Stop/Start/Continue: Wellness Marketing Priorities for 2019

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1. Blogging or posting without a specific, strategic purpose

The world has enough posts about drinking eight glasses of water/day. Please don’t pay someone to write another one.

What is a strategic post? A post that addresses a common concern for potential clients. A post that shares the life experience of a real customer on a relevant health journey. A post that gives new insight into your approach to health and wellness.

Remember: blogs and social media posts are marketing tools. The whole reason you’re posting is to establish and deepen connections with future clients, members and patients.

2. Going through the marketing motions

This one’s closely related to posting without a purpose.

Many clients come to us with a hodge-podge of marketing initiatives. They’re doing video because a few years ago, they heard it was the next big thing. They send out emails because they think they’re supposed to. They’re diligently posting on Instagram because “it’s the next big thing,” too. The special offers are always the same. You get the idea.

Take a step back. Inventory all the sales and marketing activities that your wellness business churns through during the year. Then, consider questions like these:

  • Is all of it still relevant? For example, Twitter is completely irrelevant for most retail health and wellness businesses. It. Just. Doesn’t. Matter.
  • Is all of it as effective as it can possibly be? How can you tell?
  • Does each activity align well with your target audience? For example, we have a senior fitness client whose marketing team posted on Instagram with very little engagement. That’s because the Instagram demographic skews very heavily to women in their teens and 20s. You’re not going to find many senior citizens there.

3. Starting every marketing message with “we”

We do a lot of “website refresh” projects. All too often, 99% of the content reads like this:

  • “We pride ourselves on a sparkling clean gym environment.”
  • “Our experienced staff is certified in XXX and holds degrees in ZZZ…”
  • “We offer weight loss programs for…”
  • “Our healthy lifestyle program…”
  • “We coach the best professional prospects…”

Conspicuously absent: anything that speaks to your potential client’s state of mind, their hopes and fears as they contemplate.


4. Marketing to “you” — your customer

  • “Your one-stop shop for judgment-free support…”
  • “Your questions always promptly answered by our experienced staff…”
  • “You’re among friends at….”
  • “Weight loss programs to help you…”

Sure, you may streamline the resulting copy before it goes live — after all, “Questions promptly answered by experienced staff” is a crisper phrase.

But when marketers write to “you” instead of writing about “we”, they automatically switch away from an internal focus and begin writing from the customer’s perspective. It makes for much more powerful and convincing copy. It also forces you to think hard about why each feature you want to emphasize really matters to your prospective client.

Push your marketing team to use this technique when they’re developing new website content or copy for posts, brochures, or anything else customer-facing.

5. Connecting the dots among your marketing data

Reviewing your website analytics, email campaigns, Facebook insights, and Google Ads/Facebook Ads pay-per-click results is definitely a good start.

Pat yourself on the back if you’re doing this regularly. Many wellness businesses don’t.

However: it’s even more valuable to connect the dots among all this data.

For example, most health and wellness shoppers take more than a single action before they call or stop by. They might click on a PPC ad, check out the weight loss FAQ and program details on your website, watch your Facebook video featuring client stories, then skim some reviews on your Google My Business listing or Yelp.

What’s the most common path for your customer’s journey?

6. Aligning your marketing plan with your customer’s journey

Say your typical client follows a journey like the one above. How well does that journey align with your marketing plan? For example:

  • Do you have a specific campaign to grow online reviews on the most relevant platforms?
  • Does your FAQ answer the real questions prospects worry most about — or is it really questions you wish they’d ask, with self-serving answers that avoid disclosing real information?
  • If your competition’s investing in PPC ads, are you showing up on the PPC field too? If so, how do your campaigns measure up?
  • If not, can you really afford to ignore the first stop most prospects make to your competition?

Apply this process to every component of your marketing plan.


7. Scrutinizing your online reviews

Respond to the positive comments, especially on Facebook. Engagement in the form of a reply is a signal that improves post visibility.

Respond authentically, personally, individually to the actual content of the review. Don’t just cut-and-paste the same generic “thank you” boilerplate every time.

If you’ve got negative reviews, restrain the natural human tendency to explain them away. One of our clients has had several negative reviews over the last 3-4 months. They have lots of reviews, so their overall rating is still good. But an honest reading of the complaints says they’ve got a client experience problem that’s actually systemic.

8. Optimizing your Google Business listing

As we said in our 2019 wellness and fitness marketing trends roundup, if you do only one thing, capitalize on your local Google My Business listing. Use every single capability that Google gives you to stand out from your competition.

Take advantage of the Q&A feature. Update your hours for 2019. Post a real photo from your business — not stock photos! — every week or so. Post special offers and other content that will catch the eye of potential clients and members.

Want even more ways to streamline your business?

Start with this list of nine things you can stop doing.

This digital marketing self-assessment is another helpful tool.