Why Start A Blog & How To Write For It
A blog on your website is not an option; it’s a must. It’s your primary opportunity to conduct an ongoing dialog with patients and prospects who want answers, solid answers to the big health issues they struggle with without coming in for a visit. You are the voice of authority and your blog is the mouthpiece through which you can educate and inspire them to take action.
But blogging does more than that.
A website that has zero activity – meaning it just sits there like an out-of-date brochure – appears “invisible” to search engines. Without relevant and engaging content continually being added, your website is basically screaming, “Sorry! We’re closed for business.” This sends crawlers, spiders and “bots” merrily on their way past your URL when indexing websites for search engines. Unfortunately, this means that when your prospects are searching for holistic health services online, your competitors’ results get served up instead of yours. Assuming they are regularly blogging on their sites.
I give loads of details on how to create a blog, e.g. how to write, how often to write, how long your posts should be, in my newly published book, The PEACE Process. But the question I most often get asked is “what should I write about?” My favorite blogging strategy for this is the FAQ approach to blogging.
Create a blog your readers will love
You probably have a list of topics that you want to write about. That’s great, of course, but in order to write about things that your patients really want to know about, you need to take a patient-centered approach to your blog. In other words, blogging is less about what you want to write and more about what your readers want to know. These are two different things! Here’s the strategy:
- First, block out about an hour of time for brainstorming. This, for many of us, will be the toughest part of this task.
- In this hour, jot down the top 12 to 24 questions that your patients are always asking you. These might include the things that you find yourself saying over and over again to them when you meet with them in your clinic. No question is too basic or boring! If they are asking you about it, it’s important.
- Write the answer to one question each week. That’s it. You have just come up with the 12 to 24 blog posts your readers most want to read. If you are an overachiever, dig deep and come up with even more FAQs to answer. Your staff may be able to help out, or simply ask your patients in your next few visits what things they struggle to understand better.
This strategy is so simple that it feels like you’re cheating – you’re harvesting your ideas directly from the mouths of your patients. Yet the most popular blogs start with the patient’s desires in mind. Not sure what they want to know? Ask them. It doesn’t get any easier than that.
Miriam Zacharias is an author, speaker and strategic marketing advisor who teaches functional and integrative health leaders how to build thriving practices that deliver joy and prosperity. Grab more marketing gems at www.miriamzacharias.com and see her in person at this year’s IGNITE Conference www.eeIGNITE.com/