Blogging is a great way to expand your online presence, increase your outreach efforts, and offer added value to both current patients and prospective clientele. And regardless of the healthcare field you specialize in, an on-site blog can provide an opportunity to personalize your visitors’ experience, engaging readers and attracting them to your business.
Pick Topics Wisely
Keep your topics timely, engaging, informative, and entertaining. Although your healthcare organization has access to virtually unlimited subject matter, finding relevant topics is no easy task. One way to curate topics is to brainstorm with colleagues to create a list of topics that can be saved for later use. You can also stay current with developing trends and technologies in healthcare or work with your call center to learn what types of inquiries they handle.
Write For the Layman
It’s easy to lapse into lingo and get technical when speaking about healthcare. Remember that the majority of your audience is made up of patients or prospective patients. Be sure to write with that in mind so your message will resonate with them and build a loyal following.
This is imperative for your blog. If you want to reach readers, optimize your contact, and engage readers, you need to consistently post to your blog. Loyal readers will check back a few times to see if you’re posting content before looking elsewhere for content. But web surfers won’t come back to your blog if they don’t find new content every time.
When operating online as a medical authority, be careful to not disclose too much information. First and foremost, you need to be familiar with HIPAA requirements for blogging in order to provide the appropriate level of privacy for patients. For example, it’s best not to write about actual cases, even if you don’t use the patent’s name or other personal data.
Keep in mind that people may take your content as gospel and may use it in ways you never intended, potentially causing harm in the process. When offering advice, you need to do so with the highest level of responsibility and make sure your information is accurate. Beware of generalizations, mentions of specific medications or therapies, and theories that lack practice-based evidence. If you’re discussing an extreme case – either a worst case scenario or borderline medical miracle – make sure you’re clearly stating the event is well outside the norm.
Healthcare is serious business, but don’t make your blog overly professional. Your blog provides a personal touch to your healthcare system, hospital, or clinic. Having multiple people in your organization blog will help create a variety of personalities and perceptions that might appeal to different audiences and increase your blog’s readership.
Remember that you have limited space when creating blog posts. People peruse blogs because they want a unique perspective on topics that are of importance to them. Make sure your post is to the point and written from a perspective that engages the reader.
Allow for Comments
Adding commenting functionality to your blog will engage visitors and allow them to share their thoughts and opinions. You can encourage comments by asking questions throughout your blog post, and comments make it more likely that visitors will share your content with others.
Create Visually Appealing Layout
Having a visually appealing layout is important in attracting visitors and keeping them on the site longer. A great layout, along with relevant content, will also encourage repeat visits – no one wants to look at a boring layout. Be mindful of the colors you use throughout the posts, as they should complement your logo and other branding elements.
Sharing your healthcare organization’s expertise through a blog increases your website audience. If your focus is on providing information, you can become a go-to resource for health-related information. As you write your healthcare organization’s blog, don’t feel compelled to follow “the pack,” as some originality can be quite powerful in developing your blog’s voice.