Welcome to healthcare marketing RX, where our goal is to help the owner of the practice. The practice manager make good decisions about marketing. You’re not the ones who are going to be doing marketing, but you may be responsible or feel the need to do more marketing, start marketing, change marketing, and you’re not sure what to do. We try to help you get more informed about the different facets of marketing so that you can make good decisions about them.

Today we’re going to jump into a topic that’s pretty controversial and it doesn’t need to be – what the heck is content marketing and why do I need it to begin with?

What’s Content Marketing?

It’s Marketing Jargon

Let’s start with the sad part – it’s jargon. The term content marketing is just a piece of marketing jargon. In my opinion, there is no such thing as content marketing. There’s marketing. You have a marketing plan for your practice and content is a very prominent part of your healthcare marketing plan, but there’s no separate arm of marketing called content marketing. Jargon makes things really confusing. It leaves a bad taste in people’s mouths.

It’s How You Educate Your Target Audience

What does it mean in plain language? It is what you say and do to educate your target audience. You focus on helping them solve their problems, that you’re really good at solving by virtue of the specialty that you’re in, who you are and what you do.

Many Practices Resist Doing Content

So why do some practices resist, doing it after you hear the kind of plain language definition of it? It’s because of the marketers who just keep telling you to do it.

People Don’t Pay Money for Jargon

It’s the way in which marketers describe it to you. I really think jargon is confusing. How often in your own life, when you see something and it’s really confusing, do you end up spending any money on it? Probably not at all. I know I don’t. If I don’t understand something, I certainly don’t put any money down on it.

Pricing Varies Widely

Prices are all over the map with content. Sometimes that’s legitimate, depending on the scope and the context, but sometimes it’s not. But when you’re confused out of the gate, because of the jargon, this doesn’t help.

You’re Already Doing Some Content But That’s Ignored

And the other thing that I see sometimes is you’re already doing some content, but when a marketer says you need to start doing content they ignore what you’re already doing. They don’t acknowledge it but it’s in the back of your mind. You say to yourself, but we already are. We’re doing some of this. What do you mean? I don’t understand what’s new and different about what you’re telling me compared to what we’re already doing. In the end, there’s not really much trust built, so you probably don’t spend any money on it.

The Need For Content Is NOT New

There are so many reasons why you need to keep coming up with new content.

You Have Target Patients

healthcare content marketing patient reviewYou’ve got target patients and you get new ones all the time. The ways in which you describe what you do work on some but not others. You always have to keep coming up with new ways.

You Have Treatments, New Services and Products

healthcare content marketing treatmentsYou’ve got services and some of you have products. You have to figure out new ways to talk about these products and services to all of those new patients.

You Have Competitors

healthcare content marketing competition iconYou have competitors coming in, sometimes bigger than you, sometimes smaller than you. They’re saying things about who they are and what they do. You’ve got to do the same thing in a way that helps differentiate you from them. You have to come up with new ways to talk about yourself compared to your competition.

You Want To Build Trust and Expertise

healthcare content marketing trustThrough all of this you want to do it in a way that builds trust and expertise and authority with those target patients about those services against those competitors.



And this has been going on since the beginning of time. There’s nothing new about having patients, treatments, competition, and trust.

Content Build Trust With Search Engines

The other audience to consider is search engines. You want to build trust with them. Content is really good at this because if you are feeding your business with good content in a regular way, search engines can detect that. When search engines see people interacting with your content in good ways, like stopping to read it, not bouncing off, clicking on it a lot, they say, wow, people must like this content. The practice that has the content must be trustworthy. We’re going to trust them a bit more too and rank them higher in search results. There’s more that goes into an algorithm’s decision about where to rank you in search, but content can play a big positive role in your overall search results.

So Many Content Choices!

You have a lot of choices with content. Sometimes that paralyzes people because they don’t know where to start.

  • Website content – you can put more pages on your website, core pages, service pages. You can mix pages up.
  • Blogs – you can do blogs
  • Newsletters
  • Video
  • FAQs – and keep adding to them
  • Reviews posted on your website – even if they’re streamed in from a third party source, like Google, that counts as new content

On the one hand, you’ve got all these great choices in front of you, but on the other hand, it can be difficult to know where to start. How do I do it? We’ll come back to that one in a second.

The Advantages Of Online Content

There’s some advantages to online content compared to printed or offline content.

Available Forever

Online content is available forever, right? If you put a website page up, it’s there. As long as you keep your website live, it’s there forever. By comparison, at the end of say, a trade show or a conference or a health fair, or, you know, a chamber of commerce fair or whatever it is once that show is done so is the content.

It’s Easy To Change

Online content is easy to change. I know I’ve been in this position. We do print materials from time to time. Let’s say you print a brochure or you print something educational. You print 400 or 500 of them and you spend a few hundred bucks on that. Then the next day you say, oh, I wish we changed this. Well, we’ll wait until the next print run and then we’ll change it. Sometimes that ends up happening. And sometimes it doesn’t, but it’s not easy to change. Even if you decide to it there’s time and money.

If it’s online, if it’s a website page, or if it’s on your social media page, or if it’s a blog or whatever it is, it’s pretty easy to change. Once you change it the new and improved is available forever.

It’s Easy To Track

Everything online is pretty easy to track. You can watch to a shockingly great amount of detail about how a population of people interact with your website, with your social media platforms, with individual pages on your website and on, and on. What they did, how long they stayed. Was it good? You can make decisions about your content based on what you can track and make it better all the time.

Tracking is a lot easier than the offline versions of the same content. The offline versions of those are trackable. There is a way to build in tracking mechanisms to see if something worked, but it’s more difficult to do and it’s not as durable as it can be online.

The Must-Haves When Doing Content

Have I caught your attention about good content? If you’re thinking about changing content or starting to do more regular content in your marketing plan, here are the things that you want to look for. If you ask an agency to give you a proposal. If you don’t see these three things in the proposal, absent, anything else, you really have to ask them questions.

The Content Targets Your Target Audience

First, it goes where your target patients are. So if your target patients, for example, spend a lot of time, let’s say on Instagram or on Facebook, you go to those platforms.

At MarketVisory Group we want our clients to be in a number of places, so we take a total online presence approach – website, main social media platforms, Google, and one or two others, and make sure that our clients have a good content presence, a good overall presence on all of those major platforms. But if you’re different and you know that your population spends a lot of time on Instagram, then make sure you’re really, really paying a lot attention to Instagram.

75% Educational 25% Promotional

Because health care and being salesy just don’t go hand in hand, you want to have a good, proper mix of educational content versus promotional content. We say it’s about 75 educational and 25% is promotional.  You don’t have to get very salesy like in the consumer side of life, remember you’re in healthcare.

Do It Consistently!

Most importantly is to be consistent. Pick one or two avenues and just do them consistently. Unless you have the time and money, I’d rather see you pick one or two types of content to a particular target audience and do them consistently and get good at them over time instead of, say four or five, but only doing each one of them every once in a while.

Sporadic does not work. Consistent works. If marketing is going to work, you have to do it consistently. It takes time to catch the attention of people. It takes time to change their mind about who they’re using now to switch over to you. And consistency is the key to getting that done.

So again, if you’re thinking about changing up content, adding content, beefing up content,

whatever it might be, and you’re talking to outside agencies or you’re thinking about starting yourself with some of your staff, you got to make sure you’re checking these three points.

Thank you for listening. Our library of Healthcare Marketing Rx videos is growing. You can see all of our Healthcare Marketing Rx videos here.