Today was the official release date of the 2015-2016 U.S. News and World Report rankings for health systems and hospitals across the nation. Many of our clients were awarded top hospitals both regionally and nationally! They did the hard work, now it’s our turn to help them reap the benefits with a sound digital marketing strategy to share this great news!
There are several ways that you can leverage the U.S. News and World Report rankings (assuming your health system had positive rankings) for your content marketing and SEO efforts. First off, if you do not already have an awards and recognition page, we recommend you create one linked to the about us section of your navigation. Here is an example of a page that illustrates a great awards and recognition page from Summa Health System.
Another recommendation is to include the U.S. News and World Report badge throughout your website, but especially on your homepage. The image can be an authoritative symbol that helps establish a sense of trust among potential patients – if they quickly see you’re a top hospital, they may feel more comfortable choosing you for their healthcare needs.
Another option would be to blog about your rankings or sharing a press release. These are simple ways to get the message out of your new rankings to current and prospective patients and to also help with your organic rankings. Here is an example of a press release about the University of Colorado Hospital’s 2015-16 U.S. News and World Report rankings found under the Google News section and on the first page of Google blend SERPs. If you push out a press release through a wire service like PRNewswire or PRWeb, be sure to also publish the press release in your website’s news section.
If you have the creative capabilities and/or budget, make a short YouTube or Vine video about the recognition. One idea is to gather a large group of nurses, physicians and other medical staff together, then take a video of the group saying “we’re proud to have the top (fill-in-the-blank-here) services in the nation!” This turns your recognition into an engaging, shareable piece of content that’s perfect for social media or a blog.
Similarly, if you send out a monthly email newsletter this is a great opportunity to share your newly released rankings and link out to your awards and recognition page that you created on your website! More specifically, if you’ve segmented out your email lists by service line, be sure to include specific rankings within those emails and potentially leverage the U.S. News and World Report badge with a snippet of content about the specific ranking. Below is an example of how The Cleveland Clinic is leveraging their number one ranking in Cardiology and Heart Surgery within an email:
Well, if you spend money paying for a press release, writing a new blog, or creating an awards and recognition page, then it’s only natural to share across social media to your followers! Remember to share several times across your social networks, especially on Twitter. Also, use popular hashtags such as #hospitalrankings, #besthospitals, and more. Below is another example from The Cleveland Clinic on Twitter sharing their top rankings!
Now onto Pay-Per-Click advertising; using PPC is such an easy way to get your new rankings out to the users searching for your health system or care services you provide. There are four main ways to leverage the new rankings:
Option one is to simply update your ad copy for your brand campaign and service-line specific campaigns with your new rankings.
Option two is to leverage review extensions in Google AdWords. This might be the best way to go about doing this, but there may be a longer approval process. The reason it might be best is because it does not take away from the ad characters of the body of the copy. It’s in addition and supportive messaging about why a prospective patient should trust your health system and choose your doctors and specialist for treatment!
Another option is to leverage sitelinks that show underneath your ads. You could simply link to the awards and recognition page you’ve already created for SEO/content marketing purposes. See how all your digital marketing efforts can work together?
Finally, you might be able to squeeze in your rankings through Google AdWords callout extensions. Unlike sitelinks, these are non-clickable/text only elements of your ads. So if you do not have a dedicated page mentioning your award, callout extensions may be an option as well.
U.S. News and World report rankings are taken very seriously by current and prospective patients. It’s imperative you have a cohesive and holistic digital marketing strategy to take advantage of your top accomplishments and rewards.