When I’m making a purchase decision, the Internet is my go-to source for first impressions and in-depth research. If I can’t find a company’s website, you can guarantee I’m not making a purchase. Unsurprisingly, I’m not alone — a recent study found that 81% of people explore options online before making a purchase decision.
It’s easy to forget your online existence when your marketing goals are often focused on connecting those in crisis with immediate assistance; however, a strong online presence can be extremely valuable in providing support to those in need of help.
In part one and part two of our series, we discussed how treatment centers can update their sales, referrals, and paid media practices. In this installation, we will discuss how treatment facilities can modernize their digital practices for a strong online presence.
Traditional Digital Practices
For many treatment facilities, digital assets are often overlooked in favor of paid marketing efforts for their ability to draw in leads. This logic is flawed when we consider the prevalence of online research that takes place before a purchase. Zach Binder, the Senior Director of Marketing Operations for American Addiction Centers, agrees that digital assets are extremely valuable for their ability to consistently draw in organic leads — all for a one-time cost.
It’s simple math. If you spend thousands of dollars per month to fill your facility through paid media, then you’re not acquiring any leads organically for your business to regularly rely on. If you spend those same dollars on improving the business for your visitors on your site, then you’ll be creating a foundation for long-term sustainable growth.
How to Update your Digital Assets
To hone your digital marketing approaches, focus on tactics that fall into these activities:
- Optimize your website based on what your visitors are searching for
Binder says that a “clean, informative, and beautiful website” creates a positive experience for a user that will encourage admission to your facility. Usability is also key — make sure your website is optimized for a mobile experience. According to Google, the majority of online searches occur on mobile devices, so make sure your website is responsive to any screen size.
- Maintain a consistent and active social media presence
Social channels operate as a space for knowledge sharing and community building. Create space for authentic connection and avoid selling, but offer opportunities for visitors to reach out for help. Binder recommends making these moments of outreach easy for a visitor who needs treatment: “Depending on your available in-house resources or call center capabilities, this may involve call, text, live chat, email, and direct messages on social media.”
- Create content (e.g. blog posts, videos, white papers) based on search engine optimization (SEO) principles
Consider building tools and assets that will hold value upon an exit. For example, a virtual tour of your facility is a one-time investment that can hold tremendous value and deliver consistent admissions without maintenance.
- Utilize paid search (pay-per-click) to elevate your treatment center in search engine results
Keep in mind that this is an expensive channel and is intended to deliver immediate results. Keywords related to rehab, treatment, and recovery are typically in the top 20 most expensive keywords across industries. “Watch it closely,” Binder warns “if you find yourself bleeding cash without any return, stop immediately.”
If you haven’t revamped your digital assets in the past year it’s time to take a look at how you can modernize your online presence. To update your digital assets, take a look at your unique selling proposition (USP)– aka, what do you offer that differentiates you from other treatment centers?
Your mission statement and distinctive treatment services are a great starting point to uncover your USP. From there, you can build out a solid strategy to populate your digital channels with information and tools that will build sustainable relationships of trust with your audience.
Summary: Quick tips for elevating digital strategies
- Consider digital assets placed across your website and social media channels as an investment that will consistently draw in visitors and establish your facility’s credibility
- Focus on creating high-value, enticing content such as videos and blog posts that showcase your facility’s unique features
- Across all of your digital assets, provide as many options as possible for a visitor to reach out for help including call, text, live chat, email, and direct messages on social media
Are you looking to boost your online presence? Click here to learn how our digital platform can extend your treatment center’s visibility via our network of authority websites.