Content marketing is the current and future of digital marketing.
Research reveals that 70% of marketers are invested in content marketing. Also, 40% of marketers affirm that content marketing is vital to their overall marketing strategy.
Compared to other sectors, the healthcare industry has taken the most time to embrace content marketing. As the need for education on the patient end intensifies, this is the best time to adopt it. Whether your practice is looking to start a content marketing initiative or improve existing efforts, having a strategy is vital.
What is Content Marketing and How Does It Apply to Healthcare?
According to HubSpot, content marketing aims to create and share relevant written, audio, and visual media to educate your target audience on your brand, expertise, and products or services. Healthcare content marketing helps healthcare organizations, ranging from dentists to hospitals, chiropractors, and foot specialists, reach and educate their audience through online content.
Successful healthcare content marketing offers consumers high-quality content on medical conditions, treatment options, healthy living, at-home care, among other health-related topics. It can range from explaining post-treatment procedures to onboarding campaigns and how-to-guides for a product.
The Need for Content Marketing
Did you know that every minute, people conduct 70,000 health-related searches on Google? In the contemporary digital era, people are actively using the internet to learn about their health conditions, symptoms, and medications. Consumers are increasingly interested in learning about their health.
Regrettably, the internet is full of dubious dark corners that provide incorrect medical information and risky order forms. What makes matters worse is that consumers can’t differentiate the genuine resources from fake ones. This problem can be a blessing in disguise though. When your practice delivers quality and credible content, you offer people a trusted source of health information.
You can reach and educate your audience through content types such as:
- Blog posts
- Case studies
- How-to guides
- FAQ and Q&A presentations
- White papers
- Infographics and illustrations
- Research reports
- Interviews with healthcare experts
- Live chat sessions
Create Compelling and Well-Researched Content for Healthcare Audiences
Content marketing in your practice allows patients to find credible and useful medical information seamlessly. This way, patients have access to medical data before visiting their doctors, which simplifies their work. Also, patients avoid the misconceptions and misinformation that some online resources offer.
Increase Brand Awareness
Through content marketing, you can tell people about your practice and the services you offer. As such, you create awareness of the existence of your brand.
Enhance Patient Engagement
Many people research online about medical issues and concerns. These people want to know the causes of their aches and pains. They want to know how long it will take to go back to work after surgery and symptoms of Covid-19. Publishing blogs, videos, and social media posts to address these queries can increase engagement with current and prospective patients.
Boost Patient Retention
Most practices do not need new patients, but need to put the work to retain the current ones. Hence the need to invest in educative content. After a procedure, do not show a patient the door. Go a step further to educate them on what to expect.
You can go on camera and record post-treatment procedures and at-home care. This way, patients get a great experience at your office and are likely to return and even recommend friends and family.
You establish trust with your audience when you post articles on the latest medical breakthroughs or give your valued opinion on what’s in the news. They regard you as an expert in your field, which builds credibility. Besides, who are your patients going to trust more, the guy on tv or you, their doctor?
Compared to traditional marketing options, content marketing is cost-effective. Combined with a paid traffic plan, content marketing generates leads and sales and thus delivers a positive ROI. Also, once you create content – a video, blog, or how-to-guide, it becomes a timeless resource for all patients.
Improves SEO Ranking
Fresh and credible content contributes to the visibility and ranking of your practice on search engines. Sites like Google favor websites with original, engaging, and consistent content. The last bit is most important. The frequency of your content is more important than the quantity. However, the quality will always be the most valuable.
Content Marketing is Essential
Presently, 77% of healthcare marketers have adopted content marketing. If you want to start putting together a strategy, here are some things to keep in mind to guarantee success.
Focus on Your Niche
Every medical practice has an area of specialty. Before you invest in content, identify your niche and the problems in it. Depending on the issues in your niche, you can develop new content ideas.
For example, if you are a dentist, you can create content on topics like braces, oral care, and dental procedures. Chiropractors can tackle topics on back pain, bone conditions, and muscle soreness. You know your focus and the patients. You also know their biggest concerns, even the things they should be concerned about but don’t ask.
Understand Your Target Audience
When creating content, you must understand your target audience. Your audience is unfamiliar with industry jargon, so ’86 it’ (that’s code for ‘get rid of it’). Therefore, ensure you use simple and easy to understand language.
Knowing your audience will also help you determine your content marketing strategy. For instance, if your audience segment contains teens, it is best practice to increase visibility on social media networks like Instagram, Snapchat, or TikTok. Looking for an older demographic? Try Facebook.
Add a Human Element
Nowadays, people want to see the faces behind brands and organizations. Adding a human element in your practice builds trust and credibility.
Your practice can leverage social media, videos, and testimonials to achieve this goal. Producing a quick video doesn’t take more than using your phone and addressing some misconceptions or FAQs.
When it comes to video, don’t overthink it. If the quality of your context is good, people will forgive the lack of production quality.
Listen and Interact with your Audience
Your content marketing efforts should not be solely self-promotional. Aim also to listen and interact with your audience to convert them into customers and advocates.
You can interact with your audience by responding to comments, answering questions, and replying to messages promptly. When interacting with your audience, you are likely to get a prospect with a medical emergency or one who is unsatisfied with their current care.
When it comes to social media, the most important thing you can do is listen. It’s called social listening and it’s one-quarter of the social media picture. To learn more about social media marketing, click here to watch the Social Media Marketing in a Nutshell presentation.
Content marketing is not a set it and forget it strategy for marketing. You must measure its performance to determine whether people are reading and engaging with your content. By monitoring performance, you know what is working and what is not, and make adjustments accordingly. You can track metrics such as social shares, traffic, CTR, backlinks, and time on page.
If you’re not measuring and constantly testing variations in your content marketing, you’re probably spending too much for less than impressive results.
Content helps your practice connect with your target audience while increasing visibility, improving retention rates, and cultivating credibility.
Your goal in content marketing should be to educate consumers, not to solely promote your practice and services. Also, health related content has great power, it comes with greater responsibility — people’s lives are in your hands. Ensure you provide accurate and credible information.
Are you looking to incorporate a content strategy?
Click here to book a Discovery Session
…and we’ll help you see opportunity in content marketing.