Digital healthcare marketing vs. advertising - what's the difference?

Just 20 years ago, many healthcare groups advertised services in the local newspaper, TV, or radio, and it was, at the time, an effective way to bring in new patients. But as digital healthcare marketing continues to grow, the future of healthcare marketing seems to point more and more online. But what’s the difference between digital healthcare marketing and advertising? A smart healthcare marketing strategy incorporates both marketing and advertising, and knowing the difference between the two and how to use both can help you grow your healthcare practice.

What is Digital Marketing?

While all types of marketing use the same basic concepts and principles, the main difference between traditional and digital marketing is the communication channels. Traditional marketing channels include print, television, and radio. Digital marketing channels include social media, digital advertising, blogs, and email.

Digital marketing is about identifying customers’ needs and figuring out how to meet them online. Marketing includes digital advertising as well as other facets such as social media, email marketing, and video content.

What is Digital Advertising?

Often considered a part of marketing, advertising is promoting a product or service through a paid channel, such as Google Ads or Facebook Ads.

Digital advertising has changed the marketing game and is often more effective than traditional advertising. You could pay for an advertisement on TV or radio, but you have no guarantee who it will reach. With digital advertising platforms like Google Ads, you can target specific demographics and structure your campaign so you only pay when someone clicks on your advertisement.

Why Go Digital?

If you’re considering a marketing investment, digital marketing is most likely the way to go for the majority of audiences. It can reach a wider audience at a more affordable rate and offers more comprehensive data analytics so you can create campaigns targeted for potential patients.

Within digital marketing, digital advertising is a great channel to get qualified marketing leads. Like digital marketing, it gives you a better sense of who you’re marketing to.

Unlike other marketing channels, digital advertising allows you to speak to your target audience faster. If you were trying to gain attention on social media or rank high in search results through search engine optimization (SEO), it could take some time to establish yourself as a trustworthy source that comes up in Google searches or on social media. Digital advertising allows you to bypass that build-up time and reach those same audiences faster through paid advertisements.

Ready to invest in digital marketing and advertising? Fogg media offers a starter package for healthcare professionals looking for a well-rounded marketing strategy. This program includes:

  • Mobile-Friendly WordPress Website, designed for Healthcare Practices
  • Website migration
  • Online Reputation Clean-up of Social Media Accounts and Google My Business Directory Listing
  • Google Analytics Set-up
  • 6 Custom Pages or Articles written for search (SEO)
  • 5 Hours of creative services for logo design/clean up, rack card advertisements, etc.
  • Access to Print and Promotional products at Wholesale costs

[Learn More About Our Starter Package]


Fogg Media has been helping medical practices in the Carolinas and throughout the US to increase their visibility and drive patient conversions. If you’re struggling to get search visibility, or if your patients struggle to use your website, we’ve created a simple, straight-forward package deal that gives you exactly what you need to get started in the world of digital marketing. We offer targeted, optimized digital advertising services for healthcare, including Pay-Per-Click (PPC), Google Ads, Search Engine Advertising, and more. Simply put, we’ll handle the behind-the-scenes digital marketing so you can get back to medicine.

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