Tuesday, 5 June 2012

World Wide Web is the next place for hospitals to compete with each other

Most hospitals are poor marketers and that is very much evident in the conspicuous absence of creativity in their marketing campaigns, indoor patient experience and online presence. While management would spend crores of rupees in building their hospitals and buying the medical gadgets (read equipments) they would not spare even a thought to the marketing of these facilities.

One would have noticed that patients are now becoming smarter and social media has really given wings to the imagination to the customer in us. The patients like to surf more information about the hospitals online, seek advice from their friends and relatives about which one to choose and freely share their experiences about the hospital services on social media platforms. In such a marketplace, can the healthcare providers survive if they do not learn more about the mediums of reaching out to their target customers, i.e. patients and their relatives/friends?

Websites are the virtual existence of a business. For a hospital, it is an extremely cost-effective way to build a sound patient perspective about their services, competencies and outreach programmes. It is a one-time effort to communicate consistently to all your clients in a comprehensive manner.

Search engine optimization (SEO) is another area where one needs to focus. In our own observation, we found that some very good hospitals and with decent (if not great) websites were not appearing in the first 10 pages of Google search results! What can explain this situation? Definitely, the choice of vendor was a big reason because of which hospitals could not leverage their web presence.

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