Secrets To Marketing Your Practice
- Volume 27 - Issue 6 - June 2014
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The secrets to marketing your practice are hiding in plain sight but are you really using them effectively? This author emphasizes the importance of consistent online content updates, marketing in a comprehensive manner and building referrals from your current patients.
There is no secret to marketing your podiatry practice. People may think marketing means there is a purple pill they can take, that there is one thing they can do that will solve all their problems. This simply does not exist in spite of all the emails we are all receiving daily telling us that someone “has the guaranteed answers to getting you on page one of Google by spending hardly any money.”
The truth is that marketing, like everything else in life, is a process that requires time, tools and people to make it work. It can be tedious and it can be fun, just like everything else. Great marketing is a comprehensive, sometimes complex approach to letting your market come to the conclusion that you are the best choice in solving its problems.
The paradox is that “Secrets to Marketing Your Practice” do exist but they are not really secrets. They are hiding in plain sight. Most doctors reading this article will say, “I already know that” to much of what I am going to tell you but here is a secret: you might know it but you do not do it. That makes all the difference between those podiatry practices that I see surging forward and growing the practices they want, and those practices that are convinced that the next five years are just going to get worse and worse.
Secret Number One: Do Not Underestimate The Importance Of Consistent Content Additions To Your Web Presence
Most podiatrists are woefully underutilizing the Internet to build their practice without realizing it. Most podiatrists have a website and even have some social media platforms set up for their practice. However, that is simply not enough.
Let me give you an analogy. When I bought a big Lexus LS460, I was very happy with it. I am a big guy and it is a big car. As I drove it off the showroom floor, it was gleaming. I drove it for about 400 miles and it suddenly lurched, bucked and stopped right in its tracks. I got out and kicked it, and said, “This car is a piece of junk and it does not work.” I am sure this has also happened to you, right?
Of course not. It did not happen to me either because I, just like you, are well aware of a sophisticated network of places all over North America called gas stations. Long before my car stopped working, I went to the gas station and filled up my tank. I have done it many, many times since then and my big, beautiful car is still taking me anywhere I need to go in style.
Your website and your social media platforms are exactly like your car. They need gas if they are going to do anything for you and that gas is content. Period. More than one company has most likely told you recently that they are search engine optimization (SEO) experts, which is the new snake oil being sold on the Internet. Doctors are especially good targets because they have some money and no way to judge any of this. Many doctors are spending hundreds and even thousands of dollars each month for what amounts to nothing. Worse, these companies are using “tricks” to try to fool Google into putting you at the top of the searches and in most cases, these tricks will seriously damage your Internet SEO reputation and ruin your ability to market online.
If the company uses phrases like “guaranteed” or “Google Certified” or “$299 gets you on page one with no work,” you should run the other way. There is no such thing as Google Certified. Guaranteeing results before knowing anything about the health of your current Web properties is something no reputable companies would ever do. Caveat emptor is the rule when sorting out who is going to work with you online. It is essential to have multiple references from doctors just like you with great results. Do your homework and save yourself enormous frustration.