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Organic Vs. Paid Search: What’s The Best Content Marketing Strategy?

Whether you want to convert cups to ounces for a recipe, find your nearest dry cleaner, or brighten your mood with funny puppy videos, you’ll probably do a quick internet search. Even more likely, you’ll probably turn to Google, where more than 90% of internet searches are done.

In the healthcare world, Google is similarly powerful. Patients seek out health-related information and new providers. Healthcare professionals seek out job openings and communities of support. Hospital leaders seek out partnerships and management resources.

And it falls on your website to get your name out there.

This is where content marketing comes into play. Part of a robust content marketing strategy is determining what to invest in, including whether to focus on organic or paid search.

However, even though healthcare organizations often see content marketing as a one versus the other scenario, it’s not.


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For a winning content strategy, you should focus on both organic and paid content marketing. Each has its benefits, and they often work alongside one another to promote your content.

The Difference Between Organic And Paid Search

When a user types a word or phrase into a search engine like Google, they get two kinds of results:

  1. Organic search results, which are the unpaid sections in the search engine results page. These are determined by how relevant Google thinks a page is to its search query.
  2. Paid search results, which are essentially advertisements. These live at the very top of a search results page or in the sidebar. Paid search follows a pay-per-click model, meaning site owners pay each time their link is clicked. There’s also a little ad icon to identify the site as an ad.

Why And When To Focus On Organic Content Marketing

Organic content marketing is playing the long game. It requires time, effort, and expertise — but it’s worth it. Every website should always be utilizing organic content marketing.


Brandies Meva'a

“Organic marketing is the gift that keeps on giving. Once you create solid, evergreen, high-quality, competitive, organic content, it continues to give years after you publish it.”
Brandies Meva’a, VP Client Strategy, CareContent

Pros of organic content marketing include:

  • It gets clicks — over half of website traffic comes from organic search.
  • It’s seen as trustworthy — many searchers trust organic listings more than paid ones.
  • It’s long-lasting.

Cons of organic content marketing:

  • It takes a long time to rank in one of the top positions in search results.
  • Conversion (when a user completes your desired goal) may not be as strong.

Why And When To Focus On Paid Content Marketing

Paid content marketing is quicker, but you need to be strategic about when to use it. For instance, you can create an organic post and pay to have it promoted. Or, you might do a hard and fast campaign to nurture awareness and generate leads through paid.


Brandies Meva'a
“Investing in traffic — burst to your organic content is a good SEO strategy. It leads to a quicker influx of traffic, and it helps validate the fact that your content is competitive.”
Brandies Meva’a, VP Client Strategy, CareContent

Pros of paid content marketing:

  • It appears at the top of the page, so users see it right away.
  • It can move your site to the top in as little as 15 minutes.
  • When paired with highly optimized content, it generates more conversions.

Cons of paid content marketing:

  • Traffic will stop if you stop paying for ads.
  • Some users may automatically skip paid search due to its ad icon.

But First, Business Goals

The CareContent team takes a practical approach to content marketing. This starts with having a solid set of business goals for the next six months — and identifying the problems that are keeping you from reaching those.

There are 4 common content marketing problems that a strong marketing strategy can help solve:

  1. You don’t have any leads.
  2. You have plenty of leads, but none of them are engaging with you.
  3. You have a broad spectrum of services, but most of your clients have only heard of one or two.
  4. You’re struggling to get referrals.

When determining whether to focus more on paid or organic content marketing, it’s important to consider the investments you’re already making — and where you can afford to invest more.

At CareContent, we meet your organization where it is at to help you overcome roadblocks, spread awareness, and provide a seamless user experience. We also ensure users are taken care of once they do make it to your site, including making sure there is quality information at every step of their customer journey and a strong post-conversion plan.

Quality content marketing requires dedication, expertise, and a combination of paid and organic search — all of which can help your organization meet its business goals as efficiently as possible.

Let us help you build your content marketing strategy to meet your business goals. Contact us today.