“Do blog post titles really matter?” is a question we’re commonly asked, and it’s understandable why there’s uncertainty over the answer. Sure, the real informational value comes through the blog post copy that follows the title, but the title is what people see when searching for information online. If the title doesn’t grab their attention long enough to click on it, then the content of the blog post—no matter how eloquent or unique—isn’t even seen.
Think of it this way. Your medical or healthcare practice’s blog posts are like beautiful, cozy rooms that you’ve filled with inspiring information about your practice’s expertise and how you can help them, and why they can trust in you above other options they’re considering. You want potential patients to come sit in these rooms for a while so that they get to know you and so they feel safe enough to share some information about themselves. You just need them to walk through the door.
Blog post titles are the sign on that door that either says “open me!” or “stay out!” They need to be inviting, inspiring, or enticing enough to make new patients open the door by clicking on the title to open the content of the post. Titles need to give patients enough information about what’s behind that door, and that it’s worth opening.
Here’s an example. I recently wrote a blog post geared for doctors and physicians about how patients research their symptoms and treatment options online before deciding which medical provider they will choose.
The working title was A New Patient’s Path To Your Waiting Room May Be Slow, But Here’s Why You Need To Stay With Them Every Step Of The Way. While it’s an accurate summary of what the post is about, it’s clunky and not very inspiring or engaging. So I played around with the notion of guiding potential patients along their path to making a decision about which doctor or medical practice to choose. Because we know that being on that path and finding the right information online can often seem bewildering for patients, I came up with Why Your New Patients Are Like Hansel & Gretel—And How To Leave A Trail At Every Turn Leading To Your Waiting Room.
The Hansel and Gretel imagery immediately gives the reader three keys to the content: 1) patients can easily get lost in the “woods” of information and options; 2) these patients are searching for guidance and a solution; and 3) there’s a way to find them and guide them to your practice.
Again, an effective blog post title needs to be inviting, inspiring, or enticing enough to draw your reader in, so you can also think of it in terms of “what reward am I offering with this content?”
For potential patients, the reward is often how you can help them solve a pain or condition, why certain practices or procedures are most effective, and what can be done to resolve an issue. How, why, and what are powerful words to start with in titles when combined with specific keywords that tell the purpose of the blog post. For example, let’s consider a practice that specializes in varicose vein procedures and wants to inform patients that the painful vein stripping techniques of the past are long gone:
- “What You Need To Know About Today’s Varicose Vein Treatments, And Why You’ll Wish You’d Done It Sooner.”
- “How You Can Get Your Active Life Back With The Latest Varicose Vein Procedures.”
- “Why You Shouldn’t Let Your Grandmother’s Horror Story About Varicose Vein Removal Keep You From Considering Treatment.”
There are many variations you can play with, but these first three invite and inspire patients to consider your information, entice them with the reassurance that procedures have come a long way, and offer the reward of finding a solution to getting rid of their varicose veins.
So yes, blog post titles absolutely do matter when it comes to attracting prospective patients. Use them like a sign on the door that beckons, “Welcome! You’ve come to the right place. We’re here to help.”
And if you need a boost getting started on blog post titles, download our two free months of medical blog post titles here. And if you’re curious about an example of best practices in marketing for medical practices, view this case study about a vascular surgery group that was not having success with traditional marketing methods but increased their website traffic 300% and generated hundreds of new appointment requests with online marketing.
At Baker Labs, we believe in the power of content marketing and use a variety of digital strategies to help medical practices grow by attracting new and loyal patients and establishing the medical practice’s reputation as a leader in their region. Contact us for a free marketing assessment of your medical practice.