Are you looking for new ways to build leads and high-value customers for your healthcare brand?
You’re in luck.
By creating a demand generation and lead generation strategy, you can attract aligned prospects, increase your lead list, and create meaningful patient relationships.
But how exactly do you create a demand gen and lead gen strategy?
Simple. By setting up a healthcare content marketing plan for your organization.
As an integral player in the sales funnel, content marketing can help you educate, engage, and convert your prospects and patients. By utilizing content marketing, you can nudge leads from the top to the bottom of the funnel and continue nurturing your patients for years to come.
Let’s take a closer look at why content marketing for healthcare matters and how to set yourself up for success using this method.
Why content marketing for healthcare matters
The significance of online information — collectively referred to as ‘content’ — plays a major role in healthcare marketing success for a few key reasons.
First and foremost, avoiding content marketing prevents your brand from meeting your audience where they are. Healthcare marketing predominantly operates online as patients and prospects search the internet for expert information about various health problems, treatment options, and medical facilities.
Second, reviews and recommendations concerning hospitals, doctors, and healthcare providers have a significant impact on care decisions. This pattern of self-education has created an environment where patients are actively looking for ways to solve their pain points and participate in their health.
Not only do reviews and recommendations help healthcare brands overcome sales objections, but they also help brands provide pertinent information searchers are looking for in an easily digestible format.
And third, having an informed audience as a result of content marketing puts your brand in a position to build awareness, trust, and over time, conversions.
The bottom line? The modern-day patient is well-informed. But that’s only because brands and medical professionals have put in the time to create content online searchers can use to learn more about their healthcare options.
TL;DR: Give your ideal patients the information they’re seeking and watch as they begin to know, like, and trust you more.
Best practices when setting up a content marketing plan
Don’t skip the following tasks when creating your content marketing plan:
Conduct SEO and audience behavior research for each channel you plan on using
Creating and distributing high-quality healthcare content isn’t enough to build awareness, leads, and conversions. To truly captivate your target audience, you must also optimize your content for search engines, social media platforms, and any marketing channels you plan on using.
This means using relevant keywords, hashtags, tags, titles, descriptions, and calls to action (CTAs) to help your content rank higher and reach more people.
When conducting SEO research and audience behavior research, be sure to uncover:
- Your ideal patient’s pain points, common questions, and healthcare needs (these will inform your main content themes, topics, and secondary keywords)
- How they consume wellness content — for instance, via videos, blog posts, and infographics
- The types of content they consume, i.e., diabetes medication research, how weight loss surgeries work, and non-invasive treatment options for people with Type 2 diabetes
- Where they consume online content (for example, healthcare websites, blogs, social media channels, and email newsletters).
Make data analysis and application a regular practice
The benefits of healthcare content marketing are endless. From stimulating brand awareness, to positioning your organization as a leading medical expert, to retaining your best patients, content is an invaluable marketing asset.
However, you must measure and optimize your content performance using data and analytics to achieve these benefits.
This is where business intelligence reporting comes into play. Powered by interactive information visualizations, businesses can extract actionable insights from the data and optimize their content performance for continuous growth.
By using business intelligence reporting effectively, you can make data-driven decisions that can improve your content marketing ROI and get you closer to achieving your sales goals.
Plan your topics, content types, and publishing schedule in advance
Work with an SEO strategist with experience in the healthcare industry to plan your content topics, types, and publishing schedule in advance.
An SEO strategist can help you get organized, create a content production plan based on SERP results, and inform you on how to batch your content to stay ahead of the competition.
You’ll also need to work with subject-matter expert writers and medical reviewers to ensure your content is professional and accurate.
How to educate your prospects with content marketing
Here’s how to use content to generate demand and inform prospects at the top of the marketing funnel.
Answer your target audience’s top questions by writing blog posts that are based on search intent and FAQs.
In addition, consider creating a help center or knowledge base where leads can conduct a deep dive into how your medical procedures, treatments, and medications work.
Create easily-digestible infographics, informational videos, and custom images to help crystallize the data you’re sharing with your audience.
For instance, here’s an example of a simple, yet effective infographic on why “Turkey Teeth” happens:
Take this tip up a notch by starting a podcast show. Dedicate each episode to a top audience pain point and solution.
Guest authoring and appearances
Consider guest posting on high-authority medical blogs and appearing in informational interviews, podcast episodes, and live videos to build rapport with your audience.
How to engage your prospects with content marketing
Here’s how to use content to engage prospects in the middle of the marketing funnel.
Influencer marketing, affiliate marketing, and UGC campaigns
Gather reviews and recommendations from trusted influencers and affiliates who serve your target market.
Here’s an example of an influencer showcasing a documentary-style Reel about their injectables experience with ACPS Plastic Surgery clinic:
Work with influencers and affiliates to create massive user-generated content (UGC) campaigns to help you skyrocket your engagement efforts.
High-value social media content
Post social media content in line with your audience’s core needs, values, and pain points.
Ask thought-provoking questions to get them to talk back to you, post behind-the-scenes content in Stories (don’t forget to use engagement stickers), and show off some of the infographics, images, and videos you created earlier.
Here’s an example of an informational carousel post by Perfect Skin Solutions, a facial aesthetics clinic:
Funnel marketing with a lead magnet
Increase your prospect list by creating an irresistible lead magnet and accompanying sales funnel.
Choose your lead magnet based on your audience research. For instance, if the majority of searchers in your audience are looking for a new primary care doctor to conduct a physical, take blood work, and provide a custom treatment plan, consider adding those services as part of a free package patients can win in a social media contest.
Or, consider offering free physicals in exchange for downloading your “10 Tips for Immaculate Health” guide. Not everyone will take advantage of the free physical right away — but they’ll have to supply you with their contact details in order to be eligible to download the guide. This gives you ample opportunities to nurture them with automated, segmented emails until they convert.
How to convert your prospects with content marketing
And finally, here’s how to use content to convert prospects at the bottom of the marketing funnel (BoFu).
Case studies and patient testimonials
Win over your BoFu prospects by sharing in-depth case studies, testimonials, and before-and-after photos.
For example, Dentfix shares informative blogs, case studies, and patient testimonials from those who have had successful dental treatment in Turkey. It also showcases its patients’ positive experiences with the following impressive before-and-after photos:
Put the purchasing power in your audience’s hands by creating comparison guides that highlight why your treatment options are better than your competitors’.
For instance, Pumpkin, a dog insurance provider, uses content marketing to educate pet owners about various health topics, such as allergies, heartworms, and surgeries. Pumpkin also uses comparison guides to showcase how its unique care packages excel against the competition:
Decrease decision overwhelm and overcome objections by creating optimized, in-depth buyer’s guides for your BoFu prospects.
Here’s an example of a buyer’s guide exploring all of the different options for dental insurance in California, for reference:
And that’s a wrap! In this article, we shared why content marketing is important to the healthcare industry and how to boost demand, leads, and patients using this approach.
Your next steps? It’s time to put insight into action. Work with a content production agency or hire an SEO content strategist and expert writers to help you advance your goals. Don’t forget to partner with medical reviewers, too, to make sure your content is accurate.
PS: Feeling overwhelmed by these tips? Us too! Luckily, our content curation platform can help take some of the pressure off. Learn how Scoop.it can help you save hours every week on content marketing.