A lot of physicians I know and speak with become very excited about growing their practice through digital marketing.
For many, this involves finding an SEO firm to work with, which can be a significant step as long as they provide market exclusivity.
Why Do I Need SEO Market Exclusivity?
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a combination of several elements, but a central focus is related to keywords.
If an SEO firm you work with also works with (or can work with) a competing practice or physician, how can you know they genuinely have your best interest in mind?
SEO marketing professionals make their living on knowing how SEO works and being able to adjust when things change.
So a firm that represents two competitors has a built-in temptation to game the system.
If one site is ranking well, but the other is struggling, it becomes very easy to reduce the performance of the site that is doing well to help the other one increase.
In my view, even the potential of having that conflict is unethical.
Even if a firm says that they wouldn’t do that, it doesn’t make sense to leave it open to chance.
In hiring an SEO firm, you need to be making an investment into your practice, not someone else’s.
SEO Market Exclusivity is a Wise Investment
It may cost more to get a firm to exclude taking on competing practices, but it shouldn’t be much.
For example, my company is certainly not the cheapest when it comes to physician SEO, but we’re not outrageous either.
If you’re going to invest in digital marketing, it’s wise to protect that investment by making sure the people who work with are “all-in” for you.
Plus, the business relationship is inevitably in question if you start off having to question loyalty, potentially negating the entire investment.
Market Exclusivity is Also Good Business for Digital Marketers
Don’t let anyone fool you; providing market exclusivity is not a one-sided business equation either.
From the SEO provider’s side, the reality is that there is still a lot of opportunity in each local market when you focus on specialties.
Speaking from years of experience, my company is exclusive to healthcare, so we’re already “limited” in that we don’t provide SEO for anyone and everyone who asks. But for us, it’s been great for business to specialize and provide exclusivity!
For example, if I work with a cardiologist in Detroit, it doesn’t mean that I can’t work with an orthopedic surgeon, primary care, neurologist, etc… in Detroit. I have opportunities in every specialty! It just means I’m not going to provide services to any other cardiologist in Detroit and am focused on their success. This is a win for both sides!
SEO market exclusivity is a win-win for both the physician and the marketing firm and creates a unity of purpose that will serve both sides well.