When you’re planning your content matrix for content marketing, you’ll use the keywords you’ve identified as the best ones to reach your target market. The people you’ve identified are likely to look for specific keywords, and you will make sure that you have great content that will be likely to show up for them when they search. If you’re in the health and wellness field, the first keywords that come to your mind may be medical keywords.
Is that the right direction for your blog, your social media posts, or your email marketing newsletters? Content marketing with medical keywords is a must for health care professionals, but it can be tricky.
Remember the path to purchase
People who need healthcare or health-related goods and services usually start their search with a problem. Unless they are unusually knowledgeable, they’re not going to begin with “calcific insertional Achilles tendinopathy,” even if that’s what they’re facing. They’re likely to begin with “heel pain.”
Often, the first round of searching is mostly about finding the right vocabulary to search for. A heel pain sufferer will learn that he is going to find more information about his needs if he looks for “Achilles tendon” and will begin searches with that very general term. The next round of searches will confirm his hypothesis that he has Achilles tendon trouble and give him some initial knowledge of treatment options. He’ll narrow down his search to “Achilles tendon surgery” if that sounds like the best option, and will spend some time learning about the surgery and the challenges of recovery. The next round of search will probably be the first time he is looking for a place where he can get treatment, whether that means surgery, chiropractic care, or home remedies.
That’s not the only path, though. Imagine a second potential patient. After she reads about heel pain, she could end up purchasing a product for plantar fasciitis support. When talking to the unaware consumer, the orthopedic surgeon and the home medical care e-commerce shop are in competition for the attention of that consumer.
As the two imaginary consumers learn more, they’ll head down different search paths. Your website needs to be there along the path, even though you’ll lose some early readers.
When you’re talking to healthcare consumers who are researching their concerns, “heel pain” is just as good a keyword as “tendinitis” or “plantar fasciitis.” When those consumers move toward a decision, though, they’re likely to be using the words they’ve seen during their research.
At this point, you need to show up not for “heel pain” but for “orthopedic surgeon near me” or “plantar fascitis orthotics.” It’s the same for any health and wellness website. The people who need your goods and services will start their with broader, more general terms for the problem they’re experiencing.
Google tells us that they’ll visit ten or more information sources as they narrow down their search to something more specific. And often that means they’ll be moving from common terms to medical terms. You need to be aware of the variety of terms they’re likely to use. You’ll also need to use those terms in different content at your website.
In fact, this is especially important for medical keywords because search engines may not be completely up to speed. Heel cups, orthotics, night wraps — a robot may not grasp that these are all things that can help with heel pain.
What might keep you from using varied keywords?
We’ve had clients who were uncomfortable with using a variety of keywords. If it’s a catechin, they don’t want to call it an antioxidant.
Accuracy is good, but you need to show up where your potential customer is looking. A post that shows up well for a broad term and then explains why a narrower term is more accurate can be just what your potential customer needs. If she finds another page on your website as she narrows down her research, you’ve just become a super helpful resource. Your narrower post can explain the value of the product or treatment you’re offering and lead her to a sales page… and she’ll feel comfortable with your sales pitch because you’ve already helped her.
As you plan your content marketing campaign, use the full range of medical keywords your consumer is likely to search for, from the most common terms to the most specific medical keywords.