About 75 percent of people say they have looked online to find information about a doctor, dentist, or medical care, according to PatientPop. One of the most effective ways to reach these patients is via paid online advertising.
Because Google has 88 percent of the U.S. search engine market share, according to StatCounter, placing medical ads on Google is an effective way to reach patients who are searching for you and your services.
When paying for medical ads, we recommend launching a branded ad campaign, which targets a branded keyword such as your name or the name of your practice. This allows you to dominate Google’s results when your name is searched.
Read on — or watch the video — for step-by-step instructions on how to create a branded medical ad campaign.
How to launch branded medical ads on Google
Step 1: Create a Google account
If you already have a Google account, skip to step 2. If you have a Google account that is already linked to Google Ads, skip to step 3.
If this is your first time running medical ads on Google, you’ll need to create a Google account. This will be your single sign-on for all Google properties such as Gmail, Google Chrome, YouTube, and Google Ads. You can do this by visiting accounts.google.com/signup.
Step 2: Link your account with Google Ads
Now that you’ve created (or logged into) your Google account, go to ads.google.com and click on the “Start now” button. The screen will ask you for your main advertising goal. Instead, click on the link that reads “Are you a professional marketer? Switch to Expert Mode.”
Then, you’ll be asked to select a campaign type. Instead, click on the blue text that reads “Create an account without a campaign.”
The next screen will ask you to verify your business information. Click the “Submit” button, and then you’ll be ready to begin placing medical ads.
Step 3: Create a campaign
Follow the on-screen instructions to create a new campaign. You may have to click a blue “+” sign, and then click “+ new campaign.”
The next screen will ask you to select a goal. Click the last box marked “Create a campaign without a goal’s guidance.” We find this is the most customizable option.
When asked to select a campaign type, choose “Search” and click the “Continue” button.
Step 4: Set parameters for your healthcare advertisement
Where it says “Campaign name,” type in “Branded Campaign.” This will differentiate this particular campaign from other healthcare ads you’re running. Then, uncheck the box that reads “Include Google Display Network.”
Select your target geography by selecting “Enter another location,” and fill in your desired targets by city name. Your target patients are most likely going to be in your immediate area. You should have a general sense of where most of your patient base lives.
Do not worry about the language section, as it will default to English. Enter your desired daily budget. Leave the bidding section blank, and then click the “Save and continue” button.
The Practice Growth Podcast: Online advertising for doctors
Step 5: Write your medical advertisement
Now you’re ready to start writing your medical advertisement. Name your ad group “Branded Ad Group.” Then, list your keywords. We recommend adding all applicable variations of your name and your practice name in quotation marks. For example, if your name is Jane Doe, your keywords might include:
- “Dr. Jane Doe”
- “Jane Doe MD”
- “Dr. Doe Santa Monica”
- “Dr. Doe OBGYN”
- “My Practice Name”
Click the “Save and continue” button. On the next screen, you’ll start adding text to your medical ads. Enter, at minimum, a URL, Headline 1, Headline 2, Description 1.
Use the following copy guidelines:
- Headline 1: your name or practice name (ex: Jane Doe, MD Santa Monica)
- Headline 2: a call-to-action (ex: Book online or call today)
- Description 1: what sets your practice apart (ex: Dr. Doe is a trusted board-certified OBGYN with 20+ years of experience.)
As you’re filling in the text for your healthcare ads, you’ll see a preview on the right-hand side of your screen. Keep the character limits displayed in mind, so your ad doesn’t get cut off.
When you are satisfied with your ad, click “Done.” Then click “Save and continue.” You can modify your medical ads even after they start running.
Click the “Continue to campaign” button to review your campaign. If you haven’t already, you’ll want to set up your billing information, as your campaign won’t run until this information has been input. To do this, select “Tools” in the upper right-hand corner of the web page. From the dropdown, under the “Setup” column, select “Billing” then “Billing settings.”
Once you update your billing information and click “Submit,” your campaign will be active.
Branded ad campaigns are a great way to get started with Google Ads, as they are simple to set up and manage, and you usually won’t need to spend more than a few dollars a day to protect your brand. Branded medical ads are important to your online advertising strategy because they help you rank above other practices who may also be running ads on your name. Additionally, online advertising is a great tactic to use while you wait for your website’s SEO to ramp up and your organic rankings to improve.
Know that if you were interested in running ads specific to your specialty or services that you offer, the steps are exactly the same. The main difference with these medical ads is that you would have chosen different keywords to target and changed the ad copy accordingly.
Interested in learning more about online medical ads? Check out the blog post “5 online advertising options for healthcare practices.”