If you’re new to the world of online marketing, preparing to launch a new professional practice, or thinking about adjusting your current practices to fit the online sphere, you’re in the right place. We’ll teach you the ropes, get you up and running, and equip you with the tools you need to succeed.
Why Use Online Marketing to Market Your Practice?
The benefits of marketing, advertising, and selling online are endless. It’s easy to reach a large audience with relatively little investment. The internet has opened up an entire new landscape for marketers and businesses.
Plus, you have the ability to track the results of your efforts in real-time. You can see how many people are hitting your website, what they’re doing on your site, and how you’re performing compared to other similar businesses.
What Are The Main Tools You’ll Need To Market Online?
To get started, you’ll need a website. Making a good impression on potential clients is key to your success — so make sure that your website is user-friendly, informative, and easy to navigate.
The next step is to figure out how to use the internet to market your practice. You have many options, but we’ll discuss a few of the more popular ones.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
SEO, or search engine optimization, is the process of tweaking your website’s content and HTML to ensure your website shows up in search engine results when someone types in keywords and phrases related to your practice.
You need to approach SEO with a healthy dose of skepticism. There are a lot of snake-oil sellers out there who will try to sell you a scheme to boost your SEO score. Remember, the results of your optimization efforts really can’t be measured in black and white. It takes time for Google to see the results of your efforts, and even then, you’ll never really know for sure if you’re performing at the top of the game.
On the plus side, you can get started with SEO for free. All you need to do is follow the instructions provided by a reputable SEO agency. The good thing about SEO is that you don’t need to be tech-savvy to implement it. All you need is a willing mind and some time. And remember: you can integrate SEO into your marketing plan at any time. So if you decide that SEO isn’t for you, you don’t need to give it up entirely — you can always switch gears and try something new.
Social Media Marketing (SMM)
SMM is all about using social media to attract potential clients to your side. This could include anything from posting regularly on Facebook to using YouTube to share insightful, educational videos about your practice.
You can use social media to get in touch with potential clients, provide them with relevant information, and keep them up-to-date with the latest developments within your practice. The good thing about SMM is that it’s a very organic approach to marketing and doesn’t require a lot of money to start up. You can use tools like Hootsuite and Buffer to build and grow your following.
Email marketing is, as the name suggests, all about putting a marketing email in your arsenal. These emails can be used to promote your practice, offer special discounts, or simply stay in touch with past customers. The catch is that you need to have a list of email addresses to send the campaign to. You can use tools like MailChimp to create and manage your email list.
One of the best things about email marketing is that it’s one of the most effective and affordable forms of marketing you can do. You can start small and build your list slowly, testing out different campaigns and sending out limited quantities of emails to see which works best for your practice.
You’ll need to put in the time to get to know your customers and figure out what they want. Once you know this, you can start to develop an email marketing plan and work your way up to a larger scale. Email marketing can also be used to cross-promote with other platforms, incorporating brand consistency throughout your marketing plan. And let’s face it, email marketing is still one of the most effective forms of marketing around. If you’re looking to grow your practice, this is something you should consider. Plus, you can use tools like MailChimp to send out weekly or daily emails with helpful tips, upcoming events, and special offers.
Pay-Per-Click Advertising (PPC)
PPC, or pay-per-click advertising, is when you pay a company to have their name and website link in the form of sponsored ads on your chosen platform. When someone clicks on these ads, they’re usually directed to a specific landing page where they can learn more about your practice. PPC is pretty self-explanatory; you’re paying to have your text and/or image displayed in a sponsored ad space on a specific platform. You can work with companies like Google Ads and Facebook Ads.
The good thing about PPC is that you can get started with a small budget and know exactly what results you’re getting. You can test different types of ads and measure their effectiveness to find the right one for your practice. When you find the right sponsor, the results can be quite lucrative. PPC is a great choice for new or expanding practices looking for additional streams of revenue.
Where Do I Start?
With so much to learn, you’ve got a lot of options when it comes to marketing your practice online. To get started, simply follow these six steps:
1. Choose a platform.
Now that you have a good idea of what you’re looking for in a marketing platform, it’s time to narrow it down to two choices. Depending on your budget and existing skills, you have several platforms to choose from. If you’re on a tight budget, you can start small and test out different platforms until you find one that suits your needs. Once you do, you can move forward with confidence that you’ve settled on the right platform. You should choose a platform that already has a large base of users. This will make it easier for you to connect with potential clients, and the information you share will be more reliable.
2. Determine your goal.
What do you hope to get out of using this platform to market your practice? This is the single most important question to ask yourself before you begin any type of marketing campaign. Determining your goal will help you choose the right metrics to track and determine the success of your plan. You should decide whether you want to go for more clients, make a name for yourself, or both. Thinking in terms of more clients will drive you to focus on SEO, while creating a name for yourself may inspire you to look into paid advertising.
3. Choose keywords.
When you start building your website, you’ll be given the option to enter a number of keywords that describe your practice. You can use these keywords to find potential clients. When someone performs a search on Google with these keywords, your website’s content should pop-up in the results. While it would be great to have your website show up on the first page of Google search results, this is very unlikely to happen. Instead, you need to focus on getting your website to the top of the results page for a variety of relevant keywords. This will require a bit of trial and error, but it’s all worth it in the end.
4. Create content.
Once you have your website up and running, it’s time to start creating content. This content can be in the form of anything from blog posts to videos, infographics, or a straightforward FAQ section. Make sure that the information you provide is valuable and that you add new content frequently. The more you put out there, the more people are likely to find you. Make sure to include call-to-actions (CTAs) at the end of each piece of content to get people to take the action you want them to take. If you’re new to content creation, consider using free blogging platforms like WordPress to get your feet wet. Don’t worry, you don’t have to be a trained writer to produce quality content — anyone can do it.
5. Measurement and analysis.
Once you begin to see results from your content strategy, whether through increased website traffic or elevated search rankings, it’s time to take a step back and analyze the data. Without careful measurement and analysis, it’s near impossible to determine the true success of your campaign. Some basic tools that will help you track the results of your marketing efforts include but are not limited to: