Lead generation strategies are essential for any business to thrive. While healthcare deals directly with people’s lives, it’s still a business like any other.
Getting individuals interested in your services and persuading them to keep in touch is the goal of lead generation. But to do that, you first need to offer a variety of ways for potential patients to get in touch with you.
Acquiring new customers is tough! Even with the right strategies in place, many potential patients might ignore your practice and go to a rival. Our time-tested patient lead generation techniques will ensure that you don’t miss out on potential clients and income.
Although maintaining relationships with current patients is vital, bringing in new ones is what keeps the practice alive. Seeking out new patients is an integral part of any medical practice.
But how do healthcare businesses determine the best patient lead generation source and manage the ones from several co-existing sources?
Well, this guide explores the different lead generation methods to help you identify what works best for healthcare providers.
Digital Lead Generation Strategies
1) SEO-friendly website
Your hospital, practice, and company’s website say a lot about you, especially in terms of expertise. Keep in mind that every online lead-generation tactic you employ will eventually bring visitors back to your website.
There, visitors will figure out how to get in touch with you for further details and decide whether or not they can trust you. To determine if your website is in good form to create healthcare leads, ask yourself the following questions:
- Is it easy for search engines to find your website?
- Is it simple to use?
- Are your contact details visible on every page?
- Is the loading time quick?
- Does it offer visitors relevant information?
You might want to revisit and revamp your website if you don’t have a definite answer to any of the questions above. Ensure that your website is well-designed and maintained so that customers, patients, and potential business partners in the healthcare industry have confidence in your company and what you offer.
Effective search engine optimization (SEO) is crucial for the generation of healthcare leads. This is how search engines can contextualize, index, and show your website. Ensure that your website optimizes:
- On-page blog content
- Title tags
- Meta descriptions
Several factors require optimization, but the three above are a solid place to start when driving lead generation for the healthcare industry. Additionally, since those leads may turn into patients, optimize your website for the keywords that will bring in quality traffic.
These keywords can change periodically, so carry out intensive keyword research to stay on top of the search engine. Making your website SEO-friendly is among the most cost-effective methods to generate new leads.
2) Conduct webinars
Webinars may seem like a strange tool to use for lead generation. Most marketers may view it as a lead-nurturing process rather than one that drives lead generation. But webinars are immensely powerful in building awareness and educating viewers.
Healthcare providers can massively benefit from creating webinars targeting specific consumers or illnesses. These are some of the benefits your facility can attain through the creation and dissemination of a webinar:
- Healthcare consumers are rarely as aware as they should be when it comes to their ailments and conditions. A webinar can add immense value to their lives as it will deepen their perspective and encourage them to reach out to you for treatment.
- A webinar enables you to reach a larger audience. Online registration forms also facilitate the collection of vital data for lead generation, helping a company to better segment and market to various groups, enhance its retention strategy, and turn the audience into potential leads.
- Webinars are a highly interactive lead generation platform. It encourages audience participation, and you will likely address some of your viewers’ concerns. This interactive system can foster trust and credibility in your facility.
- Above all, webinars help generate high-quality leads. Viewers have high levels of intent and will likely schedule an appointment or carry out actions you specify in the webinar.
You can have multiple reasons for creating and sharing a webinar with viewers worldwide. But if your primary objective is to generate leads, ensure you include actions viewers can take that ultimately starts their patient journey within your healthcare facility, such as specific tests or vaccinations.
But keep in mind that prior planning and ample time are necessary to prepare for a webinar. It is advisable to hold a brainstorming session in advance to create the webinar’s agenda and goals.
To maximize the growth of your audience after the event, you must develop a post-webinar strategy. Provide compelling content with vital information to drive traffic to your business. Which can easily include email campaigns or various touchpoints as a part of your automated marketing strategy. This brings us to the next point, email marketing.
3) Email marketing
Email is, without a doubt, one of the most effective marketing tools when it comes to increasing patient engagement and revenue. In fact, research studies indicate that one of the best methods for bringing in new patients is email marketing.
It’s not surprising that more healthcare providers are using email marketing to contact patients given its many advantages, such as increased engagement, cost-effectiveness, and reach.
Moreover, due to the fact that your patients’ email inboxes are their private online spaces, communicating with them there gives you the focused attention you cannot receive on social media.
So how do you use email marketing to drive lead generation?
- Segment your email list
The most successful marketing strategy, according to over 51% of healthcare marketers, is segmentation. A segmented email list will enable more relevant messaging and increase the likelihood that the receiver will act.
- Use email automation
Manually sending emails to leads is time-consuming and frustrating to carry out in any industry, and healthcare is no different. Fortunately, most email providers allow you to schedule emails in advance, so you can send emails to specific leads at various times based on their preferences. These email services enable you to split-test different email components and arrange emails so that one action triggers another.
- Follow strict HIPAA compliance
The value of privacy is one of the main distinctions between healthcare and other sectors. Always keep in mind that many patients may interpret even a general email as personal information. Trust is essential for long-term marketing success in the healthcare industry. Your first step should be to make sure that all of your systems and procedures are secure. Use HIPAA-compliant email marketing software whenever possible.
- Don’t overwhelm respondents with too many emails
Most patients stated that receiving too many emails from their doctors or healthcare institutions was the main reason for them unsubscribing. Be cautious of communication frequency if you want to raise lead generation and concentrate on providing high-quality content over a large quantity of meaningless material.
Email marketing takes time, despite how simple it may seem. Effective email automation will offer optimum lead generation channels, freeing you up to concentrate on caring for your patients and establishing your clinic.
4) Social media
Using social media for your lead generation is a no-brainer. Every industry has a lot to gain from the expansion of its social media following. Healthcare facilities, in particular, can become more accessible and engaging when they establish an active social media presence.
Presently, almost all brands and businesses recognize the value of having an online presence. Research shows that social media is in use by almost 70% of American healthcare companies. Social media platforms for the healthcare industry might turn your little clinic into a booming business or make your hospital the top choice in your area.
Creating your clinic’s profile is the first step to establishing your presence online. Lead generation largely differs from one platform to another. Instagram thrives with visual and film content and can help you reach a massive audience.
In comparison, Twitter depends on your ability to write and create compelling content. Facebook is a goldmine for accessing the older generation and generally shows the highest ROI among these platforms.
So, what are some steps you need to follow across all social media platforms?
- Create content geared to the specific site’s audience
As we’ve mentioned, each site differs vastly in its preferred content format. Moreover, it is essential to figure out the best timeframes to post so that you reach a large audience and gain exposure.
- Stay consistent
Make sure to schedule social media engagement into your lead generation strategy. You can invest in tools that help you schedule your posts while you’re providing care and treating patients.
- Promote content on your platforms
Share blogs, stories, forthcoming events, and anything else that could be interesting and useful to your prospects on social media. Regular blogging helps you build credibility with your prospects, establishes you as a resource, and increases customer loyalty. To do this, you can interact with your followers, respond to comments, and groups, share user-generated content, and monitor what your followers are discussing.
- Track and conduct follower research
Tracking your growth on social media is essential to identify what kind of content, media format, and material is working with your followers. Look into the other healthcare accounts your audience follows and see what content they post. Doing this can help you understand what your followers expect from your page and their preferences.
Social media has the potential to generate leads effectively by increasing website traffic and conversion rates. Using social media in the medical sector will also ensure that people receive accurate information from reliable sources. Additionally, it will increase public awareness while enhancing the credibility of healthcare practitioners.
5) Content marketing
You must enhance your healthcare lead generation strategies for the internet as more consumers rely on the web for medical information. Digital marketing trends have a much wider reach than traditional brick-and-mortar strategies.
A strong healthcare content marketing plan may help you continually connect with your target audience and convert those conversations into lucrative leads.
Although other businesses have embraced content marketing as a standard procedure, many healthcare professionals find it difficult to do so in a way that is both helpful and empathetic.
The healthcare industry is a challenging subject to write about because of the scientific terminology, perplexing procedures, and extensive list of confusing measures. So how do we create and market content in a way that is easy to read and informative?
- Create a blog
When you provide original and helpful content, it has the potential to go viral. There are a high chance potential patients will notice it, and eventually, it will boost lead generation. This helps you draw in your target market, some of whom will become devoted consumers. You can improve your search engine rating and make it simpler for prospective patients to find you by maintaining a consistent blog. Additionally, ensure that your content is authentic and original. Duplicate content can bring harsh consequences from search engines, such as pages not being indexed or a substantial drop in rankings.
- Answer questions
According to the Pew Research Center, 35% of adults search for medical symptoms or try to get a diagnosis online. This means that answering frequently asked questions about health on your website can become a terrific way to generate leads.
- Create diverse content
Alongside text-based blogs, you must explore other forms of healthcare content marketing. Create brief videos on YouTube that touch on medical conditions or symptoms. Videos are frequently the clearest way to explain certain concepts. While creating and sharing this content, ensure it’s easy to understand. Remember that you are writing for average individuals who are not well-versed with complex medical theories or terminologies.
You are passing up an opportunity to truly engage your audience if content creation is not a part of your marketing strategy. Your client communication and lead generation initiatives can thrive with excellent content, which can also build credibility and increase trust with your audience.
(Important Note: Ensure you plan, schedule, and follow a content calendar. Sporadic content uploads will rarely help you gain the trust of any blog follower.)
6) Display ads on health information and health insurance websites
As we’ve mentioned above, 35% of adults search for medical symptoms or try to get a diagnosis online. While this isn’t the best practice and can lead to a faulty diagnosis on the lead’s part, health information websites are a treasure trove of high-quality leads.
Paid display marketing is the quickest path to improving your bottom line out of the several elements that make up a strong digital marketing plan.
Paid search places your business at the top of Google’s search results, whereas display advertisements are a little more passive but have a much bigger impact on brand recognition.
Display ads are those that appear either off to the side or at the top of a webpage (banner ads). The majority of the time, you see the advertisement because it is connected to the page’s content or due to your previous searches.
For example, someone may view your image or video ads when looking up symptoms on WebMD or while watching a YouTube video about their condition. Some highly ranked health information websites are:
When you’re trying to get your display ads on healthcare information websites, don’t forget about the sites that offer in-depth information about medications and patient prescriptions.
Health insurance websites offer another platform for you to access and pull in leads online. Several leads searching for different insurance policies may be doing so due to a recent health scare or wake-up call.
They will likely keep a lookout for a trustworthy healthcare provider if that is the case. Some great insurance platforms like Emblem Health and Molina Healthcare are ideal options for you to display ads or run sponsored content for high-quality leads.
7) Leverage healthcare scheduling platforms
Appointment scheduling is one of the most tedious aspects of the patient journey worldwide. Convenience is of the highest priority to most patients booking appointments. Moreover, patients facing emergencies can greatly benefit from the option to book an appointment online.
Over 67% of patients prefer to arrange appointments online, according to research. More than half of Gen Xers and Millennials said they would switch service providers if they could schedule appointments online.
Investing in a solution that helps you schedule appointments online or looking into healthcare aggregator platforms is a great idea for any provider. While maintaining your website and establishing your presence online is a smart idea. There’s a high chance you won’t rank immediately when you create this platform.
Reaching new leads requires you to branch out and access them across other platforms that help you do so.
Some of the top platforms used by leads to find doctors near them in the US are:
With the use of the internet platform, ZocDoc, patients may search for doctors by specialty, insurance coverage, and area. They can also schedule an appointment right away using the website. Zocdoc provides backend scheduling solutions for healthcare providers, which are accessible from both the practitioner’s website and Zocdoc. They are situated in New York City and give medical professionals a platform for the following cities–New York City, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx, Long Island, Baltimore, Washington, DC, Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, Miami, Los Angeles, San Diego, and many more.
Blueshieldca, headquartered in Oakland, CA, provides patients access to several hospitals, doctors, and specialists so they may find care no matter where they live or work. They currently provide patients with a platform to identify healthcare providers throughout the state of California.
To provide WebMD website users with immediate access to provider search and scheduling capabilities, healthcare operations startup Symplr and health information giant WebMD entered into a partnership. Now WebMD users may schedule appointments with Symplr’s clientele. This includes doctors at medical centers like Baystate Health and the University of Tennessee Medical Center. WebMD’s care portal offers users access to healthcare providers across all 50 states. WebMD, like ZocDoc, is located in NYC.
Vitals primarily provided patients with a platform to review and rate healthcare providers across the US. Over time they’ve partnered with appointment scheduling solutions to give patients easy access to care. Vitals is headquartered in Lyndhurst, New Jersey.
Positioning your practice on one of these platforms is a way to gain access to high-quality leads. Most people searching for providers on these platforms are ready to schedule appointments and book consultations making lead generation much faster on your end.
8) Build a positive online presence
RepuGen, a medical reputation management system, recently revealed a study on how the validity of review ratings and key review attributes influence a patient’s decision-making process when selecting a doctor.
With 81% of patients considering online reviews to choose a healthcare provider, three critical factors influenced their decision: feelings expressed through user feedback, star ratings, and an overall number of reviews.
Online reviews were crucial to 95% of the patient cohort in their decision-making phase. Furthermore, 40% of them refused to see providers with negative feedback.
Healthcare providers must:
- Collect a substantial amount of feedback and reviews. Patients are typically hesitant to contact clinics with few reviews, even if they are positive and show high ratings.
- Ensure that a vast majority of the reviews are positive, and address any negative reviews in a transparent and accountable way. For example, if a patient complains about a lengthy wait time, do not invalidate their experience. Instead, ask them how you can compensate for the time spent or offer assistance to give them a better resolution after the experience.
- Monitor and track reviews consistently across various reviewing platforms and sites. You must implement a system for monitoring your internet reputation, including positive and negative patient reviews.
- Patient reviews can assist a medical practice in increasing its visibility and reach on Google.
Platforms you can use for this purpose are Yelp, RateMDs, Vitals.com, Healthgrades, and other online review sites. Positive patient evaluations, such as five-star scores, not only improve your practice’s credibility but also boost your search engine ranking, ultimately propelling you to the first page of search results.
Patient feedback collection is the most effective technique to spot internal problems that impact patient retention. You can ask patients to provide feedback on their experiences, including scheduling appointments, medical staff behavior, communication skills, and expertise.
You will have a better awareness of your standing and overall patient satisfaction. This will ultimately help you make the required adjustments to optimize your service.
Offline strategies are a great place to start but you also need to focus on your offline lead strategies to optimise lead generation.
Offline Lead Generation Strategies
Lead generation strategies depend largely on your ability to market and promote your practice across various channels. Many marketers may disregard offline strategies, claiming that reaching new leads online is the most effective strategy. But as of now, several offline tactics highlighted below continue to show promise in generating new leads.
1) Word of mouth
One of the most effective methods for businesses to attract new leads is word of mouth. It turns out that choosing a hospital is heavily influenced by word-of-mouth advertising.
A study surveyed several respondents on their reasons for choosing a healthcare practice. Half of them claimed to base their decision on recommendations from friends and families. A substantial chunk of research concludes that choosing a hospital and doctor is significantly influenced by family, friends, or co-workers.
Nielsen found that 92% of customers worldwide said they place the highest level of trust in suggestions from friends and family over all other types of marketing.
With the word-of-mouth strategy, information is passed on verbally between people, either directly or through the Internet and social media. Here are a few word-of-mouth strategies to boost lead generation:
- Collect testimonials and feedback– Engaging patients who would refer your practice to others is the ultimate objective of word-of-mouth advertising. Ask patients directly if they would recommend your practice to others. Send them digital feedback forms and send gentle reminders asking them to submit this information.
- Offer rewards and create a referral-based loyalty campaign- Offer clever referral incentives to encourage enthusiastic patients to recommend your healthcare service to others. Patient referral programs are a clever technique to promote word-of-mouth advertising in the healthcare industry. This can promote retention while accelerating the acquisition of new clients.
- Optimize your online presence– Since it does entail an internet lead-generating technique, this may seem like a weird strategy to incorporate into your offline efforts. But word-of-mouth now relies on words, online and offline. Ignoring your online reviews, ratings, and feedback is a dangerous move. Negative reviews on your social media or Google reviews can destroy any word-of-mouth campaign.
- Offer positive patient experiences– People have learned to anticipate being treated as valuable customers thanks to the retail industry. The rules, practices, and interactions at your practice, must go above and beyond expectations. Raise the bar, deviate from the usual, offer relevant solutions, and provide high-quality service wherever possible. Positive customer experiences can result in organic word-of-mouth marketing and generate high-quality leads.
[Also Read: How to Improve Patient Experience in 7 Easy Steps]
When it comes to promoting a hospital, it’s clear that word-of-mouth marketing is one of the most potent lead-generation tactics available. Furthermore, recommended patients or customers are more likely to stay loyal, become ambassadors, and bring new business.
2) Billboard advertisements
The average commuter only glances at a billboard ad for a few seconds, so conveying your message effectively takes extensive thought. Despite the rise of digital marketing, billboard advertising is still effective at raising brand awareness and reaching out to potential customers.
According to a study conducted by Nielsen. After the collection of 453 surveys on the efficiency of digital billboards over one week in early 2020, the researchers found the following:
- 62% of the 453 respondents who took the study stated they saw digital billboards within the previous month.
- 65% of respondents reported taking action, which might have included visiting the establishment, viewing the website, or using social media for the establishment.
- 52% of them engaged in mobile-related activities, such as scanning QR codes, visiting websites, searching for hashtags, etc.
Now that we know the value of a billboard ad, let’s get into what steps you can take when designing a billboard to advertise your healthcare facility.
Steps to take when using billboard advertisements:
- Incorporate a distinct CTA
You can place a call-to-action (CTA) on your billboard to send individuals who might be looking for more details to your webpage or clinic. You may include a dynamic QR code that people can scan to access your online services. Provide a text message number so that patients can call to schedule a free consultation. Include a promotion for a cost-free or discounted in-office visit.
- Concise and clear copy
Although it’s only natural for a medical practitioner to want to give existing and future consumers as much information as possible, healthcare billboards should be brief while incorporating a decent amount of information. After bringing patients to your facilities, you can enlighten them in further detail about your medical services. Keep your billboards appealing, easy to read, and helpful.
- Reach relevant viewers
Billboard advertisement largely depends on whether the people viewing it are interested in the services offered. Reaching your target audience can be made much easier by being more deliberate with your advertising. Healthcare billboards can be a particularly successful approach to reaching marginalized areas that might not connect to other forms of communication.
In densely populated urban areas, billboards are one of the most cost-effective ways to get leads through the door. According to the research, billboard advertising may be the most effective way to promote a healthier neighborhood and a population that is more educated in digitally deprived areas.
3) Radio Ads
Radio advertisements may seem like a thing of the past. Most marketers typically ignore it without realizing its value as a high-quality lead-generation tool.
Every business’s success can depend on its visibility. The ability to reach out to a massive audience is fundamental to any lead generation strategy. Radio gives most advertisers a great edge in terms of reach and visibility among new and relevant audiences.
Any profitable healthcare business can benefit from using radio to generate leads. Radio not only reaches a loyal following but also encourages them to take action immediately.
Gaining the audience’s trust is crucial when you run a healthcare brand, and radio is the ideal medium. Despite the introduction of extensive advertising platforms, individuals continue to trust established advertising channels like radio.
Listeners are also more likely to trust a business and even book appointments or purchase a product when the radio host mentions a particular brand, healthcare provider, or service.
Tips to keep in mind when advertising on the radio:
- Much like billboard ads, ensure you target relevant listeners who fit into your healthcare facility’s customer profiles. For instance, if you’re an OBGYN, you should target listeners who are pregnant women and their significant others. There’s no point if your ad reaches a single man in his 20s when you don’t cater to his needs.
- Choose programs based on your target listeners. Moreover, ensure that your ad’s timing aligns with your target audience. Carrying this out can help you see an immediate increase in lead generation.
- Create meaningful and engaging content for the advertisement. Radio’s only crutch is the lack of visuals. So, paint a picture with your words and incorporate clear CTAs that listeners can carry out when they tune in for a show.
Radio is a wonderful option for anyone trying to bring diverse leads into their healthcare facility. Additionally, radio is one of the most affordable options for offline advertising.
4) Digital Signage
Digital signage can attract the attention of viewers more seamlessly than any other media format because of its vivid screens and colorful, dynamic content.
Digital signage is an excellent communication tool at larger hospitals because of the busy environment that includes patients, visitors, nurses, doctors, and support workers.
This technology is also helping smaller clinics and hospitals maintain patient engagement, establish a name for themselves, and offer healthcare information.
If you’re wondering how hospitals can boost lead generation with this tool, the answer lies in the following core principle: improved patient experiences.
Patients who visit hospitals that incorporate digital signages that help with navigation, appointment information, and more are likely to talk about it with family and friends post-visit. Here are some other ways hospitals can use digital signage to provide an enhanced patient experience:
- Hospitals can show high-definition panoramic videos of meditation or relaxing soundscapes in silent rooms using digital signage panels or 4K video walls. Both the patients and the employees can benefit from this because it lessens their stress and improves the atmosphere of the clinic.
- Digital signage may be a highly useful tool for informing patients and other visitors to the facility about health-related information and advice on illness prevention or medical issues.
- Stepping into a hospital with a display unit indicating wait times significantly alleviates the tension of not knowing how long it will take to receive an examination which is a better alternative to staring at four walls for hours on end.
Digital signage is additionally valuable in an emergency, such as a fire, fuel leak, health issue, or security risk.
With that, we reach the end of this guide. Creating and implementing lead generation strategies across various channels is essential to the growth of your practice.
But wait, what happens when you implement these strategies and the leads pour in? The next step is to ensure you experience zero lead leakage and capture every lead.
You must implement a system that helps you capture, distribute and manage patient leads across every channel. Your patient management platform should help capture and distribute leads automatically as and when a lead enters your patient journey.
Look no further if you’re looking for a platform that will guarantee zero lead leakage and assist you in increasing total lead capture. LeadSquared’s robust Healthcare CRM is the ideal solution for healthcare providers worldwide.
Moreover, LeadSquared’s healthcare CRM is fully HIPAA compliant, with Business Associate Agreement (BAA) in place to maintain PHI security and overall HIPAA compliance.
LeadSquared’s CRM offers a range of stellar features for marketing alongside several healthcare platform integrations. If you’re getting started on your lead generation journey, take the first step towards high-quality leads by booking a demo today!