How to do Inbound Marketing for Health clinics?

Learn how to apply the methodology to attract new patients to your office in a progressive and sustainable way

Marketing strategies for offices, clinics and hospitals, which were previously divided mainly between traditional media and word of mouth, were gradually replaced by digital.

Today, Inbound Marketing is, without a doubt, one of the best strategies for clinics in the health fields to position themselves in a planned way on the internet and attract more and more patients.

But, after all, how to apply the methodology? How does it work exactly? What knowledge do you need to start promoting your clinic on the internet? These are the points we will cover in this article. Follow up!

Differentials of Inbound Marketing for Health Clinics

It is not possible to deny that the internet, today, is the first source of information on health issues for the population. From the patient’s perspective, it is much more convenient and faster to search for symptoms, diseases and treatments in “Dr. Google” than waiting for an appointment with an expert doctor. So how can health professionals adapt?

Well, the main alternative is precisely the possibility of attracting patients based on this new pattern of behavior, answering their most common doubts or needs through their internet channels.  

And that’s exactly the basic concept of Inbound Marketing — or Attraction Marketing, in free translation. Being focused on content strategies , Inbound Marketing is an excellent method to build your authority in digital.

It works like this: your patients are already on the internet and are already carrying out research constantly on various subjects, including their health and possible places to consult or perform any procedure.

In this moment of research, a spontaneous relationship opportunity of that potential patient with your clinic or with your competitor is generated. And the “winner” in this dispute is precisely the company that is investing in a relevant digital presence, with useful content that is consistent with its audience.

If you have a Google crawlable site, a rich blog with content and are present on social networks to promote all your communication, you are certainly ahead of your competition. You are, mainly, much closer to getting appointments with your potential patient.

Inbound Marketing Steps to Attract More Patients

The Inbound Marketing strategy is divided into four steps, focused on a sales funnel. In short, the funnel consists of the visitor’s relationship stages with the content you’ve produced.

  • Attraction: at this stage, the patient can relate to his clinic through social networks; or you can be attracted to your website/blog through educational content, with no marketing content — they are, in general, those articles about common symptoms, most known diseases, health tips. At this stage, it is very important to apply SEO strategies to improve your ranking on Google and manage to generate organic traffic to your website. When the user does not know your site or your authority in digital is still irrelevant, the position in the search results is crucial to get exposure.
  • Conversion: after gaining some authority in the attraction phase, the next step is to convert the visitor into a Lead (nomenclature given to the visitor who becomes a contact for your database). That is, you start to get that visitor’s email, among other possible information. For this, you can invest in digital baits with forms, pages for appointment scheduling, ads on Google Ads or social networks, among other possibilities.
  • Relationship: once you have channels to contact the lead, whether by email, WhatsApp or phone, it opens up the possibility to create a relationship. This step is essential to feed the lead with more interesting content for their journey. By gaining the trust of that potential patient, he will certainly remember your clinic when he needs to perform any medical appointment or procedure in your specialty. With leads segmented according to key criteria for your clinic, you can automate this part of relationship marketing with RD Station. For example, you can create email sequences that will automatically be sent whenever a lead meets certain criteria.
  • Analysis of results: every good digital marketing process requires monitoring of data and indicators in order to identify bottlenecks and adapt to inefficient processes. There are some tools that facilitate this checking with real-time statistics, such as RD Station, Google Search Console and Google Analytics. Among so many strategic information, it is possible, for example, to find out how long the user stays on your site and the number of times he or she returns; the amount of unique people who visited your site within a period of time; number of impressions, clicks and average position of your pages on Google; amount of leads, opportunities and sales converted on your website.

Content Marketing for Physicians: How to Design a Purchasing Journey for Your Patient?

“But then I just need to create a website and publish interesting articles on the blog so that new patients start arriving?”. Calm down, it’s not that simple.

Creating content also requires planning. You need to produce consistently and strategically so that your agendas meet the stages of your patient’s buying journey. Here’s how this work can be done from four main stages.

Learning and discovery: at this stage, the dissemination of more generic content is indicated, aimed at the top of the funnel. For example, content with general tips on preventive health care or other curiosities that may attract your potential patient. It is noteworthy that, at this stage, the visitor is often not even aware of a possible “problem” he has to solve. If you are a gynecology clinic, for example, it can spread awareness about the importance of preventive check-ups for women’s health.

Problem recognition: in general, this is the step to explore pain, symptoms and illnesses related to your specialty. Continuing the previous example of a gynecology clinic, we could begin to address some symptoms that indicate an irregularity with the health of the female body.

Solution of consideration: here it is worth delving into content that addresses solutions, forms of treatment and procedures in general. For example, if your persona is a woman after menopause, you could address a headline such as: x signs that hormone replacement is for you. 

Purchase decision: guidance for scheduling an appointment or examination at your clinic. Here the conversation is straightforward. In addition to directing you to an appointment, you can work on content with the main advantages of your diagnosis, on payment terms or presenting the health plans attended by your clinic, for example.

It is noteworthy: the purchase journey of your patient varies according to the segment of your clinic and, mainly, according to the profile and common behavior of your patients. Therefore, assess your market to draw the best communication strategy with your audience.

What does the code of ethics say about Medical Marketing

Digital Marketing for clinics must be governed by the medical advertising manual, respecting the rules and guidelines of CFM Resolution No. 1,974/11.

It is important to emphasize that the techniques and methods used in the Inbound Marketing strategy for clinics and hospitals do not violate these guidelines as long as there is a medical team designated to evaluate and approve all content produced and published on the internet by the clinic. 

Thus, the contents are always signed by specialist physicians in the area to avoid the promotion of procedures and information irresponsibly or without scientific support.

In addition, the objective of Inbound Marketing is to bring the reader to the clinic so that they can consult a professional. Therefore, it is not appropriate to use the blog to recommend procedures and medications so that the patient can decide what is the best treatment for him. The aim is to educationally highlight the dangers and symptoms of untreated pathologies and disorders.

Inbound Marketing Will Generate Sales

If you were unsure whether or not to invest in Inbound Marketing for your clinic,  I hope this article has helped you understand how the methodology works, as well as the strategy’s potential to continuously and sustainably attract patients to your company.