(Scroll down to read Part 1.)
Things you should not spend money on:
1. Paying to be “#1 on Google”
Of course you want your practice to rank well when it comes to search engine results. Being on the first page (usually that means the top10) is important, and you should strive to do that, but be careful of companies that simply promise to make you “#1 on Google”, for a price (usually high). The questions to ask are:
- #1 for what keyword or keywords?
- How do you know that is the keyword(s) people are searching for?
- How long can you guarantee I will be #1 (or on the first page)?
It’s relatively easy to help a website rank well for certain keywords for a certain period of time, but it’s far more important to concentrate on making sure you update your site on a regular basis, that it is well-written and patient-focused, that the person who writes it for you understands basic SEO, and that you make it a source of information for existing patients as well as potential ones. If you do that, good search engine rankings will follow.
This is true whether you are just starting out, or have been in practice for some time. As your practice ages, however, you should expect a larger number of new patients to come from referrals and word of mouth, in addition to website traffic. Regardless of the age of your practice, don’t ignore either one.
2. Expensive Search Engine Optimization (SEO) or Search Engine Marketing (SEM) campaigns
Companies like Prosites offer inexpensive and professional SEO and SEM services that will start building visibility for your site from day one. You don’t need anything other than the basics for a year or two.
3. Expensive branding
If you have to use your name as your logo for the first year, that’s fine. There are also very affordable online resources for designing logos, etc. Branding is important, but you can do with the basics for a year or two. Professional does not have to mean expensive. And please, no dancing teeth.
4. Print Brochures or Welcome Packs
Just say no. Let your website serve as your brochure, especially in Year One when you have so many other expenses to consider. If you want something to hand out, try a postcard with a special offer or 'thank you' message. There are numerous online sources for affordable print marketing materials like this. I use Vista Print.
There you have it, a Five Minute Guide to a Year One Online Marketing Campaign that won’t break the bank!
Click here for a Prosites Test Drive. Contact Paige Nichols at firstname.lastname@example.org for additional discounts and special offers. Please make sure and mention this article.
If you would like an assessment of your current site and other online marketing materials, please read here. And if you would like help writing your bio, please check out my website.