How to talk medical tech—without losing readers
It can be tough to write lively copy about medical procedures or equipment—but it can be done. Here are 5 solutions that really work.
One of the perpetual challenges of healthcare writing is how to discuss new medical equipment or state-of-the art procedures in a reader-friendly manner.
Too often this type of medical content is generous with technical details but skimpy with consumer benefits. Granted, it's tough to write lively copy about procedures or equipment—but it can be done.
5 tips for writing engaging healthcare content on technical topics
Some patient-friendly tactics to consider:
- Stress the benefits.
Patients want to know: How is this equipment or service going to help me? Is it going to save me time or money (with a shorter hospital stay, for example)? Is it easier or less painful than previous methods?
Does it have the potential to help me live longer, survive a disease better or recover more quickly? Can it help detect a disease better and faster than older equipment?
- Make it personal and specific.
Profile patients who have experienced the benefits firsthand. People like to read about other people—particularly when the story has a happy ending.
Patient testimonials are an important part of your medical marketing strategy. They can make a scary diagnosis and treatment plan seem less daunting.
Technicians can also bring a personal touch to your content. Talk with the professionals who use the equipment—and the ways in which it helps them to serve their patients.
- Keep it simple.
When describing how a machine works or a new procedure is done, go easy on the medical jargon. Doctors are often eager to talk about the latest technology or technique. But you may need to remind them it's best to use language a layperson can understand. A simple metaphor is often the most powerful tool.
For example, when describing how a 3-D mammogram allows specialists to scroll through slices of breast tissue, you might compare this to flipping through the pages of a book.
- Craft a compelling call to action.
Think of it as a next-stop road sign. You don't want to leave readers at a dead end. Instead, offer them a clear route to your services or more information.
Be sure the benefits are clear and compelling in calls to action (CTAs) too.
For example, if you’re promoting your lung cancer screening program, your CTA might read like this:
Screening saves lives. Lung cancer screening is covered by many insurance plans. Call XXX-XXX-XXXX to learn if you qualify.
- Choose your words wisely.
Within the walls of your facility, you might refer to your fancy new machine by its brand name. But consumers may not know about (or care about) the equipment's formal name. They're likely more concerned about how the machine will be used. So focus on that, not the name of the machine. Case in point: This search simulation suggests that just 250 searches for the term "low-dose computed tomography " take place in the United States each month. By comparison, 2,100 searches take place for the term "low-dose CT scan" in the same time period.
Nailing down your terminology is especially important when you're writing content for your hospital website. Keywords matter a great deal in search engine optimization. But these online best practices can also help you to capture the attention of your healthcare magazine or newsletter readers. If you know what they're searching for online, you know a little more about what they might be drawn to read in print.
We're equipped to help
Coffey writers are experts at creating accurate, easy-to-read healthcare content about complex medical topics. Contact us to discuss how we can write custom, compelling medical content for you. Call 888.805.9101 or email us.