Are you looking to blog about health topics but aren’t quite sure how to get started? Maybe you’re a health professional that has a lot of expertise to share but struggles with how to gather your thoughts or even when to share them. I hear you. It can be hard. I’m not a fan of using jargon in blog pots but here are my top solutions for expressive aphasia secondary to graphophobia and topic generation paralysis:
Personal blogging – this was how I got started in the blogosphere. I had a child who was sick and being diagnosed or treated for something ALL the time. I still have the child (now 17 – phew) and luckily not nearly as many sicknesses nor diagnoses now but this was an easy way to get in to blogging. Why? Because it provided tons of inspiration, things to share and I was doing all kinds of research so there was also information to support my posts. That blog morphed in to a new blog as my son provided less fodder and became increasingly aware of his mom sharing his stories across the web. But I remember how easily the material flowed then and thought it would always be that way.
Now that I not only have to write for my personal blog but two business related blogs and for clients, sometimes the inspiration is a little harder to come by. It’s also extremely important that whatever topic I’m writing about resonates with the health or business trends that are top of mind for readers. I need to be able to tag the post and add an image that will engage people and find traction online. That’s a lot to think about and I write for a living. If you’re still up for the blogging experience (and I highly recommend you at least give it a try) then here’s a simple way to get started. What do you do and who do you help?
Yup. It’s that easy. What’s your specialty? Are you a Family Physician? Are you a Cardiologist or Obstetrician? Are you in the allied health practices that make up 60% of health care and offer Registered Massage Therapy or Audiology services? Are you in holistic health and practice Naturopathy or Integrative health care? I can’t even imagine the amount of expertise available in all of those fields and the number of questions you answer every day. And that’s solution #1: you write blog posts every day that you see patients. How? Because you are answering their questions in probably the same manner that you’d write a blog post. After all – blog posts are about conversations.
So now that you know what you do, I can assure you that more than your immediate patient load would love to benefit from your expertise and that they have the same sorts of questions that your patients do. In fact, 1 in 3 Canadians look online for health information and over half of them (that’s over 5 million people) then schedule follow up visits with a health pro. Ideally if they’ve found your expertise online and realize that they’ve got a problem you can solve then they’ll be calling you!
Solution #2: how do you start? Here’s where I suggest: find a really good calendar that shows you what health topics are already being focused on. This is the best one I’ve found so far from Health Canada: http://hc-sc.gc.ca/ahc-asc/calend/index-eng.php. Why? Because now that you know you’ve got wisdom to share, make the most of it by showing how much of an expert you are and why patients should come to you. It also makes it really easy to tag your posts and get them to show up across the web.
Solution #1 leads us to solution #3: your patients. The very people you spend most days of the week with are one of your best resources. If you start to notice a trend of certain questions or complaints that are happening over a week or month, write it down! If patients are commenting that a certain treatment is working wonders for them, write that down! These are all opportunities to spark inspiration and get you writing. Why? Because your practice success depends on patients just as much as they depend on you. Hopefully, if you’ve done your job right, they won’t be your patients for too long and you’ll have room for new ones. And guess what? By getting your name out there and sharing your expertise the new ones will be ready.
There are definitely more solutions to the blogging process and more steps involved, but now you can take another look at what blogging might be able to do for you, your patients and your practice with a new perspective and perhaps a prognosis of success.
Yours in health.