Latest Marketing Trends to watch in 2023 For the Hospitals in Kenya
Learn today on 12 effective strategies for marketing hospitals in Kenya which forms a great investment for doctors & healthcare experts.
Healthcare patients in Kenya of late have more options than ever before. With so much information available online, these patients no longer feel the need to visit the closest hospital, a medical practice nearest to their location, or even healthcare practices with multiple locations in the community.
That’s why it’s so important to have the most effective strategies for marketing hospitals in Kenya to reach new and returning patients in your area at the right moment.
The need to adopt the appropriate and the most effective strategies for marketing hospitals in Kenya forms a great investment for doctors, healthcare networks, and healthcare marketing professionals in Kenya.
To help you along, here are 10 Marketing Strategies for Hospitals in Kenya for 2023:
1. Use consistent Hospital branding
You might feel confident your expertise sets you apart from other healthcare providers, doctor practices or hospitals. But let’s face it–to a patient, one white coat looks just like the next, and consumers famously are unwilling to buy a product or service from someone they don’t know or trust.
When you build a strong and recognizable brand and promote awareness of your brand, you go a long way towards bringing down your overall cost-per-acquisition.
You need to first figure out what your brand is all about. What’s unique about your healthcare network, hospital, or medical practice? Is it the way you treat patients? Your family-friendly office? A spa-like environment? There is at least one thing that makes your medical teams unique, and that’s what helps patients remember your healthcare organization’s name.
Promoting any awards for sort of achievement is one great way of building trust in your brand when you’re essentially asking consumers to trust you with their health.
It may take time to figure out what works for your brand. But eventually, your healthcare marketing strategy comes together smoothly because you learn how best to represent your brand with any marketing materials.
2. Evaluate the online patient experience of your hospital
A decade ago, simply having a website was enough to impress prospective patients and help them find your healthcare brand identity. But now, a website is healthcare’s new front door. It’s the first thing patients often see, and if it’s not optimized for user experience, it may also be the last time a person considers your hospital or healthcare practices.
Put yourself in a patient’s shoes. If someone were to land on any page of your site, would they know your practice’s location, or your medical practices in multiple locations, and primary services in about 5-10 seconds? Would they be able to contact the right person quickly? Do the imagery and wording represent your healthcare clinic’s, or practice’s, average patient?
User experience is an important consideration in website design. But sometimes, designers are so focused on making the website look good, they forget to focus on the patient experience. We often find that websites need to be completely redone. However, it might help to make small changes, like positioning the “Contact Us” form higher up on the page.
Patient experience also means taking note of how patients typically begin engaging with you, which could include channels such as your website-a third-party listing service, online ads, etc. Consumers these days want to interact with you on their own terms, and your healthcare marketing strategy needs to account for the different ways people can connect with your business.
Examine the path consumers take after first engaging with your health system, whether they end up calling you or signing a form or not. Mapping your patients’ journey can give you a better understanding of what consumers are looking for and what can trigger a conversion.
3. Build a responsive hospital website
A responsive website is one that automatically adjusts to the size of a screen, so the experience is the same whether the site is accessed on a computer, tablet, your phone, or any mobile device. It’s the norm [FYI: Google has committed to a mobile-first index all websites, including Healthcare websites, since September 2021] in website design today–but more than that, it’s something search engines are looking for when crawling any medical website to determine how and where you’ll rank.
Google cares about the user experience, and it will prioritize competitors who have a site optimized for mobile users. In general, responsive sites work best for the mobile digital healthcare experience. But even if you currently have a responsive site, you should check that both your content and imagery continue to load properly (and promptly!) on mobile devices.
4. Test site speeds
Healthcare marketers who study user (that is, prospective patients) behaviors online have proven that patients today are less willing to put up with slow loading times than ever before. It only takes 5 seconds to lose a prospective patient who decides to navigate elsewhere to their healthcare thanks to your slow site.
In fact, it’s another user experience (or patient experience) issue that may cause your medical or healthcare website to fall in the search engine results. You can test your site speed at Google’s Page Speed Insights here. If load times are slow, speak to your web developer about ways to speed it up. And, another hospitals in Kenya Marketing tip, to remember — check the site speeds of your competitors, within your “healthcare neighborhood”, or within you medical services niche.
5. Optimize for prospective patients search engine results
Search engine optimization is one of the most effective strategies for marketing hospitals in Kenya. It helps your hospital to be visible to the top of the search engines. However, it’s a lot more complex than most marketing professionals realize. You cannot simply use the term “healthcare practice” 100 times throughout your website and hope to rank #1 on Google among doctors providing healthcare services in your area.
A large part of SEO involves using the right optimal phrases and keywords so that Google can understand your healthcare organization’s websites and be sure you rank for the proper, relevant, and pertinent healthcare-related search terms (e.g., medical conditions, healthcare professional treatment of any type). But it also means using those terms naturally throughout your content, as Google cares about readability first and foremost. And this is only the beginning of healthcare marketing best practices for SEO, which also include:
- Having links pointing back to each page on your healthcare website.
- Gaining backlinks from reputable health sites.
- Managing your site index or sitemap.
- Claiming your healthcare website on Google My Business.
- Submitting your website to Google.
6. Utilize PPC and display ads for Healthcare Marketing
Pay-per-click advertisements appear first in search results.
Search Engine Optimization (i.e., “Healthcare SEO) is the organic marketing strategy to earn a healthcare practice, hospitals in Kenya greater visibility online. However, even if your site ranks number one for a search term like “dentist in Kenya,” there are still 3 or 4 paid advertisements above that number one search that people will see first.
These are pay-per-click advertisements, paid advertisements that are laser-targeted to appear first for a set of search terms. With pay-per-click advertising (also known as PPC or paid search), you can manage your budget and decide what you’d be willing to spend to keep your site visible at the top of the search engines. Your return on investment is clear and defined with both PPC ads and display ads that appear on the sidebar or top of other websites.
6. Leverage social media (the right way)
Too many hospitals and healthcare practices rely on organic social media for a large part of their digital healthcare marketing strategies. Organic social media means posting photos, updates, events, and more directly to Facebook, Twitter, or YouTube, and it’s a valid strategy to build your brand and let patients know what’s new.
However, it shouldn’t be your only social strategy. Paid advertising on social media is a better way to reach the right people who may be looking for your services—even if you’re not already connected. Let’s face it: few people share posts from local healthcare organizations online unless they are already engaged with that group, or better yet, employed by it.
Paid social media is about more than pressing the “Boost Post” button that appears when you post from your business page. Like PPC or display advertising, it involves strategizing and budgeting to target the audience you want.
7. Ask for reviews from patients
Recent reports have shown that patient reviews are at least somewhat important when choosing a physician. Consumers want to see that others like them have had a good experience with you before scheduling a visit, making it critical that you obtain positive reviews from your satisfied patients.
Typically, patients only leave reviews when they are motivated to do so, or if they had an above average (or extremely poor) experience. Unless you ask for reviews of your healthcare services, you miss an opportunity to feature positive feedback from patients who were satisfied with their office visit. This might be difficult for your front office staff to do–and they should not be required to evaluate each patient’s level of satisfaction as they walk out the door.
That’s why we recommend automated reviews as part of strategy in Marketing hospitals in Kenya.
Here’s a brief overview of automated reviews:
- Patients use a computer or tablet at the office to rate the quality of service they received on a scale of 1-10.
- High scores automate a follow-up email asking the patient to leave a review on their site. Those positive reviews show up directly on your website and can potentially counteract any negative reviews left elsewhere online.
- Poor scores allow healthcare practicesor hospital a chance to ask the patient to elaborate and, hopefully, reach out and resolve the issue.
8. Follow up with patient feedback in your marketing efforts
You can’t help it when patients have a poor opinion of your practice and leave reviews on outside sites such as Yelp. What you can do, however, is follow up with any patient feedback and show that you are working on the problem. Sites like Yelp allow you to respond to patient feedback directly. With the right follow-up, patients may be motivated to update their review to let others know the problem was resolved in a timely fashion.
Reputation management should be part of any strategy for marketing hospitals in Kenya, but this doesn’t mean you should get defensive about negative reviews. It means upgrading processes and equipment and ensuring the best possible patient experience moving forward based on prior patient feedback.
9. Look into traditional media options
Many hospitals in Kenya, healthcare groups, and practices are afraid to invest in external media opportunities: traditional advertising sources like radio, television, billboards, and newspapers. These are a major investment, and you must be careful about where you spend your money to see the best, tangible results.
Having trustworthy healthcare media buyers to make these decisions for you is the best way to make sure your advertisements get seen by the right people at the right time. A billboard in the middle of nowhere does little to bring in patients, but a television advertisement that runs on a channel with demographics that represent your average patient can do wonders for your ROI.
10. Build doctor referrals into your marketing plans
How does your practice reach potential refer doctors? If you’re not using a physician liaison, you’re not getting what you need. Too many healthcare practices and medical specialty groups trust the front desk to reach out to doctors who may choose to refer their practice–but the front desk simply does not have the time to commit to this!
Doctor referrals are some of your best organic marketing strategies for bringing in new patients. Your physician liaison should be visiting hospitals, licensed caregivers, and medical practices every day, scheduling lunches with potential referral bases, and keeping in touch with potential sources.
11. Check in with your current patients
Though it may not compare to digital advertising, word-of-mouth referrals should always be part of your overall healthcare marketing strategy.
Follow up with patients after an appointment or procedure to see how they’re doing. Ask about your patients’ families or send out birthday cards with a personalized touch.
Send emails and mail reminders for follow-up appointments (in-person or via telemedicine) and do whatever you can to maintain a healthcare relationship. Patients will always appreciate that you took the time and may make a point to recommend your local medical practice to their friends and family.
12. Become an authority in your specific field of medicine
Prospective patients remember you when you establish yourself as an authority in your medical specialty. Your PR (public relations) strategy should involve reaching out to the appropriate media outlet when you have something to share–it’s free advertising for your healthcare brand!
Stay up to date with your specific healthcare industry niche through LinkedIn groups and other online forums. Submit healthcare community press releases from time to time–and consider hiring outside help to boost your visibility.