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The best content marketers need to understand their audience to create blog content that resonates, but those at healthcare SaaS companies are especially challenged in this task. Blog content for hospitals, physician practices, and other health tech buyers must resonate with each member of a diverse buying team and serve a complex decision-making process.
Your choice of blog topics can be critical in how effectively you attract and connect with these buying teams.
Sarah Loeffler, content director for Spot On, a SaaS content marketing agency, explains why the right topic focus for your blogs is key: “When you’re talking about health IT solutions, buying cycles are long, and people on the buying team research at different speeds and have different needs. So you need a variety of topics not only to attract—but also maintain—their engagement over time and speak to many concerns.”
To hit the mark with blog topic selection, you should examine how each blog supports your overarching business goals and marketing plan. Whether you plan to audit and overhaul existing blog content or create new material, your approach to topic selection should be part of this larger healthcare SaaS content marketing strategy.
With endless options for potential blog topics and angles, how do you know what will work best? Loeffler shares the top 7 questions she considers when brainstorming and planning a successful topic approach.
Before identifying blog topics to pursue, you’ll want to examine the keywords most likely to be used by your prospects during their research process. While these keywords won’t dictate your content strategy, they can help guide areas of blogging interest.
“The keywords and phrases that you will use in your blog titles and within your content play a strong role in how easily search engines can find your content, and thus the amount of traffic to your website,” notes Loeffler. “You can write all the best content in the world, but if nobody ever sees it, it's like having a great car that doesn't have wheels.”
What makes a good keyword? “Aim for meaningful keywords with the highest traffic volume and achievable ranking difficulty on search engine results pages. Your goal will be to appear higher on results pages than content from your competitors when prospects are conducting searches using these keywords,” says Loeffler, noting a variety of tools, such as Semrush and Moz, are available to conduct this keyword research. Alternatively, many health IT companies rely on a SaaS content marketing agency to provide them with keyword and search engine optimization (SEO) guidance.
“The right team can help you use data to guide topic decisions and provide insights on areas where competitors’ content is performing well. Sometimes even small tweaks to your keywords can move the needle on site traffic,” she says.
Having SEO in mind as you brainstorm and prioritize blog topics will help ensure you’re on the right path. For example, suppose you’re a revenue cycle solution vender that has decided to pursue a blog discussing hospital denials management strategies, but you need help figuring out where to focus. “For illustrative purposes—and this is a bit simplified, but let’s say your keyword research shows ‘authorization denials’ has considerably more traffic and less ranking difficulty than ‘eligibility denials,” Loeffler says. “You’ll know that focusing on authorization issues better aligns with the types of searches people conduct and will have an easier time ranking in search results, so your traffic potential focusing on this topic area is greater.”
Once you have a healthy set of keywords to work into your blog titles and body copy at some point, you're ready think about your actual content approach. Content marketing strategy in healthcare IT will need a mix of blog content that addresses audiences throughout their research and buying process. Blog topics tend to be top or middle in the marketing funnel and fulfill the following functions:
Failing to address a specific touchpoint, such as problems or understanding comparative criteria, can slow or impede lead progression.
“Many websites struggle with achieving the right balance,” says Loeffler. “All focus on product features with little attention to the user’s pain point can hinder your pipeline. Too much general interest content around issues, and you’ll miss out on opportunities to convert.”
Ensuring you have blog topics spanning the awareness, consideration, and decision stages and incorporating keyword use sets up the foundations for your site to succeed.
Loeffler cautions not to narrow funnel assessment to only your blog section. “Examine where blog topics can serve the larger marketing efforts occurring across your site,” she says. “Often, you’ll find topic inspiration by examining your product feature pages.” She cites the example of an EHR company with technology that supports secure telehealth hosting. You will likely have the opportunity for “awareness” blog content that discusses the value of telehealth (helping site visitors recognize need), and “consideration” content that compares approaches to managing telehealth security, including your product’s approach (helping visitors understand how to assess the value of a product).
“Such blog content serves to prime the reader for evaluating your product more favorably when they view your product page referencing telehealth capabilities or attend a product demo at a later point,” Loeffler says. “Blog content doesn't exist on its own. It also needs work within the larger ecosystem of how readers will likely flow through your website.”
When brainstorming topics around your gaps, also take a critical eye look at whether you are addressing the needs of each member of the buying team. “Often, SaaS companies produce a lot of content on a site that's geared around the CIO, since they're often the primary decision-maker,” notes Loeffler. “But do you also have content that targets the team member holding the purse strings? For example, do you have content about how to build a business case for investment or how to calculate ROI? The CFO or other financial leadership will also be a key influencer in most decisions, so you want to be sure you’re addressing their interests as well.”
As you assess which blog topics will aid funnel efforts and fill any messaging gaps, you’ll also want to examine how to get the most value out of your development efforts.
For example, if you have a common theme, you’ll often find it useful to choose related blog topics to create a pillar page. Basically, your team will pull insights from your collection of blog posts, also known as a content cluster, onto a page that comprehensively covers the subject. Having an “ultimate guide” pillar page on a topic that links to and from your individual blogs tends to do well with search engine algorithms.
“Look at types of content already performing well, with high traffic and high time on page. Can you add a few additional angles to create a pillar page? This is an easy way to best position your site for more pipeline,” says Loeffler.
As you brainstorm and prioritize topics, you should seek opportunities for your team or a customer to give unique insights. In this age of AI-generated content, a subject matter expert (SME) can provide a deeper perspective and specialized knowledge to help your content stand out and resonate with prospects.
Search engines also reward content that reflects real experience and authority, as seen with Google’s EEAT guidance for content creators. That’s because site visitors are more apt to spend time and engage with content that they find helpful and credible.
Tapping into subject matter experts can be a great way to come up with practical and trustworthy information that your audience can rely on. Blogs featuring SMEs also can build credibility and trust in your brand—an essential part of any marketing strategy in healthcare.
“Don’t be shy about including your technical team early in your topic planning,” Loeffler says. “Your SMEs hear prospects’ questions all the time while in the field or at conferences. So they can be great at anticipating the types of concerns and questions your website visitors will have and suggesting associated topics.”
Another great source for blog ideas can come from thinking about your offers and working backward from your larger SaaS content marketing strategy, Loeffler says. “For example, suppose you’re a surgical scheduling vendor and you already have a webinar discussing the importance of room turnover speed or a product demo discussing turnover speed tracking,” she says. “You might find it valuable to create blog content around common sources of room turnover delay or more general tips for improving OR utilization.”
Loeffler adds that thinking about related offers can also be helpful when prioritizing your blogging efforts. Choosing one blog topic over another will sometimes come down to recognizing opportunities for partnering the piece with related gated content. “If I know I already have a strong form-restricted case study, tool, or another piece of content that complements a blog topic well, then I’m more likely to choose that blog topic than other options,” she says.
Chances are, you will have far more blog ideas than resources to execute them. Therefore, when assessing and prioritizing which topics to pursue, Loeffler advises seeking content that will offer the greatest potential for longevity or repurposing. For instance, blogs highlighting annual statistics around an issue or “best of” lists can be easily updated over time. Or a blog topic can be versioned into another type of content, such as a video, social post, or visual, or vice versa.
“Developing content is resource-intensive, so you want to have a strategy at the outset that ensures you’re making the most of available vehicles and channels to reach your audience,” she says.
The best SaaS content marketing strategy helps each buying team member realize they have a pain point, gives them ways to resolve it, and shows them how to analyze options. Spot On is a proven SaaS content marketing agency that has helped countless health tech companies do just that. With deep knowledge of healthcare IT buying teams and content marketing best practices, we can help you audit your current content to fill gaps and create an entire funnel of targeted, searched-for content to help you achieve your business goals. Schedule a time to discuss your digital marketing and content strategy needs today. We’re here to help!
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