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Marketing Strategies to Attract New Patients to Your Eye Care Center

Eye Care Centers, Optometrists and Ophthalmologists looking to open their skills, services and products to new patients and wanting to create brand awareness for their website, clinic(s), and  product offerings, need to improve their overall optometry marketing strategies. It is not enough just to create a few local advertisements for radio and television. In today’s advertising world a multi-faceted approach that relies heavily on building your brand as well as your online presence is necessary.

Multi-faceted Marketing Strategies

A multilateral marketing approach builds upon more traditional marketing by integrating the importance of building and communicating your unique brand with exciting and powerful new tools like SEO and Social Media to propel your eye care marketing to the next level. Any good multi-faceted optometry marketing strategy incorporates numerous SEO tactics to build an online presence that creates inbound leads from clients and customers in need of your services. 

Build a Recognized Brand  

Your brand can also be called your business identity. It is vital that you create and build your business brand. Your brand needs to convey a life and a voice that clearly communicates your deeply held character, vision, mission and values.  Brand focuses on the demographic you choose to engage with, inviting them to receive their eye care from you.

Therefore your eye care marketing first step is to renew/discover/create your Brand and your second step is to build your brand so that it will be recognizable in your community and will stand for your values and beliefs.  At zo.agency we frequently begin our client relationships with a two-day intensive Brand Workshop that walks them through the intricacies of these vital two steps.

These workshops involve the key players in your eye clinic in the process of brainstorming to discover the top three values of your organization. It may sound easy but our thorough process  demands lots of thought and effort to narrow your essential values down to just three. The process itself is invaluable and also results in arriving at a unified sense of a laser focus about who you are and how you serve clients. It is this focus that defines your brand, your culture, your image, your products and your customer service.

Once you have identified your values, then your Brand can be developed and refined to perfection. It will be your brand that defines and guides every detail of your eye care marketing.

Relationship Building

As with any business, optometry advertising comes down to relationship building.  Repeat business and referrals come down to building relationships with your clients, staff, suppliers and the general public. Even more important than all of the possibilities provided by technological advancements, your practice needs to build and maintain strong relationships with your clients and partners. 

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search engine optimization means making the value of your website’s content, organization and layout readable to artificial intelligence (AI) crawlers (spiders) used by search engines to collect data.  Search engines value reliable, helpful and high quality information that they can turn around and offer to their users. SEO identifies keywords and key phrases that their users most often type when they go searching for information.  SEO then searches the entire web for quality content in which these keywords and key phrases are used in order to provide quality content to the searcher.  

Websites that rank high in searches (get on the first page) are those that follow the principles of SEO. This first means SEO identifies high quality keywords that are purposefully used in the content of business webpages, blogs, infographic content and links. Taking this first step ensures that a website is optimized for SEO crawlers. Keywords are woven into as many places within the web content as possible so that search engine software finds their website reliable as it continually scans billions of pages, notes and indexes that use these keywords. For your eye care marketing the desired end result is that when a consumer types “best eye care nearby” or “optometrists near me” into the search engine, your business name, website address, phone number, etc., is given to them on the first page of their search. 

Second, high quality content will be a determining SEO factor for the foreseeable future.  Which means creating content on eye care issues that your clients will be interested in is a first priority. Writing or getting professionals to write high quality and high impact content in your blog, in your newsletters and on your website is vitally important.  Quality information about noticing changes in eyesight, how to care for your eyes as you get older, eye care products and their uses and other valuable topics to your clients will soon get noticed and shared through social media and will inevitably lead more people to your website. Producing this kind of high quality relevant content will necessitate that you consider what are the most likely questions and needs of your potential customers? 

Maximizing the incredible marketing power of SEO will need to be in the forefront of your mind as you craft your brand messaging in each of the following types of content:

Regular Blog Postings

Blog posts are topical articles that aim to inform potential customers about eye issues, eye care and ways they can benefit from your products and services. These articles are free information for anyone who comes to your website. Types of articles often include:

  • Lists of tips and problem solvers 
  • How-to guides 
  • Editorial opinions and/or topical analysis 
  • Answers to common questions 
  • Upcoming events you are sponsoring

White Papers, Checklists and Guides

These informational give-aways are similar to blog posts but go more in depth. They offer readers greater detail and insight, and are often available for download in PDF format. White papers and guides are content that you can leverage into offers.  Perhaps you make these “offers” available when a user provides their email or other information in order to download the document. This communicates that the content of the offer has monetary value, but is being offered for free in exchange for something else of value – the user’s contact information. Examples include: 

  • Guidebooks for improving one’s eye health.
  • Packet on the benefits of laser surgery if you offer that service.
  • In depth research into a product or a way to use that product.
  • Lists of how-to’s covering a range of products and/or services. 

Videos

If informational content is king, then visual content (video) is the emperor of content delivery.  And if you can write about it, you can create a video about it. Videos that are high quality and offer helpful content are an incredibly effective communication tool for explaining complex procedures or showing how to do self care in a short amount of time.  And they are easily deliverable through most digital marketing streams:

  • Websites 
  • SEO  
  • Pay per click ads 
  • Social media
  • Email campaigns, etc.

Pay Per Click (PPC)

One of the most effective and cost effective modes of optometry advertising today is Pay-per-click marketing.  PPC uses search engine advertising to drive clicks to your website. And it works in two significant ways.  First, you buy a sponsored ad so that you show up at the top of Google’s search results page when someone does a local search with your business keywords, best local optometrist/eye care/ophthalmologist.  Second, your business can run PPC campaigns on Facebook or LinkedIn. You create a targeted ad that appears on FB or LinkedIn accounts of people whose searches have indicated they would be most interested in your products or services.  Every time your ad is clicked, the user gets sent to your website, and you pay the search engine a finders fee. Well-designed PPC ad campaigns will generate lots of quality leads which will make the fees a worthwhile investment.

Social Media

A cutting edge area of optometry marketing for your services and products is in social media. By harnessing the power of social media 60% of small and medium businesses report gaining new customers.. The explosion of social media has created a wide range of opportunities for you to get your eye care brand and products greater visibility in your community.  The many benefits that this growing medium provides include:

Exposure for your Brand 

Growing familiarity with your brand among your potential customers is essential. People most often choose a service or product based on familiarity of name recognition. They have previously heard of you or seen your logo, signage, ads. Growing recognition of your brand through social media is effective, has the potential to expand you local reach through trusted contacts (friends) and doesn’t have to cost a lot of money.  

Fish where they Bite

I would have never guessed this, but the average person today spends 2.5 hours a day on social media.  It is increasingly where people are interacting with others, getting information and accepting advertisements. If you want to grow your local footprint you need to go where people are engaged and active. Building a presence on social media where you are building relationships and answering people’s questions will get you fishing where people are biting.

Become the Go-To Expert 

When you provide excellent content, advice, answers to questions, relevant sources and friendly service you will create a broader following on social media in which you become the go-to expert in your field. When customers return to your page for quality content and pass that information on to their “friends” your client list grows and trust in your business increases. Greater trust with contacts will lead to higher sales conversion rates.

Final Thoughts

By incorporating these optometry advertising strategies into your future plans you will begin to see the focus of your business become more defined and targeted, which will lead to greater brand exposure, improved customer relations and growth in clients and product sales. However, these steps will demand your time and effort. You can do these things yourself or you can hire a marketing director, or hire a marketing firm to come in and do these things for you. The good news is that you have options. 

One other approach is contacting a full service marketing agency. They will work with you to define your goals, and then work within those goals to hone your brand, design an overall marketing plan that is tailored to your needs, and develop and grow your marketing of eye care services and products. 

Here at zo agency we work to build long term relationships with our clients. We call it Tribe! 

We will work diligently to discover your vision, your passion, your needs, your hopes and dreams for your business and then will create an overall marketing plan that meets your needs and fits your budget.  Visit us today at www.zo.agency

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zo agency serves as the marketing department for small to midsize businesses that are typically too small to have their own internal marketing department and invariably too big to manage without one.

We’re your marketing director, strategist, account manager, project manager, family and tribe.