Marketing is not the same as it was only several years ago. Today, digital marketing is king. There are very good reasons for this. Only 13 percent of American citizens do not use the internet. The internet, not TV, radio or print, is the primary tool people now use to obtain information and consume media.
As such, many industries need digital marketing to operate in the 21st century. However, healthcare has been one industry that has been slower to adapt the internet into its marketing repertoire. Despite that, there are many reasons why the healthcare industry needs effective digital marketers.
Patients Use the Internet for Medical Research
In the healthcare industry, patients are the consumers. Digital marketing is required to reach those consumers because that is the tool they are using to research healthcare, medicine, PACS system and illness. 77 percent of patients use search engines to perform research about their treatment. Also, 83 percent of patients visit the website for a hospital before making an appointment.
If you want to compete in the medical industry, you need a digital presence. If you don’t have one and your company has basically no search engine optimization, competitors who are far more tech savvy will be found by patients first. If you don’t make digital marketing a priority, you are ceding a good deal of your business to the competition. It’s just a fact.
Digital Marketing Can Be Personalized
More than probably any other industry, healthcare is deeply personal. One benefit of launching a digital marketing campaign in the medical industry is that you can personalize your advertisements.
With traditional advertising, a generic message is transmitted across a platform like TV, radio or print with the hope of reaching as many consumers as possible. However, more targeted and personalized advertising may actually be more successful at converting leads into paying customers. 48 percent of people spend more money when targeted with a digital personalized ad.
Personalized advertising is made possible due to big data analytics. With more information to comb through and more powerful software, advertising can be tailored instantly based on a person’s shopping history, internet history, preferences, and background. Each patient has very specific circumstances to his or her health and medical status. As such, it only makes sense to focus on advertising that can target that person’s specific health needs. More generic non-digital mass-market advertising campaigns cannot accomplish this.
Healthcare Is a Product
While many people in the healthcare industry like to think of themselves as having loftier un-capitalist goals, that doesn’t change the fact that any healthcare enterprise or medical based company is a business that needs to produce a profit to survive. Despite this fact, many entities in the healthcare industry have been wary of marketing in general. This reluctance has again reemerged with the healthcare industry being one of the least integrated in terms of digital marketing.
Since healthcare is a product, it must be marketed to succeed. Certain areas of healthcare are very product oriented. This is the case for pharmaceuticals for example. The drug industry is certainly competitive. However, that competition and profit motive benefit the patients by making it cost effective to put millions every year into developing new treatments for patients. This is why it is important for health organizations to invest in pharmaceutical sales training courses and other means of producing better marketing for drugs. Drugs must be profitable for pharmaceutical companies to invest a lot of financial capital in their research and development. If it wasn’t profitable, there would be less R&D. Newer, better drugs wouldn’t be developed, and patients would suffer as a result.
Marketing has certainly been moving in the digital direction for quite some time now. Companies in the healthcare industry should not ignore the power of digital advertising. If they do, they can expect to lose a gigantic part of their market share to competitors.