1. You’re Not Following the Medical Advertising Rules
There are strict rules with severe repercussions surrounding medical advertising. The rules are in place for a reason, mostly to protect a vulnerable audience from manipulative marketing techniques. If you don’t follow the rules – your medical marketing campaigns won’t deliver a high return-on-investment because your ads may not even reach your audience. Although most Search Engines and Ad Platforms will notify you of infractions on your account, they’re under no obligation to help you correct the infractions nor will they go out of their way to notify you. If you don’t keep a close eye on it, you may not be aware that the performance of your marketing campaigns has been ‘limited’ or stopped altogether. Search Engines and Ad Platforms face severe punitive measures under federal law if the rules are not followed by the advertisers on their platforms. If you do try to ‘dodge’ the rules or don’t follow them out of ignorance your account will likely be suspended altogether.
2. You’re Not Considering Your Target Audience
People who need medical attention are generally in a vulnerable condition. Quite often I am asked by Medical Service Providers to audit their marketing campaigns as a means of discovering why they’re not converting. One of the most common errors I see is a lack of considering who the target audience really is and how they should be approach for best results. Whether it’s a dentist, a doctor, a medical device supplier or a medical specialist – the tone and presentation of marketing ads in the medical industry must be quite tactfully designed. It’s not enough to research your target audience’s demographics and point your ads towards them. Rather, a careful process of studying their online behaviors and what phrasing they respond to without hesitation will help campaigns convert at a much higher rate.
3. The Wrong Person is Following Up with Leads
This ‘reason’ even surprised me. It’s something I discovered only after years of refining campaigns. I had reached a point with several specific campaigns where all other qualifying components of the campaigns were perfectly optimized and yet the lead-to-patient rate was still not delivering an ROI I was happy with. These campaigns were delivering a very high volume of leads – sometimes as many as 50 qualified leads per month were reaching out to an individual medical practice and yet, only a handful would convert. Reviewing the data, I could see that all 50 leads would leave detailed voice messages or write lengthy form submissions outlining the specific help they needed from the medical practitioner so I knew the leads were qualified. So why weren’t they converting into patients? While the ROI on these campaigns was still positive it frustrated me to no end that less than 10% of leads who had expressed interest in a service were converting.
Then it occurred to me that once a lead is passed off to a practice, the first conversation they have will ultimately determine whether they convert into a patient. The reason the leads I was delivering weren’t converting into patients was directly related to who they first spoke with at the practice. This point correlates with something I’ve already mentioned which is that leads in the medical marketing industry can be quite volatile and must be handled delicately so they’re not scared off. People who contact a medical service provider looking for help, don’t want to be directed to a salesperson. If possible, they should be put in immediate contact with a medically savvy receptionist or, even better, the medical practitioner who will be treating them. From my experience, swapping a salesperson out for an individual with a medical background who works “on-the-ground” at the practice has increased conversion rates from 10% to nearly 90% of the 50 leads per month I mentioned earlier. This kind of data shouldn’t be ignored especially because this was a simple “offline” change that had a game-changing impact on the Return-On-Investment the practice was seeing from their medical advertising.