With growing and aging populations and limited access to state funded healthcare, demand for medical practitioners will continue to grow.
That social & demographical aspect also means that competition among medical practitioners will continue to increase for all actors offering medical services, including private practices.
While patients of course will want to always get help from the smartest, most capable experts available, how can a patient competently evaluate the knowledge and capabilities of the medical practitioner ?
That means that patients rely on other means to decide whom to go to for medical care. Becoming a thought leader in a particular medical niche becomes a very effective way to bring in new patients and ensure they come back. The decision making process goes beyond referrals from trusted friends, family and colleagues – while referrals play an important role, their search and decision making often transits via the Internet.
What does that mean for you as a medical practitioner ?
Whether you like it or not, if you want to continue attracting new patients you need to get the word out about you, your expertise and your practice. Where patients have options, marketing can become the deciding determinant on where patients choose to receive everything from ongoing wellness care to major surgery. In fact, the more options patients have, the more marketing, and in particular thought leadership, can make a difference.