7 Tips to Make Blogging Less Painful
You’ve been told you need to blog. And not only do you need to blog, but it needs to be interesting, sharable, AND on a consistent basis! You’re tired of hearing it. You sweat over it, procrastinate, and make excuses. You may be thinking: How am I supposed to come up with so many things to write about that haven’t already been addressed by other physicians?
The following tips can help this task seem a little less painful, generate a few ideas, and get you excited about blogging.
1) Take Notes
One big struggle that marketers have is getting clients to understand that their blog or website is not purely an online entity. The biggest successes occur when the offline and online work together in harmony. Therefore, the main goal of enhancing your online presence should be to reflect who you are offline. An easy way to do this is via your blog. Think of all the notes that you take during consultations, post-operative appointments, and during phone calls with patients. Do you find that patients ask a particular question all the time? Use that and turn it into a post! Your patients will love that you’re taking the time to answer their questions, and likely return to your blog for the valuable information that you’re providing.
2) Your Opinion Matters
Patients come to you for advice. In other words, they want your opinion and professional insight. So you should feel comfortable sharing your thoughts on news topics, pop culture surgery trends, new plastic surgery products introduced to the market, the types of medications your prefer to prescribe post-surgery, the brand of breast implant you typically prefer to use, etc. Again, it’s simple: Patients want to know your opinion on the topics that matter to them. If they see that your thoughts and opinions align with their own, it’s likely that they will feel more comfortable calling you their surgeon.
3) Nice To Meet You
What do you talk about to people at parties when they ask what it’s like to be a plastic surgeon? Patients want to get to know you, and form a close relationship in order to feel comfortable trusting you. Think about what you would tell your friends’ wives at a dinner party or members of your Chamber of Commerce. Imagine that conversation in your head and transcribe it.
4) Make it Juicy
For the sake of those reading your blog, avoid boring procedural content. The word “procedure” by nature is cold, calculated, objective, and frankly…dry. Your readers want juicy content! The posts on your blog that are boring and procedural probably are not half as successful as the more in-depth, less technical, and unique posts are. Think less “Beverly Hills Breast Augmentation Surgery” and more “Cartoon Characters Speculated to Have Gone Under the Knife”. Don’t be afraid to get creative!
5) Let’s Get Together
As a doctor, it’s safe to say you probably have a few other doctor friends. Consider guest blogging on their website and/or invite them to post on yours. Have a staff member interview the two of you talking about the work you do, trends in your specific niche, or thoughts you share with a respected colleague. Again, remembering to connect the offline with online will make a world of difference. Is there a conversation you had with a colleague or staff member recently that you wish other people were eavesdropping on? Write about it!
6) Thumbs Up
Recommendations: Do you have a certain brand of scalpels, scrubs company, or surgical equipment provider that you love? Pay it forward! Review them, rave about them, tell everyone how much you value their product or service on your blog. It doesn’t necessarily have to be medical-related, either. Is there a sandwich shop down the street that you and your staff frequent? Your patients and potential patients will learn about the caliber of product you use, see the things that interest you, see your passion, gain insight to your practice culture, and the company or business will appreciate it more than you know. As a thank you, it is likely they will link back to your article from their website: win- win- win- win -win- win! BONUS: if your patients see you’re willing to review others, they might be more willing to review you.
Write about what you like to read in your spare time. List three to five things you’ve been reading, whether they’re online articles that you’ve found interesting or helpful, or a book that you like to read before bed. Don’t forget to talk about why you’re enjoying reading it. Bonus points if it’s something interesting that can help convey who you are. Again, the subject matter does not have to be about medicine/surgery/aesthetics. It can be an article from a fishing magazine! Unfortunately, surgeons can be stereotyped to be cold and heartless, so imagine potential patients researching you and finding out that you are a real person with genuine interests. BONUS: Help readers get to know your staff as well! Have them submit one thing they’ve been reading or something they’ve got bookmarked, and include a sentence or two from them about it.
All in all, blogging doesn’t have to be as painful as you may think. I hope you’ve gotten some actionable tips and thought up a few ideas you might like to write about. This is your profession — your passion. You eat, breathe, and sleep medicine. Who better to write about it? The next step is to write about it. Don’t forget to leverage your efforts to get the most out of your blog posts by promoting them on your social networks. For even more information on best practices when it comes to blogging, refer to the blogging category of the Plastic Surgery Studios blog.