Accelerate Your Growth – Here’s Where to Start: A Primer on Growth Marketing in the Substance Use Treatment Industry

Did you know that the wait time to get into rehab can be days, weeks, and in some areas, even months? Maybe this isn’t a new fact to you; perhaps you already know that, and that’s why you’re here.

You saw the need, and you’re ready to help remedy it with your substance abuse treatment center. However, you need to know how to get your name out there.

You have the service, now how will the people find you? Keep reading to find your answer and learn about growth marketing in the substance abuse industry.

What Is Growth Marketing? 

Growth marketing is a new and innovative way to market. This form of marketing expands on traditional marketing.

While growth marketing expands on traditional marketing, it is also very different from it. In traditional marketing, you set your strategies and hope for the best.

In contrast, growth marketing is data-driven. This means that if one strategy doesn’t work, you move on to the next. This is a fast-paced form of marketing where you throw ideas out and quickly keep moving to see what works for your brand and what doesn’t.

Growth marketing requires creativity and a willingness to be flexible. However, ultimately growth marketing takes you to a place where you can achieve healthy and sustainable growth. It also allows your clients to become champions for your services.

Goals of Growth Marketing

You are going to see a variety of goals when discussing growth marketing. Some of these goals will help to shape the strategy you utilize for your substance abuse treatment center marketing.

Goal: Get Traffic to Your Website

There are a few types of traffic you will get to your website. Each of these types of traffic will take a slightly different approach.

Organic Traffic

The first type of traffic is organic traffic. These are the people that search for a topic and are brought to your website by their search.

Creating content for your website that addresses various issues surrounding substance use and optimizes for SEO is one of the ways you will do this.

Paid Traffic

Paid traffic is the next kind of traffic you will look at. These are the people that come to your website through your advertising channels. With this form of traffic, there are a few numbers you want to track to help with data.

You will track how much you are spending, the number of impressions your ad gets, and the cost per acquisition.

Referral Traffic

Referral traffic is traffic that comes from sources that are not from a search engine. For example, let’s say you create an amazing piece on how family members can support a loved one struggling with addiction without becoming an enabler.

Jane Doe finds your article, and she is in a support group of people on Facebook with people who have family members struggling with addiction. She loves your tips, and she shares the article there.

The traffic that comes in from that share is referral traffic. Referral traffic can also come to your website through guest posts on other websites. This is another important component of SEO.

Goal: Improve Conversion Rate and Get Leads

Your conversion rate looks at whether or not the people who are visiting your website are doing what you want them to do. For example, if you’re looking for someone to visit your website and contact you about treatment or support, are they following through?

There are a few things you want to optimize when it comes to conversion rates.

Landing Page Conversion Rate

When people come to your website through your landing page, what is the conversion rate? You want people to find value even on your home page.

You can optimize this through website design, layout, and copy. Make sure that you are grabbing the attention of your visitors and that they are easily able to find what you do and how to contact you or enlist your services.

Blog and Email Subscribers

You should be creating content that is compelling and that people want to read. If you’re not already doing that, you need to start. This will help draw traffic to your website.

One thing that is important to note about your content is that around 55 percent of users will leave your post in less than 15 seconds if they are not engaged. Your content needs to be valuable and engaging in order to grab the attention of people reading it. You also need to keep their attention.

Are you already creating content that is grabbing the attention of your website visitors? If the answer is yes, great.

Now you need to start tracking. There are a few things you want to track here; this includes things such as shares, click-through rate, and subscriber growth.

Goal: Retain Customers

When discussing rehab marketing strategies, this is going to look a little different than it would for other companies. Retaining customers is obviously important in the rehab industry.

When you retain your clients, it means that they are working towards sobriety and utilizing you as a resource.

Reducing churn is a big part of retaining customers. You also want to increase your lifetime value to retain customers for life. Why should your clients keep coming back to you for aftercare services or if they relapse?

Goal: Build a Brand 

Throughout the process of growth marketing, you will begin to gain your client’s trust. By showing you are reliable and care about the people you serve, you can begin to build a brand.

Your brand name can begin to be associated with quality in the substance abuse industry, and word-of-mouth marketing from happy clients will help further.

Why Is Growth Marketing Great for Rehab Centers? 

Substance abuse treatment centers face unique challenges when it comes to marketing. Growth marketing allows for unique answers to those challenges.

If something doesn’t work, you move on and find something else that does.


Stigma is one of the biggest challenges you will face in marketing for the rehab treatment industry. Even with all the knowledge out there that states that addiction is a disease, stigma is still rampant.

One great thing you should consider is utilizing your marketing to help address the stigma and encourage people to seek the help they need for substance use problems.


When family members or friends are looking for a rehab facility for someone they love, trust is necessary. They need to trust that the person they love will get the help and care they need from your facility.

This is a very vulnerable population, which is why it is necessary to establish a sense of trust. As part of your rehab marketing strategies, you need to answer a very important question—why should families and clients trust you?


As a rehab center, you know that relapse is something that is possible. However, it can be discouraging for the people experiencing it. They may begin to believe they will never stay clean.

How do you get your clients to come back to you when they relapse? How do you get them to keep coming for aftercare?

When you consider that one of the goals of growth marketing is to retain customers, this makes this the perfect model for substance abuse centers. You want your clients to keep coming back and getting the support they need to maintain sobriety.

Denial and a Resistant Population

Think about your target market. How many of them trust you? How many of them currently want your services?

They may be there because a court ordered them to be there. They might be there because of the fear of losing children or because their family gave them no choice.

Some of them might not even believe they have a problem, and on top of that, mental health concerns might be compounding the issue. So how do you convince that person they need you and want to come to your center?

These are questions that need to get answered in your marketing plan. Growth marketing allows for the flexibility to use the data you gather to answer those concerns and keep adjusting until you find a method that works.

Build Your Marketing Plan Today

As a substance abuse treatment center, you will face unique challenges when it comes to marketing. However, growth marketing provides answers to your challenges.

Are you ready to accelerate the growth of your rehab? Faebl Studios is a growth accelerator that specializes in the substance use treatment industry.

Request a consultation today to find out more about how we can help you.

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