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How to Use Your Practice Blog as a Successful Marketing Tool

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Tips and ideas for timely topics that resonate with patients

Medical practices that publish a blog do so for a number of reasons: to connect with people, educate patients, and to market their practices, to name a few. After all, a blog is a way to keep your website content fresh and up-to-date. High-quality blog content can also help your website rank higher on search engines if the writing incorporates SEO

But a blog can quickly become a time-intensive chore if you don’t have a strategy or content calendar. Too often, we see practice websites feature blogs that haven’t been updated in months, which can work against you.

Here are some ideas that may help. We’ve included links to relevant Rendia videos where appropriate, since a page or post with video keeps visitors on your site for seven times as long as a page without video, according to a Video Benchmark Report from Forbes, HubSpot, and Vidyard.

What to blog about

While there are infinite topics you could blog about, why not start with what patients are searching for? According to an analysis of Google Trends data from 2004 to 2020 published by the American Journal of Ophthalmology, researchers found these eye conditions to be the most frequently searched:

  • Cataract
  • Glaucoma
  • Nearsightedness (myopia)
  • Diabetic retinopathy
  • Macular degeneration

Using that data as a jumping-off point, and using some of our own blog posts as examples, related topics could be:

Blog about topics your patients are searching for. Make sure to include a news hook—is a condition on the rise? Are there new treatments you’re offering?

Notice how these topics aren’t simply “All About this Disease,” but rather they have an angle or news “hook”—a reason why patients need to know about that condition. Is it on the rise? Is there a lot of misinformation about it? Does your practice specialize in certain conditions or treatments, such as dry eye or pediatric tonsillectomies? These can all inform your blog topics and encourage patients to come in.

Tie in timely topics and promotions

Per the last blog topic listed above, there are National Health Observances for every month, named by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. This can be a great way to keep your blog timely and tailor your patient education to specific topics.

Keep your blog content timely with seasonal promotions. How about encouraging people to gift their sweetheart LASIK for Valentine’s Day?

Another idea is to tie in promotions to certain holidays. For instance, what about a Valentine’s Day promotion to encourage people to gift their sweetheart LASIK—or a new therapy to treat obstructive sleep apnea and snoring?

Or consider blogging about protecting your eyes with sunglasses, and promote a buy-one-get-one free (BOGO) sale—say, buy one pair of glasses, get a pair of sunglasses free. This can be a great way to generate more business and get rid of old inventory at the same time. 

Back to school in late August and early September is a great time to promote vision and hearing exams. This year especially, parents may be concerned about their children’s increased use of screens. Eye care practices could blog about blue-light glasses or healthy eye tips for computer users.

Save time with a content calendar

While nearly every practice has a website, too few have a blog that they regularly maintain and update. This is a mistake—blogging is a scalable and affordable approach that can generate 13 times the ROI of businesses that don’t prioritize blogging, according to inbound marketing software company HubSpot.

A blog content calendar can help alleviate the top two reasons practices don’t blog: lack of time and ideas.

The top two reasons healthcare providers don’t blog, according to practice growth technology company PatientPop, are:

  • Not enough time to write and edit content (40.3%)
  • Not enough ideas for fresh, regular posts (35.1%)

A blog content calendar can help by laying out a month’s worth of blog ideas at a time. Start by filling in monthly promotions and health observances. Then add in blog posts about specific services you offer, especially those that are in-demand locally, suggests PatientPop. You can also leverage Rendia’s library, which has curated content specifically for  social media and your blog posts. 

Your blog can also provide a great source for your social media campaigns. Promote your blog on Twitter, Facebook, and other platforms, linking to specific posts, encouraging people to subscribe to your blog, and inviting people to check out your practice. Here are examples of 8 physicians and practices that are using social media effectively, many in conjunction with their blogs. 

Get started today! Download our sample blog content calendar.

 

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