If you were to ask anyone what invention over the last 20 years has changed the course of history, most people, if not all of them would say the Internet, or the computer. Indeed, thanks to both those things, we have been able to communicate with other people from around the world, start our own businesses, and learn so much. However, a lot of people often often forget one of the first and most powerful search engines, Google. Indeed, what started as a college project by P.H.D. students became a common household name.
So, we are going to breakdown how Google works and how each thing can work towards your healthcare marketing needs.
The Paid Advertisement Section
This is the first section of Google search results that appear when the search results pull up. This part is often the most controversial part of online healthcare marketing. Because there is a lot of debate about their effectiveness and how much it could cost.
Google ads are the adspace that appear in front of search results. Companies pay for keywords depending on either how many times people click on the ad. The companies that pay for the ads want to be on the top page of results for what they pay for. However, there is no guarantee of placement.
The four factors that determine the rank of an ad is:
- Bid amount: bidding higher means higher rankings. But only bidding high isn’t enough.
- Auction-time ad quality: quality score (more below)
- Context of search: location, device, time, etc. relating to your ads. Is your ad the best choice, logically based on the context of each person and your current offering?
- Ad extension impact: how much of an improvement do your ad extensions make? More = better. Higher CTRs will provide bigger impacts.
It is a good (and the only) way to shortcut yourself to the top of the search results list. However, if you do not put a spending limit or know which keywords are the right ones to get the most clicks then you are more likely to lose money.
Google Maps and Business
This would be the giant map with the list of businesses and ratings below it. This second section is very effective for your medical marketing strategy for a variety of reasons.
For starters, the more you index your website, the more likely Google is going to count that towards your organic search results later on down the line. Another important thing to take note is that it literally puts your business on the digital map. This means that people who are looking for directions to your office, are likely going to follow through with a visit. Also, the listing itself doesn’t cost money.
This sort of listing is not all that different from a traditional phonebook. However it also shows your business reviews, which serves as a digital word of mouth. So if you are going to try and spread the digital word about your brick and mortar business, this is a good way to do it.
Organic Search Results
This section of the Google Page is where people are most likely going to get their information from. In fact 90% of all buying decisions and customer research happen here. Listing yourself on Organic search results out of all three sections takes the most amount of work. In fact, It takes a consistent amount of effort just for Google to rank you for the right relevant content.
The only way that you can rank on the first page of organic search results is to create content. The kind of content that is relevant to your business, consistant, and has the keywords you want to rank for. But how much does content matter?
The Mayo Clinic website can answer that with a 300 episode podcast with millions of downloads. If your content is good, people will flock to it.
The content can be anything that you are comfortable with such as a written blog, an audio podcast, or a video. As long as you are talking about work you enjoy, you are creating content where you are the expert of your field.
There are multiple facets of digital marketing, and many ways in which healthcare marketing can be applied. All that matters is finding what works for your business and what doesn’t. Because, no two businesses are exactly the same, each one will require a mixed marketing strategy.