Which Is Better: Informational or Promotional Content?

Should doctors and dentists use informative or promotional content on their websites and social media?

To inform or to promote—that is the question. With all of the time and effort you put towards establishing your online presence, you want to make sure the content you’re publishing—whether on your website or social media accounts—is being noticed. When done right, these posts can be highly influential for your brand. So which can provide a bigger impact: informational or promotional content?

Typically, the goal is to have just enough of both promotional content and informational content without tipping the scales in favor of just one. Overloading a post with too much informative writing or promotional writing can turn readers away from your website. In some cases, blogs or other website content you are creating will be more promotional than informational or vice versa, based on what the situation calls for. Read on to dive deeper into the pros and cons of each type of content and discover when (and how) to use both.

The Dangers of Being Overly Promotional

Promotional content highlights your products and services with the purpose of creating awareness and demand for them. Promotional writing is also meant to target your audience while attracting new followers. If your primary goal of posting online is to drive more people to your business, it may be tempting to only publish content that advertises your products or services. Unfortunately, this all-too-common practice can hurt your long-term success if not done correctly.

When it comes down to it, people will only read your posts if they find some sort of value in what is being said, which is directly related to SEO. The more people (and search engines) find your content to be relevant, the more attention you will receive. While promoting your business can help people find a solution to their problem, they may also lose interest in your posts if every single one reads like a sales pitch. As a result, we recommend balancing both promotional and informational content.

Creating More Value with Informational Posts

By simply broadening your goal of promoting your brand online to helping people find answers to their questions, you can attract new readers and motivate them to keep returning. In addition to highlighting your practice’s ability to solve specific problems, consider offering a different type of solution: answer questions related to your business that your readers are asking. By educating your audience, you are positioning yourself as the expert, and over time, you can gradually become a trusted resource while you gain credibility. As you establish yourself to be an authority in your field, people are more prone to listening to your opinion, such as about the products and services you offer.

Evergreen Content

One of the best types of informational posts you can create for your website is “evergreen content.” Evergreen content is a blog or article written about a topic that will always be relevant to readers and won’t go out of date. Just like how an evergreen plant keeps its green leaves all year round, evergreen content retains its relevance for a long period of time. It can be very valuable to write evergreen content because it continues to help your business grow long after it’s published. A few examples of evergreen topics include “Top 5 Tips for Preventing Childhood Cavities,” “Tips for Maintaining Optimal Eye Health as You Age,” and “How to Get Rid of Puffy Under-Eye Bags.” To maximize your content strategy, we highly recommend including evergreen posts to boost your rankings on search engines and help establish your authority in your industry.

Relatable Content

Regardless of writing promotional or informational content, too much of either can weigh down your website and dissuade those reading from venturing further into your blog or exploring the rest of your site. A great way to keep them engaged, regardless of being informative or promotional, is to focus on remaining relatable to current and potential patients. Connecting information-heavy sections to real-world scenarios or framing the products or services you’re promoting in a more pragmatic way can help make the content more engaging and digestible. For dentists, describing the wide-ranging benefits of a “smile makeover” attached to a real-life example, like a wedding, can go a long way. Even though you are promoting your catalog of services and providing necessary background information on the procedures, you are still conveying a relatable story of someone in need of dental care, presumably like your readers. The same can be said for plastic surgeons by detailing the experience of someone receiving a mommy makeover. By tying the promotional and informative writing with an actual experience, the industry jargon, definitions, and data can be woven seamlessly into applicable anecdotes.

The Balancing Act

By incorporating both informational and promotional content into your online marketing strategy, you can create a mutually beneficial relationship with your readers. As they come to you for answers, you can offer help while also presenting your business as part of the solution. It all comes down to balancing content marketing and social media in one overarching goal.

Contact Rosemont Media

To learn how our knowledgeable team at Rosemont Media can help you perfect the art of posting informational and promotional content in an effective marketing strategy, please feel free to contact us.

Editor’s note: The original version of this post was published on September 29, 2015.

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