Have you given thought to adding a blog to your website? Did it seem overwhelming? Were you afraid you’d post a couple of articles then quit? We can help with Blogging 101 just for you!
Blogging is a great marketing channel to add to your practice. Here’s why:
- Huge popularity. Eighty percent of the folks on the internet are interacting with both social media sites and blogs.
- More leads. Analysis of companies with and without blogs shows that companies with blogs generate two-thirds more leads than companies without.
- More website visitors. Companies that blog get 55% more website visitors than companies that don’t.
- Useful to readers. Seventy percent of people would rather learn about a company by reading its articles instead of advertisements.
Blogging is a chance for you to highlight your expertise to readers, which gradually builds your authority in their eyes. So let’s look at how we can get you started on your own blog.
What Is a Blog?
A blog is valuable educational content for those people most likely to need your services. Blog posts are not advertisements for your services. There’s nothing wrong with a mention of “call me for an evaluation” at the close of a blog post, but these articles should overall focus on being useful and immediately applicable.
In every post, you (or whoever writes them) can showcase your own knowledge and experience. When a child needs physical, occupational or speech therapy, guidance is something the family desperately needs. You can build trust and increase your credibility by providing this guidance, one blog post at a time. Your readers will view you as an authority because they see the truth in what you say.
There’s another benefit from having a blog on your site. All the major search engines love fresh, relevant content. What does this mean?
- Fresh means you are regularly adding new articles to your blog.
- Relevant means your content provides the answers online users are searching for in your area of expertise.
When you consistently add fresh, relevant content to your website blog, it heightens your online visibility. That means a greater chance of your website or blog articles appearing early on in search engine results.
What Should You Write About?
There are a few easy ways to develop blog topics. Here are some ideas:
- FAQs. What parent or patient questions do you answer over and over again? Make a list! If you have specialists on your staff, have them make a list, too. I bet you can come up with 50 topics right here.
- Diagnostic tips. How can a parent, teacher or other professional spot when a child needs PT, OT or ST? You can break this topic down into several posts, one for each specialty.
- Parenting tips. How can a parent keep the improvement going at home? What advice do you have for parents of picky eaters? What are the best ways to motivate a child? What do parents tell you they struggle with at home? I’m sure you can think of tons of these topics.
Who Gets to Write Them?
Well, of course, you can write them. But you can also have your therapists write them when they are not booked.
Do you have someone on your staff who loves to write? They might love this job. Ask around.
Whoever writes them should be proficient in the basics—writing clearly, with good grammar and punctuation. These posts are going to signify your professionalism so they need to look good. Alternatively, a therapist could write them and then the best writer could tidy them up.
As the practice owner, you should approve these articles before they are published.
Here’s a tip for whoever writes them: If you’re having a hard time getting started, just imagine yourself sitting down with a parent who’s stressing over a problem. They explain the problem and you know exactly what the solution is. Start writing down those words as if we were talking to the parent. That’s your blog post.
Another tip is to take any milestone achieved in your practice and turn it into a blog article. For instance, let’s say a kiddo goes up the stairs for the first time. That’s a big deal. Tell the story of the steps your practice took to achieve this victory, the results along the way, the patient’s gains, and so on. Of course, get permission from the patient’s parents or guardian to publicize the story.
What to Include in Your Blog Article
For a reader to make it all the way to the end, your blog post needs to engage the reader’s interest. Here’s some help on that score:
- Break up the text. Don’t make it one long, uninterrupted wall of words. Use subheads, numbered lists or bulleted lists to make it more visually interesting.
- Add images or illustrations. Use images from your practice or stock photo websites. Look around for inexpensive websites where you can get a set number of images for a flat fee.
- Make them long enough. Blog articles should minimally reach 800 words. If you can expand on a subject for 1,000 or 2,000 words, that’s even better.
- Keep it real. Write in a natural, conversational tone and use stories or anecdotes to deliver your message.
If you’d like more tips on marketing or growing your pediatric private practice, check out our free one-hour webinars. Learn more.