HCP Advertising, Part 2: Highly-Targeted Content Marketing for Healthcare Providers

This is part 2 of our 5-part series about HCP advertising and marketing. Part 1 covers healthcare marketing segmentation for your target audiences. This part explains how to create good content, followed by part 3, which discusses the best platforms to use to promote said content. Finally, we round out the series with part 4, which explains the ideal nurture strategy, and end with part 5, on measuring, optimizing, and replicating results.

When it comes to content marketing for healthcare providers, good digital HCP advertising campaigns are built on high-quality content. Some marketers resist this. We’ve heard clients insist that they want to do a branding campaign, not “hand someone an eBook.” But a well-written, well-researched eBook on a topic important to your target audience is a key part of a good branding campaign in the modern age.

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And quality content is far more likely to be effective than a banner or video ad. Display ads on the Google network have only an average 0.35% click-through rate (CTR). And no one’s buying high-consideration products based on a single ad they see while perusing the web.

Would you make an expensive, high-stakes purchase based on a banner ad you saw while reading your morning news?

Healthcare providers don’t make business decisions that way either.

Content marketing for healthcare providers—when done well—works because it provides valuable information to people about a topic that’s relevant to their needs. You’re not just handing them an eBook, you’re handing them a solution to a problem they have.

And for marketers, tracking the results of a content marketing campaign is more direct than traditional branding campaigns. With the right systems in place, you can see who accessed your content, and you can usually track how they found it. That not only makes it easier to prove what’s working but, also gives you data you can use to improve your campaigns over time.

Tracking content marketing based on platforms and success is a great way to make informed decisions to improve marketing efforts over time.

In Content Marketing for Healthcare Providers–Your Content Has to be Good.

The “good” part of the equation is non-negotiable here. Healthcare providers aren’t going to read an eBook that’s sloppy, full of outdated information, or too surface-level to be useful to them. They’re highly intelligent people who understand the value of good research, and your content must meet their standards.

The information you share in your marketing materials should be backed by scientific studies and well-sourced facts and figures.

Marketers with a background in the consumer world may be used to putting a lot of value on writing a snappy tagline and relying on the emotional sale. A clever tagline may not hurt here, but it’s not a priority. And while emotions are still likely to play a role in the decision-making process for these sales, they take a back seat to more analytical concerns. Any argument you make that depends on an emotional response also needs to be built on strong research.

The main factor that defines good quality is the value of the content itself. But from a marketing perspective, how you structure it is important too. With in-depth content, you want to write and design a document that is easy to skim and get the general gist in 30-60 seconds. That helps busy readers skim to find the information most important to them. (You’ll notice we have taken the same strategy with the eBook available for download above).

It also makes it easier to repurpose. An eBook can be turned into smaller pieces of content, like multiple blog posts (such as the one you’re reading right now) or a video series. Standout lines from within the eBook can be turned into social posts and ad copy to help promote it.

hcp advertising - content marketing for healthcare providers - content types


This is the question we get most – followed with a lot of “but what I do is boring”–but that doesn’t matter. The key is to create educational content that is valuable to your target audience. It helps to get as specific as possible. Here are some starting ideas:

  • Explain what your industry sector does for a specific target segment
  • Generically explain how a solution (which happens to be what you offer) solves a common problem
  • Third-party validation, reports, product showdowns, or published clinical study
  • Case studies or genericized use cases
  • What’s newsworthy?
  • Answer the questions you get from prospects

Content [Check] – Now, what do you do with it?

Creating content that’s actually useful to healthcare providers takes a lot of work, but that’s what makes it so valuable. It sets you apart from businesses pursuing easier tactics. You get to position yourself as the brand that truly cares about helping your audience with their needs.

Quality content will earn you more trust than an ad that shows up alongside the day’s news ever would.

Once you’ve created the content, it’s time to release it into the wild with paid and organic promotion. Effective HCP advertising requires picking the right mix of platforms…but how do you do that?

Read Part 3

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Rich Quarles

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