ComScore.com bills itself as “the global source of digital market intelligence and the most preferred measurement service” and for good reason. It is a reliable source for understanding current and future trends in digital marketing. A recent ComScore report revealed two facts that are relevant to plastic surgeons that are serious about marketing themselves through digital mediums.
Local Searches are Thriving
What’s incredible about the growth in local search is that, even during a time of recession when many consumers reined in spending, the need to find a local business certainly didn’t go away, Whether it is on a personal computer or a mobile device, consumers have more media choices than ever to find a product or service when they are ready to buy. Advertisers should be considering a multiplatform approach that combines a print, online and mobile strategy designed with their target consumer in mind.
(Neg Norton, President of the Yellow Pages Association)
While some aspects of internet searching may be slowing down, one area that continues to show rapid growth is in the area of local searches. Online activity may be cutting into the business of big box stores like Best Buy but that will never be true for those providing professional personal services.
PC Searches are Steady but Mobile Searches are Skyrocketing
The proliferation of iPhones, smart phones, and other android devices has caused a dramatic shift in the way people find your practice. More importantly, that shift is most pronounced in a demographic significant to professionals who provide services for those with what is often termed disposable income. Over half the people doing local searches with their mobile devices are part of a household with more than a $75,000 annual income.
The number of mobile subscribers looking up business directories with their mobile phones has risen steadily by about 14 percent a year totaling 17.3 million users by March 2010. Far more dramatic is the increase of local searches being done by way of mobile apps. That number increased by 42 percent in just one year to 4.1 million subscribers in March 2010. As already pointed out the number becomes more impressive when one realizes over half of those searches are being done by people making well above the national median annual income. It is important to also note that people who use mobile apps to do local searches use them quite often. 5 million of those local searchers are using their search app at least once a week.
So what does this mean on a practical level? Plastic surgeons may want to give serious thought to having their web sites optimized for mobile users. They also should put more thought into how their Google Places page is set up and continue to consistently list themselves in sources like Yellow Pages. The Yellow Pages is quickly becoming more web-based as it begins to reduce the size and distribution of its print versions. This all adds up to a bonus of plastic surgeons who know how to harness the power of local searches.
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