Sales reps going into hospitals or attending trade shows is no longer the only way to get in front of your target audience and form connections with them. Digital is the new sphere to market medical devices, allowing medical device manufacturers to get in front of their target audience like never before.
But what exactly does digital marketing for medical devices involve? How can you implement your own digital marketing strategies? Read on to learn about running successful websites, social media marketing, paid ads, and email marketing and how they can work as part of a healthcare marketing plan.
It contains everything you need to know to get started.
Websites should act as the hub for all digital marketing campaigns, and they link together the rest of your digital channels and are the best tool for getting your customers to contact you. Successful website strategy includes ensuring that your website ranks highly on search engines and designing in a way that encourages users to become customers.
Search engine optimisation
53% of traffic on the internet is organic, meaning that most internet traffic is from people typing a search into a search engine. With that in mind, think about when you go on Google and type in a search, which sites are you most likely to click on? How often do you scroll down to the sites at the bottom of the page? How often do you go onto the next page of results?
The answer is very rarely for most people, which is why appearing at the top of search engines is so important.
Search engine optimisation, known as SEO, is making updates to your website and running it in a way that encourages search engines to rank it higher. Ideally, the higher your website ranks, the more traffic it will receive, which is why marketers dedicate so much time to getting SEO right.
Optimisation techniques include making sure your website is technically sound;, implementing keywords that indicate to search engines what your website is about;, and creating content that will provide value for readers. Take a look at our guide to learn more about how to optimise your website.
Optimising conversion is the other important aspect of running a website. Getting lots of traffic to your site is great, but it is not worth much unless that traffic is converting. Conversion rate optimisation is analysing websites and coming up with ideas on how to encourage users to perform a desired action.
For medical device manufacturers, this is probably to have healthcare professionals get in touch via a contact form to facilitate lead generation, or buy a product on the website.
In order to do this, you must understand your target customers and what they’re expecting, so you can predict their journey to converting. You must make it easy for them to navigate around your website, and always guide them to the next step on their journey.
Social media marketing has risen in popularity in recent years, as social platforms allow businesses to connect with their customers like never before. It has become an integral part of digital marketing for medical devices. In fact, in 2020 the number of messages on Facebook being sent to businesses doubled, demonstrating, how much consumers have taken to interacting with brands on social media in recent times.
In ORs, the reps that do the best are personable and relatable. In the online world, with fewer face-to-face interactions, it's important that the relatable, personable nature of your business is not lost. Social media gives you a platform to showcase your products, but the best campaigns show your customers who you are, what is important to you and why they should interact with you.
Paid ads are often considered the quick win strategy of digital marketing for medical devices because you can begin to see results immediately after they are set up. They can come in two main forms: search ads, which appear on search engines, and display ads, which appear on social media and other websites.
Ads appear when a user types a keyword into a search engine or fits a demographic criteria. Companies must bid on these keywords or demographics and can choose to either pay every time someone clicks on their ad, or every time someone sees their ad. Ad hosting platforms will work to maximise a company’s budget, based on how they are choosing to pay.
Paid ads are great for extending your reach and getting traffic to your website quickly, but as with all digital marketing activities, they need to be optimised to have the maximum impact on marketing medical devices.
Retargeting is a type of paid ad, but it differs as these ads are only shown to users who have visited your website previously. This means that they are particularly good at encouraging conversion because they’re an opportunity to remind users about you.
Retargeting is great for helping you to be seen by an audience who have already shown an interest in your business. One of the famous rules of marketing is that you need to be seen 7 times to be remembered, so retargeting is perfect to ensure you are seen enough times to be memorable.
Email marketing is one of the most effective digital marketing strategies, having the highest return on investment for small businesses. Emails are sent out to a list of subscribers, with content including offers, newsletters, company updates, and event invites. At this stage, the potential customer has passed through the awareness stage of their customer journey, so they need to be nurtured until they convert.
This digital marketing strategy is so effective because you are able to get directly in front of an already engaged audience and continue to provide them with value. Not only that, but the costs associated with it are minimal, aside from paying for an email provider.
It can be challenging though, there are GDPR issues to consider and there is no guarantee that your target audience will open the email once they receive it in their inbox. You need to regularly monitor and improve your campaigns. Our digital marketing for medical devices guide contains resources to help you run successful email campaigns, including a breakdown of the popular email service providers and their features. It’s a great place to get started with email marketing.
How it all works together
Although they are spread across different digital channels, digital marketing campaigns should all be working together so that you have an expansive multi-channel presence, allowing your customers to find you wherever is best suited to them. Your campaigns should be working together to achieve one goal. As a medical device company, this may mean that your marketing plan is geared towards getting your target audience to fill in a contact form on your website. In which case all of your marketing activities need to guide users into doing it.
You will find that your different marketing campaigns will complement each other nicely. For instance, creating content on your website will help to improve your search engine rankings and drive organic traffic to your website, but it will also help to create content for your social media and email marketing. Conversely, your social media posts and emails will need to link to somewhere to drive the user forward on their customer journey. Linking back to your website is ideal as it is a digital channel already set up for conversion. Remember, at all times, you need to be encouraging your potential customers to take the next step towards contacting you.
Once you have driven customers to your website, you may then retarget them to encourage them to return in the future. You could also encourage users to sign up to your mailing list by creating downloadable content, and this will provide you with another way to remind them of you. As you can see, these platforms may be separate, but they are working in unison.
How to get started
With so much to consider when it comes to digital marketing for medical devices, it can be difficult to know where to start. Our helpful guide will provide you with everything you need to get started. We have also included some further reading links below, to articles on the digital marketing activities we’ve discussed.
Digital marketing has the ability to transform your business, bringing it into modern times and hugely increasing your client base, so what are you waiting for?
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