It is estimated that 75 percent of internet users search for health-related content online daily. And at the present time, 93% of all online searches start on Google’s search engine. Therefore, knowing how to promote medical tourism on search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo will enable your organization to effectively communicate your unique value proposition to medical travelers around the world and ultimately boost your sales.
The success of any medical tourism marketing strategy chiefly depends on how you reach your target market and how you earn their trust — but this is not enough, you must also be able to educate and convince them. They must see that you are a highly trained healthcare travel expert, and that the hospitals in your network are top-notch and provide high-quality, affordable medical care.
How to Promote Medical Tourism and Create A Marketing Strategy
As you grow your company, it is essential to focus on different ways to market medical tourism throughout your digital platforms and social media pages. This will not only increase your lead generation; it will also boost your visibility and introduce your brand to prospective patients.
Below are things you need to know to effectively execute a medical tourism marketing strategy:
Educate Your Prospective Patients
Traveling patients need to understand why they can trust you with their health and wellbeing. They need to learn about available options before making a choice. Hence, it would be best if you educated them. Tell them about the affordability and quality of your healthcare services. Show them your accreditations and certifications, reviews of past jobs, and accolades you have accumulated.
Who is Your Ideal Customer?
Who is your target audience? What type of patient are you looking to work with? What is the age range of your target audience? Answering these questions will help you in your healthcare marketing and medical tourism plan. More specifically, look out for the following when targeting your preferred customer;
Focus on people in a specific geographical location. For instance, if you are already receiving a substantial amount of patient leads and clients from a specific country or region, you could target certain locations that have direct, non-stop flights, to your destination. So, keep an eye out for regions and geographical areas that give you a competitive advantage when it comes to marketing medical tourism to international patients.
The Importance of Demographics in Healthcare Marketing and Medical Tourism
Look out for the age-related socio-economic information of your target audience. Usually, the 30 to 65 year old age group serves as a key demographic in medical travel because people in this age range have had life experiences that allow them to be open to international healthcare, particularly if they are fond of traveling for tourism-related activities, cultured, and actively use the internet. However, it is important to look at a wide range of attributes when you are in the process of identifying your “ideal customer” which a lot of the time largely depends on the service you are providing to your healthcare marketing and medical tourism niche. For example, a medical provider performing orthopedic surgery may want to focus on people in the 55+ age bracket because the average age of a person that gets a joint replacement is usually between 60 and 80 years of age.
Determining the characteristics and traits of your ideal customer will help you create an effective medical tourism marketing strategy that will attract the type of prospects that need your service the most.
How to Use Psychographics in Your Marketing
Create a psychographic profile. Let the profile answer the following questions – What is the psychology behind the actions your prospective customers take? What thoughts do people process before deciding to utilize healthcare travel? Does the thought process induce hope or fear? Creating a psychographic profile and answering questions like these will help you develop a better idea of how to market medical tourism to your niche clientele.
How to Build Credibility and Set Yourself Apart from Competitors
If you are a medical tourism agent, you have to go the extra mile to promote medical tourism and make sure you are following a well-defined marketing strategy. Nevertheless, your ability to establish credibility will come from your business competence, marketing plan, and overall knowledge of medical travel. Here are some ways you can differentiate your service from others in the industry.
Related Article: 5 Proven Marketing Strategies for Promoting Medical Tourism
Provide Educational Information
It is important that you educate potential customers on health travel and what to expect from your service which will aid them in making an informed decision. Make sure your sales material educates your prospective clients on your service(s), benefits of medical tourism, destination attractions, treatments, etc.
Building Sustainable Credibility
Since the vast majority of your potential medical tourism clients will never get a chance to interact with you in person, it’s vital that you have a strong online reputation. Your digital platforms will be the first interaction prospective customers will have with your brand. Whether it’s your website, social media, or an online blog about your company, each of these platforms will influence your perceived credibility and trustworthiness. To make sure you are making a good impression, your website needs to be highly visible on search engines like Google, and you need trust symbols and accreditation logos displayed on your digital platforms.
When prospective clients see that you have a robust digital presence and your company has been recognized by other industry leaders, they will assume you offer great services. The more you promote yourself and your company, the more leads you will generate, and the more likely you will be able to convert the leads into paying customers.
Set Yourself Apart from The Competition
When people think about “how to market medical tourism”, this is a strategy that is often overlooked. Identify your big competitors and small competitors, list their visible strengths, perceived strengths, and identify their market strategy. Determine whether they focus on location, pricing, convenience, quality, a large network of providers, or service. Identify what makes them different. By doing this, you will discover how to differentiate your business from theirs and how to make yours more outstanding. You can only outgrow your competitors if you know what they think and how they think. Identify why people should use your services instead of your competitors. Once you figure this out, highlight these benefits in your marketing and promotional campaigns.
How To Conduct A Marketing S.W.O.T Analysis
In distinguishing your business, you should always outline certain factors. These should include a “Marketing S.W.O.T Analysis”; S.W.O.T is an acronym that stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. This analysis can be as complex or as simple as you’d like. In its most basic form, this assessment will help you identify internal and external factors that can make or break your business. If done correctly, this document should give you an extremely realistic view of your current situation and help you understand what steps you need to take to maximize your organization’s market standing.
You can do this assessment with a pen and pad or a Microsoft PowerPoint. Start by writing the words: strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. The next step is to make a list of your company’s strong points, weaknesses that you feel you can use some improvement on, opportunities and new trends that can help your company in the future, and lastly, include anything external that you feel can negatively affect your organization.
This exercise gives you a chance to be bluntly honest about your company and your current position in the marketplace.
Look at the below example carefully. It explains the type of subjects each section should cover.
The Importance of A Medical Tourism Website
Having an effective medical tourism website is one of the core elements of carrying out a successful health tourism marketing strategy. When it comes to working with international patients, there is no substitute for a company website. In fact, if used properly, a medical tourism website can be your most profitable asset. Here are some things you need to keep in mind:
If You Don’t Have A Website, You Don’t Exist to Potential Customers
If potential customers search for your website and cannot find it, it can be perceived as “sketchy” or “questionable”. So, publish reliable and credible information on your site for people who need your services. Make yourself well-known and visible by writing blogs, posting YouTube videos, publishing press releases, speaking at industry seminars, and write guest blog posts for popular publications. Become a specialist in your area of medical travel.
Language Translation Tools
A lot of companies make the mistake of creating their website in their native language or have poor English translations. If you plan on marketing your website to an international clientele, your content should be in the English language. Each one of your web pages also will need a language translation button, so your website visitors have the option to read your content in any language they choose.
Have an Attractive Website
Having an attractive medical tourism website cannot be overstated. If you don’t have a background in website design, it may be best to outsource this task to a professional. Once your website is completed, it’s always good to compare your website with 10-20 competitor websites and truthfully determine if yours can be among the top three. If not, consider getting a new site. Ensure your site can be easily navigated, has good photos, a large volume of written copy, working links, and testimonials.
Pay Attention to Keywords and Search Engine Optimization
When people search for medical travel services online, they search using specific keywords and phrases. You need to identify these words and utilize them in the content on your website. At Medical Tourism Business, we can do SEO Keyword Research for your site and find out which keywords you need to target in your marketing campaign.
Avoid Shortcuts and Gimmicks
To effectively market your medical tourism website, avoid going for options that are too good to be true. Understand that your website is your most crucial marketing tool, so don’t attempt to increase your search engine rankings through tricks and gimmicks. Getting ranked on Google and other search engines takes time. However, you can shorten this time dramatically by working with the right digital marketing company.
Establish Credibility with Good Content
As a healthcare marketing and medical tourism expert, you need to ensure that you are creating good content that will boost your credibility, build familiarity and trust-based relations. Ensure your written content is compelling enough to convert your leads into active customers.
Don’t be Afraid to Ask for the Sale
Generally speaking, most folks welcome a straightforward but not pushy style to business. If you want their business, tell them. When prospects fill out the contact forms on your site, respond promptly. Delayed responses to emails and telephone calls can result in lost sales.
Word of Mouth Marketing
One of the top reasons for growth in the medical tourism industry is word-of-mouth marketing. In actuality, healthcare marketing and medical tourism rely heavily on patient referrals. Some people even prefer to base their decisions on what a prominent person has to say. You should also create stories for your business. Stories that patients around the world can easily relate to.
Every patient has a story, and most people tend to relate to at least one story. To identify these stories and tell them to the world. You could tell them a story of how you were able to plan for a patient who was worried about the fact the medical procedure he needed wasn’t available in his home country. It could also be a story of how another patient was able to get a life-saving surgery at an affordable price.
Circulate these relatable stories and make these stories visible to your future clients. By doing this, you will be able to generate attention and even drive people to your website. While paid advertisement is undoubtedly effective, persuasive public relations will further boost your healthcare marketing and medical tourism sales.
Social Media Marketing
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn are social media platforms that allow you to reach thousands of people you do not know. According to statistics, over 85% of 30-50 year-olds are active on social media, over 51% of 65-75 year-olds are active users, over 51% of Facebook fans are likely to buy from companies they support through social media, and over 67% of Twitter followers are likely to buy from companies they support through social media.
Just like every other healthcare and medical tourism marketing campaign, social media marketing requires hard work. But if you can strategically position yourself by putting out niche-related content to earn interactive followers on these platforms that are interested in your services, over time you can gain a loyal following and generate more business.
On social media, most followers are visual learners, so incorporate the use of pictures and videos. Keep your followers interested in your brand by offering continuous valuable information and sustainable benefits.
Although people now get a lot of customers from social media, do not build your account with the goal of selling. Your primary goal should be to provide relevant, entertaining, and helpful content, while directing followers to your main website. If you become a notable member of any social media platform, it will be easy for people to find your website and social media platforms on search engines and get more exposure.
In order to promote an effective medical tourism marketing strategy, you must invest in social media marketing.
YouTube and Video Marketing
Your healthcare marketing and medical tourism business will flourish when you invest in high-quality medical videos. It has been established that social media users interact better with media content (pictures and videos) compared to written content. Create compelling and exciting videos that will allow you to demonstrate your services effectively and present your offers in an appealing manner. Give users a glimpse of the services you offer and establish familiarity. You could even incorporate video reviews given by past clients to establish credibility.
For your video marketing, ensure your video has the following elements included:
- The video needs to be at least 85% informative and educational.
- It should be five to fifteen minutes in length.
- It ought to have a Call-To-Action at the end of the video. Telling the viewer what you would like them to do next or directing them to your digital platforms, where they can find more information.
- Provide the viewers with your contact information and website name.
Do not forget that your medical tourism services also include providing general tourism information. Therefore, in addition to the healthcare information, also have information about hotels, restaurants, recreational centers, upcoming events, and general tips to enjoy their medical travel experience.
Make Local Lines Available
Considering the fact that your patients are from other countries, you should make it easy for them to call you by incorporating a local line or toll-free line. For instance, if your target audience is Americans, you should include a U.S. local line and advertise it on your website and promotional material. More so, if you are from a French-speaking country and your target audience are people from an English-speaking country, you should have an English-speaking representative to respond to calls and answer questions. Miscommunication and language barriers are big turn-offs. Please avoid it in your healthcare marketing and medical tourism campaigns.
Healthcare and Medical Vacation
Having to see a doctor in another country can be a boring activity. However, it is your responsibility to help your patients, and prospective patients see that medical tourism is beyond just seeing a doctor. Beyond getting good medical care, help them know that they are also going on a vacation.
There is no doubt, marketing and promoting a medical travel company is hard work and it takes time. However, the effectiveness of your health tourism marketing plan will be largely dependent on the message that you are communicating to your target audience. Identify what your ideal customer needs and wants and address those subjects. Only then will your marketing strategy be a success.
About Medical Tourism Business’s Marketing Services
If you are interested in attracting more international patients to your website, or looking to have a website created, Medical Tourism Business offers a full range of marketing services, including Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and lead generation. Contact us today to find out how we can make your organization more visible to patients.
Tel/WhatsApp: +1 (561) 909-7178
Thanks for reading. We look forward to hearing from you.