With patients having access to thousands of medical providers with just a few keystrokes, it’s essential for telehealth providers to market themselves to stand out from the crowd. As rising healthcare costs make going to the doctor a cost-prohibitive practice for many Americans, telehealth providers will need to position themselves the most affordable medical alternative. It is estimated that healthcare premiums will continue to increase by 5-10% every year through 2030. According to the Bureau of Labor & Statistic, the average monthly premium for a single person enrolled in company-provided medical care is approximately $140 a month.
While health insurance costs continue to skyrocket, so too do the average costs for a doctor’s visit. On average, a trip to the emergency room can cost between $600 and $4,000 depending on the severity of the illness or injury. However, a comparable telehealth session is often priced between $100-$200. This immediate cost savings is why patients (from a cost perspective) are open to trying telehealth options.
Consumer behavior, especially as a result of the pandemic, has dramatically shifted with consumer purchasing being largely driven by cost and convenience. In many cases, how patients choose health care follows many of the same retail patterns. Medical providers that offer flexible payment options, virtual appointments, have convenient locations or times, and provide affordable and superior medical care are leading the way. Another emerging trend with the new informed health consumer is the use of scorecards to comparison shop between medical service options.
Patients, just like consumers, want to know the value your brand provides over and above just the product or service itself. This is where leveraging proven digital marketing strategies and messaging will be essential to clearly convey the key benefits that your telehealth service provides. It’s important to also consider what other telehealth programs are offering as well as what patients are searching for to expertly craft telehealth messaging that will stand out. For example, if other telehealth providers do not offer evening or weekend appointment times, but your ideal patient market are likely parents who may find it difficult to keep even daytime virtual appointments, then highlighting your after hour medical care can be a key differentiator.
In addition, it’s also equally important to consider what consumers are actively searching for and to find ways to leverage this in how you market your telehealth services. For example, since the pandemic, self care and wellness topics have exploded. This opens up an opportunity to position your telehealth services as the most cost-effective way for patients to manage their medical care without having to leave their home.
As consumers continue to have near-limitless medical options to choose from, you’ll want to ensure you are using the right messaging and the right marketing channels to get the word out about your telehealth brand. Using many of the digital marketing strategies and techniques described on my blog, you can ensure these healthcare consumers can find your telehealth practice.