Once you have finally immersed yourself in the digital world with a strong web presence, the next step is to develop a strategy that will drive traffic to your website. Your website represents your practice online and the goal is to get customers from the web to your door. As with every marketing strategy – traditional or otherwise – in order to be successful, you will need to implement various tactics that will engage your target audience online.
In the past few years, the scope of social media and its evolution of tactics have grown tremendously, revolutionizing the digital landscape through the ability to connect people via online communities. If done strategically and on a frequent basis, any business – including those in the hearing healthcare arena – can take advantage of social media to increase their online presence and foster customer interaction.
Here are some tips on how to move the digital needle in the right direction.
Identify Feasible Platforms
The biggest challenge that many face is determining how to incorporate a social media strategy into their marketing plan. Research shows that for independent business owners it is more effective to only focus on two social media platforms at one time [e.g. Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter] in order to build a strong online reputation. The best way to determine what platforms might work well for you is to check out what others are doing in the industry. By reviewing the competitions’ activity and monitoring relevant conversations, it is easier to determine what your audience is interested in.
Develop Strong Content
Once the platforms have been established, the next big step is developing strong content on a consistent basis that people will want to read and share with others, in order to generate viral content. Getting your branding or other marketing messages out there to be shared within and among online communities is key. Although there are various types of online content, the most effective are ones with a simplistic approach. These will engage your target audience and will help you to build credibility as a knowledgeable expert in the hearing healthcare field.
Monitor Content Consistently
It is also important to monitor the content once it is developed and posted. It is one thing to have a presence, but it is essential to be engaged. One way to achieve this is to monitor comments on your social media sites and then follow up with responses in a timely manner. Encouraging the audience to “like” or “share” the content is also a valid tactic, depending on which metrics you are measuring.
Promote Platforms Process
In order to promote these social media platforms, it is important to talk to your patients and encourage online sharing and reviewing. This process can be implemented into your process, where applicable, to encourage staff to ask patients after they had their appointment or made a purchase to submit an online review about their [positive] experience. Developing a handout with instructions on how to review via Yelp or Google+ to remind customers to go online is one idea to boost participation. Reviews help establish business credibility online.
Interested in learning about social media and other digital marketing tactics? Contact marketing at firstname.lastname@example.org.