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Data and the Patient Journey: Where to Start

by Sara Foster | May 29, 2019

This sponsored article was written by Christina Millett, National Brand Manager – Strategic Healthcare Accounts, at ReachLocal/USA Today Network. Christina has worked in marketing for more than 13 years with a concentration on digital marketing for the past nine years. Her professional career has been focused on national, multi-location brands in healthcare, education, and the wellness industries. She brings a deep understanding of the patient journey grounded in her ability to synthesize data and insights as she works to humanize her brands through relevant and engaging marketing solutions. She is passionate about helping healthcare brands deploy strategies that are meaningful and drive results.

Collecting marketing data is easier than ever, to the point of seeming overwhelming. For healthcare systems looking for growth and more patients, there isn’t enough time in the day to sift through data searching for the perfect insight — so how do you efficiently pinpoint only what matters and use that to act? reach-local

Consider the side effects: mismanaged data can easily trip up any marketing strategy. Don’t let insights get lost in the shuffle.

In healthcare as an industry, people look for care for them and their loved ones. Understanding which metrics deserve your attention is vital — after all, it’s the key to connecting with your patients on their journey when selecting a healthcare provider.

OK, where do you start?

Your Website is Key to Understand the Patient Journey

The most important datapoints you should focus on first are website metrics.

It may seem obvious but seeing that studies show that 63% of people conduct their research online, we think it’s worth repeating.

The patient consumer journey is no longer linear, but your website is definitely on every roadmap. Which is why it will be brimming with information on who’s seeking you out and what their behaviors are within your site. Use that data to identify your strongest traffic sources – where to lean it and where to start investing, not to mention you’ll learn what content is the most relevant.

Uncover Opportunities to Optimize

Data from website visitors can help you understand how each patient’s journey led them to you and provide valuable insights on current marketing.

  • Check the Source: Are more people finding you in search or display ads? With social media, is Facebook tops? Source analysis helps you know which channels are working and which need work.
  • Time on Site: If the answer is “not a lot,” your site may not answer enough initial queries, or you may need to evaluate navigation or content engagement.
  • Engagement: If people are visiting your website and not clicking on a call to action, it could be because they searched for something specific and never found it, or worse, saw nothing to differentiate you and moved on to another healthcare provider’s website.

Focus on Key Content Improvements

An excellent first step to ensuring your website lives up to its full potential is to review these core pages ASAP:

  • FAQs. No matter the specific need… there will be questions. And if your website can answer them up front, you make a stellar first impression.
  • Dedicated services & key differentiators. Potential patients want to know what you offer and how you stand out, so give your offerings the room and spotlight they deserve.
  • Videos. Around 56% of people use YouTube as part of their patient journey, indicating video content has definite pull with website visitors.2 So, think about what you can highlight with video to draw people in.

Your website is one of the major touchpoints in the patient customer journey. Leverage website data to identify opportunities to strengthen your marketing strategy and make sure your website delivers when people arrive.

About ReachLocal:

As part of the USA TODAY NETWORK, ReachLocal now offers even more complete marketing solutions. We have experience assisting thousands of healthcare and wellness providers with more than a decade’s worth of data insights and digital marketing expertise. USA TODAY NETWORK can help you cut through the noise and uncover the smarter way to reach local consumers and grow your business.
  • HealthCare Digital Marketing
  • healthcare data
  • patient journey
  • data

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