Sending the Right Message

July 18th, 2014

Despite the increasing popularity and “normalcy” of plastic surgery, it is still easy for many to turn their nose up at the entire industry. In a culture where we are constantly confronted with Photoshopped images and celebrity standards of physical perfection, there are many people who are rising up against the ideal of an enhanced appearance. You may have heard of the campaign led by an 8th-grader that resulted in Seventeen Magazine’s No-Photoshop Pledge, in which the publication promises to never digitally alter body sizes or face shapes of young women. More recently, singer Colbie Caillat’s music video ‘Try’ depicts Caillat and several other women sans makeup and hair extensions. Many other campaigns embrace full-figured women and models as well as women without makeup. On social media outlets, the hashtag “no filter” (#nofilter)  is one of the most popular.

However, the world of plastic surgery is not limited to achieving a particular ideal of beauty, nor does it oppose beauty in its natural state. There is another side of the industry that is far more sensitive and more necessary than many think to consider. Each year, thousands of plastic surgeons dedicate their time – and often sacrifice pay – to perform procedures on burn victims, post mastectomy patients, and those who were born with physical deformities. Many of these surgeries are performed here in the United States, and many others are performed overseas and in developing countries. These patients are given the chance to experience life with a normal appearance. With their improved look, others first notice their eyes or smile rather than their blatant “flaw.”

But even when a physical “flaw” is not as obvious to the rest of the world, it can have a significant impact on the quality of life of the person who experiences it. A woman who has oversized breasts may suffer chronic back and shoulder pain, a child with protruding ears may be continually teased, or a person with a crooked nose may be haunted by their imperfection on a daily basis as they look in the mirror. For these people, plastic surgery is not about transforming into a Vogue cover model, it is about the ability to enjoy life without limitations.

Part of our purpose at Plastic Surgery Studios is to send the full message about the plastic surgery industry. For years, we have promoted surgeons who volunteer their services in the United States and abroad to help their patients achieve a sense of normalcy and confidence. We have promoted those who invest their time, knowledge, and other assets into research for surgical reconstruction, repair, and enhancement. As surgeons make their imprint on their surrounding communities, we help them send the message that there is much more to the industry than what meets the eye. Plastic surgery can – and always will be – an empowering, positive tool.

If you would like to increase your website visibility or improve the message you are sending to prospective patients, feel free to contact us today. We look forward to working with you!

‘How To Get Started’ With Your Internet Marketing

May 5th, 2014

Figuring out which services you really need or where you should begin with your Internet marketing can be a very daunting task. Our goal is to help alleviate some of that confusion and guide you toward exactly the right services for your needs.

Introducing Our ‘How To Get Started’ Tool

Our easy-to-use tool guides you through the process of finding exactly how you should get started with your Internet marketing. All you need is a very basic understanding of your current marketing efforts and two spare minutes. That’s it!

How do I use this great tool?

Simply visit our ‘How To Get Started’ page to begin. Start by answering a basic question about how many visitors you receive each month. Don’t worry about being exact. Whether you think you receive only a few visitors each month or think your traffic is through the roof, our questions are designed to guide you quickly and easily toward the products you need in order to see success.

If you have any additional questions about getting started with your Internet marketing, please feel free to contact us. We’ll get you on the right path!

Website Redesigns Improve Search Engine Traffic

April 21st, 2014

Virtually everyone knows that having a presence on the web is a crucial component for a successful business, but what many don’t realize is that maintaining your site and staying current with the latest information is just as important.

Your website is your client’s first look at you, what you stand for, and what you are all about. If your site is stale, old, and awful, you can just imagine the kind of message that sends to potential customers.

Here are some of the most common indications that your website is in need of a redesign:

  • Old school SEO practices like keyword-stuffed content. Visitors often come to a site for information, only to get confused when they run into phrases that are misplaced and don’t make any sense. These flaws stand out and cause your potential clients to look elsewhere. Google can also detect keyword stuffing and other “black hat” SEO practices, which will undoubtedly hurt your website’s visibility.
  • Outdated information. It’s great to have information on your site, but if it’s out of date, it will make you look out of date. Mistakes and dated information are one of the biggest red flags to consumers and search engines alike.
  • Complicated code. If a page takes too long to load because of large images or complicated code, you can expect a high bounce rate. People today want information, and they want it fast.
  • Overly complex page titles and meta keywords. Simplicity and conciseness are key when attracting users and search engines. Titles will identify your page in search results and help users to know exactly what they are getting when they choose to read your page. Since it is so easy for users to search elsewhere, you cannot afford to have any confusing elements.
  • Unattractive design. By catering to the beauty of your website, your patients will get the message that aesthetics is a priority to you. Your site may have outdated colors and fonts or overused and cliché stock images. The text may be too small for your visitors to read, or the contrast on your landing pages may be hard on the eyes, causing users to click away.

Our Findings

Over a period of several months, our team collected and analyzed data to determine the actual value of a website redesign. We found that, on average, a website redesign improved search engine traffic by 13.1 percent, which means that if your site were getting 1,000 visitors per month, a redesign would garner 131 more visitors. That’s 131 more chances for more business in just one month.

Why Does a Website Redesign Improve Search Engine Traffic?

Your goal should be to have a website that people can find, and once they find it, they can easily find the information they need. Our website redesigns appeal to both search engines as well as your target audience because:

  • We build websites using clean code and a content management system (CMS) known as WordPress. This allows for pages to load quickly. Plus, the interface is very simple to use and will allow you to make edits easily.
  • New websites, especially when they come from us, are given an initial round of optimization to perfect page titles on current and even future pages automatically! We then set up the XML sitemap to automatically notify Google for every page added.
  • New websites typically have fresh, modern, well-written, and unique content. Our team of writers provides customized material – procedure pages, blog posts, and campaign pages – that will cater to your needs. They stay on top of the latest information and work with you to achieve content that is true to your voice.
  • New sites are updated more frequently. New features and new content can be implemented that will keep your site fresh and relevant. The blog posts we create often include the latest trends in plastic surgery, a particular procedure you wish to focus on, or health and beauty tips that can appeal to a greater audience. The variety of content can draw in diverse traffic that will result in more leads.

If you’re ready for a website redesign or want to discuss how we can help you achieve your goals, please e-mail or give us a call at (888) 525-6360.

Do Facebook, Google+, and Twitter Even Matter?

April 7th, 2014

Social media is, without a doubt, here to stay. For years, businesses have been trying to leverage these networks effectively to improve upon or achieve their business objectives. Which social networks matter, and in what way should you look to be utilizing them to help your business?

facebook-logoFacebook

Google does not directly take Facebook ‘Likes’ or performance into consideration when determining their rankings. However, great content is by nature shareable, and Google definitely recognizes and rewards quality content in their algorithm.

Facebook can often act as a litmus test: If the content does well with your followers on Facebook, chances are the page already has merit and will perform well. If you notice a particular post take off, that’s a good indicator that you may want to create additional content like it or continue with the promotion of said piece.

Being able to target enormous amounts of people in your market is where Facebook truly shines. Advertising on Facebook should not be taken lightly. Facebook exists to collect personal information on its users – that’s what it does. They know what people like, what they share, and the types of people they associate with, and Facebook formulates labels based upon this information. As a marketer I am able to then choose my target demographic very, very accurately to ensure I am getting the best possible return on my investment.

Google-plus-logoGoogle+

Although Google+ is miles behind Facebook in terms of the number of people who use the service, you shouldn’t ignore the facts:

  • Google+ ‘Shared Links’ are followed, which means they pass something called link equity. Simply put, if I write an amazing article and it receives a lot of +1s, Google will take that into consideration for how my page ranks.
  • Google+ is already optimized for semantic relevance – Facebook and Twitter are not. This means that something posted on Google+ is treated exactly like a normal blog post. It has all of the elements needed to be considered a true inbound link from a website, and the links will be followed as well.

In the end, you really can’t create a Google+ account, post ten times a day, and hope to see results. Time and effort should be taken to cultivate a following of real people who have the ability to influence others.

Utilizing the +1 button correctly is also important. Even visitors who do not actively manage their own Google+ page will happily press the +1 button – they can’t help themselves. Good content gives visitors the natural compulsion to tell others. These +1 likes turn into inbound links and directly indicate to Google’s algorithm that the content is worth sharing with others.

twitter-logoTwitter

The biggest mistake Twitter users make is using this social network to broadcast. It’s easy to just retweet what someone else says or share a link to a new post you’ve written. Interacting with people is where Twitter shines.

Rather than just retweeting popular figures or pasting a link to your newest post, you should be showing genuine interest in attracting interaction with others. Use Twitter to showcase the culture of your office. Use it for customer service, getting others to share what they’ve done with you, and publicly show you and your organization are available and accessible.

The 140 character limit forces efficient communication which means you aren’t having to spend time crafting email replies. A quick answer to a question is often all someone needs, and Twitter makes that easy.

Does Social Media Matter?

When used properly, these social networks become business tools with the power to build a brand, provide customer service, build customer loyalty, and improve search engine results.

Simple Website Usability Tips

March 31st, 2014

Our marketing department gets this question a lot: “How can I give my visitors a better user experience?” I love the fact that this comes phrased as a question, and the asker is (hopefully) genuinely interested in making real changes to make their website better.

Avoid Multi-Level Navs

amazon-nav

Amazon’s menus are easy to navigate and provide a big-picture approach that is great for helping their visitors find what they need.

Multi-level navs can frustrate a user for multiple reasons. The first is simple usability. I will often see websites utilize a nav that will close on the user if the cursor does not follow a perfectly horizontal line when entering the next tier.

Finding content can be difficult if a page is buried deep within a nav. For example, Botox is often structured under facial fillers. Putting facial fillers under ‘Injectables’ and then putting ‘Injectables’ under ‘Other Procedures’ has effectively put Botox four levels deep.

If you have a lot of pages, and you absolutely must have your navigation accomodate them all, you can have them all appear at once in a larger section similar to what Amazon.com uses. That way you can emphasize the sections clearly and list all of the sub-link below.

Don’t Assume Every Visitor Enters Through the Homepage

Lots of work goes into making a homepage beautiful, interesting, usable, and capable of directing visitors where you want them to go. Why not carry those same traits into your procedure pages?

Every page on your site should be considered an entry page. If you’re working hard to create amazing content and a website that will index in the search engines and get shared by others, then hopefully the majority of your traffic isn’t going to your homepage.

Don’t Be Boring!

If someone tells you your website is “not engaging the visitor,” that’s a nice way of saying your website is boring. No one likes to look at walls of text, and no one likes to look at just a bunch of pictures. Break text apart into sections, reduce the wordcount, and make your content readable to someone who hasn’t been to ten years of medical school.

Negative space can be used to break up the flow of a page, separate objects, and make it easier on a visitor’s eyes. Cleverly using white space can even influence conversion rates by controlling where a visitor looks when moving down a page.

Make Converting Easy

If your website is meant to send you business, why not make it as easy as possible for people to give you their information? That contact form buried in your footer at the bottom of the page? No one is going to scroll down there. Move it to the top or insert it into your content!

Remove the friction. When a visitor goes to your contact page, chances are they are already in the mindset to contact you in some way. If they are greeted by a huge contact form asking for their full address, date of birth, and Skype username, they will probably decide contacting you is simply too much work.

Keep it simple, interesting, and easy for someone to find what they want.

State of the Industry

March 24th, 2014

Plastic Surgery Studios has helped clients in the plastic surgery industry exceed their goals for over 15 years. This year, we are reaching out and sharing our wealth of information with everyone.

Introducing: State of the Industry

Using State of the Industry

Understanding the competition in your region has never been easier.  Follow these easy steps to get started:

  1. Visit State of the Industry
  2. Find and click on your region
  3. When the summary pops up, click ‘View Region’
  4. Explore the vast amount of data we are willing to share with the world

In each region you will find the average visits, leads, social media data, blog information, marketing cost, and return on investment.  Utilizing all of our data, we identified meaningful averages for each of these categories, and presented all of that information to you in easy to read graphs and tables.

Frequently Asked Questions

How did you gather this data?
We have hundreds of clients across the entire country.  Utilizing Google Analytics and a diligent marketing team, we gathered the data and applied simple average to create a set of easy to understand numbers.

How did you determine each region?
Over the past 15 years we noticed significant trends with regard to how plastic surgeons and patients naturally group themselves.  Each region was constructed by evaluating the overall competition, interest in plastic surgery, and geographical location.  In other words, we grouped together what made sense.

I’m lower than the average.  How can I improve?
How you rank against other plastic surgeons in your region can be influenced by a number of factors ranging from how long you’ve been in practice to what types of procedure you offer.  If you only perform blepharoplasty you may not see the volume of a body or breast doctor.  Whatever the case may be, we’re happy to evaluate your marketing efforts and give our recommendations for how you can improve your internet marketing.

My numbers are way better than these averages.  Should I stay complacent?
When a client of ours is excelling we often have to remind them how and why they are doing so well.  Typically those who are out-performing the competition got there because they went above and beyond what others are doing.  To stay ahead of the curve, you should continue to watch your competition closely and actively work to stay ahead.

We invite you to see how you stack up in the State of the Industry.  If you have any questions regarding your marketing, or how you can improve in 2014, give us a call at (888) 525-6360.  We want to hear from you!

Setting the Right Goals for Your Website

March 24th, 2014

“What does success look like to you?”

This is the question I lead with when I sit down with a client to determine their Internet marketing strategy. Usually their response is, “I want to be number one in Google.” That’s a noble goal and one probably every business in the world shares.

The problem with having a goal like being number one in Google is that it’s a deceptively inaccurate way of measuring success. We’ve had plenty of clients reach that coveted first rank in SERPs just to give us a call saddened by the fact that they aren’t suddenly a celebrity with their phone ringing off the hook.

A better goal would be to convert more of your visitors next month into email consultation requests. This can be measured by a simple conversion rate: the number of visitors divided by the number of contacts. Improving your site’s conversion rate means you don’t need to reach a wider audience to get more business. Conversely, you may already have an amazing conversion rate, so the goal could be to simply improve the number of people visiting your site while maintaining your ability to convert.

Even better goals revolve around a strategy. Our marketing team will sit down regularly with clients to figure out what specific area of their practice they want to improve. These are great meetings to have because not only do we gain a better understanding of how we can directly help the client, but the client starts to think like a marketer. The results go from, “I want to be number one in Google” to “I can’t believe I did so many rhinoplasties last month. Let’s try Tummy Tucks next!”

Measuring how a goal’s success or failure affects the bottom line transforms the way you think, how you market your business, and how your website works for you. Make your goals work for you.

A Better SEO

March 19th, 2014

SEO has evolved significantly over the past few years.   Practices that were once encouraged and commonplace are now the quickest way to get blacklisted or penalized.  What used to yield amazing results is now the same as throwing your money away.   As part of our ongoing effort to educate and guide our clients and the plastic surgery industry toward making better decisions for their businesses, we launched the “Better SEO” campaign.

  • See the difference between Old and New SEO
  • Learn about the history of SEO and how these past few years have radically altered the way your business should be approaching SEO
  • See a few of the ways our company is changing the way our clients market themselves on the internet

 

The Importance of Blogging

March 17th, 2014

What is a blog?

A blog (short for “web log”) is a method for delivering frequent, often casual and more personal, content to your website visitors. Blog entries (called “posts”) are usually shown in reverse chronological order on your blog’s website so that more recent posts are visible first. Blogs are generally interactive; people can leave comments and even share blogs on social media platforms.

What type of content should I blog about?

One of the great things about blogs is that you can discuss anything and everything, from procedure-related information to hot topics in the news. Blogs in the plastic surgery industry generally cover a wide range of subjects, including:

  • How a procedure has changed (new techniques and technologies)
  • A new service your practice offers
  • Common misconceptions
  • Frequently asked questions – believe us when we say that people have thousands of questions about plastic surgery!
  • Plastic surgery statistics
  • Health and fitness topics
  • Celebrity plastic surgery and other relevant news stories

Why is blogging important?

Blogging is important for giving your practice exposure, building a sense of community, and establishing authority, all of which help to generate leads. The majority of plastic surgery websites have blogs, so chances are your competitors are already putting this effective marketing tool to use.

You can post entries as often as you want on your blog, and Google gives preferential treatment to hyper-fresh content. This means that more recent content, if relevant to a user’s search, will rank higher in the search engines. Having a rich library of content also helps to ensure that when someone performs a search, your blog will be there to answer their query. This establishes your status as an authority on plastic surgery and allows readers to recognize and become familiar with your practice.

By granting access to information and knowledge with your blog, you’re interacting with potential customers and creating a bond that will encourage further interaction. A blog forms a sense of community between you and your readers, and they will likely return to you for answers to future questions and for their plastic surgery needs. In addition, users can share your blog on other social media platforms, which will allow you to reach an even wider audience and generate more potential leads.

Start Your Blog Today!

Blogging can be done by anyone, but many businesses find they do not have the time to keep up with writing the content Google and readers so adamantly demand. You may want to blog but have a busy schedule or don’t know where to start, and that’s why we’re here to help. At Plastic Surgery Studios, we have a dedicated team who works every day to provide relevant, interesting content for blogs that will get your practice noticed.

Don’t be one of the few practices without a blog. Call (888) 525-6360 to start your blog program and expand your practice!

What is PPC?

March 10th, 2014

PPC is a commonly used acronym for pay-per-click advertising. When someone says they are running PPC ads, they typically mean they are using Google Adwords or the ads that appear in the search engine results.

How Does PPC Work?

The easiest way to think of PPC is quite literally you pay per click. When your ads are shown through Adwords, you only pay Google when someone clicks on your ads. The cost of that click is then determined by many different factors. The most common factors include:

  • Targeted keywords
  • Location
  • Bid
  • Quality score

Ads are created inside of the Adwords control panel and are governed by many different regulations ranging from character limits to the words you’re allowed to use.

Character Limitations

Example Ad Max Character Length
Headline Red Shoe Sale 25
Display Line 1 Buy One Get One Free 35
Display Line 2 At Doug’s Red Shoe Store 35
Display URL www.DougsShoes.com/RedShoes 35

Google strictly enforces the types of claims you are allowed to make in an ad. Anything advertised must be truthful, accurate, factually supported, and 100 percent verifiable. Information in ads must match what is on your website, including offers and prices.

Ads have really evolved over the years. Google now allows advertisers to implement trackable phone numbers which can be clicked, product listings, maps which integrate with your Google Local listing, and many other ‘extensions’ to enhance your campaigns.

What Is This ‘Quality Score’ I Keep Hearing About?

According to Google, “Quality Score is an estimate of how relevant your ads, keywords, and landing page are to a person seeing your ad.” Simply put, if you are advertising a facelift, you want to make sure that the keywords and ad copy are relevant to facelifts and that the page you are sending people to is all about facelifts. This will earn you a high Quality Score, reduce your cost-per-click amount, and help your ads place better.

The Benefits of PPC

PPC has a number of benefits depending on your current circumstances. If you’re not able to organically rank on the first page, PPC is a legitimate means of buying your way to the top. On the other hand, you might already be on the first page. Buying more real estate on the front page for the terms you’re trying to advertise helps ensure you’re the site people visit.

Measuring your return on investment is one of the greatest benefits of all. Unlike SEO, which can sometimes be confusing as to exactly what you’re paying, PPC can literally tell you exactly what it cost to get that visit and ultimately that lead. The freedom to adjust your bid, retarget your audience, and change immediately reduces the hassle of having to wait for Google to re-index your website. PPC is flexible enough to give you the freedom to change.

You shouldn’t forget about brand awareness, either. Having ads display in Google right at the top of the list is a great way to begin associating your brand with terms people actually search. Top of mind awareness is incredibly important. If you’re a cosmetic dentist in Beverly Hills wanting to improve the number of porcelain veneers you sell, you want people to think of your name when they think of porcelain veneers. PPC is a very effective at increasing visibility.

How to Get the Most Out of Your PPC Campaigns

Now that you know what PCC is, how it works, and why you should use it, it’s time to learn how you can really get the most out of your campaigns.

One of the best recommendations we can possibly give any of our clients is to stop sending traffic right to the homepage of their site. Think about it: you’ve just spent money figuring out the keywords you want to use, the demographic you want to target, and you’ve convinced that person to click on your ad. Why would you want to send them to your homepage where they can get lost, confused, or bounce?

We use incredibly effective, handcrafted landing pages for all of our PPC campaigns. These pages are designed to convert and are tailored precisely to their corresponding ads and campaigns. Our goal with PPC landing pages is to quickly educate the visitor to qualify them, then present them with the opportunity to learn more. Our landing pages consistently convert higher for paid traffic because of our ability to refine for that lead.

Use PPC to augment your existing efforts. Drive visitors to the procedures or products you want to improve. Advertise specials, create campaigns, or even break into a new market. If you’re not using PPC, you’re leaving money on the table and missing out on great opportunities to grow your business.