By Gloria Kopp
Content marketing is big business, and there’s never been a more effective way to promote and advertise your business to the masses. Businesses of all sizes, locations, and industries are jumping on the bandwagon. It’s safe to say that some businesses will have a lot more creative legroom when it comes to creating their content.
As a dental practice, you’ve got the same opportunities to implement content marketing into your advertising strategy. If you’re stuck for ideas or simply wondering where to start, here are seven key steps to help you create an effective content marketing strategy for your dental practice.
But first, what is content marketing?
Content marketing is the process of advertising your business. If you’ve been on Facebook recently and seen blog posts being shared, such as top 10 lists or articles that explain topics, this is content marketing. Sometimes this content can be in the form of images or videos.
I searched “how to brush teeth properly.” The first company to come up (at number two in the search) was OralB, a dental product company. You can read their blog post and absorb the information you want. Throughout the article, in the sidebar and at the bottom of the website, you’ll see ads for their products.
Now that you’re on their website and tempted by their products, you’re far more likely to buy the products or services than if you hadn’t visited the site at all. This is the same concept you’ll want to apply to your dental practice, and there are many methods you can take. Now on to the seven steps.
1. Research your niche
If you’ve never done anything like this before, the first thing you’ll want to do is research other blogs in the dentist niche. You can look at local or national blogs, it’s up to you. Look to see what sort of topics are trending to give you an idea of what people are interested in. You can also use a Google search to see what kind of dentist-related questions people are asking. Develop knowledge of your audience.
Of course, nobody from the other side of the world is going to come all the way here just to go to a dentist, so you’ll want to focus on your area. You know your patients better than anyone, so ask them or take notes of what questions they ask you during their appointments for an idea on what type of content they’d be interested in.
2. Decide on your content types
The word content is a rather broad subject and doesn’t relate just to blog posts. In addition to text-based posts, you can create eBooks, videos, infographics, social media posts, memes, or podcast series. Look at your budget and the time you have to invest in your content campaign.
“Of course, a video is going to be one of the most time-consuming, resource-consuming and budget-consuming ventures, but at the same time it can also be one of the most effective,” explains Roger Tate, a digital marketer at Resumention. “However, for beginners, writing blogs is your best bet.
3. Brainstorm content ideas
Now that you’re up to date with everything that’s going on in the industry and have an idea of what kind of content you want, the next step is to think about what topic to write about. If your dental practice specializes in a certain procedure, this is a good place to start. If you’re stuck for ideas, you can use content idea generation services such as Eliteassignmenthelp.com to point you in the right direction.
As I said above, researching your competitors is a great way to find out what topics are being covered. For example, check out this blog by Harley Street Dental Clinic in London, one of the most successful practices in the city. Some of their blogs include topics such as what happens in a dental emergency, how to maintain dental hygiene when you’re pregnant, how to protect your oral health, how to improve your smile by visiting a cosmetic dentist, whether you need to visit an orthodontist, and everything you need to know about dental implants.
The list goes on. Thanks to Google, if people searching for answers to these questions have their location turned on, your blogs will come up in their feeds. Seeing the answers to their questions and then seeing that you’re available to treat them will get patients through your doors.
4. Plan your content process
Say you want to run a content campaign for the next six months, but you get to month three and run out of ideas. I recommend creating a plan using a calendar so you know exactly what topics you’re going to write about, what themes you’re going to cover, and what ideas you’re going to use.
For example, if one of your blog days falls on March 6 (National Dentist Day), you can plan ahead to write a blog post discussing this day because it will be a trending topic. You could also go for a more basic and guidebook feel for your dental blogs. For example, take a look at Causeway Dental Practice’s blog. It mainly consists of static pages that simply have information about all the services they provide, from whitening teeth and mouth cancer to the effects of sugar, and even events in their practice.
5. Writing your blogs
Now that you have everything ready to rock and roll, it’s time to start writing. You have complete creative freedom to do what you want, but there are a couple of basic rules. First, set a word limit. Readers won’t get value from short content and will be bored by long content. Aim for between 700 and 1,000 words.
Also, look at the formatting of the blog. Information is far easier to digest if you break up your paragraphs and use subheads to break up your main points. Don’t forget images! Content writing tools such as State of Writing can help you with your writing process.
6. Editing your blogs
Once you’ve finished writing your content, it’s time for the editing phase. Chances are that you won’t get your message right the first time, so you’ll need to read through your article and make changes so that it sounds the way you want it to. During this stage ask a friend or colleague to read through it to make sure it makes sense. Don’t forget to check your grammar so you sound professional.
7. Perfecting your blogs
Once you’ve finished writing and editing your blog, it’s nearly ready to be uploaded to the masses. The next part of the process is the absolute final thing you’ll do—proofreading. Read through your blog post, disregarding the sentences themselves while looking for errors. Look for typos, spelling mistakes, and misplaced punctuation. If you need help with this, you can use proofreading tools and grammar checking services such as Essay Roo.
Once you’ve finished writing and perfecting your blog, it’s time to upload it. You’ll want to host your blogs on your practice website, but because you’re trying to attract people in your area, feel free to post them on your social media accounts as well.
Make sure to write strong headlines, such as “The 5 dangers of sugar you need to know today,” since readers find these articles irresistible. If you want to boost the visibility of your posts, contact other businesses in your area to work together to promote each other’s content.
That’s all there is to it! Of course, if this is your first time writing content it might feel a bit strange. But with the right amount of organization, planning, and time invested, you’ll dramatically improve your skills, which will lead to a successful dental content campaign!