As a dermatology practice, you have a lot on your plate, from scheduling to re-stocking supplies to supporting patients and handling billing. It’s easy to forget to reevaluate if your 2022 marketing plan was working for you or against you, so as we move into the new year, it’s the perfect time to look at how your 2023 dermatology online marketing plan could be better to improve revenue growth, increase practice stability, cut costs, and serve more patients.
But there’s a reason so many dermatology practices put off reevaluating their plan. It can feel overwhelming and somewhat out of control. So, in this article, we want to demonstrate just how straightforward building a marketing plan for your local practice can be with our step-by-step dermatologist marketing plan blueprint you can use as the foundation of your plan. We’ll also show you why Surefire Local is the ideal marketing platform to execute your marketing plan for revenue and practice growth.
Phase 1: Setting the Stage for Success
It’s essential to look back before you go forward. What went right in 2022?
Revisit your marketing activities. Perhaps you ran some Google Ads, posted on social media, started blogging, and tried your hand at short-form videos. Or maybe you went a more traditional route with flyers, direct mail, radio spots on a local station, and word-of-mouth.
Did these marketing initiatives get the results you expected, and could they have performed better? Did you set clearly-defined goals and have the right tools in place to measure the outcomes? If something worked for you, you might want to incorporate that into your new plan, but more times than not, this exercise highlights holes in last year’s plan. Notice it, and don’t judge your plan harshly. You learn from what worked and didn’t, and it’s time to move into a new year better for it.
So, where do you see your practice when the next year rolls around? What goals do you want to accomplish regarding revenue growth and profitability? Start here and work back to the metrics you’ll need to measure and the goals set to get there. You’ll need goals for:
- Practice and doctor reputation
- New patient leads
- Cosmetic dermatology patient retention and upsell
- Revenue growth
- Profitability / Lowering patient acquisition costs
- Employee growth and development
- Location expansion or new location
It’s okay to dream big when goal setting, but there’s one more point to evaluate here to understand what’s attainable. That’s how much money you plan to spend on marketing. Local marketing is an investment; your dermatology online marketing plan should deliver a positive return on investment (ROI). Achieving that ROI doesn’t come from simply spending more money but spending enough and spending it wisely on the marketing activities and tools that make your plan work as it should.
Phase 2: Crafting Your Marketing Plan
Your dermatology online marketing plan combines the power of online marketing activities that work together to help you meet your goals. Note that you don’t have to invest in everything at once as a local medical practice. But as your skill, capacity, and budget grow, you’ll want to think bigger because each of these contributes to developing your practice.
Your website is the most crucial part of your dermatology online marketing plan and shouldn’t be glossed over. If it looks outdated, is slow, doesn’t have modern scheduling features & resources, or functions poorly, this creates a particular perception about your practice. Will a patient believe that you offer state-of-the-art dermatology procedures and treatments if your website experience doesn’t communicate that?
Some websites are salvageable. They can be updated and work within your marketing plan, but if you haven’t done much with your site in years or it lacks basic features modern patients expect, it may be wise to go for a complete website re-design in 2023.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
What do you do when you need to find a local business? Chances are you search using a search engine, and so do your new and existing patients. SEO ensures your site meets the technical requirements and includes helpful pages that appear in real patient searches that guide them along a journey toward setting up an appointment.
Being found organically in search and social media is fantastic, but building that kind of authority takes time. You can’t wait 12 months to increase revenues. Digital advertising serves this purpose, but since ads cost more than organic methods, you’ll also want to invest in organic methods to increase profitability year over year.
Review / Reputation Management
Like most people, you use reviews and social media reputation to gauge whether or not a business is right for you. Overwhelmingly, those new patients you’re trying to bring through your doors do too, which is a vital part of your plan.
For local SEO and findability online, you need to both be found in directories and have your information consistently communicated and always up-to-date.
Social Media Marketing
In addition to looking at reviews to determine your online reputation, new patients look at your social media profiles. If you appear active and engaged with your audience here, that’s a good sign that your staff and doctor are also attentive.
While some online content is just for fun, people also actively look for local content to learn about their skin problems and possible solutions. You can insert your practice into this search conversation by creating this content in your dermatology online marketing plan.
Email marketing is a great way to keep new and existing patients informed by sharing dermatology news, practice news, skincare tips, video tutorials, and more to engage them and keep “seeing their dermatologist” on their minds. Capture emails within your practice by offering prospective new patients helpful content in exchange for contact information to bring them into your pipeline.
Email marketing is just one way to nurture leads. Other tactics like retargeting ads, social media engagement, managing your reputation, and outreach with offers can guide prospective patients toward becoming real patients.
Text Message Marketing
People check their text messages even more than they do their email, so when done effectively, text message marketing can be a very effective piece of your dermatology online marketing plan.
Finally, analytics ensure that you get real results with your marketing plan, including those you can take to the bank. Analytics also help you predict how many new patients are coming down the pipeline so that you can plan for growth and expansion. Looking at the numbers gives you a data-driven way to see what is and isn’t working, so you don’t waste your marketing budget.
Phase 3: Executing Your Marketing Plan
Now that you have a marketing plan, it’s time to execute it. Here, it’s undoubtedly a good idea to create a calendar for your marketing activities to stay ahead of deadlines, keep your quality superb, and create a consistent experience among your audience of existing and new patients.
One of the fastest and easiest ways to stay on top of your plan is by utilizing marketing software. However, these technologies often have a hefty price tag, so remember that time is money when you evaluate which tools you need to invest in. Analytics and automation technology can improve consistency and timing by bringing all your marketing activities into one place and making it easier to block off time for marketing to get more done in less time.
Phase 4: Setting the Stage for Growth
If there’s one point we want to hit home, it’s the importance of analytics. Analyze and test everything to ensure you’re getting the expected results. Don’t wait weeks or months looking at reports. If you’re spending money on something that isn’t working, or worse, on something that is damaging your reputation, you need to know sooner so you can adjust it.
Analytics also helps you understand where the best leads come from. This may encourage you to focus more of your budget in that place to increase revenues and ROI and grow your practice continually.
Add more marketing activities as you have the bandwidth and see consistent revenue increases. Most practices need to start small, but as they see the revenues, they realize they have more money to invest in marketing to get customer acquisition costs down and grow.
Phase 5: Attend a Surefire Local Marketing Platform Demo
Marketing technology costs are a barrier for small local practices like yours. But with it, it’s easier to invest in the right places, compete, scale, and grow your practice. We offer business intelligence marketing software that costs much less than other tools because it’s built for small local businesses. Our software helps you manage your marketing activities all from one place, so you can confidently expand the number of online marketing activities you have the capacity for. We could talk all day about how Surefire Local can help your practice grow, but it’s better if you see it yourself. So, click this link to schedule a free demo.