There is a steady drumbeat of scary and negative news that we are all facing, and you may feel like you are in uncharted territory in terms of how to respond. While every practice’s situation is different, it’s important to understand the impact of your digital marketing during this time. Reports from the hardest-hit areas are showing massive increases in internet traffic. Notably, health care search volumes have maintained and, in some areas, are increasing. The isolation patients may be experiencing right now could be exacerbated by their struggles with their hearing. It is critical to ensure your brand is out there with a calm, reassuring message for your patients and prospects who may need your services and guidance. Here are some insights and considerations in regard to your digital marketing during this time:
Update Your Google My Business Listing
Your Google My Business listing is a critical piece in your online presence and provides a wealth of information for your patients including, phone number, hours, location, videos, questions and answers, posts, and reviews. During this time, there has been several changes to the function and availability of certain features within your Google My Business listing.
Temporarily Closed: Google added a “Temporarily Closed” setting within Google My Business Listing for businesses who have had to temporarily close during these times. Don’t use this feature if you have only had to adjust your business hours or are providing tele-health options to your patients.
There are have been several articles suggesting that if you change your business to temporarily closed, that it could impact your search rankings or that Google would prioritize businesses who have not listed their location as temporarily closed. When Google first added this feature that was the case, but with the recent changes made by Google, the temporarily closed setting does not impact visibility or rankings anymore.
Businesses marked as temporarily closed does not impact ranking or their visibility anymore
Update Your Business Hours
If your business remains open, but with adjusted hours we would recommend using the special hours feature within your Google My Business listing. This is the same place where you would make changes to your business hours for holidays or other events that impact your business.
Share Updates With a COVID-19 Post
Another feature to keep your patients updated with your hours or other changes that are impacting your business is to create a post within your Google My Business listing. Google added a dedicated COVID-19 Update Post feature within your GMB dashboard. From your dashboard simply click on posts on the left navigation bar and it will direct you to the post options that features the new COVID-19 update post. At this point this new post type is not available from the Google My Business listing app, but based on the frequent updates Google is making, we wouldn’t be surprised if that changes.
Let your patients know how COVID-19 has impacted your business and what services you are offering.
No New Reviews, Review Responses, Videos or Q&A’s
As April, 2 2020 new reviews, new review replies, videos, and questions and answers will be unavailable within your Google My Business listing. Additionally, Google has made it clear that businesses should expect delays to reviewing updates made within your listing due to reduced review team.
Social Media Usage Rising
- When consumers have more dedicated time at home, they turn to their devices for entertainment and information. We’re seeing good interactions through impressions on Facebook with reports of surges in traffic on the platform — it’s a good time to stay out front in your market!
- Learn more about Facebook advertising and the benefits it can have for your practice.
- Have fun with social media and show a different side of you and your team. What are you doing during these times? Shoot quick videos about your day. Share tips for cleaning hearing aids. Provide video updates about how you are still helping and always there for your patients.
Show a new side of you and your team on social media by sharing what you are doing during these times.
Paid Digital Marketing Campaigns
- We recommend you keep all digital campaigns going. By continuing your campaigns, you’ll be able to reach a more present audience with more time for research and education.
- Because some advertising has been paused, a consumer using the internet will be exposed to less advertising noise. Those who continue their marketing efforts will receive more attention, which may drive stronger results. Stay ahead of the competition by remaining consistent in your branding and presence online.
Hearing aid brands and audiology practice continue to use Paid Search Marketing as we can see with Auction Insight reports.
- When in crisis, our first reaction is to cancel or pause. The consumers who need your services will still be looking for practices that can help. We focus money on consumers who are actively showing interest in hearing aids and hearing aid services. If you’re not present in their search, they will flock to competitors who are. Moreover, pausing your Google PPC campaigns can set you back at relaunch by weeks or months — making it that much harder to gain momentum when you’re ready to get back to normal life.
- Besides driving new leads into your practice, paid search marketing has a variety of benefits for your practice including improving your organic results and spying on your competitors. Learn about the hidden benefits Paid Search Marketing can have for your practice.
Update Your Website With Fresh Content
- If your patients need you right now, they will be looking to your website for more information. Ensure you have a COVID-19 update posted on your homepage that is easy to find.. Include specifics that will ease their worry if they need your help: Are you offering phone support, curbside service, or free shipping of supplies? Highlight those things for them.
- Consider the ways you can add value to their lives right now: Can you post tips and tricks on streaming services? Do you have troubleshooting guides for Bluetooth connectivity, changing batteries, etc., that you can get in front of them?
- Got downtime? Consider writing custom content for your website pages (this will help your SEO!), creating new blog posts (also helpful for your SEO), schedule out social media posts, etc. We rarely have the time or brain space to really read our own content and think about what prospects and patients are looking for, so dedicate your time or your staff’s time to doing just that.
- Need ideas on what type of content to create for your website? Answer the Public and Ubersuggest are two tools to help you see what people are searching for online.