We talk to companies every week looking for ideas on how to better promote their healthcare staffing agency. Almost all of them want to talk about the obvious methods of social media marketing, search engine optimization, email marketing, etc. However, most of them leave out a key component of effective web marketing – blogging. This post is part of a series discussing 10 web marketing tips your healthcare staffing agency should do right now.
5. How blogging can benefit your healthcare staffing agency. Many people we speak with have a hard time understanding the value of having a blog. Perhaps the most common objection to blogging we hear is "I don't have time." From our perspective, you don't have time NOT to blog. Blogging really takes no more time than any of your other marketing efforts. Once you work it into your marketing process it can become as routine as sending emails.
Why your heatlhcare staffing company should blog:
- Improved Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Previously I posted on how SEO can benefit healthcare staffing agency. All of these tips can also be applied to your blog and each post you create. Every time you blog you are adding content to the web. If that content is relevant, valuable and optimized for search engines you will drive traffic to you website and increase conversions.
- Increase customer loyalty. Blogs allow you to communicate information about your company more quickly, through a different voice and with more of a personal touch. Typically, blogs are more informal and cover topics you wouldn't necessarily cover on your corporate website. Blogs are a great way to interact with and introduce yourself to your customers in a new way. This will improve the overall trust and relationships you have with your candidates and hospital clients.
- Personal branding. Blogs allow those contributing to the content creation to also increase their personal branding. Allow your employees to establish themselves as experts at what they do and show off this internal expertise to your customers. This will greatly benefit your employees and increase their job satisfaction.
- Brand extension. A blog is simply another platform from which you can promote your healthcare staffing company's brand. Since the platform is controlled by you, you set the message.
- Increased customer interaction. Blogs are interactive. They encourage sharing and participation. The goal is to bring your customers and candidates in to this environment and begin interacting with them in order to improve your relationship.
- Creating buzz. Blogs are great at creating buzz for new ideas, promotions, products or services. Often times, news on your website is reserved for articles and press releases. However, blogs allow you to write short posts and present timely information for the purpose of getting people excited and engaged about what your company is doing.
- Easy to add content. Updating your website can be a major task, especially if you work for a large company. Blogs make it easy. Every blogging platform out there allows you to quickly and easily update content. By frequently adding good content, your company will outpace your competition in terms of brand promotion.
- Improved internal collaboration – Get your employees involved. Make it fun and interesting. Doing so will create a better work surrounding. In addition, your employees will feel more engaged and connected as company information is spread more quickly and easily. As information begins to pour out of your employees, they will all get to know each other better and understand the knowledge each of them has to offer.
Tips for creating a good healthcare staffing blog for your company:
- Don't use a separate URL or sub-domain. If your corporate website url is www.agencynursesplus.com a subdomain would be www.blog.agencynursesplus.com. The best option is to go with www.agencynursesplus.com/blog.
- Create interesting and valuable content that people want to read. Even if it isn't 100% work related, make sure it is interesting and relevant to your audience. Creating good content will help improve your search rankings. We constantly analyze the traffic on our Staffing Robot sites and we're always amazed by some of the search terms that bring people to us. Sometimes the most obscure search words can lead people to one of your posts and ultimately to your business.
- Don't worry about revealing information that is too valuable. In fact, if you're worried that the information you're posting is too valuable or something you should charge for – you're on the right track for producing good content.
- Don't forget to apply proven SEO practices. Again, all the SEO tips for healthcare staffing agencies we've given can be applied to every blog post you write.
- Choose the right blogging platform. There are several out there. We personally recommend WordPress. It's stylish, flexible, easy to use and can really help you with your SEO. I started this blog on the TypePad platform years ago before we had done our homework. I very much regret the decision. I would switch this blog to the WordPress platform if it wasn't such a chore and had the risk of losing all of the SEO it has. But trust me and learn from my mistake – start with WordPress.
- Don't micromanage your bloggers. If you allow your employees to blog (which you should) trust them and let them blog. Set proper guidelines and expectations but don't micromanage the process. Doing so will kill the creative element, restrict the knowledge your employees share and ruin the authenticity of the messages.
- Post frequently. How often is always the question. If you can do it daily, go for it. If not, shoot for weekly. If you can't do that, monthly is the minimum if you want to really see any value. Remember this, one of the things that makes a good blog is to talk about relevant and timely information. So, blog as often as needed to keep up with current events. Also, remember that Google is highly in favor of websites that add more content to the web often. Doing so will greatly increase your rankings.
- Link out. There is a lot of debate as to whether or not you should link to other sites from yours and if you do, what kind of links you should use. I'm a big believer in linking out with normal (followed) links because I think it can help you. Why? Including outbound links provides more value to your readers by adding something more to your content than just your own work. It also increases the chance of getting inbound links and new followers from other sources.
- Use your brand. Make your blog look consistent with your branding. Even if the purpose of your blog is very different from your corporate site, you still want people to recognize it as your company's brand.
- Make it social. Connect and closely integrate your social media sites into you blog for quick sharing and increased interactivity. This should be part of your healthcare staffing agency's social media marketing strategy.
Once you have your blog set up and a blogging strategy laid out, the only thing a blog costs you is time. However, if you do it right, it can be the most cost effective part of your web marketing and also deliver you the largest return.
Blogging doesn't have to be a complicated venture. In fact, most people find it a very enjoyable part of their job. There are several things to consider before you and healthcare staffing agency start blogging. Staffing Robot can help you choose the right blogging platform, integrate it with your other sites, brand it with your corporate look and feel and help you with a strategy. If you're interested in learning more contact us and we'll get you started blogging right away.
Next post – Running Successful Ad Campaigns on the Web for Healthcare Staffing Agencies
The greatest thing about marketing on the web is that all of your efforts can be highly targeted and easily tracked. This ensures you get the ROI you're looking for when it comes to your marketing campaigns. Running ads for your healthcare staffing agency on search engines, Facebook and LinkedIn should be a big part of your online marketing strategy.