All you need for successful healthcare content marketing is some copy and an image, right? Wrong.
Here’s the reality: Your team will need to master at least 10 additional skills in order to make sure your content marketing efforts are effectively drawing in patients.
Here are the 12 skills of content marketing you need if you want to do it right:
1. Content Strategy
All good things start with a plan. A content strategy helps you determine why you are creating content, how you should distribute it, and, most importantly, to whom. It’s your blueprint for creating content that strikes a chord with your identified patient population. And yes, the content strategy needs to be written down, not in someone’s head.
Your healthcare content needs to come up in search for people to find it. You can make that happen with search engine optimization, or SEO. Identify popular search terms on your topics, and organically incorporate them into your content. Don’t forget to apply your optimization tactics to other forms of reach, such as email marketing and social media.
3. Content Creation
Ah, the meat and potatoes of your process. Feeding the content creation beast isn’t such a daunting task with a solid editorial calendar, good writers, and streamlined workflow. Always aim for clarity in your writing, avoiding healthcare mumbo jumbo. Also, ask yourself whether you are really addressing the questions and concerns of your audience.
Never underestimate the power of a well-polished piece. Grammar and typo fixes aside, editors fill in content holes, check facts and flow, and ensure a post maintains your organization’s writing voice. A strong editor can take a writer’s work from good to great.
5. Visual Design
Articles with images get 94% more views. But are you using plain stock photos? How many other healthcare organizations are doing the same? Aim for originality—start with simple infographics and branded image/text complications to really make your posts pop. Use visuals to break up copy and as aides in content promotion.
6. Content Management
Whether you’re posting hourly or monthly, you’ll need a comprehensive content management system (CMS) to host and format your content. Look for a CMS that easily allows your contributors to collaborate and create compelling layouts. Security, version control, and metadata management are also important.
7. Content Distribution
Your goal is to create engaging content. Your other goal is to ensure that the content is read and shared. Develop a plan for posting to your main methods of distribution (frequency and timing for your blog, social media, and emails). If there’s room, adapt content for those specific platforms.
8. Social Media
Facebook, Twitter … whatever your platform, make it a goal to consistently promote your content on social media. And think of these platforms not only as promotional vehicles, but also as your ears to the ground. Observe what your online community is saying matters to them, and adjust your content topics accordingly.
Analytics determine whether your content is reaching its intended audience and meeting your marketing goals. Make this step a priority. Employ tools like Google Analytics to gather and automate data collection—and be ready to make changes if you see areas for improvement.
10. Email Marketing
Email marketing is still a useful channel for sharing content. Keep your correspondences relevant and succinct with links that work. Trying to generate an email list? Instead of pop-up opt-in boxes—which could annoy visitors—prominently feature a subscribe section on your blog’s main page, and a variation of it at the end of each post.
11. Web Development
While not a necessity, learning web development basics could be instrumental in delivering higher quality content over time. Knowing basic page structure and HTML can provide you with the tools to create content that shines on your healthcare organization’s blog platform.
12. UX Design
Organized content that’s easy to find, search, and navigate is no longer an exception—it’s the rule. And with 30 to 50% of internet searches taking place on mobile, good user experience (UX) design must extend beyond desktops. But no need for separate strategies. Simply consider creating content components that are easily transferrable on multiple platforms.