Advantages of Using Content Marketing in the Healthcare Industry
The Healthcare industry is probably the best niche for using content marketing as there is a continual progression in medicine, research, studies, technology — a limitless supply of meaningful information.
The healthcare industry is an enormous sector of the US economy. It extends far beyond the clinics and hospitals that provide primary and acute care to ailing patients.
It’s a huge industry that comprises a broad spectrum of manufacturers of healthcare equipment and supplies. Pharmaceutical companies play an integral role in healthcare by providing doctors and patients with lifesaving medicines. Insurance companies and regulatory agencies from both the private and public sectors are fundamental in influencing the day to day functioning of the industry.
The healthcare industry, as a whole, is a world of interconnectedness between distinct services and products offered to different types of consumers. The impressive advantages of using content marketing in the healthcare industry should not be overlooked by the professionals in the field.
What is Content Marketing?
Marketing, in times of innovative technology and shifting cultural values, has to adapt and evolve quickly. Consumers are savvier than ever before and the healthcare market has become an increasingly competitive battleground for those looking to win and retain new contracts, sales, and patients.
Content marketing (CM) is a big buzzword these days. It is surprising for most people to discover that the techniques used in CM have been put to work by companies and firms for centuries.
According to the Content Marketing Institute, CM goes beyond the old sales pitch method of simply offering a product or service.
Content marketing provides people with useful information. It tells a story. It helps a potential customer understand a problem they may be facing and gives them potential solutions. Products are showcased to a potential client in a broad, informative context that leaves a future client feeling more confident in their newfound knowledge.
All of this results in a prospect base that is open to receiving more information and that actively engages with the media content offered by a company.
Potential customers willingly become happy clients through continued interaction with engaging content, with many eventually signing up for services or purchasing the products offered.
What are the Advantages of Content Marketing?
A successful content marketing strategy will:
- Build Trust – Through a diverse CM campaign, companies large and small can tailor their message and outreach information according to local customs, culture, and language. The result? Potential clients identify with and develop trust in a company and the company’s capacity to help them solve their problems.
- Create Credibility and Authority – Highly informative, well-researched content creates a sense of credibility and authority around your company that a simple print ad cannot achieve.
As potential clients investigate solutions to their problems, they may encounter a lot of incomplete or inadequate information that leaves them frustrated or confused. By offering high-quality content, your company has the opportunity to place itself as a leading authority in its field.
- Has Potential For a Broader Reach – Creative content has the potential to really “click” with an audience. When a consumer feels emotionally connected to content or when it resonates with them, they will often spontaneously share that content with friends, family, work colleagues, and others.
Word-of-mouth has always been a strong influence in any company’s success and future sales. In the digital age, however, word-of-mouth can translate into ‘viral’ and a companies message can reach an audience outside of its typical reach. Successful CM campaigns often reach new customers in unexpected places.
- Reach a Specific Audience – One can always hope that a piece of creative content goes viral, but the fact is, most of it will not. A large share of content should be personalized to the different sectors of the target audience.
In the healthcare industry, for example, there are many specialized communities and target markets for specific goods and services. With successful content, you can reach these niche audiences to build a sense of community, trust, and authority.
- Keep the Customer Engaged Long Term – By having a diversified CM strategy, a business can take advantage of all the different outreach options available to continually engage existing and potential clients.
Through digital and non-digital formats, a company can engage with the public across the entire spectrum of media. Blogs, informative videos, email, and social media platforms such as Instagram or Facebook combined with diversified localized media like print or television allow a company to create consecutive interactions without making a client feel bombarded or overwhelmed.
If each outlet features a distinct but complementary and coherent message a customer is more likely to maintain interest in the companies informative content offerings. There are now many online services like BestWritingAdvisor.com, to which you can delegate all your corporate writing so that you don’t have to hire an in-house team.
- Is Cost-Effective – There are many reasons why CM is a cost-effective marketing strategy. Businesses can take advantage of low-cost options like social media, blogs and video content to reach targeted audiences and create loyal customers.
A good blog post or informative article will generate interest in a company and its products long after being published. Video content, while slightly more expensive to produce, is more likely to be shared and is considered relevant for years after its initial publication. Well-written content will generate more traffic the longer it is available to the public.
- Supports the “Purchase Process” – Through CM, you can fully support your customers in the decision-making process that takes place before a purchase or contract can happen.
Through well-designed content, your company can provide answers and suggestions to potential clients that encourage them to find solutions through the purchase of a service or product.
Blogs, articles, videos, and especially social media posting usually invites potential customers to freely comment and make inquiries regarding the company and the product it offers. By being consistently responsive and providing excellent customer service, clients can be efficiently funneled into purchasing a product or service.
Content Marketing in the Healthcare Industry
If you are not convinced about the effectiveness of CM as applied to the healthcare industry, consider the following data. It is estimated that at least 8 out of 10 people look to online sources for health information before seeking health services. The vast majority of respondents, over 70%, look at commercial websites when seeking out health information.
Take a look at the success of WebMD, the most recognizable name for online publishing of health-related information. This company averaged over 170 million unique visitors a month in 2016.
Another perfect example would be the Mayo Clinic, which has become a trusted online resource for patients, students, and other health care professionals to access information, studies, professional publications and, of course, information on how to sign up for treatment, study programs, training, and other fellowships.
WebMD and Mayo Clinic are just two big players in healthcare that have successfully implemented CM strategies. As a result, they have consistently generated measurable increases in revenue by fostering brand loyalty, dedicated clients and creating a legitimate sense of authority in the field of healthcare.
The advantages of using content marketing in the healthcare industry can be enjoyed by all of the different sectors that make up the market. A successful CM strategy can be just as effective for business to business (B2B) advertising as it is for business to client (B2C) advertising. Content marketing is not limited exclusively to hospitals seeking out new patients.
The possibilities of engaging potential clients are endless when considering the incredibly diverse array of tools and options that industry and content marketers have available to them.