A Practical Guide: Digital Marketing for Doctors

Practical strategies to attract more patients and grow your health clinic via digital marketing.

Anita T is an award-winning marketing consultant with 15+ years of experience.

Some doctors are constantly booked. Others need to establish their reputation as a health care provider, especially if they've decided to establish their own practice. Marketing yourself doesn't need to be daunting. You won't have to be a social influencer, (or maybe you want to be?), and you don't have to break the bank to get yourself set-up. Here are some practical digital marketing approaches to grow your healthcare clinic and online reputation as a healthcare service provider.

cater TO YOUR Target Patient Population

Even if you're a general practioner, you'll have a target patient population such as your service locality. Basic desk research and interviews can help you understand the local demographics better and base your healthcare business around it.

"If your name articulates what you do, as well as your unique value, it makes it much easier to achieve cut through when you are first starting out."

Dr. Vein in Victoria, a vein specialist, is an excellent example of a health practioner that positions itself well to cater to the target patient population. Often medical clinics or health professionals adopt vague business names, like a last name, but instead, Dr. Vein has made his expertise super obvious combined with clear messaging like, 'Free Your Legs', pictured on the homepage snapshot below.

Doctor Vein's messaging, 'Free Your Legs' is perfect for his target market.

Having a name that explains what you do is easier than building a reputation for something around a vague name when you are first starting out. His website, pictured above, is one of the best examples of website positioning for a medical specialist. Not only that, but he's located opposite a hospital making his market position highly targeted both on and offline.

If your name articulates what you do, as well as your unique value, it makes it much easier to achieve cut through when you are first starting out. A general practioner could adopt a similar approach using a straightforward business name like, 'Fitzroy GP's'. A physiotherapist, 'Townsville Rehab" or a gyno, "The Womb Room."

Have An Active Online Presence

Avoid letting your website and social media become stagnant. Just like an orange in a grocery store, if it's left there, it simply starts to deteriorate. If a customer rolls past, they may pick the fresher looking option, and, so do search engines. Regularly update your website, utilise social media and consider platforms like YouTube to share health tips or answer questions relevant to your service.

SEO for Doctors

Grow your visibility online by creating valuable, relevant content tailored to your ideal patients. Ensure that the content you create is genuinely useful, or you may end up with low quality website traffic that doesn't really convert into bookings. Outsourcing content writing is an option, but always brief writers with accurate medical information. Focus on content that drives desired actions, such as appointment bookings, and seek advice from SEO experts.

By delivering relevant content, optimising your website set-up, and leveraging an expert's knowledge, you'll reach your desired clientele.

Use Your Online Presence To Amplify Referrals

Traditionally, doctors relied heavily on word-of-mouth referrals to grow their medical practice or health clinic. Social media has taken this to a new level. Social media channels can amplify referrals, as can Google Business Listing reviews and dedicated referral websites like Trustpilot.


  • Set-up your Google Business Listing, properly. Are you a 'doctor' or 'medical center' for example? You'd be surprised how many people categories their business wrong on Google and this will impact how people find you online.
  • Incentivize both current and new patients to leave your practice reviews via SMS/email. This can be personalised, appropriately timed and automated. NOTE: Some countries discourage this under law, so check your regulations.
  • Prioritise channels that have a longer life span - like Google. Social media posts only last so long, content on Google hangs around.

The public are likely to expect to be able to read about you online, so own that.

Advertising For Doctors & Medical Clinics

Paid search (PPC) is often reported as the best online marketing strategy for doctors. That's the paid ads at the top of search results that appear when somebody is looking for a service like yours. Utilise platforms like Google Ads but avoid the DIY approach to prevent wasted resource. Work with a PPC expert who will help you navigate set-up, local advertising regulations for your health service, as well as the latest developments in AI targeting.

Maximise Tools Available: Like CRM Systems

Many consider the healthcare industry to be lagging behind other industries in digital marketing know-how, but that neglect offers opportunity to the savvy. You don't necessarily need aggressive self-promotion or to be like Doctor Oz in order to build your profile. Rather, focus on your customer. A customer centric marketing model that caters to the customer's journey offers appointment reminders and encourages reviews.

One of the most commonly utilised tools to facilitate this is by using a Customer Relationship Management System. There are many available, and which is most appropriate for you will depend on what you do, where you are, and your budget! Consider moving beyond traditional newsletters to personalised email campaigns that foster a professional connection with your clientele.

seek out a healthcare marketing specialist

When you're looking for a marketing specialist, opt for someone with a proven track record that is also familiar with your service locality. Nuances in marketing such as cultural sensitivities, state by state legalities and search differences can significantly impact campaign and website performance.

Do you want to attract more patients and grow your practice, faster?

If you're a health practioner looking to attract more patients and grow your practice, digital marketing is part of the means to achieve it. Whether you choose to embrace social media, invest in SEO, or leverage PPC advertising, the key is to tailor your approach to your specific audience.

I help doctors and surgeons generate new patients online. If you're ready to grow your practice, drop me a line.


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