How to use Social Media to lead Patients to a specific Surgeon
Bad patient marketing in orthopedics drives me crazy. I am going to show you what good patient marketing looks like.
People live on social media today. Our phone is always nearby. We use social media all day long to keep track of friends, learn, read, explore and search for medical advice.
Prospective orthopedic patients do the same. When a person with hip arthritis looks for solutions, she pokes around on social media. The algorithms at Google and Facebook know. Google/Facebook know that her name is Susan, that she is 64 years old, that she is looking for solutions for hip arthritis. Yes, big brother knows.
Why don’t the orthopedic device manufactures take advantage of these super-targeted Google/Facebook’s profiles?
Let’s talk about “Out of Context” versus “In Context” marketing, or push versus pull marketing.
Out of Context – Push Marketing
Device companies are all using the Out of Context marketing methods. This is a push method that is not effective because it requires the patient to do all the work.
To illustrate, here are three examples of digital marketing that DO NOT drive patient behavior.
Now they have to fill in their location, what Orthopedic specialty they need (uuurg?), If they get this far, they see a “Yellow pages” list of surgeon names. How do they know which one is best for them? It’s just a list.
Same thing as AAOS, a list of surgeon names, but now the patient can schedule a doctor consult much like reserving a dinner table on OpenTable.
A patient somehow finds a device manufacturers’ website. I’ll pick on ConforMIS as an example, but they are all the same. Somehow the patient navigates to the Find-a-Doc area on ConforMIS’ website [ https://www.conformis.com/find-a-doctor/ ]
Same thing as AAOS or Zocdoc. Patients who have to fill out a form, then click on a surgeon profile and the patients are probably not going to ever reach your surgeon customer.
In Context – Pull Marketing
In digital marketing, context is everything.
The better way. Here is an example of digital marketing that DOES drive patient behavior. I think you will “get it” after seeing it.
Let’s go back to our potential patient looking for an answer, Susan. Google and Facebook already know that Susan is 64 years old, lives in San Diego, has an arthritic hip, and that she is looking for a solution.
Here is the secret. You can pay Google and Facebook to reach Susan while she is In Context. The cost of the ad is $0.27 per click on Facebook (as of this writing). The bigger cost is the content production. In advance, the device manufacturer will have to do some video recording at each of their surgeon’s location for a specific patient experience. Cost = thousands of dollars (hired agency) to free (if you already have a marketing FTE). Cost to edit is hundreds of dollars (any 14 year old can edit a video today.)
How does it work?
One afternoon Susan is on Facebook and a video link pops up. It captures her attention because, the content is a woman just like her – 64, lives in San Diego and needs a hip replacement. Amazing, what a coincidence! (a savvy company has paid for access to this super-targeted patient) Watch the video below to understand how powerful In Context marketing is.
“My name is Adele and this is my story of fixing my hip and getting my like back. “
Susan is led to only one surgeon – the surgeon in video, Dr Peter Hanson. Susan feels like she already knows him. Dr Hanson’s office is near Susan’s house. She is reassured by watching Adele’s story. She books an appointment to see Dr. Peter Hanson at Sharp Grossmont Hospital.