December 2012: 5 Internet Predictions for 2013
1. More Pay to Rank Programs
Over the past few weeks the term “Scroogled” has been bandied about. BING, Microsoft’s search engine, coined this term in reference to Google’s shopping site. Right before the holiday buying season Google switched the site to a “pay to rank” system that makes it difficult for consumers to distinguish advertisements from the honest search results. Thus, BING says, those using the shopping site are getting “Scroogled.”
Expect to see more pay to rank programs, particularly with Google+ Local. Currently, the ranking of the Google+ Local pages is based on the search algorithm. But in the coming years, possibly as early as 2013, Google is likely to begin charging for the high ranking positions on these Local pages.
2. Mobile Will Continue to Boom
Mobile use will continue to boom in 2013 as more and more people use their smart phones and tablet computers to surf the net. To keep up with this trend, make sure your website is mobile-compatible. A separate mobile site may not be necessary if your site displays well on an iPhone- or iPad-type device. On the flip side, for those of you doing PPC advertising, the value of this advertising will fall, as the limited real estate visible on the mobile device will squeeze out the ads.
3. Review Sites Will Continue Consolidation
Two years ago, there were literally hundreds of viable review sites for doctors and dentists. As Google stripped the rankings from many of these sites and as Yelp has grown in popularity, consolidation of review sites has accelerated. Going into 2013, your strategy for obtaining positive reviews will need a narrower focus and should be limited to a handful of review sites – Google+ Local and Yelp being the most important. Fortunately, another change coming to reviews will be the elimination of anonymous posts. This is especially good news for anyone who has been the recipient of an anonymous and/or falsified negative review that they suspect is from a former employee or a competitor. A big driver of this trend will be Google, which now requires users to become Google+ members before they can write reviews. With this new structure, reviews (and reviewers) will no longer be anonymous, which will make it difficult for any party to hide or falsify the identity of the owners of the Google+ pages who write reviews. Don’t be surprised if other review sites begin to adopt the Google+ model.
4. iPhone Dominance Will End
In recent months, Samsung and Apple have engaged in a heated battle for smart-phone market share. With the passing of the torch to new leadership at Apple, it seems that Apple’s innovation is not keeping up. While Samsung has developed many new features for its Galaxy phone, Apple has struggled with its Maps program and continues to have incompatibility issues with certain types of web-based software, such as Flash. Expect to see more people switch from the OIS operating system (Apple) to the Android. Since Google owns the Android platform, expect Google to parlay the Android’s increased market share into new ways to advertise on mobile phones (particularly since the effectiveness of PPC advertising on smart phones appears to be waning).
5. Mobile Apps Still a Long Way from Doctors and Dentists
When mobile apps burst onto the scene, many doctors and dentists jumped on the idea of creating a mobile app for their practice; the thinking being that the younger generations would search the app store, instead of a search engine, when attempting to learn about a treatment or doctor. This trend did not materialize, and don’t expect 2013 to be much different. It is unlikely that we will see people rushing to download mobile apps (in lieu practice websites) in 2013.
Read about our Case Study of the Month
Ask the experts
Q How do I get rid of a negative review?
A There is little you can do to remove a negative review, particularly if the review is anonymous. However, there are ways to diminish its impact. The best ways to offset negative reviews are 1) overwhelm the review site where the negative review appears with positive reviews and/or 2) develop the ranking of other sites so that they rank above the negative reviews for search terms related to your name. Contact Ceatus for more information.
Events: Maximize Your Internet Strategy
Come by the Ceatus booth for a FREE website evaluation!
Hilton Waikoloa Village (Big Island)
Meet us at this year’s Hawaiian Eye to learn about new innovations that will enhance your skills and take your practice to the next level. Hawaiian Eye brings in over 1,000 world renowned physicians, skilled nurses and highly-trained administrators for a full week (January 19-25, 2013) at the Hilton Waikoloa Village on Hawaii’s Big Island. Ceatus Internet marketing experts will be available throughout the event to assess the effectiveness of your website’s call to action along with other important features that are critical to increasing your patient volume.
Expanding Horizons Symposium
Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas
Come to Expanding Horizons to explore the latest technological advances and techniques in facial rejuvenation, breast augmentation and body contouring. This 2.5-day symposium will offer intimate, in-depth, and advanced discussions on new techniques that will enhance your practice. Speak with one of our Internet marketing experts at Ceatus to learn how you can increase conversion and bring new patients to your practice.
CEATUS Case Study of the Month
Background: Dr. Lee Corbett is a Louisville-based plastic surgeon with an excellent reputation in the community. Although many of his referrals come from word of mouth, he recognized that prospective patients were placing more and more value on other patients’ reviews of his practice.
Challenge: Dr. Corbett had many great reviews, but like other plastic surgeons, doctors and dentists, he wanted to obtain more. However, soliciting patients after surgery was difficult and cumbersome for him and his staff.
Solution: He consulted with his Ceatus representatives and a strategy was hatched. Ceatus placed an attractive “Reviews” page on his website. The page included links to the most important and influential review sites so that his patients could easily link to each of these popular sites. A process was put in place to directly solicit positive reviews. A patient survey, developed by Ceatus in conjunction with Dr. Corbett, is now sent via email to each post-op patient. For those patients who have highly positive comments, a follow-up email is sent with a link to the “Reviews” page. To incentivize patients to post a review and refer other patients, gift cards and other items are offered. All of this has simplified the process of obtaining patient reviews and is generating great return.
Since our list of vintage cocktails was so popular last month, we’ve decided to give you our list of favorite holiday drinks! Recipes for cocktails can be modified to suit your personal tastes and ingredients you have available. With so many imaginative and original ideas, you’ll be sure to impress your friends and family at this year’s holiday party!
Apple Mint Martini
1 oz. apple vodka
1/2 oz. green crème de menthe
2 ½ oz. soda
Fresh mint leaves
1. Pour the apple vodka and several mint leaves into a martini shaker and shake well.
2. Add the green crème de menthe and ice cubes, and shake until blended.
3. Pour one-third of the way into martini glass and top off the soda.
4. Garnish with a mint leaf and serve.
Fun fact: Did you know that mint is good for you? The essential oil of mint has been shown to have healthy antimicrobial activity and is also believed to ease nausea and vomiting, improve digestion, reduce heartburn, and improve bad breath.
Frozen Cranberry Margaritas
1 (10-oz.) can frozen mojito mix
3/4 cup tequila
1/4 cup whole-berry cranberry sauce
2 tablespoons orange liqueur
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1. Combine first 5 ingredients in a blender.
2. Fill blender with ice to 5-cup level, and process until smooth.
Tip: Presentation is a big part of enjoying a martini. To give it a simple twist, always add some kind of garnish that indicates the flavors of your drink.
Hot Cider Nog
2 cups half-and-half
1 cup milk
1 cup apple cider
2 large eggs
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup bourbon (optional)
1/2 cup whipping cream, whipped
Garnish: cinnamon sticks
1. Whisk together first 8 ingredients in a heavy saucepan; cook over medium-low heat, whisking occasionally, until mixture thickens and coats a spoon (about 15 minutes).
2. Stir in bourbon, if desired.
3. Top each serving with whipped cream.
4. Garnish with cinnamon sticks, if desired.
Fun fact: Alcoholic eggnog differs in each country. In the United States it is typically combined with bourbon, while in most European countries it is often mixed with white wine.
Champagne and Cranberries
2 oz bourbon or rye whiskey
1 oz simple syrup
¾ oz fresh lemon juice
1. Place cranberries in Champagne flute.
2. Pour Champagne over berries. Serve immediately.
Fun fact: Cranberries are one of only a few fruits native to North America. Contrary to popular belief, they do not grow in water. They are grown on sandy bogs. Because cranberries float, some bogs are flooded when the fruit is ready for harvesting.
Peppery Bloody Mary
1 teaspoon chopped fresh basil
1 teaspoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon chopped fresh chives
1 1/3 cups tomato juice
1/2 cup pepper vodka
6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 ½ to 3 teaspoons green hot sauce
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
Pinch of sea salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
Garnishes: pickled okra, lemon wedges
1. Combine first 3 ingredients in a cocktail shaker.
2. Press leaves against bottom of cup using a muddler or wooden spoon to release flavors; stir in tomato juice and next 7 ingredients.
3. Transfer half of mixture to a 2-cup glass measuring cup.
4. Place ice in cocktail shaker, filling halfway.
5. Cover with lid and shake vigorously until thoroughly chilled.
6. Strain into a glass over ice.
7. Repeat procedure with remaining tomato mixture.
8. Garnish, if desired.
Quick Tip: Rim your glass with a flavored sugar or herb/spice-flavored salt to enhance the flavors of your drink.
Read about our Case Study of the Month
Find Your Niche!
Procedure-specific websites offer surprising opportunity
For many doctors and dentists who have wisely invested in their practice websites, their Internet strategies are paying off. Some have been so successful that they have abandoned other forms of advertising and promotion and focused almost exclusively on Internet marketing. So, what is left for a practice to do when the website is up to date, provides comprehensive information about procedures and ranks well on the search engines?
Answer: a procedure-specific website.
3 Big Benefits
Procedure-specific websites can provide three distinct benefits to your practice.
1) You look like a specialist. A procedure-specific website makes it clear that doctors within your practice specialize in the procedure or treatment described on the site. A website that focuses exclusively on tummy tuck, laser cataract surgery or dental implants, for example, sends a message to the consumer that your practice has specific training, skills and experience in these areas.
2) Google rankings. The website provides additional potential to rank on the first page of Google for search terms related to your name, the name of your practice, or the featured procedure. Even if your main practice website already ranks well, a new “niche” website can be very powerful, as it doubles your potential for capturing real estate on the first page of the search engines. It also diminishes the amount of search engine real estate available to your competitors.
3) Linking opportunities. Your procedure-specific website can also be used to provide valuable links back to your main practice website. This linking can help your rankings while sending potential patients to your main practice site to read about the other procedures you offer.
Give us a call and ask us to show you some successful examples of procedure-specific websites!