Veterinary Content 101: What’s in a Word?

September 4, 2017 - Posted by Erin Green

It’s back-to-school season, and it’s the perfect time to brush up on your marketing savvy to give your strategy a burst of energy for the new season.

We’ve talked about the basics of marketing, that wonderful part of building your practice’s business that likely leaves you dragging your feet and grumbling in protest. There are all kinds of benefits that come with knowing your stuff for a general marketing strategy, but there’s more to it than that.

Now, it’s time to break it down into some of the core components and see just how much you know!

Today’s lesson is all about veterinary content.

You’ve likely heard the adage that delivering a message is 70% how you look, 20% how you sound, and 10% what you say. Unfortunately, in the online world, you don’t have the advantage of using tone of voice, so the pressure is on for the other two components.

This is where content comes in.

Why put the focus on content?

Content is the key to your online marketing. It’s your ticket to being seen by pet owners as a credible service and optimizing your online marketing strategies. It’s what you put on your webpages, in your blogs, on your social media, in your emails—basically every piece of messaging that pet owners will see from you.

Your content is how pet owners will learn about your practice. What you put out there is what will draw pet owners to your practice, or drive them away—it’s all in how you do it!

How do you build your veterinary content strategy?

Your veterinary marketing strategy comprises several components, including:

We’ve already discussed the first one, and we’ll get to the others in due time.

First, though, let’s talk about the four key steps for your content.

 

1.      Know your context.

Context is the biggest part of your veterinary content, and it will come from a combination of the buyer personas you create and the channels you choose to use for your strategy.

It helps you target the right audience the right way; for example, you can share an article about proper snake diets on your social media because it’s addressing a wider audience, but you really shouldn’t send that same article in an email blast to someone who has a pet hamster.

 

2.      Pick your elements.

It’s easy to think of your content as just the words you write, but it’s important to think bigger than that. Veterinary content isn’t just your writing; it can be graphic elements like your images and your videos, too. Be sure you know the elements you’ll need, and that they carry a consistent tone across all platforms.

 

3.      Do your planning.

It’s tempting to jump right in and get all your ideas started, but make sure you have a plan first. You’ll need a content calendar to help you sort everything out in a logical manner, and to make sure you’re hitting all of the important seasons and dates.

Think of it like an essay, but much less tedious. Your overall monthly theme is your thesis, your smaller weekly themes are your arguments, and important seasons and dates are the quotations you need to connect with a clear narrative flow.

Once you have your plan sorted out, you can use a tool like a WebDVM website to build a perfect home for your content. With a built-in blogging platform, easy-to-navigate pages to put your content on display, and WebDVM Social to schedule everything out, you’ll be ready to spread the word in no time.

 

4.      Define your tone.

In the online world, you don’t have the advantage of relying on tone of voice to convey meaning. Instead, you must rely on the words themselves to communicate clearly with pet owners.

Your tone will depend somewhat on where you’re writing, but it should stay more or less the same throughout. After all, you don’t want pet owners to think they’re hearing from multiple different people!

As an example, we strive to use a consistent voice across the board, but obviously, social media is going to have more flex room for an informal and conversational tone than a website or blog will.

 

Knowing the vocabulary

Like essential marketing, there are all sorts of terms and acronyms that get used in various contexts, and it can be easy to confuse the meanings.

We’ve put together these handy flash cards to help you learn and remember what some of these key terms mean.

LifeLearn bounce rate flashcard for our essential marketing course
LifeLearn CMS flashcard for our essential marketing course
LifeLearn content calendar flashcard for our essential marketing course
LifeLearn context flashcard for our essential marketing course

We’ll be posting more veterinary content terms on our social media throughout the week, so check out our Facebook and Twitter accounts for more!

 

What’s a course without a test?

We’ll also be posting a quiz for you on all your newfound (and newly remembered) knowledge on Thursday. Use this post and our social media posts for your study notes, and we’ll see you then!

Take your quiz now!

Don’t worry, we’re not keeping track of scores. This is just for your own benefit—and your veterinary practice’s, too.


Want to get started with A+ veterinary content? Learn what the LifeLearn ecosystem can do for you!