Comfort level with the doctor is the number one criteria when patients are searching for healthcare providers, aside from their experience, skills, quality of care, infrastructure, and facilities.
If you want to establish credibility and build trust with your patients, building a personal brand is a great way to do that.
Stay tuned as we share the 6 steps to create and elevate your personal brand.
What is a personal brand?
Your personal brand is how you promote yourself. It is a combination of:
- what information people see about you online,
- the personality you showcase on your social media, events, and conferences you attend,
- and how your patients or the general public perceives you.
Do you need to create a personal brand?
Absolutely. Regardless if you have a private practice or you work in a group practice or hospital, you NEED to create your personal brand.
Let’s dive into the 6-step process of building your personal brand.
A step-by-step guide to building your personal brand
Step #1: Identify your uniqueness
As a doctor, what makes you different? What are your strengths? What do people associate you with? Do you offer a service that your colleagues don’t? Maybe you attend dental emergency cases. Maybe you have convenient clinic hours.
I remember, when I was a kid, my pediatric doctor would give us those colorful erasers of different shapes whenever a patient would visit. She does that to this day. She has a welcoming bright smile and the clinic is so well set up, making it a comfortable environment for children.
Everything that makes you who YOU are, adds up to create your brand – your mission, your message, how you behave, and what you believe in.
And that brings me to step 2.
Step #2: Channel your Values, Vision, and Voice
As a doctor, your vision and mission revolve around helping people live healthier and happier lives. Talk about it. Let it reflect in the way you engage with your audience online.
So, if you’re a dermatologist or a plastic surgeon and give treatments for the skin or face, you will talk about acne treatments, chemical peels, and so on. But also talk about how people can take care of their skin in general. So your audience will start seeing you as their go-to doctor for anything and everything skin-related.
Step #3 Define your audience
Who is your audience? If you’re a gynecologist, it is women obviously. Maybe you can filter it down further – say women between the age group of 18 to 25. Maybe you can create content around increasing awareness about various health issues women go through in their different life stages.
Step #4: Choose your channel
Once you’ve decided on the niche audience, it’s time to select the right channel to promote your message.
Where is your audience mostly found? Is it on a video-based platform like YouTube, is it on social media like Facebook or Instagram? It’s important to select the channel that is right for YOU.
Of course, you can leverage all the channels. Any marketing expert will tell you about the advantages of creating your online presence on multiple platforms. But you may feel overwhelmed, so start with one channel. Once you’re set, add another channel. And the best part is, you can use and share the same content on this new channel.
So taking the example of a gynecologist further – address women’s health issues through your social media, send out weekly newsletters, start a podcast, create videos and share them on YouTube if you’re not camera shy.
And when you start using all these different channels, you’ll notice some channels getting more engagement than others. You might get excited seeing those likes, comments, new followers, subscribers, and that’s great.
But what I’m trying to say is, ultimately what matters is how relevant your content is for your audience. Curate content keeping the needs of your niche audience in mind.
Step #5: Document your journey
Relevancy of your content is important to make it clear to your audience what they can expect to see. But there’s another type of content that works well, and we’ve seen this across industries, and that is your personal journey.
Say you’re a medical student or a resident doctor, you could vlog a day-in-your-life. You could showcase your other side-interests. Maybe you play a musical instrument. Maybe you come up with some innovative recipes that are also healthy. Address some social issues, share a quote or a story that inspired you to do something. The list is endless, and you can get creative.
Now, why does this work? Well, people are curious to know about you. And they love stories. They prefer this raw content over something that’s very scripted.
Step #6: Be Consistent
We’ve come to the last step towards building your personal brand. And this is an important one. Be consistent.
To build a personal brand, you have to be consistent with all the efforts that you’re putting in. Check if you’re being consistent with your Brand Identity which includes your logo, colors, and tagline. And most importantly, check if you’re consistent with your Values, your Vision, Mission, your Actions, and the Culture you embody across all the platforms. Reflect all these aspects in your content.
Bonus Tip: Invest in your #1 marketing asset
Invest in your #1 marketing asset – which is your Website.
Say you’re working in a group practice or at a hospital and plan to eventually move out and start your private practice. This is the right time to get yourself a website. It may not be very fancy but it should have the top 5 must-have pages. Your website is a good platform to showcase your personal brand. Talk about your values, your vision, the services you offer, pull in your patient reviews from Google, display before and after pictures of the patients you’ve treated.
Your website will do the talking for your brand, it’s really your first impression online. So make it count.