Business (SAB) establishment has been a growing pain for Google Maps users and local businesses. Businesses without physical locations were disfavored by the algorithm as opposed to brick and mortar local businesses. In an effort to ease this pain, Google has introduced a new sign-up flow for SAB’s.

A Brief History:

Google’s local pack algorithm has three key factors for ranking local businesses:

Relevance (Are you a Dentist?)

Prominence (Are you a notable Dentist?)

Proximity (Is your physical location near the searcher?)

With this trimodal factoring system, SAB’s outside of the area are at an immediate disadvantage with regard to proximity. They will have to overcompensate in prominence to outrank competitors who are in the searcher’s area by relying on links, reviews, and other authority factors. So what can SAB’s do to increase their online visibility?

1. Double-down on SEO content strategy.

Let's face it, you are not going to get noticed by bots unless you really PURSUE content within your desired area. This means link-building to your location pages and targeting reviews that specifically mention the areas that you want to show up in.

2. Make sure your SEO Basics align with your targeted service area.

Does your website contain strong landing pages for each city you serve? Are these pages populated with relevant content? The more content you have that is location-specific, the more likely you will be favored in local packs.

3. Reviews in target service areas matter.

Doing business in your targeted service area is best documented with review content. User reviews are one of the most trustworthy forms of content by local bots. Check out our review system for more information on how we can help boost your local feedback.

4. Multi-location maps are important.

If you serve multiple area, it’s beneficial to have a store locator on your website. According to SEJ, even points of reference with a phone contact listed will help bots rank your service areas. Any geo-tagging reference points that Google can crawl will benefit your business.

In Conclusion, time will tell if this update has any effect on SAB’s. This could improve visibility for businesses that may not have a hard location in a big city, but seek to increase their online visibility.


Source: SEO Land


Algo-Rhythm: Updating your Business Categories

Google is constantly looking to improve their algorithm for local businesses. They use these updates to see how well their users will adapt to the improvements and if they will be adopted by a widespread audience. You may have heard of Google Plus? Yes, it’s still alive and well. The point isn’t to say that Google is at fault for trying to make the improvements. Google is releasing these features for local businesses to take advantage of them. Google has recently updated their business category section to help organize the vast amount of niche businesses within local communities. Here are a few points to note:


  1. Google Changes the names of these Categories Frequently.  Your favorite “Natural Foods” store can seamlessly be renamed a “Natural Goods Store” to accomodate a more comprehensive list of goods and services. The only problem is if the Natural Grocers, which specializes in food, gets relabled, it's now categorized with niche natural goods and services. This is a much smaller market in comparison to supermarket grocery stores. This is why it’s important to utilize multiple categories in businesses.

  2. Categories get removed all the time.  In 2018 Google removed 36 categories and added 34. In the most recent update, Shower-Door Supplier was taken out of the list. Moz Local suggests these new categories are very important to update in your business profile. This also emphasizes how attentive businesses need to be with their own profile data.

  3. New Categories will BOOST your Rankings.  A recent update in a business owner’s industry put him in the top of the searches extremely quickly when he was on top of Google’s Category update. While some categories remain ossified for quite some time, when these updates happen, it can be a huge benefit to your visibility!

  4. “Category-Dilution” is not a real thing.  There has been widespread concern that classifying your business under multiple categories was going to diminish your ranking authority. That isn’t the case. Adding more categories increases your rankings and click throughs. Adding a new niche category could even boost your business to the top of the searches.

  5. Your Primary Category Holds Weight.  The last point to note is that the primary category should be thoughtful and precise, properly defining your business. Search Engine Land mentions how a personal injury attorney saw dramatic ranking increases when he switched his category from “Insurance Attorney” to “Personal Injury Attorney” as his main classification.  Making sure your business is classified correctly is important.

Staying updated with your Google My Business (GMB) information is determinant to your local search rankings. Using them lets them know you care about your data, and your business.


Source: Joy Hawkins

Review Study: How many Reviews do Local Businesses Need?

Its official, reviews are becoming ever-more relevant to online search rankings. We know from the source that Google values trustworthy Businesses. They evaluate this trust through frequency of content and positive ratings for a business. A recent study wanted to assess how local businesses are using Google Reviews and provide a benchmark to help compare your business with others in your industry.

The report anonymously explored over 93,000 local businesses across 26 different industries to uncover:

  • Which industries are leading the way in using Google reviews (and who’s trailing behind)

  • How many reviews businesses in each industry have

  • The average star rating for businesses in each industry

  • If star ratings and number of reviews correlate with local rankings

  • Which star ratings are most common in each Google local ranking position


The study found that bars, restaurants, and hotels are the most reviewed industries in the country. 74% of local businesses have at least one review. Accountants were the least reviewed industry.


Local Stores have been utilizing Google Beacons to help process high volume customer traffic and transmit this information back to Google. An interesting finding in these industry results is that users rarely have the need to seek financial consultation compared to how often they need to visit their favorite restaurant or bar. We also will notice that the traffic that comes through restaurants and bars is much more anonymous than niche specific services like accountants and paralegal.

Generating trust is a huge concern with consumer research. This study noted that trustworthy businesses are those that have accumulated at least 34 reviews on GMB. Ranking position is also a major concern for local businesses. Businesses that rank in the top 3 Search Engine Results have at least 47 reviews. In conclusion, It is important to set review goals for your business so that you are at active in your industry. Reviews and ratings are a key evaluator of your business.


New 'Follow Feature' on Maps expands GMB Outreach

Google Maps has initiated a new “Follow Button” feature as they expand GMB Features

Google continues to improve their local business features as they launched a new feature in their Google Maps Application this month. The “Follow” feature allows Google users to track their favorite local businesses on updated events, offers, and other information. You can now view local Google postings in the ‘For You’ tab of Google Maps.

Upon initial inspection, this is a step in the right direction for Google. We utilize Google posts for our clients frequently and we’ve seen the direct benefits these postings offer their prospective audiences. This improvement will help customize user content so the businesses you follow will be the primary focus of your feed. No more shots in the dark with irrelevant recommendations and advertisements. Instead, you have a tad bit more control over what businesses and content matters most to you.

The timing of this and the recent closure of Google+ is showing a renewed focus on local search and business promotion. If anything, Google is empowering local businesses by promoting these features that business owners have control of. This shifts small businesses away from being at the mercy of the the ever-changing algorithm and gives users an opportunity to customize what businesses matter to them.

The ‘follow feature’ is in its very early stages currently; it’s not available to IOS users. We can only assume that this is yet another improvement Google is making to digital marketing tactics as they monopolize small business information. At this point, the best thing we can do is continue to push content through these features. The fact remains that Google search will continue to dominate other search engines. Therefore, Your best chance at getting noticed is to utilize their improved features.


Psychology and Social Media

Working in Digital Marketing, we find a lot of our clients more closely link our expertise with sales and ROI. They believe that marketing is a means to increasing sales. They’re right. As content marketers, we look to increase the overall visibility of our clients. However, quantitative information only goes so far. Our biggest objective is translating quantitative information into qualitative copy.

How clients and prospects interact with a Brand is becoming increasingly collaborative. Managing multiple accounts for various industries, we end up being the voice that addresses client (and prospect) feedback. We seek authenticity within our role because each user needs to be addressed as an individual. The following list is something we have applied to our branding model for ourselves and the businesses we represent:


  1. Transparency: Digital marketing is not perfect. We are a team of digital marketers on the other end analyzing numbers, pulling data, and building relationships. From weekly client meetings to addressing customer feedback, there are a lot of feelings that we need to address (including our own team’s). Online engagement is only part of the picture; there is content that our clients are accountable for because collaboration works two ways.

  2. The Halo Effect: Building off of the last point, we try and steer away from getty images as much as possible when creating new content. What we’ve found is that prospects seek to know your actual business. This means staying away from blatant stock images. Currently, users have a bigger Bull-sh!t B.S. Meter than ever before. Therefore, the transparency of your content directly affects how much trust you have with your audience.

  3. Reciprocity: The idea behind this is simple, yet powerful. If someone does something good for you, you return the gesture. If our clients are helpful in getting us the information we need to generate content, we will go a step beyond the contract and give them extra marketing resources. We utilize reciprocation in social media campaigns, email marketing, and as a focal point for generating reviews on Google My Business.

  4. Color Matters: Colors affect behavior. This is why it’s so crucial to remain consistent within branding and be mindful of the graphics and content you are publishing. We need to consider how color affects the tone and voice of every client we work with. We highly advise those of you who use social media to color code every post to match your brand. Check the list below for some key examples.


  • Yellow: optimism and youth

  • Red: sense of urgency

  • Blue: trust and security

  • Green: wealth and relaxation

  • Orange: aggressive

  • Pink: romantic

  • Black: powerful

  • Purple: calm

5. Why people Share: There was a study conducted by the New York Times that examined the Psychology behind online sharing. They found five primary motivators for online sharing with a general conclusion that people are motivated to share based on their relationships with their online network. In essence, we need to focus on creating and sharing content that will enhance their relationship with their online network.


5 key motivators of online sharing are:

  • They wanted to better the lives of others.

  • They wanted the content to reflect their online identity.

  • They are looking to grow or nourish their relationships

  • They share because they like the feeling of having others comment or engage in it.

  • They want to spread the word about something they believe in.

Source: Buffer App


Indexing: Stepping Stones of SEO

When it comes to running a client’s SEO analysis; we start with indexing. Indexing ensures that your website pages are being read by Google, Bing, and other key databases. Indexing is the first step to take in an SEO crawl with clients as it shows that the page we’re looking at is able to be picked up by search engines.

Whats up with it?

At a core-level; search engines read pages and treat each page individually. In other words, every page counts towards your overall ranking. You can actually look up how your site is being indexed here. Entering the site code txt beforehand will specify that page beyond its visibility to Google. When you specify and target a domain in the search query, the pages that show up are ones that have been indexed. Therefore, it needs to examined as a crucial point of reference during an SEO analysis.

What happens when a page is not indexed?

If your site is not being indexed, the most common culprit is a meta-tag misuse within the coding, or you have disallowed robot.txt files to scan this data. Meta-tags and robot.txt  files instruct the search engine indexing bots on how to process your site’s information. Meta-tags help guide these bots through the pages individually and robot.txts scan the site as a whole.

Bottom Line

Your site has to be indexed in order to be ranked. Search engines need to be able to find and read your content in order to index. Google has very specific instructions on how your indexing is coded here. Prioritize the indexability of your content as you add onto your website.  Remember, the bottom line in SEO: Happy Robots, Happy People, Happy Business!

Source: https://searchengineland.com/the-first-steps-of-your-seo-audit-indexing-issues-296853

On the Rise

It’s well known that marketing automation is the way of the future. Given the dramatic increase in online commerce and Google searches; it’s apparent that digital marketing can benefit your organization by:

  • Increasing your sales efficiency.

  • Enhancing the ability to generate qualified leads.

  • Developing a multi-channel prospect on behavior.

  • Aligning your sales and marketing goals.

  • Improving your sales processes and offering specific ROI insight.

A new study from the manifest revealed that 99% of businesses will increase their investment in at least one digital marketing channel in the next year. Social media and Website improvements are performing much better than the traditional marketing methods. These are easy investments that yield profitable results. Analytics are measured beyond a messages initial output; Conversion rates are measurable within these methods. Therefore, businesses are able to see the process all the way through a completed transaction.


Are you improving your marketing strategy? Are you developing a plan that holds your business accountable to increasing its sales? As an operations manager I’ve had proposals go flat because the business owner claims, “We have too much business already”. There is no such thing as too much business. Your management processes should help you handle these prospects. At Deluge; we help align your sales goals with a marketing strategy that delivers tangible results. Digital marketing is a high-yield investment that helps you gain traction against local competitors and promotes your business information in multiple ways.

Source: Newswire


Key Benefits of Partnering with an Outside Digital Agency

Hiring a digital agency to handle your online marketing is a time and money saver, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that you should be completely hands-off with your strategy. We’ve found that the best marketing hold accountability on both our agency and the business we’re working with. Working in tandem provides objectivity when planning a strategy and can also be the most effective way to optimize your marketing budget. We created a quick list of reasons why hiring an agency should be in your best interest.

A Broader Skill Set

Partnering with a digital agency gives you access to a team that has a variety of skill-sets. Chances are that each team member specializes in a certain area of digital marketing so you have access to these experts as a resource moving forward. It is extremely cost effective when you look at how much it would cost to hire an SEO, Social Media, and Branding Director as in-house employees.

Cost

It is extremely cost effective when you look at how much it would cost to hire an SEO, Social Media, and Branding Director as in-house employees. Total costs can vary based on the size of your business. The fact is that every successful business invests a portion of their earnings into their marketing budget. Are you utilizing this budget where it matters?

Productivity

When You partner with an agency; 100% of your money goes towards their production of deliverables. You don’t waste time aimlessly trying to figure out your strategy on your own, spending the energy it takes to hire in-house, or having to cover more benefits, PTO, ongoing education, ect. You are paying for a service that’s efficient and refined.

 

Source: https://seekbrevity.com/digital-marketing-agency-in-house-hybrid/

Facebook Rolls out “Recommendation” Ratings 

What Does This Change Mean?

Facebook has recently changed how they drive their users using “Recommendations” instead of their “Star-Rating” System. No longer can someone who may feel lukewarm about a business give a star rating of a “3”. This new rating system measures the experience as either “Good” or “Bad”.

This change requires businesses to take more care in reading the content of the reviewer.  While responding to reviews is critical, we are careful in doing so. You can read about this here.   In the meantime, take time to thank those who compliment you first, then if you feel the need to respond to a negative recommendation, remember you are truly talking to the public so keep it short and classy. Asking how you may have been better able to handle the situation could go a long way to those who are reading the review and the response. Sending them a direct contact number also alleviates this situation. They had a bad experience and they want to voice it publicly. Now you, as a business owner, want to confront the issue and amend the situation.

How does this look to the user?

On The Upside...

Facebook is helping businesses flag and potentially remove fake reviews. Facebook will allow a more in-depth and powerful way for businesses to get fake reviews removed from their page. According to BrightLocal, a FB review is prone to removal if:

-The Recommendation is not Relevant

-Its an Unfair Recommendation

-Contains Nudity

-Violence

-Harassment

-Suicide or self-injury

-Spam

-Contains Hate Speech

 

What have your experiences been with online reviews? We would love to hear from you! To connect with us:

FB Twitter & LinkedIn

Want a copy of our free eBook Secrets To Reputation Marketing CLICK HERE!:

 

*source https://www.brightlocal.com/2018/08/22/facebook-switching-reviews-to-recommendations/

Need for Speed

In the latest SEO updates; Google has favored websites that have a quicker load-time than its competitors. Breaking down each pages contents into its algorithm; Google ranks sites with optimized content considerably higher than outdated websites. Issues at hand include Lose redirects, lagging server response times, and unoptimized images. Using Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) increase user-engagement and overall site performance.

 

Google holds user-experience as a top priority within its service objectives:

 

In addition to these tools for measuring UX; Your sites security and hosting settings play a big roll in your SERP rankings. Do not let a poorly designed website hinder your digital outreach. At Deluge Digital Marketing, we make sure your site is optimized to the fullest extent. We additionally identify a content strategy that keeps your pages active and boosts your user-engagement.

Source: Jamie Pitman

Power to your Pages

Power to your Pages

 

The web is growing rapidly; there are 1.8 million pages added every day. Web-crawlers scan these pages constantly. These bots scan new pages for keywords, content, and overall relevancy. According to AHREFS Traffic Study, only 5.7% of web pages gets ranked in the top 10 search results of Google. In other words; roughly 90% of websites get zero traffic from Google.

 

Two common factors that can greatly increase your relevancy:

  1. Backlinks- Backlinks significantly help your website rank higher in Google.

  2. Targeting relevant information and content-People can’t search for things they’re unaware of; you need to publish pages about topics that are trending within your industry.

Bottom line: Link-building your blog content and proper keyword research will greatly impact your SERP status and Google rankings.

5 Forecasts of Healthcare Marketing

The healthcare market is innovating like crazy. We are in a time where consumers are getting more and more critical of their healthcare providers. Your digital presence relies on seamless design, customer-centric experience with your brand, and integrating the needs of your customers today with the demands of tomorrow. The following predictions will help you rise to these demands.

1. Consumerism will become the Central Pillar of Governance.

Businesses are integrating marketing strategy with consumer experience to create a unified brand experience. These systems are vital for growing system revenue and strengthening internal CRM.

2. Digital Engagement Spending will Double.

Healthcare Businesses are getting hip to technology. Consumers are online and on mobile devices. Healthcare Businesses need to marshal every available resource to reach them. 

Millennials may be phone-obsessed, but those born after 1995 — so-called Generation Z — spend twice as much time on their phones as millennials, and they are twice as likely to make purchases online. Healthcare marketers and strategists need to capture these future consumers of healthcare.

3. A Big Uptick in Natural Language Processing

For many health systems, much of this digital investment will move toward natural language processing (NLP).

NLP enables organizations to instantly understand and aggregate the voices of their consumers. It algorithmically analyzes patient comments, parsing out commonalities and organizing them by sentiment, demographic or any other factors a marketing team might find useful.

4. Service Recovery Will Speed Up Dramatically

The combination of real-time customer feedback and NLP makes instant intervention much easier. Patient complaints no longer have to wait for human analysis. Instead, algorithms automatically identify opportunities for essential clinical and experiential follow-up.

5. The True Age of Wellness

The brutal truth is that most consumers would rather not become patients at all. For this reason, the $3 trillion–strong (and growing) wellness industry will continue to thrive in 2018.

Given the encroachment of nontraditional providers, health system leaders will be more motivated than ever. They’ll conceive new ways to participate in wellness,” and execution will fall to those in marketing and consumer experience.

At first, these may seem like intimidating issues to manage. But it’s important to remember that they’re all facets of the same issue: a transformational shift in consumer preferences.

This shift means that solid marketing strategy and execution have never been so important. The formula for success remains the same: the right engagement, with the right consumers, at the right time. Marketers that achieve this formula will have healthier communities, healthier bottom lines and a more defensible position in tomorrow’s healthcare market.

Source: https://medium.com/ama-marketing-news/6-predictions-for-healthcare-marketing-in-2018-f81d5164d28b

Healthcare Marketing, the Natural Way

Healthcare marketing is often part science and part art. Your patients don't want to feel like you're up-selling them. They want to feel cared for! By applying proven strategies and creatively connecting with a target audience, you can appeal to new patients and maintain your relationships with current ones. Below is a round-up of tactics that are effective for doctor's offices:

  1. The Power of PPC
    Pay-Per-Click (PPC) is an intelligent form of online advertising for several reasons. Prospective clients frequently begin their search for health information and local providers through online searches via Google, Bing, Yahoo!, etc... You can use this bid on key words that are associated with your services, narrowing down your scope to reach a target audience. PPC is very effective for sales driven campaigns as you only pay for visitors who search for your product or service, look at your ad, and visit your website.
     
  2. Video Versatility
    Video is one of the most effective forms of communication for the healthcare industry. To this day, people are still perplexed by everyday medical situations and they constantly search the web for information about what they see or what they have. However, often times, the more information people find, the more confused they get. Short videos act as a visual aid for sharing information, making it easier for patients to understand the issues they are curious about. Furthermore, video education has proven to be the direction user engagement is heading towards as long as they are informative and snackable (We usually recommend a vid duration of 2 minutes or less, 5 min at most).
     

  3. Blogging/Newsletters
    Blogging has been proven to be incredibly effective in building brand awareness, retaining clients/patients and acquiring new patients! Why? A blog and accompanying email newsletter show your patients that your clinic is knowledgable and up-to date on current issues. A lot of our clients ask us about how to properly execute email marketing. As we've discussed in previous posts, email marketing is ineffective UNLESS you're providing your clients with reliable, customized, interesting content. When used properly together, blogging and email newsletters can be quite successful. 
     

We know marketing efforts can be intimidating to start. That's why we guide our clients through this process and even go as far as creating content for them! Our best piece of advice is to just start creating! You can't get better at something without practice. As medical professionals, you have unique knowledge, and your patients want to learn from you!

 

Creating a Community of Wellness: What Doctors Can Do to Engage Patients and Build a Cult Following

Word of mouth as we all know is the best from of advertisement. Doctors can take advantage of this beyond just being good at their job. Especially for the millennial demographic, patients value services that are multidimensional; meaning, they want to be part of a community. Looking at strategies that large companies are incorporating right now can be a great way to boost your business. For example: Tiffany’s & Co. and Gucci are opening their own restaurants to extend their brand identity and allow consumers to be part of their brand experience. Millennial nowadays view luxury much more through an experiential lens than materialistic. Health and wellness is becoming a status symbol. Doctors can incorporate the same strategy luxury companies are using to take advantage of this new trend in luxury. Below are the few things doctors can do to cultivate a following and build a brand. 

1. Develop a fitness club:

Weather it’s SoulCycle or Barry’s Bootcamp, doctors can bring their clients together for a workout class not only to promote health but also show their clients another side of themselves that aren’t so serious. Creating a facebook group centered around fitness and wellness is one method to organize group activities in your community.

 
fitness-cycling
 

2. Have a wellness newsletter:

This is a great strategy to allow your patients to be notified of your practice’s updates. This newsletter should focus on things that your patients find useful, such as which food to eat and avoid, debunk health myths, and promote upcoming initiatives. Your social media accounts should serve a similar function as well, drawing in new patients and maintaining the interest of current ones.

3. Create partnerships with other doctors of different expertise:

Creating synergy with others in your field is one of the best ways to expand your network and attract a larger audience. Developing a referral network is beneficial to everyone. 

 

It’s Almost 2018. Stop Doing These Things Because It Will Get Your Business Nowhere
 

 

Holiday season. Q4. We’re finally here – the last stretch of 2017. As 2018 approaches, it’s time to reflect on your progress and rethink your marketing strategy as a whole. Even in traditional fields such as medical, the consumer needs are constantly changing and now more than ever, businesses need to get as personal with them as possible. Consumers are immune to the generic, the norm, and the mass-produced. To help you navigate the ever-changing online landscape, here’s a list of marketing techniques that aren’t worth your time:

 

1.   Generalized Drip Campaign

Drip campaign refers to direct marketing methods such as email marketing (Think: Mailchimp). It’s widely used because companies can deliver information right in front of the consumers’ face. Drip campaigns are mainly pre-written content and are automatically sent at predetermined times in order to engage these contacts. The idea is to bombard your consumers’ inbox enough that they’ll consider buying the product or service. However, consumers are much smarter now; they do not pay attention to contents that appeared mass-produced. To make matters more complicated, many millennial consumers (age 19-35) use an alias email when signing up for newsletters; making many of the impressions from marketing emails useless.

The solution to this is to find ways to categorize your audience. Find ways to collect not only their emails, but their age/race/gender etc….Doing so will allow you to customize your content delivery with information that your consumers will find useful, which will increase engagement level. For example, we tend to build sign up forms that ask for additional information from our clients.

 

2.    Focusing on Quantity

As consumers are drowning in high influxes of information every day of their lives, the last thing businesses should be focusing on is producing more and more useless content. In the age of The Internet of Things, businesses have to be smart and produce content that is engaging, thought-provoking, and most importantly, useful to their audience. Make sure the content is focused on one subject matter and serves a particular purpose. Example: driving leads to another piece of content or supporting a recent campaign.

 

3.    Organic-Only Facebook Strategies

The misconception many people that most people have is gaining a large audience on social media is free. In 2017, Facebook surpassed 1 billion users. That is a lot of fish in the sea. Facebook organic reach is at an all-time low and continues to decline; researchers say that currently, only 2 to 6 percent of small businesses’ audience are seeing their posts. When it comes to marketing, the general rule of thumb is it doesn’t matter how many people see their content, if they’re not your audience, then it’s practically useless. Your high impression count does not matter if your reach is low. Instead of trying to do it organically, try using Facebook’s boosted posts and advertising to not only increase your reach but also ensure you are getting your message in front of the right people at the right time. It’s much more beneficial to dominate your niche pond than to swim endlessly in an ocean leading to nowhere.

 

4.    Relying Strictly On a Text-Based SEO Strategy

People are multi-dimensional. It’s time for your marketing strategy to be the same way. Today’s consumers are all about multimedia; people want videos, images, and audio. They want options. It’s important to think about how your message can be delivered effectively to your consumers in all angels. Short video format was a big marketing trend in 2017. In 2016, video marketing was on the rise but once marketers saw that people weren’t listening to the audio, they started captioning every piece of video content and the format took off. Everything is revolved around consumer behavior; therefore, it’s important to be considerate of all forms of media people consume. Just optimizing the text on your website is not enough; it’s time to optimize your video, images, and audio files for searchers. By doing this, you are optimizing your messages in all formats that the users are searching for.

 

Our closing message: Treat your customers, patients, and clients like the unique individuals they are. Be open to new ideas. And most of all, don't be afraid to challenge yourself.

 
Want to Get More Patients Through the Door? Start On the Web: How SEO and Google AdWords Can Boost the Health of Your Practice.
 

In the competitive jungle of business (yes, that includes medical practices…) the name of the game is no longer just “getting people through the door”.  That’s the final step of the process.  But nothing more.  And getting to that step at all increasingly depends on your online skill set and strategic abilities.  

Before we move on to some targeted tips to boost your practice’s profits, let’s cover some rudimentary definitions.  First on our list, what is SEO?  SEO (“Search Engine Optimization”) involves a variety of on-page and off-page strategies with the end goal of helping a web page rank as highly as possible on Google.  As a frame of reference, when you hear SEO marketers talking about that “coveted spot”, they mean the very first spot on Google’s search results for a particular query.  

Secondly, what’s Google AdWords?  AdWords is a digital tool published by Google to help companies track and optimize their marketing efforts.  Its features include keyword planning, a range of advertising options, customer engagement initiatives, and more.  

Given its bundled features, and that you only pay for results, AdWords is a must for every medical practice that’s serious about its marketing.  So, essentially, every medical practice that cares about its continued existence...

Still on the fence about this modern masterpiece of digital marketing?  Read on for 3 of our favorite features from this SEO powerhouse.  They’ll be sure to get more people on your site and more patients through your door.  

1. Keyword Planner lets you craft the perfect strategy

Knowledge (and eventual mastery) of keyword strategy is utterly vital to the health of your practice.  Without going into too much detail (you can find that here), keyword strategy is based around the inclusion of predetermined words (keywords) on a web page.  

The idea is to build a page with the goal of ranking top on Google for a certain keyword or cluster of keywords.  For instance, if you’re an ophthalmologist, “glaucoma patient” might be a keyword that would interest you.  

Keyword Planner presents you with an immense amount of incredibly useful info to help plan, implement, and track your keyword strategy.  AdWords will show you the number of local and national searches for a given keyword, which are incredibly useful in choosing which keywords to go after.  

For instance, let’s say you run a brain imaging clinic in Columbia, MD.  “Brain imaging” would be an extremely hard keyword to rank for, since the competition for such a widely used phrase would be fierce.  (You’ll be able to see all this in real time with AdWords.)  But “Columbia brain imaging” might very well be a keyword your clinic could rank for.  

Keyword strategy may be a vital aspect of SEO success, but it’s only one of the many benefits AdWords offers.  

2. PPC (pay-per-click) means there’s no barrier to entry

PPC is an elegant solution to the single largest hurdle medical practices encounter when setting up a bona fide marketing push: budget.  

The core appeal of a PPC campaign can be summed up in four words: you pay for results.  Here’s what a PPC campaign with AdWords would look like, from a financial perspective.  It’s disarmingly simple.  

You merely create your ad for free, and set a predetermined daily budget.  You’ll pay a set amount with each click on your ad, and that will continue until your budget is depleted (at which point you’ll be prompted to reset your budget).  

PPC eliminates the “budget factor” with online advertising, allowing even startup practices to compete with confidence.  

3. An emphasis on metrics means you can double down on what works

One of the largest recurring problems among marketing campaigns is a lack of emphasis on tracking results.  No expense is spared when it comes to planning the content of a campaign, the psychological triggers that will send the patient into your office and yours alone, etc.  We get it…it’s easy to get stuck there, especially if you’re new to marketing.  

But here’s the honest truth.  If you care about the health of your practice, you can’t get stuck there.  Because marketing campaigns are won and lost largely in this: emphatically watching metrics that you’ve determined to be important (local page views, keyword ranking, etc.) and then readjusting your approach depending on the results you get.  

If you can watch, you can adapt.  It’s just that simple, and just that vital.  Google AdWords offers a wealth of important digital metrics you can use to gauge the success of your campaign, according to your unique goals.  

Conclusion

Google AdWords is hands down one of the most powerful digital marketing tools at your disposal.  Just always remember (this should be part of your core marketing ethic): getting a patient in the door starts on the web.  

Piqued your curiosity about AdWords?  Good.  Click here for even more ways you can maximize your relevance and impact with AdWords.

 
 
Looking to Exude Industry Authority and Build Patient Trust? A YouTube Channel May Be Just What the Doctor Ordered for your Practice…
 

In the world of modern marketing, one core asset rises above all others in its ability to get patients through your door.  It’s not SEO (though that’s massively helpful).  And you won’t find it hiding in your social media channels, either (though, again, massively helpful, so include that in your marketing quiver by all means).  These are all vital strategic points, yes.  But the most important element comes from you, and you alone: trust.  

Trust is without a doubt the keystone of all successful marketing.  Without it, you’re getting nowhere fast.  The buzzword in marketing circles these days is “attention”….we’re in a constant battle for the attention of our prospects, who literally have thousands of avenues down which to turn their precious attention at any given moment.  But outside of shock value (probably not ideal for us medical marketers…), trust is the singular golden ticket of digital marketing.  What other benefits do you stand to gain, you’re probably wondering?  Read on.

1.Trust (no, we’re not being redundant…it matters that much).

Think of it…if trust is the golden ticket to marketing pretty much everything, how much more essential is it for medical marketing?  Your patients aren’t simply entrusting you with their money; they’re entrusting you with their physical and psychological well-being.  In other words, they’re already on high alert for a trustworthy ally in their quest for total overall health.  Trust is so important to them at this juncture, that they will be prioritizing it on the subconscious level as they surf websites and marketing materials.  

So how does a YouTube channel uniquely position you to win the trust of your clients and patients?  For starters, it allows you to leverage multiple points of sensory connection.  When you publish educational content on YouTube, you’re connecting with your prospects visually, with audio, and you’re establishing your unique expertise. Especially if you or members of your staff feature prominently in your content.  Don’t let yourself be camera or audio shy. Because guess what?  Your competitor across town who isn’t so shy is actively stealing your patients (and your revenue). 
Why, you ask?  They trust him or her more than you.  Not because of any inherent superiority.  Their practice may pale in comparison to your state-of-the-art equipment and celebrated medical expertise.  But they made the connection first.  They won the prospect’s trust and turned that prospect into a patient.  Next time, try to beat that practice across town to the punch.  (You can thank us later…)
 

2. A Modern Image (if “outdated” enters a prospect’s mind…you’re done)

Another truism in the world of marketing: if you’re not sprinting ahead, you’re falling behind, and quickly.  The world is accelerating, and marketing is one of the easiest sectors in which to verify this.  The name of the game today is integration.  Your prospects want (demand, really) access to your practice across channels, with the knowledge that you’re just a click or a swipe away.  (Double down on this fact if your team handles any sort of critical care scenarios.) 

As much as anything else, it’s what you’re implying to your patients that really gets them to pause and take note.  Again, if the word “outdated” even creeps into a prospect’s mind, you’re dead in the water.  In the realm of marketing, objective aims always apply (trust, modernity, SEO, etc.), but with the medical niche, the total integration factor is multiplied tenfold.  We really cannot emphasize that enough…
 

3. A Lot of the Work’s Been Done For You (but that doesn’t absolve you from strategizing)  

It’s important to remember that there are multiple avenues to successful marketing on YouTube (medical and otherwise).  If for some reason a full-blown content marketing approach isn’t your cup of tea, perhaps consider paid ads for your practice or any number of other methods.  

But let’s say for the sake of argument that you’ve opted to create a short ad for your practice, with the intention of running it on YouTube.  Frankly, that’s a great idea, and we commend you for your modern thinking.  But your work’s hardly done (and we mean that in the best way possible).  

Creating your ad is only the beginning.  The next step is to target which videos you want it to play prior to.  Your decision here will be based on the content of the video your ad will precede, the viewer demographics, etc.  This info is readily available through a variety of metrics tracking tools, and taking advantage of it will repay you handsomely.  But paid ads are just one of the many YouTube marketing tactics at your disposal.  

Whichever you choose, just remember: YouTube is a massive digital ecosystem.  What does this mean for you?  If you’re objective, intelligent, and know exactly who to target, you can leverage the unbelievable amount of existing user data on YouTube to take your practice to the next level more quickly than almost any other digital strategy.  

Final Thoughts

If you take nothing else away from this article, burn this one fact into your brain (and then repeat it three times daily in front of a mirror, for good measure): trust is the keystone of successful medical marketing.  And a YouTube channel for your practice is one of the quickest, surest ways to reach that critical objective.  

But we can break the matter of trust down even further, into subcategories that are every bit as vital.  Beyond building trust through multi-sensory connections (audio, visual, etc.), a well-maintained YouTube channel projects an attitude of industry expertise, and confidence in your facilities and abilities.  A modern, integrated image is more important in medical marketing than pretty much any other sector.  

Bet you’re already busy brainstorming your first video, aren’t you?  Go get after it, and good luck.  

 
Brooke Renov
How to Set a Marketing Budget for Your Business
 

In the early stages of a company's success, many entrepreneurs try to avoid setting a marketing budget. We're here to tell you, it's not as intimidating as it sounds. See our tips for getting the most for your money.

1. Define Your Marketing Goals 

A company's marketing budget should be customized to fit the needs of the company. Do you need more sales? Do you want to create brand awareness locally or nationally? Do you want to use marketing to revitalize relationships with existing customers?

2. Evaluate the Stage Your Business is in

For new businesses, it is widely recommended to spend between 8-10% of your revenue on marketing. However, there are exceptions for businesses in high-competition industries.
If you're industry is highly competitive, your budge can range anywhere from 12-20% depending on how high your operating costs are. 
For established businesses, with at least $5M in revenue, 12% is standard budget allocation. 
Additionally, understand that marketing drives revenue. Meaning you need marketing to grow as a company. Creating a marketing plan with a professional is one way of making sure this occurs. 

"Marketing Drives Revenue"

3. Test

It's highly likely that you won't KNOW the magic number until you test multiple marketing strategies, and evaluate which ones work best. This should be factored in to your marketing plan from the beginning. Marketing investment is a necessary risk. 

4. Don't Panic

Easier said than done. However, building up your marketing presence to accomplish your goals takes time. Make sure you look at how your marketing investment will pay off long term! You may not see direct results within the first couple months, but a successful marketing plan should increase your over-all revenues within the first year!

For clarification on marketing budget spending by industry, check out this helpful graph: