Healthcare Content Marketing by the Numbers

According to a recent study, 69.2% of healthcare marketers surveyed use content marketing, yet only 27.8% consider it highly effective. The most popular answer — from two thirds of respondents — is that it’s “somewhat effective.” 75% thought their content promotion strategies were “somewhat effective.”

In other words, healthcare marketers are generally not very happy with their content marketing.

Only 21.2% of respondents said they had a documented plan. Just over 30% said they had a strategy, but it wasn’t written down. That means that nearly half had no strategy at all. More than half also didn’t track their ROI from content marketing, or felt they did so ineffectively.

What are marketers trying to accomplish with healthcare content marketing?

Respondents had quite a few goals for their content marketing. Here they are, from the highly popular top three on down:

  • Brand awareness
  • Engagement
  • Patient loyalty
  • Lead generation
  • Upsell /cross-sell
  • Lead nurturing
  • Patient evangelism

And yet, asked what metrics they used to decide the value of their content marketing, more than half chose website traffic, which is a good general metric but doesn’t necessarily align with the goals on that list. Other top metrics included feedback from patients and call volume.

Asked about the specific parts of their content marketing that they found challenging, every item on this list was considered “not challenging” by fewer than one quarter of those surveyed. In other words, all these items are tough for healthcare marketers:

  • Measuring content effectiveness
  • Producing engaging content
  • Lack of budget
  • Producing content consistently
  • Producing a variety of content
  • Gaps in knowledge and skills of internal team
  • Lack of integration across marketing
  • Finding trained content marketing professionals
  • Technology-related challenges
 These items are listed in the order of frequency, and they confirm the respondents’ feeling that they just aren’t tracking the effectiveness of their content marketing very well. They’re also having trouble producing great content on a regular basis.

What healthcare content marketing tactics are being used?

The top 5 tactics used for content marketing by those surveyed:

  • Social media content other than blogs (Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube being the top three choices)
  • Articles on their own websites
  • Videos
  • eNewsletters
  • Blogs

Blogs replace print in the Top 5 list, compared with last year. Yet the largest proportion, 38.8%, published less than once a month. It’s hard to think of that as a blog, frankly. 28.6% published monthly, 26.5% published weekly, and 6.1% published daily.

When asked what they’re trying to improve in their healthcare content marketing, more than 70% said they were just trying to produce great content, and slightly more said they were trying to produce visual content. A quarter of those surveyed had just one person — themselves — working on this. Another 58.5% had 2 to 5 people on their team. Only 2.4% outsource to a company like Haden Interactive.


So we’re looking at one or two people in a healthcare facility, trying to create excellent content even though that’s not their primary job or skill set. They’re finding it challenging to get that content produced and promoted, and they’re dissatisfied with their results… or not sure they’re even getting any results.

We could come up with all kinds of specific suggestions, but it’s pretty obvious that the actual solution to the challenges facing these healthcare experts — from producing great content to tech problems –is simply to hire a web firm to help.

Contact us and get past the challenges to the benefits of effective healthcare content marketing.







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