Healthcare Marketing ROI: 5 Tips for Success
By FrancesMary Loughead
October 18, 2022
Only 39% of marketing leaders use ROI to make strategic decisions about their marketing initiatives because they don’t trust their data. Incomplete or lacking data often leaves healthcare marketing leaders wondering how to properly demonstrate ROI on their digital marketing efforts.
It can be difficult to measure and document a return on investment (ROI) when it comes to marketing your urgent care, healthcare, or dental practice. While it’s important to implement a variety of marketing strategies to achieve results, many activities carry hard to quantify goals like “expanding reach” or “building trust.”
Content marketing brings more measurable structure to these soft goals, but even then, just 43% of companies measure content marketing ROI. It’s often a challenge to tie content efforts (and results) back to your original marketing spend without a clear picture of where you are and where you’re headed..
Despite these challenges, you can gain significant marketing benefits by getting a handle on your marketing ROI numbers now. Metrics not only help justify marketing budgets to executives, but they also help you grow. By strategically adjusting your content marketing efforts based on clear numbers, you can increase your the value of your marketing initiatives while winning over more patients and building authority in your field.
How to Calculate Healthcare Marketing ROI
ROI is entirely about numbers: the net profit of an investment divided by its cost. The problem lies in converting all the qualitative needs of a holistic marketing engine into quantifiable costs, then accurately assessing how many conversions resulted from those efforts.
Calculating ROI is simple for marketing efforts having straightforward costs and trackable conversations. The formula is:
Net income / Cost of investment x 100 = ROI
So if a company earns $1,000 in profit from its marketing efforts that cost $200, their ROI would be:
$1000 / $200 X 100 = 500% ROI
But, as you know, real life isn’t always so simple.
A simpler way to calculate healthcare marketing ROI is to, first, calculate your average customer lifetime value (CLV)—the amount of money you expect an individual customer to spend on your products and services while they’re your patient. (Naturally, this number goes up when you’re able to create repeat customers for longer periods of time—a key measurement of business health).
Second, subtract the patient acquisition cost (PAC)— the average cost of acquiring a new patient—from that number.
In this case, if you know a patient is worth $10,000 but you spent $5,000 to acquire them, the ROI is $5000.
It’s commonplace to put digital marketing resources toward lead generation, but this can be a mistake when know you get more bang for your buck with existing leads and customers. Part of the reason organizations put so much focus on lead generation is because retention efforts are much harder to execute.
While retaining customers is not an exact science, nor is there any single answer for how to best achieve it, you can begin to get a clearer understanding of how much a patient is truly worth—and, in turn, determine your marketing efficiency—by blowing up the value of ONE of your leads. Simply take the known value of a one-time patient and multiple that number by the average length of time a patient stays with you.
We can help you do that math quickly with our free calculator
You can also improve your acquisition data by linking your marketing efforts to new patients. This can be as simple as placing a question on intake forms that asks where each new patient heard about you. With a local digital presence, you can also start tracking who calls your practice from “Google My Business” listings. Either of these will give you general data about which channels are giving the best return on your investment.
What Is a Good ROI for Healthcare Marketing?
There’s no way to know if your conversion rates are good or bad if you don’t, first, have some idea of what industry averages are. There can be nuances and variables that change, but at a minimum, you should know the average cost per lead, click-through rate, cost per click, and monthly spend for digital marketing in your industry. It’s a good starting place, if nothing else.
Armed with this information, you can begin asking more specific questions about your marketing efforts. Benchmark data like this helps reveal how efficient your spend actually is and how you stack up to your competitors. It let’s you ask questions like:
- How much should we be spending on cost per click?
- Are we above or below average? And, how can we improve?
- Are we bringing in new customers with our PPC ads or are we just showing ads to existing customers (i.e., wasting money)?
Your agency should be able to provide you with benchmark data like this in your industry. If you want to get really detailed, ask for a breakdown of your brand keyword performance and industry keyword performance too.
As a final note about conversion rates, if yours are NOT above 5-10% on average, you need to start looking for opportunities to improve them. Here are five ways to do that.
5 Tips to Improve Your Healthcare Marketing ROI
Whatever your current healthcare marketing ROI, you can likely improve your returns with a few tips. Here are five easy ones:
1. Focus locally
Boosting your local presence is crucial to growing your practice. In fact, “88% of people who conduct a local search on their smartphone visit a related store within a week.” Make sure your Google My Business, Bing, Yelp, other local directories, and local information like address, hours, and phone numbers are up-to-date and consistent.
2. Prioritize SEO
Not all patients are ready to make an appointment, so provide value for those who are only seeking information. Google shows up to a billion health results daily. As potential patients turn to search engines to educate themselves and investigate providers, you want to make sure your practice is one of the first they see.
3. Don’t forget social media
For millennial and Generation Z patients, social media comes first. Sixty-two percent of Millennials and 52% of Gen Z check social platforms, such as Twitter and Facebook, for healthcare “influencers” before searching the web for medical information. Having a healthy presence with accurate information across social media platforms is now a growth strategy, not a nice-to-have.
4. Consider video
Website visitors who watch a product video are up to 85% more likely to buy. That’s because video offers more ways to absorb information. Plus, they can pause and rewatch important parts over. You might not be selling a traditional product, but you can assume video gets potential patients to take action. Start with short, informative clips and grow from there.
5. Track and test results
With 44% of today’s healthcare marketing costs going to digital platforms, it is easier than ever to use data to improve marketing ROI. A/B testing for ads and e-mails or experimentation with blog topics can help you find new ways to spend on marketing efforts that produce the most value.
Partner With Socius to Maximize Your ROI on Content Marketing
While calculating content marketing ROI for healthcare can be challenging, it is the first step to driving new traffic to your practice and ensuring success over time. Whether by improving short-term local searches or building authority through educational content, healthcare organizations need to be able to measure and improve on their efforts.
Socius partners with healthcare companies to determine their current ROI and helps make their marketing practices more effective. Check out our healthcare marketing services to learn how we can start improving your marketing ROI today.