Best-in-class healthcare marketers are already planning for next year. They’re researching key trends that will attract new high-intent audiences, increase engagement, drive revenue, and reinforce patient loyalty in 2023.
If you’ve been revamping the same marketing plan for a few years, now is the perfect time to reevaluate everything through the lens of market innovations and advancements in digital marketing technologies.
And we’ve got everything you need to get started.
In this article, you’ll learn:
- 4 Advertising Planning Strategies for 2023
- 6 Marketing Strategies That Outpace Market Disruption
4 Advertising Planning Strategies for 2023
Avoid the popular maxim, “let’s circle back on this after the holidays,” and get ready now. November is the perfect time to take note of popular trends and plan your paid search advertisements.
Here are a few things to consider, but the key takeaway is video content reigns supreme:
1. Reach the right audiences on CTV (Connected TV)
Do you have cable TV? If not, I wouldn’t be surprised.
More and more people are cutting the cord on cable as connected TV and streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, HBO, and Amazon Prime continue gaining momentum.
According to Axios, traditional pay-TV providers like Comcast, Verizon, and Dish Network have lost a staggering 25 million subscribers since 2012 and are expected to lose another 25 million by 2025.
Your B2B and B2C audiences are streaming. Your ads should be streaming, too.
CTV is ideal for B2B and B2C healthcare organizations because it allows:
- Precise programmatic targeting to patient audiences and providers,
- The ability to optimize campaigns in real time,
- And the accurate, actionable, and timely data to be effective.
What’s more, tying specific ad campaigns to patient outcomes with traditional TV advertising can be challenging. Programmatic CTV offers a more trackable alternative, making it easier for marketers to reach broader, high-intent audiences.
For example, pharma marketers can track and attribute increased prescriptions to specific ad campaigns.
2. Tap into the full potential of video ads beyond TV
Do you want to build trust, increase engagement, and improve credibility? Shift your focus to social media videos in 2023.
Running video ads on platforms like YouTube and TikTok can deliver up to 66% more qualified leads annually. Here’s what it means for healthcare marketers:
- You become a resource for education.
46% of global viewers use video content to learn something new. Boost engagement with video strategies that go beyond brand awareness and into thought leadership.
- It helps show healthcare consumers you care.
People are 1.6 times more likely to engage with videos that appeal to their values and passions—even if the production quality is suboptimal.
3. Tailor video content for each social media platform
Video content is not a one-size-fits-all way to generate leads. Your video length and messaging strategy must be adjusted for each platform and follow each platform’s guidelines to ensure compliance.
To capture higher engagement, Facebook recommends keeping videos under one minute unless you’re posting a Story, in which case 20 seconds or less is best.
Facebook users love the authenticity of user-generated content, so look for and share relevant content often. Facebook is also great for building transparency. Showcase behind-the-scenes content about your products and services and respond to frequently asked questions.
Tip: This platform prefers native content, so avoid sharing YouTube, TikTok, or other video links.
The sweet spot for B2B and B2C YouTube videos is between six and eight minutes. This is plenty of time to share engaging content, including:
- Patient testimonials
- Product demonstrations
- Tutorials and how-tos
- Expert interviews
- Event videos
And yes—before you skip this section—your audience is on TikTok. Several healthcare professionals use this platform to share health advice, battle misinformation, and connect with patients. The clock is ticking for B2B businesses to dominate this space.
Remember that TikTok is all about fun, so keep your content light, honest, and consistent. And throw in some of the latest TikTok trends, when appropriate, to boost engagement.
If you want to make a bigger impact and maybe even find yourself on someone’s FYP (For You Page), create a general theme for your content and messaging. Not only will this cultivate brand awareness, but it will also further solidify your brand as a “friend” and thought leader in your space.
4. Level up your game if you seek Medicare Advantage members
As you likely already know, Medicare Advantage is growing, and the landscape is becoming more competitive. But what you might not know is that seniors are the fastest-growing demographic using social media:
- 84% of Baby Boomers have a Facebook account
- 82% of seniors say YouTube is their preferred online video site and are more likely to engage with a post if it includes a video.
Stand out with consistent and relevant video content that attracts this growing audience.
YouTube is the second-largest search engine in the world. Leverage this powerhouse and create value-added content for older generations. They’re online, and they’re searching for the solutions you offer. Create a channel and fill it with videos that demonstrate your product, showcase testimonials, or give easy-to-follow how-to tips.
Remember, it doesn’t need to be overly produced or flashy. This generation values clear, concise, and straightforward messaging.
6 Marketing Strategies That Outpace Market Disruption
Your competitors are gaining momentum.
Is your brand ready for the future of healthcare? Are your executives prepared to make the changes necessary to recruit and retain top talent? Are you building innovative, digitally-focused strategies that rival your competitors?
Reclaim your position in the industry—and on search engine results pages (SERPs)—by reevaluating your marketing strategy from the bottom up.
Prioritize these six strategies to outpace market disruption in 2023:
1. Develop a better-defined brand
Don’t get lost among your competitors. Develop a memorable brand that amplifies your mission, vision, and values.
Having a strong brand:
a. Increases brand recognition,
b. Improves customer loyalty,
c. Builds positive word-of-mouth advertising,
d. Raises advertising curiosity and effectiveness,
e. Lowers price sensitivity,
f. And drives recruitment efforts and lead generation.
Healthcare branding is essential for building patient trust, reinforcing patient-provider relationships, and building patient loyalty at every touchpoint along their journey.
Healthcare organizations that infuse their brand values into their content marketing strategy will create lasting, impactful impressions.
Whether you’re a new brand or market disruptor looking to make a splash on SERPs and social media platforms or an established brand in need of life support, here are a few things you can do:
- Leverage your patients’ voices (e.g., testimonials, reviews, etc.) by sharing them across your online properties to exemplify your commitment to your patients.
- Build compelling visuals that tell a brand story to engage your target audience. Infographics are three times more likely to get shared on social media platforms than any other type of content.
- Create a community around your brand that meets the needs of your patients and their families. For example, addiction treatment centers might recognize a growing need for families, spouses, or parents to come together and support one another while their loved ones attend your rehabilitation program.
- Inspire your audience into action with unique and engaging campaigns that promote things like preventive care or address your most frequently asked questions.
2. Add staff recruitment into the marketing budget
Hospitals are focusing on staff recruitment as much as lead generation in 2022. At the same time, more than half expect to lose money due to the spike in costs including paying travel nurses during pandemic surges, increasing turnover rates, and rising labor costs.
As a result, many U.S. hospitals have been forced to make marketing cuts to match these turnovers, layoffs, and restructures and focus on higher ROI tactics and strategies.
It’s critical for high-demand industries, like healthcare, to prioritize talent acquisition strategies to remain competitive as more nurses are retiring early or leaving the profession due to burnout.
Right now, it’s a “seller’s market,” meaning you need to bring your A-game to attract top talent. Here are a few tips to help you get started:
- Promote from within to create a culture of trust and loyalty.
- Work with local training programs, schools, and job fairs to attract the right people.
- Create a referral program with compensation for existing employees.
- Reassess compensation packages often to ensure they remain competitive.
- Offer unique benefits like flexible scheduling, tuition reimbursement, and childcare allowance to help your organization stand out.
3. Take the leap with integrated marketing
Today’s healthcare consumers are heavily influenced by top consumer brands delivering streamlined, reliable, and unified messaging across many online and offline platforms. (Think Coca-Cola’s “Share a Coke” campaign that ran in print ads, commercials, billboards, and across social media.)
Now, consumers expect the same immersive experience from your healthcare organization.
Integrated marketing leverages online and offline marketing tactics to create multiple impressions of your brand across every touchpoint and lead consumers through a seamless brand journey.
4. Consider the latest updates and changes in digital marketing
As healthcare organizations begin developing their digital marketing strategy for 2023, taking a proactive approach to your SEO strategy is a must.
Here are some recent Google updates and changes we’ve covered this year and why you should prepare for them:
- Google’s Helpful Content Update
Optimize your website to comply with these latest people-first algorithm changes to ensure your website ranking doesn’t take a hit.
- Google Analytics 4 (GA4)
Universal Analytics is going away on July 1, 2023, meaning it will no longer collect or process data. Make the switch to GA4 now to familiarize yourself with the platform and replicate your favorite UA reports.
- Google’s Responsive Search Ad Changes
In June, Google prioritized responsive search ads over expanded text ads. If you haven’t already, it’s time to take advantage of these automation and machine-learning tools because they’ll boost conversion rates and give you better campaign insights.
- Google Business Profile (GBP)
Google renamed Google My Business to Google Business Profile at the tail-end of 2021, but it’s still a big deal. This new and improved tool fully supports larger businesses with multiple locations and is one of the best (and free) ways to improve local SEO.
5. Prepare for market disruptors
Hospitals and health systems have much more competition than at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Market disruptors like Telehealth and other digitally-driven healthcare services have carved a straight, unencumbered path toward faster and more direct access to healthcare—bypassing traditional doctors.
Healthcare businesses must reevaluate their doctor-access strategies and communication tools to improve patient experience, protect patient volume, and differentiate themselves.
Outpace competitors and meet the rising demands of healthcare consumers by offering apps and other digital health tools to assist with things like:
- Scheduling appointments
- Accessing personal health data
- Messaging care teams
- Receiving virtual care
6. Compete with consumer brands
In addition to bolstering digital services to compete with market disruptors, healthcare businesses must also compete with retail health clinics like CVS Minute Clinic, Amazon Care, Walgreens Health, and Target Clinic, offering affordable, faster, and after-hours access to care.
To compete with these high-value offerings, traditional healthcare businesses need to innovate and focus on things like:
- Competitive advantage
Offer luxury patient experiences these competitors cannot, like a concierge, valet parking, and longer hours.
Implement telemedicine services if you haven’t already. Signing in for a quick video chat with a doctor is worth its weight in gold—especially for someone who’s not feeling well or struggling with a chronic health condition.
Don’t be shy. Advertise your number of qualified physicians and nurses and show healthcare consumers you’re ready to handle their care quickly and efficiently.
If you want more out of your healthcare marketing in 2023, we can help. The marketing experts at Healthcare Success have more than 20 years of specialized experience helping hospitals, health systems, and multilocation practices across nearly every specialty reach their marketing and advertising goals.