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Instagram Marketing for Doctors & Medical Clinics
Effective Instagram marketing is included in Gold Service – $599/month. Used by top medical clinics and practices in USA and Canada. Intelli*Doctor Instagram App is also available à la carte for $199/Mon.
Social media is here to stay, and as a doctor, you need to take advantage of this powerful marketing tool to engage with current and potential patients. One of the most popular social media channels out there today is Instagram. While owned by Facebook, in many respects, it is a different entity altogether from Facebook with different rules and capabilities. Your local competitors are using Instagram, so should you.
What should I consider when using Instagram to advertise my medical practice?
Instagram is a visual medium, so to make the most of it, you should have compelling pictures to share on it. Try to remain consistent with the tone and the branding of your photos. You will also want to ensure the images are of decent quality. While you are not aiming to win any photography prizes, you also do not want your pictures to look like one of your older relatives took it. Images that have fingers in them, are fuzzy or seemingly miss the main focus all together are not going to work for your Instagram theme. Maintain consistent branding and high-quality photos to make your Instagram feed look more professional.
It would be best if you also considered who on your staff should be able to post on your Instagram feed. If there is more than one person who has access to it, review with them the tone and feel of photos. Avoid allowing this to become disjointed, or there will be a “weird” feel to your Instagram posts. Posts that use a bunch of emojis followed by a more formally written post will look odd to the everyday person, unless someone “signs” their posts. Review guidelines to make sure no one posts anything that makes your practice look bad or violates any ethical rules.
What kind of photos should I post on my medical practice’s Instagram?
Generally, you should post photos that showcase your medical practice, doctors, and staff. These photos should try to tell stories about what is going on at your medical practice and how you are helping your patients. Do not worry about pictures looking too formal or professional. You do not need to “stage” photos at your medical practice. Many medical practices use their photos to show “behind the scenes.” Many of your patients may not realize what goes on there when they are not receiving services. Showing them what happens behind the scenes can help drive engagement and is beneficial to marketing your medical practice. You can also showcase your facility and the rooms where your patients will receive treatment. Did you get new equipment or repaint a room? These topics also make for great posts.
Avoid posts that are too technical or promotional. Your followers and potential followers do not want to be sold to, and if they don’t understand what you are talking about, they are going to move on to something else. You should also avoid posting anything related to patients without their explicit permission. Not everything on your Instagram feed needs to be related to healthcare. Showing office parties, highlighting the milestones in the lives of your staff, or seasonal decorations can be beneficial also. Whatever can spur engagement between you and your patients is great for your Instagram profile.
Your best posts are going to be posts involving your patients. Once you get their approval, there are no better posts than a happy patient smiling next to your staff. In the description, you can talk about the care they receive and how pleased they were with it. Be mindful not to post anything too graphic on your Instagram page. Someone who has suffered a sprain would be fine; someone who is bleeding profusely may get flagged for removal.
How can I get my Instagram posts noticed?
Much like Twitter, you can use hashtags to get your Instagram posts noticed effectively. Hashtags help categorize your posts by subject. Some medical practices use hashtags (#) in their descriptions, while others list words related to the post at the very bottom. Both are acceptable as long as it isn’t overdone. If you add 50 hashtagged words to a post that only has a dozen so words in the description of the picture, then you are probably overdoing it. Many posts have no more than five hashtags.
When selecting hashtags, you can pick words that are in your description or different words that describe the topic. You can also combine words for a hashtag but avoid combining too many, or it will be unreadable.
Example of good hashtags
Examples of bad hashtags
Are there any tools that make posting easier?
Many of the posts you use on Instagram can also be used on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and your Google Business Profile. There are many tools out there that allow you to draft one post and have it posted across all channels at once, rather than having to log into every channel one at a time to post your pictures. With that said, you do lose some of the functions available in the Instagram app, like being able to put layouts of pictures and use filters. This trade-off may or may not be relevant to you or the person managing your social media account. Hootsuite and Buffer the two of the more popular tools that allow you to post on multiple accounts.
Many people already know that Instagram provides a series of filters they can apply to their pictures. Three lesser-known features on Instagram include IGTV, Boomerang, and live broadcasting. IGTV is short for Instagram TV, which allows you to share high-quality videos of longer length than the usual shorter videos. You generally need to get approved to share videos of this length. Boomerang allows you to create a loop like gifs to share. These play forward and backward over and over again. If you have a sense of humor, this provides you with an excellent opportunity to put out some fun, engaging content. Finally, you can broadcast live from your Instagram account and live stream an event. You can engage with followers and highlight your facility and staff.
Start Marketing To Patients With Instagram Today
Instagram gives you an incredible opportunity to connect with your patients and build a loyal following. The more actively engaged you are on your Instagram account, the more likely you are to engage with your followers. Compared to other social media channels, you can make a more personal connection with your followers. If it is within your marketing budget, there are also advertising opportunities on this platform you can take advantage of to increase your reach. While growth in other social media platforms begins to slow, Instagram continues to grow at a constant rate. Starting today will only help improve your patient count.
Start marketing with Instagram today! Involve your staff and make it fun. Your enjoyment of posting pictures and helping others will clearly show in your posts and be seen by others!
4 Important Tactics For Online Healthcare Marketing Strategy
- Focus on Patient Acquisition – This area focuses on your website, SEO, online advertising (Google, Facebook, Instagram etc), tracking of leads, secure HIPAA compliant CRM.
- Patient Engagement – This area focuses on your ability to engage patients. For example, Facebook and Google posts, Texting/SMS from your website so you can capture leads. Referral strategy, monthly Email marketing, auto-follow up emails and texts. Building a fan base on social media.
- Patient Revenue – This area focuses on your ability to monetize your marketing. Many doctors are doing a great job on marketing, but they are missing out on maximizing revenue per patient. Life time value of patient has 2 aspects. First initial visit and revenue generated by the first initial visit. Second part has to do with Life-Time-Value (LTV) of each patient - This could be a much bigger number and when calculating ROI - Return On Investment, should also be calculated. The second area is most overlooked by doctors.
- Reputation Management – This area can be a headache or a winning differentiator for your medical practice. As you service your patients, your plan should be as every patient ( shortly after providing service ) asking them "Based on your experience with our medical practice, would you recommend us". This is probably the most important question you can ask. This can be done 4 different ways. 1) Personally asking them - This approach is most effective, however in real life, it is simply not possible. 2) Using Texting/SMS app sending a similar question and asking if they are happy with your service and willing to recommend you. If they say "yes" then software sends them link to a review site. 3) Using Email similar strategy is implemented. 4) Using an I-Pad in the lobby, similar strategy can be implemented. However this requires some clever software for changing the IP address.
How Much Do Doctors Spend On Advertising in USA?
Range is $600 per month to $15000 per month, depending on specialty and competition.
The actual advertising budget for each clinic and practice is different. Some clinics/doctors are very aggressive and spend $1000 per day (or more) and some spend $1000 a month on advertising. We also have few clinics/doctors who do not spend any money on online advertising, they doctors rely on referrals and very strong SEO rankings. This data refers to online advertising, not offline advertising spend.
Also you have to understand that every practice area is different. For example let’s review specific specialties:
Medspa and aesthetic practices
For Medical Spas and Aesthetic practices, it is highly recommended to have online advertising budget. The typical range is $3000 to $10000 per month, with average budget of $4210 per practice in USA.
Plastic surgeons need online advertising, more than any other category. It is next to impossible to be successful without proper online advertising budget. The typical range is $5000 to $15000 per month, with average budget of $6677 per practice in USA.
The typical range is $1000 to $4000 per month, spend on average spend $1960 per month per location. However these are “average” locations with medium competition. If a dermatology is also focused on cosmetic procedures, their budgets are more like Medical Spas and aesthetic clinics.
Urgent care centers
The typical range is $1000 to $9000 per month, spend on average spend $3600 per month per location. However these are “average” locations with medium competition. There are many factors, number of exam rooms and how many providers, and fixed overhead also dictates how aggressive each owner is. Brands and chains spend more on advertising than stand alone locations. We have also noticed if the owner is a doctor/physician, vs a business person, doctor/physician owners will have a hard time understanding value of advertising. doctor/physician owners view advertising and marketing as an expense, rather than an “investment” with an ROI (Return On Investment).
Walk-in primary care practices
Walk-in Clinics – with primary care services and some “urgent care” services spend $1000 to $3400 per month, with an average monthly budget of $1900 per month.
Primary care practices
Primary care doctors spend $600 to $1300 per month, with an average monthly budget of $890 per month.
Naturopathic, wellness focused care practices
Primary care doctors spend $800 to $1900 per month, with an average monthly budget of $1230 per month.
Pediatric care practices
The typical range is $600 to $1600 per month, spend on average spend $900 per month per location.
Sexual healthcare practices – multi-focus
The typical range is $3000 to $8500 per month, spend on average spend $4200 per month per location.
Sexual healthcare practices – Erectile Dysfunction
The typical range is $4000 to $10000 per month, spend on average spend $6700 per month per location.
Fertility healthcare practices
The typical range is $3300 to $7500 per month, spend on average spend $4700 per month per location.
Dental practices – General dentists
The typical range is $750 to 1900 per month, spend on average spend $1230 per month per location.
Dental practices – Specialist dentists
The typical range is $1300 to 3210 per month, spend on average spend $2540 per month per location. These type of practices include Endodontists, dental implant focus, Invisalign focus etc.
Dental practices – Celebrity & cosmetic focus
The typical range is $8300 to $18850 per month, spend on average spend $9600 per month per location. These type of practices include dentists who do not accept insurance, and accept limited amount of patients, but each patient is treated as a “celebrity” with extreme focus on customer service, and results for each patient. Services include invisalign, porcelain veneers, whitening, bonding, laminates, implants, and orthodontics.
Podiatrists – Foot and Ankle Doctors and Surgeons
The typical range is $800 to 2200 per month, spend on average spend $1655 per month per location.
The typical range is $800 to 1900 per month, spend on average spend $1380 per month per location.
Women’s Health and OB/GYN
The typical range is $500 to 2700 per month, spend on average spend $1600 per month per location.
Medical Fat loss / Physician Supervised Weight Loss Practices
The typical range is $2100 to 8700 per month, spend on average spend $4300 per month per location.
Integrative practices – Serving multiple focus areas
The typical range is $1200 to 3210 per month, spend on average spend $2341 per month per location. These type of practices include multiple focused areas, like heart health, general wellness, diabetic patients, mind – brain wellness, pain management, hormonal imbalance and many other areas. These type of practices have to compete with traditional non-integrative practices, so conversion cost per patient is higher than traditional primary care practices.
Sleep clinics and TMJ clinics
The typical range is $500 to 1580 per month, spend on average spend $940 per month per location.
Pain clinics – Chiropractors
The typical range is $1200 to 2200 per month, spend on average spend $1400 per month per location.
Pain clinics – Spine focused – minimally invasive pain management and regenerative medicine
The typical range is $1500 to 3000 per month, spend on average spend $1900 per month per location.
Physical therapy care practices
Physical therapy clinics have expanded into many areas and they offer services overlapping with other practices also. For example here is list of services for physical therapy practice : post-surgery rehabilitation, senior rehabilitation programs, work injury rehabilitation, back stabilization, balance training, functional capacity evaluations, neurological rehabilitation, orthopedic rehabilitation, pain management, physical therapy, wellness & weight loss program, vestibular sports medicine, graston technique, fitness program – So this can be quite large. Most clinics like these spend $1200 to $3400 per month, with an average monthly budget of $1900 per month, per location.
Data from 2018 to 2020. Also note that brands spend much more than non-brand focused medical practices, they also have more patients and perceived medical care provided is of higher value to patients, as evidenced by reviews received by the medical practices. The data is here for your guidelines and not guaranteed to generate same or similar results.
5 Steps for Facebook Success for Doctors & Medical Practices
Use Social Media Apps To Acquire New Patients and Engage & Service Existing Patients
Social Media Marketing is another very important aspect of your marketing. Your potential and existing are hanging around on Facebook. You have to make it easy for them to do business with you. Here are 5 steps.
5 Steps for Facebook Success for Doctors & Medical Practices
- Create Facebook Business Page for your medical practice.
- Optimize FacebookBusiness Page for your medical practice.
- Add apps to your FacebookBusiness Page for your medical practice. For example, add Contact Us app, add Appointment Requests app, add Promotions app.
- Add content to your FacebookBusiness Page for your medical practice
- Advertise your FacebookBusiness Page for your medical practice on Facebook – There are multiple ways to promote your FacebookBusiness Page for your medical practice. You can hire a professional ( recommended ) or do it yourself. Professionals who are certified advertising professionals will produce better results for you.
PatientGain.com is a proven dental and medical marketing solution, includes apps, websites, SEO, HIPAA compliance and account management.
To learn about What is the Foundation of Medical SEO (Search Engine Optimization) for Doctors
To learn about How SEO Works For Doctors Websites, this is a good starting page.
To learn about Short-cut SEO for Medical Practices, this is a good starting page.
To learn about Pricing and cost of SEO services for medical practices, this is a good starting page.
To learn about How Much Do Doctors Spend On Advertising?
To learn about Medical SEO Voice Search Optimization For Doctors (BERT)
To learn about Local Medical SEO For Doctors
To learn about Mobile SEO For Medical Websites
To learn about Zero-Click SEO for Doctors & Medical Practices
To learn about Benefits Of Medical SEO Marketing
To learn about Key Items For SEO Evaluation of Medical Websites
To learn about Avoid Risky Plans – Use Proven Medical Marketing Strategies
To learn about Medical Marketing Using Emotionally Compelling Offline Media
To learn about Pre Launch Medical Marketing Checklist for Doctors
To learn about Medical SEO vs. Medical Advertising – Which One Is Better?
To learn about Is Your Medical Website Design “Future Proof”?
To learn about Medical Website Conversion Strategies
To learn about Medical Website Content Marketing Strategy
To learn about How to Acquire New Patients for Your Medical Practice
To learn about Medical Website Applications