If a tree falls in the forest and no one hears, does it make a sound? If a doctor, talented and gifted in his field, opens a private clinic without an online presence and that no one knows, will it yield him profits?
Many physicians approach the opening of their private clinic with the full confidence that they will succeed, because they feel, and rightly so, how good they are at their job. But as any freelancer in any field learns very quickly, running a business is much more than actual work. A thriving business needs well.oiled systems of marketing, advertising, bookkeeping, public relations and more. Each of these skills will affect the success or failure of the clinic and therefore a sufficient investment is required in each of them.
Michael Axir, CEO and owner of WebManager, is well aware of these challenges. From the beginning of his career in website promotion and management, somewhere 15 years ago, he chose to focus on doctors, after seeing that many of them, even the best and most talented, simply do not get enough patients. Because they give up certain and critical aspects in running and marketing their business.
“A lot of doctors trust that patients will come to them by word of mouth,” says Michael. “And really word of mouth marketing is a great way to bring customers to any business, but those who are content with just that may step in and not fill the diary with patients, especially on days when it all starts and ends with a smartphone and Google. In one doctor or another, you understand that it is not enough to rely on recommendations alone, you have to meet them at the decision junction (search engine) “.
So how do you really create a presence in cyberspace? Here are 3 steps Michael recommends:
- Dr. Google: The most important doctor in the world
In today’s era, when something hurts us, or when some weird feeling arises in the body, we go into Google, write what is wrong and wait to discover the evil of the destiny. Google’s algorithm knows how to prioritize quality, comprehensive and reliable articles, which it presents at the top of the results in such searches.
“When people read on the website of a specialist doctor information that really helps them understand what is wrong with them and teach them things they did not know before, they realize that there is a professional factor here that can be trusted,” Michael emphasizes.
According to him, many doctors do invest in articles for their site, but it is not always enough to screw up in the first results of the search and the information they present is limited. Such articles, it is important to understand, do not provide the value that the target audience is really looking for and need in order to broadly understand its problem and the possibilities to solve it.
“Investing in quality content is important in every field, but in my opinion when it comes to medical content – that’s the most important thing,” he continues. “If I as a surfer go to a doctor’s site where the content is unclear or messy, it will automatically hurt my appreciation for him, even if he is an excellent doctor for whom I received a warm recommendation.”
For that matter, even if an aunt, close friend or teacher recommended a doctor who did them a particular treatment, today the vast majority of people will run a quick Google search on it before deciding to contact him or even when searching for his phone number. If they see that it has no site at all, or that the site is not built properly, it will affect their decision to some extent, even without them being aware of it.
- Sponsored or organic? Depends on how far you are aiming
If you want to promote your clinic online, today there is a long list of tools you can use. These tools can be divided into two main groups – sponsored promotion or organic promotion.
Sponsored promotion is a direct payment for ads on Facebook, Google and other platforms. This is an advertisement with a clear purpose – to motivate people to purchase products and services or contact you. In this situation, you pay according to defined criteria – clicking on an ad, contacting, the number of times the ad is shown to surfers and more.
In organic promotion, it is a little more complex to understand exactly what you are paying for. Such promotion places emphasis on creating a quality website, with comprehensive and enriching content, one that Google’s algorithm values and presents in a high position. Such promotion includes writing articles, researching leading search terms and also a long list of additional actions that take place below the surface without the client even being aware of them. This is a complete system that works with the goal of producing prominence for the clinic’s website and digital assets, not in the immediate term, but for many years to come.
“Asking if it is better to invest in sponsored or organic promotion is like asking if you are aiming for a date or a wedding,” Michael emphasizes. “Sponsored promotion is designed to achieve immediate results and its effectiveness ends when you stop paying for it. Organic promotion is something that if done properly, it continues to bear fruit even years after conquering the summit, like a wedding.”
Michael believes it is important to continue to invest in organic promotion on an ongoing basis. This is because in the digital world, things change all the time. Google’s algorithm is becoming more sophisticated and competitors are constantly thinking of new ways to promote themselves and overcome you.
The more you keep your finger on the pulse in this arena, refresh the content and lead new promotion moves all the time, the more likely it is that more people will be exposed to you and your clinic. Only a continuous investment in quality organic promotion will ensure maximum long.term exposure and a large clientele to the clinic.
In addition, the sites that are ranked high in the organic results get a high quality score from the surfers as well, they understand that Google values the site and it instills in them a sense of security that they have reached a safe place.
“In this context it is also important to understand the proportions, an investment in a year of organic promotion is such that most doctors will return after one or two surgeries in most areas and may significantly increase the number of clinic referrals in the long run,” Michael emphasizes.
- Stop speaking the language of doctors
As part of his role, Michael of course goes through quite a few texts from doctors and notices a recurring mistake in many of them. “A lot of doctors choose to write their own text – and that’s fine and even welcome, but it’s important to know how to do it right.”
According to him, many texts on doctors’ websites are written in the style of medical books. In other words, the simple person, who just wants to understand what is wrong with his body, will have a hard time understanding from them “what to do?”, Will not benefit from them, will lose interest and will go looking for the information he needs on another site.
In many cases, doctors try to use as high language as possible to convey professionalism and understanding, when in practice, they achieve the exact opposite result. “If you want to write texts that are intended for yourself or other doctors, that’s fine, but it’s important to understand who the target audience is that you want on your site and how to reach it,” Michael emphasizes.
A good text on a doctor’s website is written in as simple language as possible, with a simple explanation of complex concepts and a focused answer to frequently asked questions that really interest patients. For that matter, if the back hurts, no one wants to know what the structure of the vertebrae in the back is and how to operate on them if necessary. People want to know why it hurts them, are there any actions they can take on their own to relieve the pain and in which cases they should seek the advice of a specialist doctor.
“Usually, when doctors open a private clinic, they invest a lot in impressive design, central location and space that will convey prestige and professionalism. I think investing in a professional site that will also be a reliable and professional source of knowledge, will ultimately bring many clients to the impressive clinic,” adds Michael.
Over the years, Michael has accompanied many physicians and helped them significantly increase the volume of patients and online presence. If you too want to explore how to produce a quality website that will really work for you, feel free to visit the site.