But, what do I say?
There are very few things worse than a blank page, especially if it’s the copy for an ad you’re about to spend money on.
Worse yet, every astute marketer on Facebook knows that if you want to be successful on that platform and turn prospects into patients, you need two things: 1) the right audience. 2) the right message. If you screw one of those things up, you’ve essentially just flushed your hard-earned marketing dollars down the toilet.
So, as a pharmacy, what should you write in your ads?
- A bunch of testimonials from satisfied patients showing potential patients how awesome you are?
- A new offer hoping to entice new people to visit your pharmacy?
- A discount or coupon hoping to get new and existing patients in the door?
- A generic about us with your hours, phone number, and address to build awareness?
- A hook talking about your uniqueness hoping to steal unsatisfied patients from another pharmacy?
- A personal introduction so potential patients can get to know you?
- An article about a pharmacy issue in the news such as the recent Losartan recall to add value in your patients’ lives?
I don’t know. (You weren’t expecting that answer, were you?)
But, I do know where to find your answer.
Instead of guessing what your potential patients want to hear, here are three places I go before I write an ad so that I increase the likelihood of having success on Facebook.
- Your competitor’s page
Recently Facebook made it easy to spy on your competitor’s Facebook ads. Like you, I don’t have hundreds of thousands of dollars in my marketing budget. However, some of my competitors do, and as Pablo Picasso once said, “Good artists copy; great artists steal.”
So, why not take a peek at what some of my big competitors are doing. They’ve probably spent thousands of dollars testing various ads, and are only advertising the winning ones. Wouldn’t that save you a lot of time and money?
Here’s how I did it for a Facebook campaign I’ve been working on for an Rx discount card company. Because our budget was small, I knew it’d take a while to find the right audience and the right message. I also knew we had a major competitor, GoodRx, who has been spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on digital ads. So instead of reinvesting the wheel, I went over to the GoodRx Facebook page, clicked the link circled in the image below, and looked at their ads. Bam. Instant ideas.
No one likes being talked down to. No one likes hearing someone talk about himself. No one likes listening to fancy words that mean nothing to them.
If you want your ad to stop the prospect from scrolling by it and make her instantly say in her head as she reads it, “That sounds like what I need.“, you have to talk exactly how your patient talks. So, instead of hypertension, we say high blood pressure. Instead of hyperlipidemia, high cholesterol. Instead of an elevated INR, we say the blood is too thin.
Unfortunately, the more knowledge we accrue, the more we suffer from the curse of knowledge in our communication. Pharmacists, just like other medical providers, are prone to this.
So, we need to familiarize ourselves with how our patients are talking about their issues so that when we advertise our solution, we can fit right into the conversation without any awkwardness. Of course, our best option would be to talk directly to our existing patients and write down key phrases they use, what questions keep popping up, and what the real burning pain is. However, that’s not always possible.
Luckily for us, Reddit has a forum for almost every possible problem in the world today. Within minutes of finding the right subreddit, you’ll find key phrases, common questions, and burning pains that your potential patients are using that will turn your ad’s copy into a showstopper.
For example, I was working on a Facebook ad for a pharmacy that is adding compounding for BHRT patients.
Unfortunately, the pharmacy I work at is a small, independent retail pharmacy that does almost zero compounding. Thus, the BHRT patients we see are few and far between, who are usually just on oral estradiol. Although I’ve read books plenty of BHRT books, I was unfamiliar with how the patients exactly talk about it. Thus, I had little experience in this niche.
And to make matters more difficult, because this pharmacy was just adding BHRT compounding to its services, they had little to offer me either.
So, I dove into Reddit and found all kinds of phrases, burning pains, and common questions that we used in the ads, blogs, and articles. Although results weren’t instant, we slowly and profitably started adding BHRT patients to their pharmacy.
Much like Reddit, Amazon offers a sneak peek into how our potential patients talk about their problems. How? In the reviews of books and supplements in your problem’s niche.
I tend to like the Amazon.com reviews better than Reddit because the reviews will not only give you ideas about what they don’t like or hasn’t worked, but they’ll also give you ideas about what they really liked and what they’d spend money on. For some of the products and services in our gyms, we’ve used ideas from Amazon to make those products/services more appealing and thus more profitable.
When I was doing the ads for the pharmacy interested in adding BHRT above, I also used Amazon.com to get inside the patient’s head.
I know this sounds tedious and boring, but as Abe Lincoln once said, “Give me 6 hours to cut down a tree, and I’ll spend the first 4 hours sharpening the ax.” The right phrase in your ad copy can mean the difference between a crazy successful ad that brings in new patients every month and an ad that does nothing but cost you money.