The 6 Content Marketing Mistakes Most Healthcare Companies Make (and How to Fix Them)

If it’s done correctly, content marketing can be one of the smartest, most impactful investments you can make in your healthcare company. Unfortunately, many healthcare marketers don’t understand how to use it, or view it as another way to advertise.

While content marketing is part of your marketing and sales efforts, it focuses on building relationships with your customers. And those customers could include both your patients as well as their families. It’s about bringing them helpful information that educates, earns trust, and assists them with a health issue or challenge. It’s about talking with—not at—your future patients.

Here are five content marketing mistakes we’ve seen most healthcare companies make, and how we recommend you fix them:

Mistake #1: No healthcare plan or marketing strategy

Some healthcare companies begin marketing without a plan. This is like taking a trip without directions or a destination. You won’t be able to reach your future patients if you don’t have a plan to effectively do so.

How to fix it: You must first set clear, measurable marketing goals for your healthcare company, and then devise the tactics necessary to meet those goals.

Content is the foundation of your business, and it should be true to your brand values and voice.

Mistake #2: Not knowing your target patient

Many healthcare companies make the mistake of not identifying their ideal patient beyond geographical location. This results in an ineffective and diluted message that doesn’t resonate with anyone.

How to fix it: Spend some time thinking about the patients your healthcare company serves. Are there specific services you are good at? Known for? Do you see a certain type of diagnosis more frequently than others? Understand their problems, and then develop content around their story.

Mistake #3: Not knowing if your website is working

Since many patients turn to the Internet to learn about healthcare options, it’s important to have a website. But just because you have a website doesn’t mean it’s doing its job and the patients will come.

How to fix it: Healthcare companies should have a website that is easy to navigate, current and optimized with key words. It should also be tracking metrics you can use to determine if your content is reaching the right people. Tools like Google analytics, Hootsuite, HubSpot or Sales Force can help you know what’s working and what’s not.

Mistake #4: Being too transactional

For most people, healthcare is not a one-and-done. It’s ongoing. But the busyness of the industry makes it easy to create a revolving door at your healthcare company.

How to fix it: Building trust is paramount. Successful healthcare companies take a long-term perspective and view the relationship with their patients as a journey. Don’t forget about them once they are discharged. Develop a content plan that stays in touch. The next time those patients need a product or service you offer, they won’t have to go to the drawing board. They will know they can come to you.

Mistake #5: Not asking for patient reviews

Some healthcare companies don’t have a good process for asking patients for feedback, or they may think patients won’t want to share their experience. But there’s nothing more personal to someone than their own health. If a patient is shopping their health care options, reading about someone else’s experiences with the healthcare company can be a deal breaker.

How to fix it: Have a system for consistently asking your patients for their feedback in the form of reviews, surveys or testimonials. You’ll be bringing your future patients peace of mind, and solidifying your relationship with your current ones.

Mistake #6: Not staying consistent

Starting, stopping and restarting your content efforts is confusing to your patients. Going long periods of time without being in touch can bring about feelings of doubt or confusion.

How to fix it: One of the best ways you can demonstrate trust to your patients is by having a consistent healthcare marketing plan that delivers valuable content. Create a team who is responsible for a content calendar. Assign someone to oversee the calendar, determine who will be responsible for creating the content, and establish deadlines. Planning ahead and holding yourself accountable is the best way to stay consistent with your content.

Clay Agency knows that effective content marketing takes time. That’s why we partner with healthcare companies just like yours who want to grow their content marketing efforts, but just don’t have time to do it themselves.

If you’d like to learn more about our approach to content marketing and how we work with our clients, please contact me at for a free consultation. We can work with you to give your health care company’s content marketing efforts the care and attention it deserves.

5 Ways Millennials Shop (and How It Affects Health and Nutrition Marketing)

Out with the old, in with the new is the mantra when branding today’s Health and Nutrition products. That’s because a whole new generation of shoppers are changing the rules.

There was a time when the Baby Boomer generation dictated what was on store shelves, but today, the biggest influencers in the food markets seem to be the Millennials. I happen to be one of the nearly 80 million Millennials (also known as Gen Y) born between the early 1980s and the early 2000s. I definitely agree that there is a difference between how we shop and the more traditional way Baby Boomers shop.

Here are 5 things Health and Nutrition Marketers should know about the buying habits of Millennials: 

Continue reading

Creating AdWords Campaigns for Your Health Nutrition Brand

SEO, Internet Marketing, AdWords

6 simple ways to improve your Google marketing ROI

I recently took a Google Marketing class to learn more about Search Engine Marketing (SEM) campaigns. I wasn’t there to learn how to create a campaign—though the refresher on best practices was nice. My main goal was to make sure I was spending my clients’ dollars wisely. Some brands have large budgets and others have very small budgets, but they all want the best return on investment. So, I wondered, how much money does it take to run a really effective Google AdWords campaign?

The answer: You don’t have to spend a lot of money on Google pay-per-click advertising, but you do have to invest the time to make sure you have the right strategy.

Here are 6 ways to create a more successful AdWords campaign:

Continue reading

Marketing Your Health Nutrition Product as Non-GMO

Can using an industry buzzword help boost your sales?

Everywhere I go these days, it seems someone is talking about GMO’s. Consumers are concerned that scientists have genetically altered their food and for good reason. Although genetically modified foods are based on the natural model of breeding out unfavorable characteristics, the process is complicated and slightly mysterious. Health-conscious people want assurances that the foods they buy are made the way nature intended, and GMO’s are anything but that.

“Non-GMO” is a word that seems to put consumer fears at ease. Using it on your product label could be the key to driving more sales. Here’s why:

Continue reading

Marketing Sports Nutrition Products to Everyday People


Is broadening the scope of your health nutrition brand a good idea?

The majority of sports nutrition companies that market products like energy bars, powdered supplements and sports drinks have traditionally, and almost exclusively, targeted professional athletes. That trend seems to be changing.

According to an article by Stephen Daniells of nutraingredients-usa-com, leading OTC company, Swisse Wellness is now focusing on what they term  “a premium quality sports nutrition range designed for everyday men and women who lead busy, active lifestyles.”

The article also cited a 2013  report by Packaged Facts that suggested sports brands could improve profits by focusing on casual athletes such as fitness walkers and yoga buffs.

I  can appreciate the need for companies to expand their offering to keep growing. However, as a professional athlete and a veteran marketer, I can’t help but wonder
if some of the brands that follow suit will run the risk of diluting their marketing messages. And will the added sales be worth that cost?

Continue reading

Improve Your Health Nutrition Marketing with Clear Communication


4 ways to improve how you connect

There are hundreds of health and wellness influencers out there, and they are all trying to figure out how to reach your target audience. Content marketing is a great way to carve a niche for your brand. Unfortunately, it isn’t cut and dry. Content marketing can be frustrating when you aren’t seeing measurable results, and you aren’t sure if your efforts are worth it. They are! You just have to stay on target, use the right tone, and be sure that you are speaking to the appropriate audience.

Here are 4 ways to help your brand’s message break through:

Continue reading

Using Images to Drive Social Media in #Health #Nutrition #Marketing


4 ways to get started with image-centric marketing

Image-centric marketing is the newest marketing buzzword and for good reasons. Customers are overwhelmed by information, search options and online advertisements. They need information served up in a way that is simple and easy to digest. Breaking up text with images is a great way to do this while still grabbing their attention.

If you are just now getting savvy with Social Media, image-centric marketing probably seems like one more time-consuming “to-do”. In actuality, creating image-related content is not as difficult or mysterious as it may sound. It can even help drive search results in a way that text can’t. Here’s how to start incorporating images into your Health Nutrition marketing: Continue reading

Challenging Consumer Assumptions with Health Nutrition Marketing


3 reasons to tell customers what your brand isn’t

Conventional advertising wisdom dictates that brands should stay positive by talking about what they are, not about what they aren’t. Lately, I’m finding very good reasons to do just the opposite. In a marketplace brimming with gluten-free, fat-free, sugar-free (and the list goes on) options that contain unnatural substitutes, consumers are becoming VERY interested in what isn’t in their Health Nutrition products.

Health-conscious consumers have had to learn to read between the lines, so when they see a product advertised as “sugar-free”, for instance, they no longer take that at face value. Instead, they mentally substitute the artificial ingredient they know is there: sugar-free = aspartame, Fat-free = more sugar, etc. Continue reading

Leveraging the Popularity of Fish Oils in Health Nutrition Marketing

How educating your customer can help your brand lead the way

Originally touted for improving cardiovascular health, fish oil is now a major profit-driver in the health nutrition category. According to a new report published by Transparency Market Research (, the global fish oil market is expected to reach USD 1.7 billion in 2018, up from 1.1 billion in 2011.

This growth is due in large part to the fact that health conscious consumers believe fish oils are beneficial for almost everything including hair, skin, nails, teeth, and joints. It is even used to boost fertility, fight depression and even to treat cancer. A new survey suggests fish oil pills are the most popular dietary supplement in the country—more so than even multivitamins.

As an avid CrossFit athlete, I use fish oil in my shakes every morning, and I have for several years. I believe fish oil aids muscle recovery, improves lunge performance, helps reduce fat, and of course contributes to joint and heart health. I truly believe I am more mentally and physically fit because of it, and I am not alone.

If you manufacture or sell a health nutrition product that contains fish oils, now is the time to lure in more customers by elevating that message in your marketing. Here’s are a few ideas for making it happen: Continue reading

Marketing Health Nutrition Products to People with Allergies

Peanuts 11-7-08

3 ways to increase your brand presence in the allergen-free market

Millions of Americans have allergic reactions to food, and there is no cure other than eating foods that are allergen-free. Though this is a growing problem for consumers, I see it as a great opportunity for Health Nutrition marketers to develop more and better allergen-free products.

The allergen-free nutrition market used to center on simple things like leaving out peanuts and soy, but it is expanding all of the time. According to a new report from the Global Industry Analysts (GIA), the global market for foods developed for those with food allergies and intolerances is expected to grow to more than $26.5 billion over the next five years.

Most of the new growth in the allergen-free marketplace is stemming from wheat-free, gluten-free, and lactose-free diets. Numerous celebrities now try out the benefits of gluten-free and wheat-free diets for weight loss and general health. Others are convinced that going gluten-free can help treat diseases and disorders such as autism, chronic fatigue syndrome, schizophrenia, attention deficit disorder, multiple sclerosis, infertility, migraines, and more.

With such a huge opportunity in the allergen-free marketplace, it is a great time to get into the act if you haven’t already. Here are the 3 steps you can take to make sure your customer knows about your existing or new allergen-free HNM product:

Continue reading