Digital Marketing for Hospitals in the United Arab Emirates
Medical marketing for hospitals is an essential corner for its success, and the term marketing includes different activities. Many changes have occurred in the medical marketing field, such as the evolution of digital marketing, one of the prominent directions in healthcare marketing of various kinds. This article will discuss the important digital marketing strategies for hospitals in the United Arab Emirates, as well as some advice that must be adhered to when marketing medical online. But first, we will take an overview of the health sector in the United Arab Emirates and its development in recent years.
The medical market in the UAE is large and a lot of capital is being pumped into it, as the size of the healthcare market in the UAE is expected to reach about 71.5 billion dirhams in 2020, and the number of accredited hospitals and medical centers reached about 176 in 2017 topping the global ranking in the number of health facilities Accredited by the Joint International Commission for Accreditation of Health Facilities (JCI). According to these statistics, the health sector in the UAE is witnessing an intense competition between healthcare providers.
Do Hospitals in the UAE Need Digital Marketing?
Hospitals in the UAE became interested in digital marketing for several reasons. The first is the significant increase in the number of accredited hospitals and medical centers, where the number of hospitals in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi alone reached about 56 in 2016, in addition to the heavy presence of the public who want to obtain medical care and solve their health problems online. In addition to social media activity in the UAE, where the number of Facebook and Instagram users is about 12 million users per month.
How Online Absence Affects Hospitals?
When hospitals in the UAE are not interested to be present online, whether in social media platforms or through the website in addition to lack of interest in building a good reputation and trust relationship with current and potential patients, they become fragile and cannot gain new customers due to the strong competition and the tendency of competitors to own powerful digital presence. Hence, we understand the importance of digital marketing for hospitals and the need to be present online and interact with potential and current patients.
There is no doubt that all businesses – including hospitals and medical institutions – require websites. It is impossible to imagine a large medical institution without any representation on the Internet. Several pieces of research prove that 6 out of every 10 users on the Internet expect the hospital to own a website. Websites are considered an immediate source of information, as patients visit different hospital websites to gain all the necessary information before visiting the hospital. Websites can allow them to book appointments and know the exact location of the hospital.
What Is the Role of Social Media in Hospital Medical Marketing?
Every time a visitor finds the hospital pages on the Internet, it leaves a professional impression on him, as the professional management of online pages plays a very important role in the medical marketing of hospitals in the UAE, due to the high number of social media users. Hence, it is important to manage the pages regularly to have a strong online presence. If the patient finds the hospital’s pages outdated or unprofessional or has negative online reviews, it prevents him from visiting the hospital.
What Are the Most Appropriate Social Media Platforms Used in Hospitals Marketing in the UAE?
The demographic composition in the UAE, whether citizens or residents, is very different, which opens the door for a large cultural plurality and different classes, each of which uses the appropriate social media, and when it comes to medical marketing for hospitals, marketing officials must study these demographics well to reach the right target audience. One of the statistics indicated that the average time spent on a social networking site is about three hours per day. According to a study conducted by The Media Lab, more than 80% of Emiratis use YouTube and Facebook, while the number of Instagram users is more than 60% of Emiratis. Digital marketers for hospitals in the UAE must determine the social networking sites appropriate to the activity of the hospital and the customers they target.
How Can Social Media Be Used in Hospital Marketing?
Here are four tips that you must follow when establishing a strong and effective social media presence and digitally marketing for your hospital in the UAE:
- Choose a social media platform that is appropriate for your practice to determine an effective and beneficial location for the activity.
- Analyze the presence of competing hospitals on social media to uncover best practices that bring results and learn from their mistakes. Analyze their most interacting posts and the type of content published, as well as collect information about the content that attracts potential patients then create your unique strategy and model.
- Create engaging content by avoiding unprofessional and unhelpful material, by promoting a healthy lifestyle to educate patients, and making sure that everything that is published has a goal. With the diversity of content that can be presented by posting videos, re-sharing content, or participating in social campaigns.
- Managing social media from one place, if you manage all of your marketing activities separately, you should consider merging the marketing activities, as you will monitor the hospital pages from one place. Thus interact with patients more effectively and monitor conversations and understand what your audience is expecting.
What Are the Advantages of Medical Marketing for Hospitals in the UAE?
As we mentioned earlier, the health sector market in the UAE is witnessing great growth, which is among the largest in the Middle East region in general, thanks to some basic factors such as:
- The diverse demographics of citizens and residents is a great opportunity for digital marketing for Emarati hospitals.
- There are a large number of users who can interact with modern devices and the Internet in general thanks to the high percentage of learners, which makes a great opportunity for medical marketing to target.
- Even though old and traditional techniques in marketing for hospitals in the UAE are still effective and show results, they must adapt to the current era, which is the era of using modern technology, creative and innovative methods of marketing for hospitals.
What Are the Modern Trends of Digital Marketing for Hospitals in the UAE?
It’s time to bid farewell to the traditional methods of printed advertisements and non-responsive websites. In the upcoming paragraphs, we will discuss the five most important modern trends that must be followed in digital marketing for hospitals in the UAE in 2020 presented by the medical marketing experts of Upper Medic.
1- Video Marketing
One study indicated that video content attracts viewers two to three times more than written content, and will double the time visitors spend on websites. YouTube is also the second-largest search engine, as well as videos on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, with Facebook videos getting about 80 million viewers daily. All of this data indicates that video marketing is very beneficial in marketing to hospitals, as the entire health sector is better to be expressed in narration, and videos of patient success stories and answers from surgeons and doctors, and provide a picture of the healthcare experience so that it helps reduce fear and anxiety associated with the medical environment and hospitals in general.
2- Social Media Marketing
Currently, social media platforms have become a powerful tool for building a community that includes many people of different generations and is considered an effective tool when marketing for hospitals in the UAE; due to the number of daily users of social networking sites.
3- Healthcare content marketing
For most potential patients, the hospital selection process begins with a search engine and hospital website. According to a report published on Google blogs about how people search for hospitals, about 77% of potential patients turn to search engines and 76% look at the hospital’s website, meaning that medical marketing techniques through search engines are both SEO-optimized or by investing in ads is crucial.
Hospital marketing officials in the UAE should focus on spending on the right things such as the quality of services; as 45% of patients search for procedure information, for example, chemotherapy in the UAE, or department information, for example, pediatrics.
4- Publishing interactive content and social media
In a study conducted in 2014 on more than 800 hospitals to see which one offers the best practice on social media platforms based on Twitter followers, Facebook fans, and interaction levels, Mayo Clinic and Cleveland Clinic hospitals ranked first. These hospitals choose what can be shared on different platforms, and do not frequently spread their internal matters such as new recruitment or improvement of new facilities, etc., but focus on providing useful health information for potential patients or existing patients.
5- Designing a modern user experience
When a user visits the hospital’s website, he expects to get his questions answered in a few moments, and if he fails to find that, they leave without taking any action. So, hospital digital marketers in the UAE shouldn’t miss the opportunity to convert viewers into clients by designing a site that meets with the desires and needs of the user and focuses on his experience. This will rank your website higher on Google search results and make you appear more to researchers.
What Are the Advantages of Hospital Marketing through Digital Marketing Specialists?
When it comes to digital marketing for your medical institution, we recommend choosing medical marketing specialists who can manage hospital marketing with the best results using the least material resources. Our experts in Upper Medic explain the most important advantages of digital marketing through specialists:
- Get the highest quality visual content in your videos and designs.
- Professional management of all digital marketing activities for hospitals in the UAE without any waste of resources with a high return on investment (ROI)
- Obtain a detailed periodic report on the performance of all hospital marketing campaigns.
Finally, digital marketing for hospitals in the UAE does not stop at a certain point, so marketing officials must consider carefully how they can achieve the hospital’s commercial and investment goals with minimal financial expenses, by following the proper methods and resorting to medical marketing experts and specialists.