As a healthcare provider, your potential patients are at varying stages in their need for your services. Some may be looking for a new physician, either because they changed insurance or aren’t happy with their current provider. Others may not yet have a primary healthcare provider but have decided to be more proactive with their health.
Whatever the reason, they need to find a physician and want to know who will best meet their needs. And with a strong lead generation strategy, those people could become your patients.
Lead generation is the step between introduction and conversion. Once potential patients hear about your practice, you continue engaging with them to increase their interest and motivate them to take the next step of calling you to make an appointment.
Call 888-601-5359 to speak with a strategist about lead generation services from WebFX, or keep reading to learn more about the types of lead generation strategies that are most effective for physicians, as well as how you can start using them.
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Why is lead generation important for physicians?
One of the great things about Internet marketing is the ability to reach thousands of people at one time. With SEO, PPC, social media, and a variety of other tactics, you can reach audiences you never would’ve been able to with traditional marketing. However, this is only valuable if you can turn them into leads. Without a lead generation strategy, you could spend time and money attracting traffic that doesn’t help your practice.
Lead generation allows you to focus your efforts on prospects that are most likely to visit your practice and encourage them to do so. As you increase engagement and interaction, get a better sense of what they want and need from a doctor, and build up their trust and confidence in your staff, you can walk them through the steps towards making an appointment.
There’s another important benefit to lead generation for physicians—it helps you refine your overall marketing efforts. Lead generation is a multistep process, and with each step, the pool of prospects gets smaller. This may sound like a negative effect, but as the pool narrows, you’re left with only the most qualified leads.
However, if a significant number of site visitors results in a paltry number of new patients and appointments, there may be a flaw in the process. Perhaps your initial approach is attracting the wrong audience, or your value proposition isn’t as strong as it needs to be. By breaking down the process, you can understand what works and what doesn’t, as well as how you can improve.
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How can physicians generate more leads?
There are many ways to raise awareness of your practice and bolster its credibility. These methods can also be great lead generation opportunities if you know how to make the most of them. The following ideas will help you more effectively convert your site visitors into leads.
Participate in local events
Health fairs, conferences, and other events put you face-to-face with colleagues and prospective patients. Since you’re already going to meet people at these events, make the most of these new acquaintances and turn these events into lead-generating opportunities.
Your specific tactics will depend on the nature of the event. If you’re taking part in a health fair, for instance, offer free heath tips to anyone who signs up for your newsletter. If you’re at a conference, hold a drawing and ask entrants to submit their business cards. As long as there’s an incentive for giving names and a mechanism for collecting them, you’ll be able to collect leads and add them to your sales funnel.
Host webinars and other online events
In-person events are great for generating new leads, but they limit your audience to the people who have time in their schedules to attend. And once the event is over, so is your opportunity to collect leads. A webinar or other online event offers the best of both worlds because it keeps generating leads long after the event has ended.
Host an online webinar, Q&A, or other presentation and then promote it on social media and other channels. Your first batch of leads will come from the people who sign up and watch in real time. The rest will come from those who want to download the recordings and materials after the event. These leads will come in over the next few weeks or even months. And although you’ll eventually stop seeing new leads, that just means you have the opportunity to host another event.
Offer premium site content
Many people look for health advice online before they even consider going to the doctor. Many of them will eventually visit one, especially if their issues are serious, but if you create content that helps answer their initial questions, they may consider making that appointment with you.
The content could be an interactive survey, a guide to symptoms and home remedies, or a Q&A about a particular condition. In many cases, you should offer this content for free on your site without any expectations.
But for particularly valuable information, you may choose to “gate” your content and require an email address or other information before visitors download the materials. Follow up with everyone who shows an interest in the content, and be sure to tailor what you say based on the nature of what they downloaded. This is especially important if you offer several downloads on your site, as the email you send to someone who selected one about flu symptoms will be very different from the one you send to someone who chose a resource about skin disorders or back pain.
The leads you contact may not need your services right away, but they’ll remember your name when they do.
Want to generate more leads for your practice?
Not all web users are going to be interested in your practice, so it’s worth your time to identify qualified leads and move them towards becoming patients. If you need help with your lead generation efforts, WebFX can help. Contact us today for more information about how our Internet marketing team can create a customized lead generation strategy for your practice.
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