The durable medical equipment (DME) industry is one of the fastest growing in the United States. In fact, there are around 6,500 DME providers across the country with a market size of about $148 billion. These numbers are expected to grow within the next three years.
With so many competitors out there, it’s more important than ever for your DME business to step up your online marketing efforts to increase your visibility and reach more potential customers. Here are some foolproof tips for planning and launching an effective marketing strategy.
Create a buyer persona
A buyer persona is a detailed description of your ideal customer, or target audience. It identifies characteristics such as demographic and geographic information, goals, pain points, and behaviors based on market research and data on your existing customers. Understanding these traits will enable you to determine which specific group of people you should focus your marketing efforts on, as well as tailor your strategies and content to their unique needs and goals.
Note that you can create several buyer personas, each representing a specific segment of your customer base. For a DME business like yours, this might mean coming up with a buyer persona that represents a sleep specialist looking for a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine supplier to refer their patients to. Another possible buyer persona is a hospital administrator in need of hospital beds, wheelchairs, and other equipment for their medical facility.
Determine your target customers’ buying process
The buyer’s journey is the process that every customer goes through before they purchase any new product or service. Determining where your customers are on their buyer’s journey will enable you to craft the exact messages and content they need at that specific stage.This will create even more engagement and, ultimately, lead to higher sales and profits for your business.
Every buyer’s journey has three stages: awareness, consideration, and decision.
- At the awareness stage, the buyer has realized that they have a problem. They are gathering information that will help them better understand their problem, as well as how to solve it.
- Buyers at the consideration stage have determined what solutions they need and whom to get these from. They are weighing the pros and cons of each provider’s offerings.
- Finally, those at the decision stage have more or less made up their minds as to what solution to get and from whom. They’re ready to make a purchase, but may still require additional information to reinforce or justify their decision.
Determining where your customers are on their buyer’s journey will enable you to craft the content they need at that specific stage. Blogging is one of the best ways to engage prospective customers no matter what stage they’re at. The trick is to create blogs with messages targeted toward a particular audience at a certain stage on the buyer’s journey.
For instance, a post about CPAP machines and their benefits will enable a patient recently diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea to better understand their condition. It will also raise their awareness about how and where to purchase a CPAP machine and supplies.
Stay updated on industry news and trends
Just like any other industry, the DME industry is ever-evolving. New developments are made and released every year, and your business can’t afford to miss out on such innovations if you are to stay ahead of the curve.
Stay updated on what is taking place within the DME sector. Businesses and industry leaders today leverage social media to advertise their latest offerings, and this makes Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram a treasure trove of industry news and information. Reading the latest posts will give you the relevant information you need to devise an effective marketing strategy.
You must also keep an eye on your competition and find out if they’re doing anything different. Then, see if you can adopt a similar solution or approach. For example, they may have recently invested in new customer resource management software, which has allowed them to gain better insights on their clients. This data is valuable in creating a marketing strategy and content tailored to customer needs and goals, as well as opening up new opportunities to get more clients.
Leverage SEO techniques
SEO, or search engine optimization, is the process of tweaking components of your website to improve your position on a search engine. If your website has a high ranking, it’s more likely to show up on top of search results for keywords related to your business’s offerings. This puts you right in front of people looking for information about the products and/or services you provide.
SEO involves researching and using the keywords that you want to rank for. A DME provider like you, for example, would want to include keywords such as “durable medical equipment,” “CPAP machine,” and “Medicare DME provider” in your blogs (especially the headers) and other digital marketing content. Don’t forget to include these keywords in captions and alternative text for any images on your website or blog posts as well. These and other SEO best practices will drive more traffic to your website and hopefully convert visitors into leads and customers.
Nurture your leads
Lead nurturing entails developing and reinforcing relationships with potential and existing customers. It involves focusing marketing efforts on finding out as much as you can about the needs of your customers and then providing them with the answers to these. It also entails giving them other relevant information to increase their awareness of your brand, earn their trust, and maintain a connection until — and long after — they make a purchase.
One of the best ways to nurture your leads and turn them into buyers is to launch an email campaign. This entails the use of an email marketing tool to create and send emails to leads at every stage of the sales funnel with the goal of encouraging further engagement with your company.
Before you launch an email campaign, make sure to sort your mailing list according to what stage your leads are in on their buyer’s journey. This will help you create relevant, personalized content for each segment.
Online marketing is an effective method for boosting your DME business’s market share and profits, but it can take away time and effort from your core services. Fortunately, Revsuppliance has the expertise and experience needed to take care of your operations so you can focus on growing your company. Give us a call today to learn more about how we can help your Oklahoma DME business: 405-467-1791.