The aim of every Electronic Health Records (EHR) company’s executive is to growth. Of course, an efficient sales and marketing strategy is key to making that happen. In the past, effective marketing meant dumping considerable funds into newspaper, magazine, and television ads. And sales required considerable time devoted to cold-calling and forcing sales pitches onto prospects who hadn’t been properly qualified. Unfortunately, the loudest voices in the EHR industry encourage many of these same tactics.
But times have changed. The old way of doing things is quickly expiring.
For your EHR to survive and even thrive over your competitors, you need to be at the forefront of the next generation in sales and marketing. Inbound Methodology‘ is latest, and this approach zeroes in on steering the right prospects to your company website, qualifying them into quality leads, and converting them to happy customers.
Sounds too good to be true, right? Think again. HubSpot found 93% of companies using this Inbound Methodology reported a higher return on investment (ROI).
In this article, we are going to look at a handful of Inbound tactics you can put to use today to accelerate your EHR company into the future.
Without an accurate understanding of your ideal customer, efficiently scaling your EHR company is an enormous challenge. So, invest in creating detailed Buyer Personas. You will want to spend some time on this project, but here are few of the essential questions you will need to answer:
With an accurate vision of your EHR company’s ideal customer, sales and marketing efforts suddenly become much more clearer and effective, allowing your teams to properly educate and nurture leads toward purchases.
An archer can fire all the arrows he desires, but, without a target, his efforts are wasted energy. Likewise, you must set clear and specific goals you wish your company to achieve. And these goals must have deadlines.
For example, you might set the goal to attract 300 leads in the next 6 months. You can then break this goal down into manageable pieces: 50 leads per month, 10 leads per week. And you will want to set conversion goals, too. How many customers? How much in revenues?
Don’t forget to track your results, either. You can’t improve what you can’t measure.
There’s a reason we say that “content is king.” The right strategy drives the right visitors to your website and helps to convert them to leads. But to do this, your content must be tailored to the appropriate stage of your prospects as they navigate the three stages of the Buyer’s Journey – Awareness, Consideration, and Decision.
At the Awareness stage, prospects have only begun to recognize they have a challenge needing identified and addressed. Your content should help to educate these prospects with relevant information. In other words, no sales pitches! Instead, use blog posts, informative videos, and infographics to help them identify their problem. And if you doubt this approach, a recent State of Marketing study by HubSpot found that 92% of companies who blog daily will convert customers through this medium.
In the Consideration stage, your prospects have identified their problem and are currently seeking solutions. You can help them choose the right solution by providing them premium content (e.g. eBooks, problem-solving guides and templates, SlideShare presentations, etc.). By “premium,” we are talking about your very best content, made available in exchange for your prospect’s name and email address. This information allows you to develop relationships with your prospects and nurture them along the Buyer’s Journey.
Finally, the Decision stage. Your prospects have decided on the kind of solution they wish to purchase, and they are now comparing the available options. This is the appropriate time for expressing the value of your EHR solution, and proving to them why your solution makes more sense than your competitors’. For content, use white papers and case studies, and make yourself available for questions.
How important is it to rank for the right keywords? Well, GE Capital Retail Bank studied that very question and found that 81% of buyers research online before making a purchasing decision. Needless to say, using the right keywords to optimize your content for search engines is crucial to your EHR company’s growth.
Engage with your marketing team to research the keywords your prospects use in their online searches. You will want to leverage those keywords in your headers, body text, meta descriptions, URL, and image alt-texts.
Keep in mind, too, that simple keywords can be very competitive. Searching for long-tail keyword phrases could give you an edge in search engine results. But, whatever you do, don’t cram keywords excessively into your content thinking you will boost your rankings. The opposite is more likely to be true. Google may penalize your page for trying to “beat the algorithms.”
Just because you have excellent and optimized content does not guarantee that visitors will come rushing to your website. You need to help your content gain momentum by properly promoting it through the right channels. For example, share your blog posts to your social media. Promote your premium content using your email list. And the smart use of targeted social media ads is an excellent means of getting your content read by the right visitors.
HubSpot defines marketing automation as the use of software to put your marketing processes on intelligent autopilot. These processes might include campaign management, customer data integration, or customer segmentation. Automation frees you and your team from the countless hours it would otherwise require to carry out the tasks manually.
Some of our favorite marketing automation tools are Marketo, MailChimp, GetResponse, HubSpot, and Eloqua. Most are packed with excellent features for Lead Nurturing, tracking website visitors, CRM, social media integration, reports, and analytics. We strongly encourage you to consider these tools for making your marketing efforts more streamlined and efficient, letting you instead focus your efforts where they are most needed.
Content that is engaging, optimized, and automated is only half of the battle here. Unless your sales and marketing teams are aligned in their goals, even the best of Lead Nurturing strategies are all but worthless.
This is where “smarketing” is invaluable. Hold weekly or monthly meetings with your marketing and sales teams to keep everyone informed and focused on the same target. Promote continual cooperation between these teams, rather than encouraging them to compete. And provide incentives for teamwork.
We have found that EHR companies who leverage the practices we’ve discussed can grow their business much more quickly and with fewer hiccups. While Inbound Marketing and Sales is a relatively new methodology, those who take advantage of its principles also enjoy more collaborative and optimistic workplaces.
Here at Responsify, we’ve guided many founders and CEOs through the process of implementing Inbound into their existing marketing and sales procedures. To see how we can help you, get your free strategy session now. We’ll get to work helping you evaluate your assets, offering free insights, and providing suggestions to accelerate your company’s growth!