If you haven’t been active in the online marketing community, you’ve probably never heard the term “medical inbound marketing“. Truth be told this philosophy & fulfillment style is on the cutting edge of digital advertising. In order to understand inbound marketing for dentists or doctors, we need to first discuss outdated online marketing tactics.

Back before Google changed the internet marketing world with the Panda Update, online marketing was based on a high volume/low quality premise. SEO agencies would do a quick and dirty job optimizing the content of a website. They would then go out and carpet bomb the internet with inbound links. This strategy was very effective and lucrative for marketing agencies.

Google decided they were sick of people essentially tricking their algorithm. Their rank requirements were going to change, and people that didn’t follow the rules would pay dearly. That’s when the big Penguin update was rolled out. It buried websites that had used low quality tactics in the past.

Current State of Medical Marketing

This brings us to the current state of medical marketing. I hate to say it, but most providers in this space haven’t evolved to an inbound state of mind. They still create low quality, duplicate content for their clients. They also spend huge portion of clients’ budgets on stupid work items that make no difference.

I’ve seen agencies allocate upward to 60% of a customer’s spend on adding calls to action & phone numbers to landing pages. The big thing they don’t understand is the concept of driving new traffic. Who cares if there are a million calls to action on a page if it gets no views.

The fact of the matter is most companies that provide online marketing for dentists & doctors don’t expect their service to provide results. They tie customers up in long contracts, then burn through the budget on work items that don’t move the needle. They do the junk work just so they have a way to justify the relationship. See, these agencies have to to have something to include in a monthly report or discuss on a phone call.

Why Most Medical Marketing is Low Quality

The first answer to this question is simple. High quality, inbound marketing is a lot more expensive than junk work. Why would a medical marketing agency that has a client stick in a 2 year contract spend any more than the absolutely minimum on fulfillment? For got sake it couldn’t be because that’s what will actually produce results!!!

The other reason most medical marketing companies haven’t adopted an inbound philosophy is they don’t fully understand Google. They have been so sheltered by their own company and its processes they have neglected keeping up on basic industry knowledge.

The real shame about low quality medical marketing agencies is they aren’t the ones that pay the price for their pathetic work. They go on their marry way raking in the big bucks. Ultimately, it’s the paying dentists and doctors that get the short end of the stick. They are locked into a situation where they are paying massive amounts of money for fulfillment that adds zero value to their business.

How to Know Your Marketing Agencies Fulfillment Quality

This is where it can get a little bit tricky. Most dentists and doctors don’t want to even think about their website or how it’s going to get more traffic. They are experts in their respective fields, and expect their marketing provider to be the same. No company that provides online marketing for dentists or doctors will ever admit they work is junk, so you’re going to have to do a little digging. Below are the 3 things to look at when determining if you’re getting screwed.

1. How Many High Quality Blog Posts Each Month

If you are paying more than 1.5K/month in fulfillment costs, you should be getting at least 4 well written blog posts. These should all be unique and targeted to your company’s keywords.

There’s no question adding content to your blog on a consistent basis is the most important thing you can do to increase your organic rankings. This is the #1 thing Google looks at when determining who deserves top placement.

Low quality medical marketing companies hate content marketing. It is extremely expensive and hard to scale. Most of the time if they are adding blog posts to your site, the work is duplicated from other clients in their system.

If you aren’t getting consistent, high quality blog posts, you need to run away as fast as possible. This is the easiest way for determining a medical marketing agencies level of quality.

2. Duplicate, Low Quality Social Media Updates

Duplicate social updates are another sure sign you are getting screwed by your medical or dental marketing agency. See, social media has always been difficult for online marketing companies. It’s very difficult to scale and speak for another entity on FB, Twitter, or any of the other popular sites. Thus, marketing agencies have tried to pre-write the content. This is another perfect example of doing junk work just so you have something to report at the end of the month.

Social media needs to be engaging and be done for a reason. You need to truly understand the niche and share content that has a purpose. At the heart of social media & inbound marketing is answering questions. When you start to provide that kind of information, is when you start to add value to the Internet, and get rewarded with Google.

3. Lack of Reporting Transparency

Even though low quality medical marketing companies won’t admit it, they know their product sucks. They also know it’s their job to trick you into thinking you’re getting your monies worth. That’s the entire job description for the account managers that interact with the actual clients.

If your medial marketing agency’s reporting lacks specifics on what’s being completed, there’s a good chance the work is very low quality. That’s the whole reason they doesn’t provide specifics. They know if the clients see what they’re actually getting for 2K/month they would all cancel.

Recommendation Moving Forward

We highly recommend you do your homework before engaging with a medical or dental marketing agency. They are nectarous for having long contracts that are difficult to cancel.

if you’re looking for a quality outfit, put them to the test. Look at the marketing they do for themselves. Do they regularly updated their blog with awesome content? Do they consistently interact with online communities acting as leaders in the space? Does their website look and run amazing?

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in all my years in the digital marketing space it’s that digital marketing companies that can’t produce quality work for themselves sure as hell can’t do it for their clients.