As a writer who specialises in health and medical content, you probably offer similar services to other health writers (it’s common when you work in a niche like medical writing).
Most professional health writer services include producing excellent health copy, credible, well-researched articles, and so on.
Writing excellent copy and possessing the essential medical writing skillset are your features – but, importantly, they’re not the core benefits of working with you.
Benefits are more powerful than features
Highlighting benefits, not features, is one of the most powerful persuasive writing tactics.
Features are what’s great about your service, but the benefits are how the service helps your clients.
Here are some examples of how this writing technique could apply to your health writing services:
- Feature: High-quality, credible sources used for every project
- Client benefit: Feel confident knowing your content reflects the latest best practice recommendations
- Feature: Experience in oncology
- Client benefit: Save money/get better value for money as you don’t need to pay a writer to research what I already know.
Promoting the benefits is a fundamental mindset in copywriting and a key component of my copywriting course, Principles of Health & Medical Copywriting.
What are the benefits of working with you?
Like features, benefits can be generic. So, think of ways to make your benefits more personalised and relevant.
Your benefits are how your speciality service helps your clients. And, that’s a service only you can provide because it’s based on your personal journey: your career background, passions, skills, industry experience, past employers, degrees and short courses. THAT’s what needs to be in your story, as that’s why clients choose you.
- job experiences
- career highlights
- strengths and skills
- short courses
- relevant industry experience
- career journey
- past employers
- passion for health
- commitment to a healthy lifestyle.
Don’t worry if you haven’t officially worked as a writer in previous roles. Focus on the knowledge you’ve learned during your career and demonstrate how this knowledge is relevant to health communication.
During your journey, you’ve learned valuable skills that translate to health writing and form the basis of your health writing services. Think about:
- clients and patients you’ve helped
- people and companies you’ve worked with
- events you’ve attended
- tasks you’ve completed
- results you’ve achieved.
When potential clients are reading about you, and deciding whether or not to hire you, they don’t just want to know a list of your features.
(Because, in theory, anyone could create a website and include a list of features.)
Potential clients want to know what it is that makes you different and how that benefits them – and, that’s the power of your story.
No two health writers have the same journey
What I love about health writing – and what I always said during my time as President of the Australasian Medical Writers Association – is that no two writers have the same journey.
You don’t go to university or college and get a degree in health writing. Most writers don’t know they want to launch a freelance health & medical writing business right after high school (though, more of us are starting to consider becoming a freelance health writer after college). You fall into health writing, or you make a conscious decision to transition to a new career.
Maybe you begin by thinking you want to freelance, but then you get offered an amazing opportunity to work in a full-time role.
Or, if you’re like me, you work full-time for a while before deciding to take the plunge and explore freelance opportunities.
After a while, your journey becomes a key benefit.
If you’ve worked with a certain type of client (hospitals, health practices), you will find it easier to market to that client in future.
If you’re specialised in a certain type of writing (blogging, SEO copywriting, regulatory writing), you will naturally be able to sell more of that writing service in future.
Your past determines your future – so, the decisions you make at the beginning of your career are essential to your future career prospects.
How to tap into the power of your journey
Essentially, your career journey is your story. As writers, we know that storytelling is the most effective creative writing tool. Stories sell. We listen to stories, and we relate them to our lives.
When clients browse your website, social media profiles and LinkedIn page, they are reading your story, placing the words in context and deciding if they want to work with you. Your career story is powerful, and it’s a key selling point – a benefit.
To promote your career journey as a benefit, consider how you can personalise your client touchpoints.
- Your website’s about page: Make sure your career journey – and how what you’ve learned benefits your clients – is clear on your site but in particular you About page; some people say your About page should be about how your services help your clients, but it’s also a place to promote your story and journey.
- Your website’s services pages: List the benefits of working with you, and personalise them to avoid sounding generic/like everyone else.
- Your LinkedIn profile: Ensure your career history includes enough information about your journey and how what you’ve learned can be translated into health communication – then demonstrate how your learnings benefit your potential clients or employers.
- Your social media profiles: When it comes to social media, work and personal lives are incredibly blurred. Consider if and how your personal life relates to your life a health writer – what are you passionate about and do you practice what you preach? Explain how this benefits your potential clients.
- Benefits sell better than features
- Benefits are how your health writing services benefit your clients
- Your career journey is a benefit
- Personalise your benefits so they’re unique to you.
Have you used your journey to promote your health writing services?