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16 Tools to Turbo Boost Your Blogging Process

Do you blog regularly? Are you looking for tools to make the process easier? Blogging is hard work and it takes a lot of time to do it well. Wouldn’t it be great if you could streamline parts of that process? In this article, you’ll find a list of tools, apps and advice you can use to find your groove and take care of blogging business. #1: Brainstorm Blogging Ideas When you need inspiration for your next blog post, where do you go? You can avoid blogger’s block by trying out these idea-generators to quickly get your creative juices flowing. How to Use Quora to Cook Up Great Content: Adrienne Erin writes a pretty inspiring post about scanning Quora to find popular conversations and using those topics to create blog content. Don’t Know What to Write About? Get Ideas From the Blog Topic Generator [Free Tool]: Ginny Soskey … [Read more...]

Why Website Content for Patients Should Be At 6th Grade Reading Level

As content writers our top priority when writing anything is to keep the reader in mind. Studies show that the typical American adult reads at about a 7th or 8th grade level. When it comes to reading content on the Internet things get more tricky because the web poses particular challenges and opportunities regarding how information is read and understood. That's why it's important for healthcare websites to publish content that is simple, likeable and user-friendly for patients. When your content is readable, your audience is able to understand and implement the information you share with them. Poor Readability But a recent study by JAMA Internal Medicine shows that a lot of patient educational content on the web suffers from a lack of readability because it is written at a very high reading level. Here's what researchers … [Read more...]

Healthcare Blogging: 6 Types of Content that People Love

It takes more than just publishing a blog article and sharing it on Facebook to get the comments, shares and page views rolling in. If you think about it, 2 million blog posts are published everyday on the social web. And most of those marketers are using social media to promote their content anyway. So doing the bare minimum likely won't cut it. Knowing what type of content your prospects want to read and share is absolutely necessary. The best way to find out what people want is to ask them. Simply conduct a survey and ask people in your social media networks: "What do you find to be the most valuable content when looking for a potential solution?" Then offer a selection of answers for people to choose from e.g. blog posts, white papers, e-book, webinar, podcast, video, case study, in-person events and so on. Or you … [Read more...]

Healthcare Blogging: How to Build Strong Content Foundations

Healthcare marketers aren't the only ones struggling to create compelling content. A lot of corporate content is centered around stuff that no-one reads such as press releases and product pitches. That's not the kind of content prospects want. Healthcare blogging needs content that entices prospects to subscribe to your email channel because email is where permission-based selling takes place. This is called content to content conversion (more on that later). But how do you create enticing content in the first place?   Build strong foundations My kids love the Katie Woo book series by Fran Manushkin. Katie is a spunky, sassy, stylish school-girl that young readers fall in love with. Her stories are perfect for explaining life changes, family celebrations and growing up. Kids love her because she helps them … [Read more...]

Effective Content Marketing: How to Solve Your Customers Problems

What problems do you solve for your customers? A content marketer's biggest challenge is to solve customers' problems while maximizing the effectiveness of his or her content. Now pay attention because this is important. No matter what you do in life you should be adding value to other people's lives. The way to add value to others is to help them solve their problems or challenges and for that you need to have the mindset of a "problem sniffer".  What does that mean? It means that people (i.e. customers) generally buy pain killers, not vitamins (even when times are hard and the economy is down). In other words people will pay more money to avoid a problem (loss or pain) than they will to gain a benefit. Photo credit: http://bit.ly/YP4rxG So when you create a product or service that solves problems or fulfills a … [Read more...]

5 Ways to Inspire Patient Relationships with Blog Comments

Have you ever read a healthcare blog that does not allow comments? Did it make you feel inspired to come back and read it again, or share it with your friends? The problem with many corporate healthcare blogs is fear of what people might say. What if they leave a negative comment? What if they say something that violates HIPAA? Can we delete it? They are so anxious about what could go wrong in the comment section of their blog that they either turn all comments off, or create ridiculous roadblocks that discourage readers from commenting e.g. "captcha" or 'log in to comment' features. These features succeed in making their blog look distant and unapproachable but even worse they kill any chance of building and cultivating relationships with future patients. Here are 5 ways to inspire patient relationships with blog comments. #1. … [Read more...]

4 Reasons Why Your Medical Practice Should Consistently Create Fresh Content

In this digital age that we live in, having a constant stream of fresh ideas in the form of content is key to the survival of your brand. Image Source: Wikimedia, Heavybluesman, under Creative Commons License Medical brands cannot afford to be left behind when it comes to content marketing. In fact a recent Pew Research study indicated that 72% of Internet users said they looked online for health information within the past year. Patients and care givers are looking to online sources including social media and blogs for information about specific diseases, treatments, and procedures as well as to find out more about doctors and health professionals. Content marketing offers tremendous benefits that traditional advertising cannot. Here are four of them. #1. Search Engines Reward Fresh Content Search engines such as Google … [Read more...]

Using Data to Create Healthcare Narratives

I mentioned in a previous post that "important stories live in our data". Particularly in healthcare where tons of data abound. The problem is that healthcare is not producing enough good stories to support decision-making in the industry. Instead what we have is an explosion of reports, spreadsheets, charts and tables such as this: For most people this kind of data is useless and invites lots of questions: What is this? What is happening? Why? What do we do with it? But if you can translate it into a narrative or make it visual so that people are able to understand it then it becomes useful. Even physicians and decision-makers in the industry could use easier ways to understand this kind of data. Something like this infographic below makes more sense (not related to above data-set): This infographic provides … [Read more...]

3 Steps to Building Patient Personas for Content Marketing

In content marketing and social media you want to make sure you're engaging with the right people. So for example an OB-GYN practice using Facebook, Twitter, and a blog to bring in more patients should make sure they're engaging with women of child-bearing age within their geographical area. They shouldn't bother having conversations with young men, or people living across the country. If you're marketing this particular practice you'll need to consider the different types of patients to target: pregnant and non-pregnant women; married and single mothers; middle aged women and teen-aged girls and so on. The point is you want to have a crystal-clear understanding of your community in order to have relevant conversations with them, inform, educate and seek their trust. That level of understanding comes from building patient … [Read more...]

How to Start a Health Blog in 10 Easy Steps

Are you wondering what it takes to start a health blog? A health blog can be written by a non-profit, a government agency or a healthcare business. But it can also be an individual's effort - one blogger's thoughts, experiences and advice. It is not uncommon to see health enthusiasts take to blogging as a platform to share their knowledge in medical, preventive, experiential, political or other health-related topics.   Some of the more interesting healthcare topics I've seen online include conventional vaccines, affordable health insurance, palliative medicine, and EHR (electronic health records). Starting a health blog doesn't have to be difficult. Here are 10 basic steps to follow. #1. Define business goals Writing a health blog is hard work and takes a lot of time. So before you get started ask yourself the … [Read more...]