As an Alaska healthcare provider, you understand the importance of having your name out there as a professional, experienced, trustworthy organization. How do you do that? Happy client referrals are one way, but shouldn't be the only avenue you use in gaining new patients.
If you have decided to embrace inbound marketing to attract an audience, you are on your way to an exciting new revenue stream! While planning such an endeavor isn't easy, it is entirely possible with a little elbow grease and thoughtful review on the front end.
After identifying your buyer persona and mapping out your buyer's journey, it's time to tap the tablet and create enticing, relevant content that simultaneously appeals to your target base and conveys why they should connect with and trust you.
The main goal here is to reach your buyer persona with a steady stream of information they want to read. If the thought of thinking up ideas for content gives you a headache, never fear. By the end of this article, you will realize you are a topic-churning mastermind!
Here's your complete plan to find topics to write about that appeal to Alaska healthcare customers.
First, let's look at sources of information to get the ball rolling on your content creation plan.
Survey your office.
Talking to the people who interact with callers and patients is the first all-important step to find topics to write about. They hear the questions, concerns and pain points Alaska healthcare customers call in about over and over. Ask them to write down the specific 5-10 questions they hear often, and compare the lists. This exercise will probably end up preparing your for a few dozen blog posts. Take note of the specific words and phrases callers use to convey their questions. You will need them later.
Scope out your competition.
Identify your top competitors in the area and visit their websites to see what types of topics they are covering. While you may not want to go with every subject they discuss, you can still get ideas of the type of information they find important for patients to know. Take note of the top 2-3 points they make with their content, and compare it to the list you made from your office survey.
With these two initiatives completed, you should have a strong list of information about what your buyer persona wants to know from you during their zero moment of truth (ZMOT). Now, start to...
Scour your brain for keywords
When potential patients use a search engine to begin their buyer's journey, they choose certain words and phrases to begin their search. Your goal in this step is to hone in on these words. Read over your office survey and write down the words that you see repeat, as well as the words that nail your business. In addition,
build some long tail keywords. These are phrases that can be used to find your company. Think about what Alaska healthcare customers would type into a search engine to find you. Make a list of all these words and phrases, create topics around them, and use a few of them in all of your content. Over time, these keywords will build a trail from your buyer's ZMOT to your website and contact information.
Taking the time to build a list of information your buyer wants to know, and reviewing what your competitors are talking about prepares you to write powerful content that will connect with your audience.
Once you have a long list of ideas from your research, begin the next step of planning your topics.
Start writing title ideas.
Say it with me, "titles are EVERYTHING!" If your target customers don't understand how the article can help them address their pain points through the title, they won't bother digging further into the content. Aim to create titles that are concise, provocative, and interesting. Some great ideas use titles that include DOs and DONTs, Mistakes Not to Make, and Top Tips. Use keywords you have pinpointed to keep your buyer's journey moving forward. Employ action verbs and engaging language, but avoid making titles too long or unwieldy. Now, all this sounds hard, and it is. You may spend almost as much time writing the title of a piece as the piece itself, and that's okay. Think of a good title as an off-ramp to your business.
Leverage each blog title into multiples.
One great topic may end up being a dozen pieces of content. For example, if you find that Alaska Healthcare customers are interested in understanding sleep studies, you may choose this as a main subject for your content. From there, you can create blog posts like "6 Things to Expect from A Sleep Study" "DOs and DONTS to Prepare for A Sleep Study" and "How to Choose the Best Sleep Study Place". Then, you may write a case study with a happy client, and how you helped him or her with her pain point. You may also create an infographic talking about the statistics of the benefits of a sleep study. While these topics and pieces of content vary quite a bit, they all center around explaining the main idea the buyer is trying to understand. They also keep to your original topic ideas that you gleaned from your survey of your office's employees.
Dig out niche posts.
Broad content that grabs the buyer's attention during the ZMOT starts the connection with your target, and more specific topics build and nurture the connection further. Go back to the intel you gathered in the beginning, and pick out a topic. Choose 3-4 subcategories of each topic as small, independent topics on their own. In the example above "DOs and DONTs to Prepare for A Sleep Study" a subtopic from this idea could be "8 Items to Take with You for Your Sleep Study". This way, each post multiplies into a few posts, and your have plenty of topics that feed your target audience interesting, relevant information that answers their questions. This sets you up in their minds as the industry leader. This entire process builds trust.
Embrace different forms of content.
Blog posts and articles are great, but don't stop there! Add in some long and short form blogs that help engage reader
s no matter what their attention span. Don't forget the people who are more visual by offering them, as we mentioned above, infographics with number-oriented information. Other forms of content are case studies, white papers, videos, and eBooks. These can all be mapped out in your buyer's journey beforehand. Each of these can pull from your original list of topics.
Review, Audit, and Edit what's working and what's not working
Finally (and this one hurts) review and erase. Over time, it's unfortunately too easy to veer away from the mainstay topics your buyers really want to read about. It's necessary to keep your eyes on the topics as they grow and evolve, and make sure they all relate back to the original questions your customers asked. If you go too far on a topic in the wrong direction, even interesting material won't lead your buyers through your sales funnel, which is our ultimate goal. So, always put the topic through the "question test". If it doesn't relate to answering a buyer's question or addressing the need they have in the ZMOT, ditch it.
Creating a content plan that shows your expertise, connects with your Alaska healthcare customers, and builds their trust sounds like a daunting task. Fortunately, you have a gold mine right inside your office with the people who answer the phones and talk to potential patients every day. By talking to them and hashing out the information your buyers will find valuable, you will build a long, awesome list of topics to write about, and see great rewards for your efforts.
If you woulkd like to speak with a content strategist at inboundMed, just click the button below. You'll get a bonus piece of content on How to write your first medical blog posts as well.