The internet continues to change the way organizations interact with their consumer bases across the board, and it continues to be one of the most integral aspects of any successful marketing campaign. This is why it’s so important to learn how to adapt to these shifts as they are happening, especially if you work in an industry that relies heavily on trust and transparency.
In this post, we’ll be going over online advertising for addiction treatment and rehabilitation centers. Specifically, we’ll be talking about LegitScript Certification and how it can elevate your addiction treatment facilities in terms of reaching potential patients and getting them to trust you with their ongoing care.
Unfortunately, the rehab industry has a history of putting misleading information into the world, effectively scamming customers into making expensive and unnecessary decisions. With this trend came a serious distrust in large organizations and online marketing tactics in general.
To better navigate this rift and make life better for both potential patients seeking information and treatment centers, Google hired LegitScript and created a certification that is required for running paid search advertisements.
Let’s dive into everything you need to know about LegitScript certifications for addiction treatment centers. After reading this article, you will know the answers to these key questions:
- What is LegitScript?
- What are the benefits of being LegitScript-certified?
- What does the LegitScript certification process look like for addiction treatment centers?
- What happens after you get LegitScript-certified?
What is LegitScript?
LegitScript is an addiction treatment certification that provides proof of legitimacy for healthcare providers, rehabilitation centers, and more. As of September 2017, earning this certification is a requirement throughout the addiction treatment industry for providers to be able to run paid search campaigns.
The healthcare industry—especially once you branch into addiction treatment and rehabilitation—is a very sensitive topic that should be handled with professionalism and transparency. Unfortunately, the Internet is not the most trustworthy platform even though it is the most popular way to share information with your customer base.
So, to bridge the gap between these two facts and discourage unethical practices on the Google Ads platform, Google instated this certification process through LegitScript, a third-party background check company.
LegitScript is the only program that is recognized by Google, Facebook, and Microsoft in terms of addiction treatment centers’ advertisements, so becoming certified is essential if you want to take your business to the next level on three major advertising platforms.
This certification applies to:
- In-Person Addiction Treatment Centers
- Mutual Support Groups
- Crisis Hotlines
- Any Drug/Alcohol Treatment Centers
What are the Benefits of Being LegitScript-Certified?
LegitScript is not a requirement for running an addiction treatment center, but it can be extremely beneficial for your success in the long run. There are countless advantages to being LegitScript-certified, which is why it’s worth looking into for your business. The main benefits can be broken into these categories.
Convenience and Return on Investment
Google is the first place people go to find answers to their questions, this includes health-related information. According to Pew Research, 66% of online users search the Internet for information about specific symptoms, illnesses, and treatments. And Google has shared that about one in every five searches is for health-related information. Yext has found that there are at least 100 billion searches on Google each year for health-related terms.
With that information, it’s easy to see that you’re missing out on a large chunk of traffic by not advertising on search engines.
The good news is LegitScript has actually helped to reduce the cost of online advertising. According to their website, overall costs have “dropped by an average of 30%” from 2017, when the program rolled out, until the end of 2021. By weeding out the unethical rehab businesses, there’s less competition on search engines. You’ll be able to reach a larger sector of potential patients and save more money than you would have in the past.
With this certification, your business will become more visible for the most important keywords and phrases revolving around addiction treatment, allowing you to stay relevant and competitive online. You’ll also have more control over who sees your ads, so you can better reach a specific target audience. Overall, this will make it more convenient for you to improve your ROI.
Credibility and Trust
One of the biggest steps businesses within the healthcare industry take is earning accreditation from reputable organizations. This process helps you prove your facility is operating safely and in the best interest of your patients.
A LegitScript certification complements accreditation in that it takes a step further than quality of care within your facility and focuses on the business model and marketing practices that brings people in in the first place.
On top of being able to say you stay up to date with rigorous business standards, potential patients will be able to see it for themselves. Your business will be listed in LegitScript’s database, and gain confidence that you’re a reputable rehab center.
These days, privacy and trust are two huge pain points between industries and consumers, and this is especially true within the healthcare industry. This certification will show that you are committed to advertising in an ethical and transparent way, which will help put people at ease as they’re making these important decisions about their health.
“Certification is more than just a requirement for advertising on Google, Facebook, and Microsoft—it also communicates value and legitimacy to families and patients.” – LegitScript
What Does the LegitScript Certification Process Look Like for Addiction Treatment Centers?
The LegitScript certification application is intuitive, so you shouldn’t have issues going through the first steps. However, the point is to legitimize treatment providers, meaning you will be going through a thorough process with a two-step certification approval process. Here’s a bit more information about what you can expect:
- Create an account: First thing first, you will have to create a LegitScript account to be able to access the application. Simply go to their website and enter your contact information to get started.
- Pay for application review: When starting a new certification, you’ll first have to pay the fee for the application review. You will be able to create multiple certifications under a single account. Pricing for the application fees and annual fees will vary depending on how many unique facilities you want to be included underneath your LegitScript certification. See the table below for more information.
- Complete questionnaire: Now, you’ll be able to start filling out your questionnaire and answer important questions about your treatment center, licensure, affiliates, transparency, privacy, and more. This application overview will give you a closer look at the questions you’ll have to answer.
- Check and modify answers: After you’re done filling out the questionnaire, LegitScript analysts will look it over to make sure they don’t need additional information from you. They’ll also go over potential areas of noncompliance that you will have to fix before your certification goes through.
- Pay subscription fee: Once everything is approved, your final step is to pay your annual subscription fee. It’s important to note that you will not need to pay this until after you are officially certified.
At this point, you will be fully certified and ready to dive into your online advertising strategies. Depending on the scope of your business and external factors, this process can take anywhere from a few weeks to a couple of months on average.
What Happens After You Get LegitScript-Certified?
Your LegitScript certification will be the foundation of a strong advertising strategy on Google, Facebook, and Microsoft. Once you’re certified, you’ll officially be ready to advertise and can begin the process of building a strong paid search campaign that reaches your customers in an effective and ethical manner.
Once you’re fully certified, a handful of things will happen. Namely, you’ll now be searchable as a LegitScript-certified business on their website, and you’ll be able to display the LegitScript Seal of Approval on your own branding elements, like your website. You’ll also be able to run ads on Google, Microsoft Bing, and Facebook.
Now, all you have to do is continue meeting their ethical guidelines and have ongoing monitoring by LegitScript to maintain your certification.
Take Your Marketing Strategies to the Next Level with a LegitScript Certification
By getting certified by LegitScript, you’ll be opening up doors for your business in terms of reaching a wider audience and gaining their trust more easily.
As a performance marketing agency for addiction treatment centers, our team is dedicated to positioning your business in the best spot for your continued success. If you’re ready to take your marketing plans to the next level, we’ll help you get started right away. Learn more about the process of earning your LegitScript certification from our LegitScript webinar today.