8/18/2020

Telehealth: Increase Your Digital Marketing Efforts During a Dark Time

The Covid-19 pandemic has affected every industry and our normal daily operations. Many aspects of regular routines have been upended, and that includes how people visit their doctor. Many medical offices have closed in-person visits or significantly limited who can come into the office in response to the rapid spread of Covid-19. However, just because in-person visits are restricted doesn’t mean people have lost access to their usual doctor. Many medical offices have switched to telehealth and either digital methods to keep patients and providers safe. The widespread success of telehealth only serves to highlight the importance of the digital world during the current crisis. The medical industry should use the success of telehealth as a sign that there is untapped power online and double down on digital marketing, especially during these trying times. 

A Helpful New Tool

Some medical offices may be hesitant to jump into digital marketing, but instead of seeing digital marketing as a scary new endeavor, view it as a new tool to learn. Many medical offices were nervous about moving away from paper records to practice management software, but after a learning period, the transition was hugely beneficial. Telehealth is a more recent example of adapting to a new digital way of business. Virtual Live Receptionists communicate with patients and connect them to providers so appointments can proceed online. Telehealth took time to get used to, but now the system is running successfully. The same rule applies to digital marketing; it may take time to learn, but digital marketing will be worth it in the long run. 

Digital World of Mouth

The Internet is a vast and nearly unending network that information races across. Many medical offices rely on word of mouth to attract new patients, but the in-person word of mouth will never compete with word of mouth on the Internet. During the current pandemic, online word of mouth is even more critical, as very few people are meeting up in-person. One patient could make a social media post about their positive experience with your office, and someone that the patient doesn’t know might see the post and decide to make an appointment. There are more people online than ever before, as millions of workers are now working remotely to slow the spread of the virus. This means digital word of mouth has never been more potent for the medical industry. 

Increased Reach of Communication

You can still send physical mail or email to your existing patients to communicate or market, but those avenues do not have the most extensive reach. Posting the same updates and communications on your practice website or social media accounts lets the same information reach more people. Posting office updates, how your office is responding to the pandemic, and news patients will find valuable where anyone can see will attract new eyes to your pages. By putting your usual communications online, you are already widening your reach and potentially attracting new patients that will use your telehealth service. Posting medical information to help keep patients healthy or assuage their worries also lets your office help spread accurate medical information and do your part to stamp out false information during a pandemic. 

Promote Telehealth With Digital Marketing

Telehealth and digital marketing go hand in hand. Both practices use the Internet to function, so it only makes sense to use digital marketing to bolster and highlight telehealth. Many patients might be entirely unfamiliar with telehealth, and you can use digital marketing to explain the service, so patients are more comfortable with telehealth. Instead of patients skipping medical appointments because there are no in-person meetings for non-critical issues, use digital marketing to show how telehealth can fix that problem. Each post you make explaining or promoting your telehealth service should also include a link so potential patients can learn more or sign up. Remove as many barriers to entry as possible by educating patients and giving them an easy link to follow to get the care they need. 

Digital marketing might be new to many medical offices, but in the wake of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the widespread success of telehealth, digital marketing is now an essential tool. Use digital marketing for digital word of mouth, better communication with patients and potential patients, and promote telehealth as a safe, convenient way for patients to see their providers. 

 

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