Posted: November 15, 2017

Producing a certain amount of quality healthcare marketing materials that keep your organization’s name “out there” used to be enough to satisfy the executives in your organization.

Not anymore.

Now healthcare marketers are expected to prove the downstream results of their marketing efforts. This evolution is not without good reason. Savvy marketers have learned that marketing analytics is the key to better decisions and stronger results.

But how do you track your marketing’s effectiveness? In this series we’ll explore each element of tracking and measuring your healthcare marketing team’s efforts, from good data to performance indicators to actual ROI. Today, we’re starting with the foundation of all good analytics practices – data.

Start with measurable data
Specific healthcare content metrics can provide a clearer picture of how effective your healthcare marketing strategy is. You need to track a wide variety of data points to help measure toward a diverse range of goals. At a minimum, you need data on:

  • Brand awareness − Periodically type your organization’s name into Google and Twitter and see what people are saying. Are there positive comments and reviews, or are there negative statements you need to address? How well are you ranking on those search pages?
  • Social engagement − Are people re-tweeting, sharing, following, or liking your healthcare social media updates? If so, that shows your content is relevant to them in some way.
  • Inbound links − The number of external links to your website from other relevant, authoritative sites indicates other people consider your content a valuable resource or reference. This could be local news, national news, healthcare industry publications, etc.
  • Blog traffic − By comparing traffic across content pieces that focus on different topics, you get immediate feedback on the healthcare subjects that resonate with your audience. You can see which service lines get more traction as well as what topics within a service line – nutrition tips vs. post-operative exercise routines, for example – are more popular.
  • Video views – You need metrics on video similar to any other content to determine engagement and effectiveness. Think view count, average view duration, average completion rate, impressions, reach etc. This will help you see if you need to adjust length, intro cards, CTA, or anything else.
  • Click-through rates − Not only will this help you determine the percentage of leads you’ve converted (giving you a hint on your content’s general ROI), it’s also a good way to determine if content is positioned properly within the consumer journey. Do you get more click-throughs on higher funnel content like HRAs or on actions like “Click to Schedule”?
  • Time on your website − The amount of time visitors spend on your hospital website can be a good indicator of whether or not people find your content interesting. Which pages and service lines are receiving the most attention time? These are likely areas where you’ll want to double down on your investment from a content or advertising perspective.
  • Tier 2 conversion metrics – in healthcare, with the long lead times, you need real-time data on deeper funnel metrics like appointments scheduled, seminar registrations, etc. – anything that ultimately ties back to appointments and procedures, i.e. revenue.

Next steps
Now that you have all this data, what do you do with it? How do you organize it and sift through the insights to discover where things are working and where you need to pivot your strategy? A big piece of your analytics strategy needs to come from the specific goals you’re trying to meet – whether that’s website traffic, seminar sign ups, service line-specific growth, or overall appointments and procedures scheduled. You’ll also need the ability to track this data all the way through the consumer journey, which means an organized strategy and solution for lead management is essential. In our next post, we’ll discuss Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and efficiency metrics and how to use these metrics to mark progress toward your goals.

Analytics and data are a big piece of the puzzle, but you also want to craft quality, effective campaigns so you have something positive to measure. Learn more about effective marketing tactics in our guide, Harness the Power of Facebook: A Modern Marketer's Playbook for Facebook Service Line Marketing.