Breathe more life into physician profiles
Use these 6 tips to showcase your provider’s personalities, passion and warmth.
As a healthcare marketer, chances are it's part of your job to help pair your providers with potential patients. You need people to sit up and say, "This is the doctor for me!"
How do you inspire that connection in your healthcare magazine or hospital publication?
One powerful way is to highlight your physicians' human sides when crafting their profiles, as well as articles in which they’re featured prominently. Expertise matters, but people also want caring providers they can relate to and trust.
Think beyond credentials
So how do you tell stories that reveal your providers’ warmth and humanity? Here are six ways to bring out a provider's personality and passion in your copy:
1. Ask inspiring questions. When interviewing providers, ask questions likely to prompt thoughtful answers versus run-of-the-mill replies. The difference can be subtle. For instance, rather than asking "Why did you become a doctor?" you might try, "Tell me about the moment you first wanted to become a doctor."
The question could reveal a compelling anecdote or a purpose-driven decision that people will want to hear.
Some other good conversation starters:
- Tell me something about yourself that might surprise people. What have your patients taught you?
- What should your patients know about the way you practice medicine and care for them?
2. Choose quotes thoughtfully. Focus on statements that show a love of patient care or a passion for a particular field. These kinds of quotes reveal the kindness and humanity in providers. Maybe that’s a nurse who couldn’t imagine himself in any other career. Or a doctor who describes helping people get better as her greatest reward.
3. Call on super fans. A truly thankful patient adds valuable credibility to your provider profiles. So step back from self-promotion and let patients sing their doctors' praises. At Coffey, we call this a "circle of caring."
"Here was a doctor I had never met before telling me I had serious heart problems. But I felt his care and concern as soon as he came into my room. So I put my life in his hands."
—Patient of cardiologist David Addley, DO, FACC
Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital
4. Show the community connection. Doctors aren't just part of your hospital. They're part of your community. So highlight the roles they play where people live. Do they volunteer their time locally? What sorts of activities and groups are they involved with?
If you learn that a provider backs a local cause, don’t stop there. Find the why behind the passion. When asked, “Why is this cause important to you?” Vincent K. Arlauskas, MD, had this to say about why he participates in local breast cancer awareness and fund-raising events.
“Every one of us has been impacted by breast cancer at some level,” says Dr. Arlauskas. “I have family members and loved ones who are survivors. I also have loved ones who did not survive. It’s important that women of all ages, including young adult women, know and understand the symptoms of breast cancer in order to identify it as early as possible.”
—Feature about Southeast Georgia Health System’s breast care center and one of its surgeons.
5. Develop an eye for details. Colorful details enliven copy and help readers relate to doctors as real people with life experiences—not just as healthcare pros. Show them as people who patients will want to get to know.
When interviewing a provider, ask questions that will help you find these interesting elements:
- What was it like growing up in your hometown?
- What is your favorite TV show, movie or book.
- Tell me about the most fascinating place you’ve ever been.
- What are you hobbies?
6. Maximize small spaces. Even if you only have a sentence or two to spotlight a provider, try to strike a balance between practicality and personality. Besides highlighting the provider’s specialty, you might mention what inspired them to choose a medical career, or what they love best about their specialty. Say you’re introducing a new surgeon: “Orthopedic surgeon John Doe, DO, specializes in total knee and hip replacements. His favorite part of his job is when he gets to help people live pain-free, active lives. To make an appointment, call…”
Custom storytelling: Count on Coffey