“I just don’t know why someone would choose us over a competitor.” It’s a statement we’ve heard from many healthcare marketing professionals when we ask them what makes them stand out from other organizations in their service area — in essence, asking them to identify their value proposition.
That’s a real problem, because healthcare consumers are on the lookout for this vital information. In fact, your value proposition is arguably the most important information you can provide in content that speaks to your services — service-line content for healthcare providers and information about plan types and ancillary services for payers.
Your value proposition is critical to your efforts to convert website users to patients and members. Let’s look at the key questions we hear from our clients about their value propositions and get some answers.
Why is my value proposition important?
Your value proposition is your first chance to influence your users’ decisions about your organization. For users who take the step of reviewing your organization’s available services, they are signaling that they need convincing. Had they gone straight to a conversion-focused activity — finding a provider, requesting an appointment, a plan-finder tool, etc. — they would not need convincing that your organization is the right choice for them. But, by reviewing your service offerings, the user has shown that they’re not yet sure of their choice.
This type of user is asking the following question: “What makes you the right choice for me?” Your value proposition has to answer that question. And that answer has to come fast.
Where does my value proposition belong?
Your value proposition should go near the top part of content that describes your services. Ideally, you should place it prominently within the first few paragraphs.
As study after study has shown, users most often are not reading your online content. Instead, they scan it. Scanning increases the chances of the user leaving the page before the end. You need to prioritize the most important information by placing it higher on the page. For service-oriented content, that means differentiating information about your organization and the team providing the service — in other words, your value proposition.
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We’ve heard from many healthcare provider organizations that believe their services content depends on first educating the user about a condition or treatment, then placing the “Why choose us” content at the bottom of the page. The belief is that users first need to learn about the condition or treatment and then make an informed decision by learning about what makes the organization unique.
However, most healthcare consumers have already done preliminary research if they believe they have a particular condition or need a certain treatment, especially if they’ve received a diagnosis from another provider. While it’s still important to have basic information, the most valuable information is why they should choose you. Therefore, the top of the page is the logical choice for your value proposition.
What should I include?
Your value proposition shouldn’t be too long — you likely only need a few sentences or a paragraph. But it does need to do some heavy lifting for your organization. You should include differentiators, or ways your services are better or unique as compared to the competition. Check out what your competitors are saying (or not saying) in their own value propositions. How can you make your organization stand out? What do you offer consumers that they don’t, or how do you do it better?
If you have solid metrics you can point to, that’s great. Otherwise, speak to the experience the user can expect — how they can expect your team to treat them when they come through your doors or if they have questions. If you’re describing a procedure or treatment, writing about how your technology or procedures are different/better/more advanced than others in your area can help you elevate your organization in the user’s mind.
We often recommend that clients include a call to action (CTA) right after the value proposition and before getting into more of the page’s deep-dive content. This goes back to the idea of the user scanning your content. If the user is ready to take the logical next step — make an appointment, buy a plan, etc. — giving them a conversion-focused CTA right after that content helps increase the chance of a successful conversion.
Related reading: CTA Strategy for Healthcare Content: 4 Ways to Increase Conversions
What should I NOT include?
Just as important in crafting an effective value proposition is knowing what to leave out. When we review healthcare content for clients, we look for clichés, such as “state-of-the-art” or “cutting edge.” These often sound more impressive to providers and marketers than they do to consumers. And there are simpler ways to write about how advanced your organization’s services are.
Similarly, we watch for medical or technical jargon that a layperson is likely to not understand. Healthcare content often has to include difficult terminology — in fact, a user may be searching for such terms without understanding them. However, defining medical terms helps increase users’ comprehension of your content. And knowing when to avoid unnecessary medical jargon altogether will further increase your content’s readability.
Related reading: Your Healthcare Content Should Never Use This Word: 4 Reasons Why
Another red flag we look for is a mention of an individual provider. In most cases, including an individual provider or team member in content that is static (i.e., manually placed or nondynamic) increases the chances that you or someone on your team will have to manually edit that content if that team member ever leaves your organization. In addition, your content should emphasize the team-based care the user can expect at your organization. That involves expecting a high level of care from all members of the team, not depending on a specific individual.
Make sure you value your value proposition
Your services content is your best chance to convince users that your healthcare organization is the best choice for them. But that all depends on having a strong value proposition to make that case. Without it, your digital content loses a key asset. And your users are far more likely to seek services from a competitor who can make that argument more effectively.
Our clients work with us to conceive and create strong content that highlights who they are and the value they bring to healthcare consumers. Contact us to learn more about our comprehensive healthcare content solutions.