If your practice doesn’t have a blog — or you have one that’s not actively maintained — it’s time to make a change. More than half of marketers (55 percent) cite blog content creation as their top inbound marketing priority, according to HubSpot.
As a busy doctor, not having much time for healthcare marketing activities like blogging is understandable. However, your competitors likely have blogs, so you need one, too. Here’s a look at several different kinds of blog formats to help you get inspired.
Different types of healthcare marketing blog posts
1. Interviews (Q&As)
Captivate your patient base by sharing interviews on your practice blog. This type of blog post is great because you can do so much with it — i.e. interviews with you, your staff, and industry experts.
Interviews will draw patients to your blog because they won’t find this unique content anywhere else. Marketing for doctors is all about educating patients and building trust, and this will do just that.
Check out: 10 blogging tips from Allan Frankel, MD
2. How-tos / Tutorials
As a doctor, you have a lot of knowledge that can benefit your patient base. Imparting this in the form of tutorial videos is ideal because it can really help people.
For example, a dentist could share a video demonstrating the proper way to floss. Patients will appreciate the lesson you have to teach them, and if they find it especially valuable, they’ll share it with family and friends.
Related: 4 blog post ideas to enhance dental marketing efforts
3. Personal stories / Patient case studies
When patients have a health problem, they often feel alone. This is why sharing personal stories — or patient case studies — is a great idea.
A case study takes an in-depth look at an issue experienced by one patient or a group of people. For example, a dermatologist might write a case study on how they helped a patient minimize psoriasis flare-ups.
This type of content is a valuable healthcare marketing tool because it really speaks to patients. Reading about your extensive experience treating an issue impacting them will encourage them to make an appointment.
4. News commentary
When a health issue impacting your patient base is in the news, patients want to know your thoughts on it. News commentary is a great blog format for healthcare marketing because it can boost your search rankings and highlight your specialized expertise.
For example, a family doctor might write a blog post on local measles outbreaks — i.e. what’s causing them and how to avoid exposure.
As a medical professional, you probably have passionate opinions on newsworthy health topics, but remember to write for your audience. Nearly half of people (43 percent) admit to skimming blog posts, according to HubSpot, so get to the point and use language patients will understand.
Also see: What doctors should know before blogging about hot medical topics
5. Reviews / Comparisons
Patients trust your opinion, so they want to hear your thoughts on the products they use. In fact, product recommendations account for nearly one-third (31 percent) of eCommerce site revenues, according to Barilliance.
For example, an ophthalmologist might share a review of a new brand of contact lenses or compare and contrast two popular brands. Utilizing this blog format adds value because it can help patients make an informed decision on the best product for their needs.
6. Video blogs
Some 96 percent of people have watched an explainer video to learn more about a product or service, according to Wyzowl. Additionally, 68 percent of people say watching a short video is the way they’d most prefer to learn about a new product or service.
The demand for video content is clear. Online marketing for doctors must engage and inform, so formatting your blog for posting videos is an ideal way to market your products and services because it’s what people want.
YouTube 101: An introduction to video marketing for doctors
Chances are, patients ask you many of the same questions over and over. Turning this into a blog format for a post — or several — is smart because there’s clearly a demand for it and it’s relatively easy for you to create.
For example, a pediatrician might dedicate a blog post to FAQs for bringing an infant home from the hospital. You can direct existing patients to this, and it will also be found by prospective patients searching online for the topic at hand.
Blogging should be an integral part of any healthcare marketing strategy. This is a savvy way to connect with patients and keep them coming back to your website on a regular basis.
Your doctor blog can bring tremendous value to your practice. Making time for your practice’s blog in your busy schedule might be a challenge, but it’s an investment you won’t regret.
For more help creating a read-worthy doctor blog, check out “Getting started with blogging for healthcare marketing.”