As your medical practice becomes more established, it’s very likely that you’re also seeing your marketing needs become increasingly complex. For your digital marketing, you may have started with just a website and since branched out to additional tactics, such as pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, display advertising, social media marketing, blogging, paid online listings, and so on.
In this type of scenario, practice owners typically accumulate a long list of marketing vendors along the way. You may have several different companies or agencies handling various aspects of your practice’s online presence. The question is whether working with a separate provider for each service is the best way to go, or whether it makes more sense to find a single provider who can meet all (or at least most) of your digital marketing needs.
Some medical practice owners prefer the multi-vendor model for a number of reasons:
They feel using separate vendors allows them to take a “best-of-breed” approach. In other words, there’s a belief that companies that specialize in just one service provide better results. According to data shared by MarTech Advisor, 48% of marketers (imagine those within your practice tasked with overseeing marketing efforts) choose to use “best-of-breed marketing technology stacks made up of multipoint solutions,” whereas 21% opt for a single-vendor solution.
They dislike the idea of putting all their eggs in one basket, and they feel working with multiple vendors allows them to shop around for the best deal and value for each service.
They feel it’s simply easier to add services with different providers as needed rather than transition to an all-in-one solution and disrupt their existing vendor model.
While these are all valid points, there are actually more benefits to working with an all-in-one service provider than many practice owners may realize.
1. Greater consistency across all your digital channels and platforms
One of the most challenging aspects of working with numerous digital marketing service providers is that they work in silos… they’re all focusing on different goals, operating on their own technology and platforms, and using conflicting methods to measure and contextualize your practice’s marketing results. Considering that over 90% of businesses work with five or more different marketing vendors and tools, and the average business works with 12 on average, that’s a lot of different directions for your marketing to go in.
Additionally, as your separate vendors work in isolation of each other, opportunities to capitalize on areas of potential overlap in your various marketing campaigns are often missed. This puts the onus on you to keep track of what everyone is doing and make sure it all aligns with your overarching brand message and goals, and to prevent conflicting or duplicative efforts.
Six in ten businesses say they could achieve better marketing results if the tools they use worked better together. So, why not consolidate those platforms? When you work with a single partner who is able to meet all your needs, there’s a greater opportunity for synergy between your various marketing initiatives. Your single marketing partner knows what’s happening in advertising campaigns A, B, and C, so they can set them up to play off each other across platforms for improved results.
2. Fewer data redundancies and clearer marketing analytics
When you work with numerous digital marketing service providers, you may have to log into multiple systems in order to track down data related to your patient engagement metrics, leads, and acquisitions. And once you have all the data, you may have to piece it together yourself to make it tell a cohesive story about your audience’s journey toward becoming a patient. This can be especially challenging when your marketing data is tracked and translated differently across numerous platforms, or when there are redundancies in the data.
One of the greatest benefits of choosing a single provider for your digital marketing needs is that you can streamline all your data through one reporting platform. Not only can you get to all your data through a single access point, but it becomes much easier to organize, analyze, and cross-reference your data, allowing you to make faster and more accurate inferences about how your marketing is affecting business at your practice. (While API integrations are sometimes necessary, they shouldn’t take the place of a native platform experience.)
Additionally, with all your marketing data flowing through a single system, it’s easier to automate your digital advertising. For example, if your all-in-one partner offers a platform that leverages artificial intelligence and machine learning technology to evaluate your campaign performance across various digital channels (e.g. Google, Bing, Facebook, YouTube, Yelp, etc.), the system can recognize which channels are performing best and make immediate adjustments to your budget based on that information. This type of automation is much more challenging when your advertising is being tracked and managed across different systems.
3. More efficient use of time and money for your practice
When you take an omni-vendor approach for your marketing, the amount of time and effort you spend managing those vendor relationships is multiplied. You must manage several points of contact, make sure each one is up to speed on the nuances of your practice’s brand, and conduct separate cost-benefit analyses for each provider (which can become especially complex when you have vendors with varying contract lengths, terms and conditions, and cost structures).
Consolidating your marketing vendor list can save you considerable time by reducing the number of hours you’re spending each month communicating with marketing reps and crunching the numbers to analyze their performance. And saved time means more efficient use of your practice’s resources, ranging from increased productivity for your staff to smarter vendor and technology procurement decisions that save your practice money over the long term.
The success of consolidation depends on the quality of your all-in-one partner
The key to making marketing vendor consolidation work for your practice is to be sure you’re choosing a partner that is actually equipped to meet your diverse set of digital marketing needs. You don’t want to sacrifice quality of service for the sake of convenience, so it’s critical that you fully research your potential all-in-one providers and verify that they are truly qualified and experienced in each of the solutions they offer. Your partner should be recognized as a leader in both the services and technology they offer, and also have a strong reputation for excellent customer service. Furthermore, they should be equipped with expertise in applying their solutions within your specific industry, whether that’s dentistry, orthodontics, chiropractic care, veterinary care, or another medical practice area.
When you choose the right partner, an integrated, all-in-one solution can optimize your marketing process, streamline your resources, and ultimately drive more growth for your practice with a higher return on investment.
To learn about the vast array of digital marketing services that Scorpion offers to medical practices, as well as our reputation for offering more streamlined and effective solutions that help our clients grow their businesses, visit ScorpionMedical.com.