Developing a Healthcare Content Marketing Strategy: Essential Planning Before Crafting Your Posts

Do I Need Content marketing Strategy Before Writing Blog Posts - Exploring the Benefits of Planning

In the growing landscape of healthcare, a well-planned content strategy is vital. Aside from attracting new patients, it is essential to build trust by offering reliable information to nurture and retain relationships. Beyond possessing the five key elements to form an effective healthcare content strategy, your healthcare business must also employ a seven-step blog strategy to develop a comprehensive approach. If you’re unsure how to implement the process, a healthcare content strategist can offer custom solutions based on budget and company size.

Why is having a content strategy so important? Everything you create has an end goal in mind; your business, product or service, employees, and teams, and every action you take should serve those goals. To reach your goals, you need to plan ahead to determine how you can leverage your content to get the results you desire. This post will discuss why healthcare companies need a content strategy. We will also provide the elements of a blog and content strategy and discuss when to consider hiring an expert.

The Future of Content Strategy: Do Healthcare Companies Still Need It?

In healthcare and any business, reaching your goals is difficult if they are not clearly defined and you are unsure of the steps needed to reach them. With any business endeavor, strategy guides your efforts. Whether it’s attracting new customers, fostering brand loyalty, or simply providing helpful information to patients and families, a healthcare company needs a content strategy to focus its efforts on prioritizing the steps to take to reach its ultimate goal.

Importance of a Content Marketing Strategy to Your Healthcare Business

Content marketing helps keep prospective patients and their families engaged and informed about their healthcare decisions. A 2017 study cites that ⅔ of people use search engines for medical inquiries before making an appointment. You foster trust and solidify your healthcare facility as a reliable resource by providing relevant, up-to-date information about healthcare diagnoses, management strategies, treatment options, and prevention.

Having a content strategy also helps retain current patients and their families as lifelong consumers. By providing reliable, relevant, and sustainable information related to their healthcare needs, healthcare facilities can help nurture their relationship with patients and their families by serving as a resource throughout their healthcare journey. Over time, these patients will come to rely on and trust their healthcare provider’s products, services, and information.

Simple Steps to Help Create an Effective Healthcare Content Strategy

There are five elements of an effective healthcare content strategy: 

1. Stay in Your Area of Expertise

Your patients chose you because of your area of specialization. It will only add to your image as a trusted professional if you create content related to healthcare topics you are familiar with and treat frequently.

2. Get to Know and Understand Your Audience

Knowing what kind of person you are creating content for is essential. You must be familiar with your audience’s preferences, baseline medical knowledge, and commonly understood medical terms to create content that resonates with them. Conducting keyword research and audience insights will help you ascertain this type of information. The more you know about your audience, the easier it will be to explain information in a way they can understand.

3. Share Testimonials and Stories of Past Clients

By sharing how you have helped previous clients with similar problems, you can relate to your reader and build trust when they have assurance you can solve their problems as well.

4. Include Interactive Media in Your Content

Interactive media responds to user input. Traditional media examples are broadcast television and film; however, these methods lack a way for the audience to navigate or participate actively. Some modern, more innovative models of interactive media are virtual reality, apps, games, interactive videos, pervasive games, and social media. Including various types of interactive media within your content is an excellent way to keep your reader engaged and interested in the content you provide.

5. Connect with Your Audience by Addressing Concerns or  Frequently Asked Questions

Responding to questions from individual patients or family members and addressing common questions will solidify your position as an expert.

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How to Create a Blog Content Strategy

There are seven steps to creating a blog content strategy

1. Define Your Goals

Knowing what you ultimately hope to accomplish through your marketing campaign, you can create content specifically geared toward reaching the end result you seek.

2. Conduct Audience Research

Finding as much information about your target audience as possible is crucial. When you know their pain points, motivation, and what they ultimately hope to achieve, you can create content that resonates with the type of person you want to attract.

3. Run a Competitor Analysis

By looking at others in your industry, you can identify what’s working well and opportunities for you to shine in areas your competitors are lacking.

4. Brainstorm Content Ideas

Now that you know what you want to accomplish and who you are creating content for, it’s time to brainstorm some ideas. If you need additional inspiration, you may want to try the following:

  • Asking your audience on social media for input
  • Researching current content trends within your industry
  • Exploring the most common search terms and keywords around your niche

5. Select Which Type of Blog Content You Want to Create

Because blog posts are not the only content option, you must decide which format your target audience will most likely prefer and consume. In addition to blog posts, you could offer lists, videos, infographics, or images.

6. Create an Editorial Calendar

An editorial calendar is a great visual representation of the overarching themes of your brand’s content plan over time. You can use it to plan for upcoming content creation. It can be helpful to organize your editorial calendar by color-coding themes and posting platforms, months, and critical dates to remember.

7. Create and Measure

It’s time to create your content and measure the results. Content analytics allow teams to develop and optimize their brand content strategy and understand the value and impact their content provides. The first 3 to 6 months of any marketing campaign will be a trial and error period, so don’t get discouraged or frustrated. Analyze your marketing campaign analytics by asking the following questions:

  • Are certain types of content performing better than others?
  • What blog topics get the most engagement (views, comments, and shares)?

Now that you know the steps to create a healthcare and blog content strategy, let’s look at the logistics of how you can get this accomplished. If these planning and implementation steps seem overwhelming, consider hiring a healthcare content marketing strategist or agency

You must first consider your timeframe, budget, and company size. If you have a smaller business or a limited budget, consider hiring a content strategist to help evaluate your business and develop a content strategy and editorial calendar your in-house team could implement. If you have a sizable budget or own a larger company, consider hiring a full-service agency that handles your content creation strategy and implementation full-time.

References

Cotton, K. (2022, July 27). Invest in Your Business by Hiring a Healthcare Content Strategist. WriteRN. https://writern.net/hiring-a-healthcare-content-strategist/
Forsey, C. (2022, November 23). How To Develop a Content Strategy in 7 Steps: A Start-to-Finish Guide. HubSpot. https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/content-marketing-plan
Fridrich, O. (2018, January 3). 6 Reasons Why You Need A Content Strategy. Kontent.ai. https://kontent.ai/blog/6-reasons-why-you-need-a-content-strategy/
Gallegos, J.A. (2019, October 21). How to Create a Winning Content Strategy for Your Blog. SocialMediaToday. https://www.socialmediatoday.com/news/how-to-create-a-winning-content-strategy-for-your-blog/565382/
Kelbach, J. (2022, October 19). 3 Big Reasons Why Clinicians Should Drive Healthcare Content Creation. WriteRN. https://writern.net/why-clinicians-drive-healthcare-content-creation/
Kelbach, J. (2021, July 6). 5 Ways to Include Content Into Your Healthcare Business. WriteRN. https://writern.net/5-ways-to-include-content-marketing-in-healthcare/
Madison, K. (2022, August 31). How to Grow Your Healthcare Business With Healthcare Content Marketing. WriteRN. https://writern.net/healthcare-business-with-healthcare-content-marketing/

About the Author

Dana Gossett RN, BSN
Dana Gossett RN, BSN

Dana Gossett RN, BSN has been a Registered Nurse since 2007 and specializes in Intensive and Critical Care Nursing. In 2020, she decided to pursue her dream of being a freelance business owner and entrepreneur and founded her Branding & Graphic Design Business, ItsBossNotBabe.

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