Photo by SHE Photography
Originally Posted On: https://www.selenemarketing.com/news/healthcare-marketing-healthcare-blogger
Even as a healthcare marketing agency, the practice of blogging weekly can seem daunting. Although we all know a blog is essential to helping you rank on search engines and reliably driving new traffic to your website, it can be challenging to find time to write 1,000+ words week after week – especially if you’re not a healthcare blogger!
You have a couple of options. Option one: you could grab other people’s posts off the internet. This is highly discouraged, as you could get caught plagiarizing another writer’s content. At best, Google will detect it as “duplicate content” and lower your website’s ranking and traffic. At worst, you could get sued. Option two: you task your intern/new hire/office buddy to stand in as a healthcare blogger and write for you every week, which might result in just-okay writing, no SEO research, or just…the same task falling to someone else’s to-do list. Option three: you know your business best, so you start writing…you keep writing…you’re almost ready to hit “publish”…and you forget about the critical presentation that’s also due tomorrow. You know, the one you can’t push off to anyone else.
Making time to do keyword research and come up with new blog ideas week after week is hard, especially if becoming a healthcare blogger wasn’t exactly your career plan. Even as a healthcare blogger, it can be a struggle to generate meaningful content for readers sometimes! So, what’s a practice to do?
RESUSCITATE YOUR HEALTHCARE MARKETING WITH HISTORICAL OPTIMIZATION
The good news: you don’t have to start from scratch! Historical optimization can improve your existing blogging strategy while saving your business time as well as creative energy.
What is historical optimization?
You may be familiar with the phrase “Out with the old and in with the new.” In this case, digital strategy trends in the healthcare marketing arena are starting to suggest otherwise.
Historical optimization helps you to optimize your old or existing content for a new purpose. This tactic might be the solution for increasing your website traffic while simultaneously saving you from an endless cycle of writing. (Say goodbye to your unwarranted career as a healthcare blogger!)
Historical optimization is pretty straightforward: you update your existing blog content to make it more relevant for today’s readers and more in line with your current healthcare marketing keyword strategy. This gives your old content the ability to generate even more website traffic and conversions. In a nutshell, historical optimization helps you build on your existing blog content (think: last year’s published blog posts), so you can write less and still earn more website visitors.
SHOULD I SCRATCH “WRITE NEW BLOGS” OUT OF MY HEALTHCARE MARKETING STRATEGY ALTOGETHER?
Not quite! New blog posts are still essential. After all, you need a vast pool of blog posts to choose from before you can even start working on historical optimization. However, writing new blog content is significantly more satisfying when you know that it’s going to be repurposed to generate more website visitors for years to come!
Remember, some posts need to be timely. You can’t just ignore a global crisis because it’s not evergreen content. As a healthcare business, people need to hear what you have to say about the ever-changing health landscape. These topics should be addressed in new blog posts.
That being said, there is also a lot of opportunity for you to dig into still-relevant topics from previous years. For instance, auto injuries are still treated by chiropractors. But have you learned anything new, or added a new treatment to your practice since you first wrote that blog three years ago? Probably.
In fact, HubSpot reported that historical optimization alone has enabled them to double their number of leads generated by old posts. They also noted that around 92% of their monthly blog leads came from “older” posts. Let’s take a look at healthcare blogging through this lens. This means that any new blog you write isn’t just for generating traffic today, but also a smart investment in future search engine optimization efforts!
HOW MUCH TIME SHOULD I SPEND UPDATING MY OLD POSTS VERSUS WRITING ENTIRELY NEW ONES?
Too many healthcare marketing strategies focus all of their energy on cranking out new blog posts every week. The fact of the matter is that writing new posts only accounts for one portion of your website’s traffic. A good rule of thumb is to start by writing two new posts each month and updating two old posts each month.
While there’s no hard and fast ratio, start by looking into your Google Analytics to see where your website visitors are finding you and what pages they’re visiting. Are users finding you on social media, and clicking over to your website when they stumble upon an interesting blog you’ve written? Are most of your visitors finding you through SEO on Google when they search keyphrases like “best mental health treatment for OCD”?
WHERE WOULD A HEALTHCARE BLOGGER START?
If your old posts are currently bringing you the majority of your traffic already, then why not spend more of your time and energy improving your all-time most popular posts? Even something as simple as updating a past blog post with new images or videos has been shown to increase organic traffic by twofold!
HOW DO I OPTIMIZE HISTORICAL CONTENT IF I’M NOT A HEALTHCARE BLOGGER?
Here’s something to take the edge off: you don’t need to be a healthcare blogger or a healthcare marketing expert to update your old content! All you need is an up to date keyword strategy from your marketing agency or in-house team and access to your past posts to get started.
Be thoughtful during your analytical research.
While you may be optimizing historical content to save time on writing, this is one step you really don’t want to rush. Dig deep into your website’s analytics. Determine which of your old blog posts still generate lots of traffic. These high-performing posts will be the first ones you’ll want to optimize since they’re continuing to earn readers and are already receiving the most views.
Don’t guesstimate your keywords in your healthcare marketing plan.
Make sure that you’re updating your keywords and keyphrases in each post you edit! Reach out to your healthcare marketing person for your keyword strategy and determine which phrases could be worked into your existing article. Some blogs will need keywords that are no longer relevant removed. Likewise, other blogs will need newer keywords added in. For example: if you moved from Bend, OR to Eugene, OR, you’ll want your posts to reflect your current location.
Reconsider your post’s title and headings.
Deciding on the perfect title for your blog post can be the most challenging part of writing for many people, even for a healthcare blogger! Take a long, hard look at your article’s title and see if you can incorporate new or more relevant keywords. You might also want to consider what kind of title is most likely to generate more clicks from your audience. Replacing a name like “What to Know about Lactobacillus Acidophilus” with “10 Ways Probiotics Can Help with IBS” could make all the difference when it comes to generating more clicks!
Update Your URL for SEO and usability.
If you titled your old blog post “What to Know about Lactobacillus Acidophilus,” chances are the slug read something like “yourwebsite.com/what-to-know-lactobacillus-acidophilus.” Unfortunately, that title no longer fits the piece. A better match might read: “probiotics-and-ibs”. Google generally prefers shorter URLs, and this one makes more sense with the new angle. When updating the URL, make sure you add a 301 Redirect from the old URL to the new one. You don’t want to lose any site visitors because of a broken link that may still be lingering out there. A 301 redirect will ensure a smooth transition to your updated blog post.
Always review before you repost.
Rereading an old blog post after some time has passed can help you notice things you might have glossed over before. Coming back to an old article gives you a fresh set of eyes, which can help you identify any grammatical errors that you may have missed in the past. This also gives you the chance to make important updates to things like broken links, services that are no longer offered, unexpected changes brought about by new legislation or technology, or cultural references that aren’t relevant any longer.
Think like a patient, not a healthcare blogger.
As you go over your blog post, ask yourself if there is any other information that a reader might find helpful. What might you have left out the first time around? Even better: have someone you trust read the post. Ask them to write down any questions that they might still have. Did you use too much medical terminology for your average patient? If your terminology is necessary for the piece, do you explain it well enough for your readers to follow along? Did you include anything unnecessary, like a personal anecdote or outdated sources?
Your updated post should help any new readers feel fully informed. Here’s a core component in any healthcare marketing strategy: your patients want to view you as an expert in what you do, and they’ll trust you more if they see you as an expert. The more you can teach your readers, the better!
Build a web of links to enhance your healthcare marketing strategy.
You won’t always be able to cover all of the information that your readers might want to know about within the confines of a single blog post. That’s why it’s so important to leverage links! Adding in relevant links can help your reader continue along their path of knowledge. This can also decrease your website’s bounce rate, which is something a healthcare blogger would keep at the forefront of their mind. Linking to related posts that you have written on your site will build credibility and trust. This will cement you as the go-to expert in your field in the mind of your readers.
Double-check your timestamp.
Make sure to go into each post and update your publish date when you feel like your old blog has been fully optimized. Updating the timestamp will bring your old post all the way back to your blog’s first page. This means that your patients will get the full benefit of the updated content you have provided them.
Share what you know.
You might be hesitant to promote the same post more than once, but you shouldn’t be! Remember, you’ve given this post a serious rehaul. Just make sure to allow ample time between the original blog post and its historical optimization. This means there will likely be new readers who missed this post the first time around. Likewise, the goal of this historical optimization is to provide a fresh new take on your old content. If you’re doing this correctly, your readers will be excited to reread your post to hear your new insights.
HOW WOULD A HEALTHCARE BLOGGER TRACK RESULTS?
Keep in mind that historical optimization for your website is an ongoing writing project. If this proves to be successful for your business, it should become a permanent tactic in your healthcare marketing strategy. To keep track of your historical optimization results, make sure to review your Google Analytics at least once a month. Check out which of your blogs are earning the most readers, and optimize posts in the future accordingly. The results might impress you!
HEALTHCARE MARKETING AGENCY + HEALTHCARE BLOGGERS TO GET YOU MOVING!
Selene Marketing is a 5-star healthcare marketing agency helping businesses make a big impact. If you’re looking to work with a healthcare blogger, please reach out to our team! You’ll be paired with a healthcare marketing specialist published in top publications Thrive Global, ABC, + Buzzfeed, who is dedicated to helping you help others. Schedule your free strategy session here!