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How to Market Alternative Health Solutions Online

Over the past year at Immersion Active, we’ve seen a significant increase in interest in online advertising from clinics and companies offering pain management and alternative health solutions.

From companies producing devices and nutraceutical to stop restless leg syndrome, to a pain management clinic in the mid-West, to organizations promoting exercise protocols for healing, we’ve had an abundance of conversations with alternative health solution providers who are interested in digital marketing.

That interest is well placed. As boomers age, they’re increasingly searching for innovative healthcare solutions outside the realm of traditional pharmaceutical cures. And, they’re increasingly searching for those solutions online.

So, what are the key steps to marketing pain management and alternative health solutions online?

1. Creating an Online Marketing Plan

Before you embark on any online advertising, we recommend developing an online marketing strategy. Your strategy should include:

  • Competitive analysis, including both a survey of your community (if you are in a specific geographic area) and your specialty.
  • Reputation assessment, including options for referrals and to promote word-of-mouth.
  • Audience analysis and demographics.
  • Mission, purpose, and values statements.
  • Your unique value proposition.
  • Messaging and creative recommendations.
  • Three-year strategic vision.
  • Six-to-eighteen-month tactical plan.

Having a strategic plan that guides your online marketing activities will prove invaluable to you and any agencies you might work with. A solid strategic plan will keep you focused on the activities that provide the best return on your investment, and will help you make or justify decisions as new opportunities present themselves.

2. Optimizing Your Web Presence

Have you optimized your web presence? Make sure you’ve leveraged these tactics, listed in order of importance, before you consider paid advertising.

Your Website

Mature consumers rely on the Internet to research health and wellness topics. They will search deeply and spend significant amounts of time exploring their options before calling to set up an appointment. Your website is often their first and most important source of information about you and your practice.

Make sure you have a website that:Screen Shot 2016-08-10 at 11.37.01 AM

  • States your value proposition on the Home page.
  • Clearly describes your services.
  • Shows a traceable phone number on every page.
  • Includes an inquiry form that only asks for the necessary information.
  • Follows the guidelines described in this post.

For more information about why seniors might hate your website, review this post.

Directories

When making purchasing decisions, older adults rely heavily on word-of-mouth recommendations. As a result, two key elements can have a major influence on your practice’s online effectiveness: 1 – Directories such as Google, Yelp, HealthGrades.com, RateMDs.com, and Vitals.com; and 2 – Facebook.

To optimize your directory listings, make sure you:

  • Have claimed your listings and updated them with the latest information.
  • Ask your patients to rate you and post reviews.
  • Monitor the listings for negative feedback and respond in an empathetic, helpful manner focused on resolving the issue.

FacebookScreen Shot 2016-08-10 at 11.37.16 AM

When it comes to Facebook, make sure you have a page that:

  • Has a strong description of your practice.
  • Includes relevant photos and addresses.
  • Gets updated multiple times per week.
  • Speaks to your audience in a voice that connects with them.
  • Is monitored regularly so that you can respond to comments. Consumers are looking for a conversation online and if they comment, they highly value your continued engagement.

YouTube

Finally, round out your online presence with your own YouTube channel that:

  • Contains strong descriptions of your practice.
  • Uses optimized video descriptions to improve search results.
  • Contains videos that are relevant and educational.
  • Features your doctor(s) if possible, to help make personal connections with potential patients.

3. Leveraging a Full-Funnel Advertising Campaign

Finally, after you’ve created your strategic plan and optimized your online presence, you should be ready to conduct an online advertising campaign.

Often, we hear from companies who have tried one or more online marketing channel (usually PPC) without success. What we hear is that they can drive visits, but they can’t convert those visits into an inquiry, appointment, or sale. To address this issue, we usually suggest a three-pronged approach.

  1. Conduct a full-funnel advertising campaign to generate awareness, influence consideration, and then drive the purchase. By building your relationship with the consumer throughout the sales funnel, you’ll find that you generate higher-quality leads that already have a strong connection with your brand. Read our post on full-funnel advertising for more information.
  2. Make sure your marketing and sales teams are aligned. Once someone calls or completes an online inquiry, what happens? Does the person answering the phone have specialized training in working with older consumers? Do they understand that it takes longer and requires more touch-points to convert a mature consumer? Aligning your marketing and sales teams can increase conversions by as much as 32%.
  3. Finally, make sure you are nurturing your leads into conversions and your existing clients into referrals and reviews. Automated emails usually offer the most cost-effective way to maintain the relationships you have started to build with your prospects and clients.

If you’re marketing an alternative health solution or a pain management product, there’s no better time to enter the digital marketing world. People are searching for innovative healthcare solutions online. Make sure that they can find you.

If you need help with effectively leveraging the Internet to market an alternative healthcare solution, give us a call at 301-631-9277, or get in touch with us online.

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