Doctor Profiles are Evolving, It's Time to Keep Up

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06/21/2019 in Blog

Remember the days when resumes were simple, straightforward sheets of paper printed in black and white?

If you do, then you know how far we've come — these days, the resume is just one piece of a robust professional digital presence that includes social media profiles, beautifully designed documents, and possibly even multimedia, all to make a positive impression.

The same thing has happened to the doctor profile.

What used to sit quietly in a low-traffic corner of a hospital website is now a central point of engagement for healthcare consumers. That means a few bullet points and a phone number aren't enough anymore. Today's provider profiles are critical tools in the patient journey. This is a new concept for many healthcare marketers, so there are a few points of truth you should get a handle on ASAP.

A profile is multipurpose.

Don't think of physician profiles as something that's created just for your website.

The digital healthcare presence exists across multiple platforms, from social media and search to patient review services, so a little investment goes a long way. Any effort invested in profiles can translate to big benefits when properly leveraged across the right marketing strategy.

They're often the first point of contact.

Patients are empowered to shop for care, which means there's a good chance that a physician profile is a first chance to make an impression. Your patients are actively searching online for information, and the last thing they want to run into is a physician “front door" (profile) which doesn't make any effort to connect on a personal level and does little to help them in their decision-making process.

Multimedia matters.

Remember the robust digital presence that's now required for active professionals? Well, multimedia matters in healthcare too.

Provider profiles should take advantage of video and even audio (podcasts, anyone?) to keep up with ever-changing consumer expectations and align with the needs and interests of the modern patient.

It's time to take action

So what does all this focus on consumer experience and a more dynamic provider profile mean for you today as a healthcare marketer?

Rethink provider profiles.

Let go of yesterday's standards. Take a new approach to the physician profile that acknowledges their position as a key influencer of patient behavior and care choices.

Know your patients.

General guidelines for physician profiles are great, but ultimately, let your patients be your guide.

Let your patient mix, local demographics, and behavior patterns including age, income, and internet use determine the style and presentation of your physician profiles and guide you in incorporating them into your overall marketing strategy as a cornerstone of the patient journey.

Enlist a partner.

Since consumers seek physician profiles from a variety of online sources, explore opportunities to reach new patients beyond your hospital website. Optimize your profiles by partnering with third-party experts with lead-generation programs like Healthgrades Patient Direct Connect

Provider profiles should be viewed as an opportunity to share the unique personality, specialization, and strengths that your providers bring to your organization and patients. Much like the resume, providers need a comprehensive online presence to be seen by consumers who are looking for them.