May 27, 2016

When it Comes to Small Hospital Websites, it’s All About the Content.

  • Subline: Baby content in this case
Rotating carousel pushing promotional messages to the "baby" audience. Topics include: gift shop, women's health, and general hospital messages. Rotating carousel pushing promotional messages to the "baby" audience. Topics include: gift shop, women's health, and general hospital messages.

When tdg first started working with Prairie Lakes Healthcare System in Watertown, South Dakota, on its website back in 2012, we knew that content organization would be key. Although PLHS is a small independent hospital, there was a massive amount of content to arrange, ranging from physician bios to service descriptions to patient stories. Our web team made it an immediate priority to create a comprehensive content strategy before we dove into the design phase.

Almost immediately we realized that the newborn baby gallery was going to be one of the most popular content areas on the new website. We made sure to spend extra time on its layout design and its functionality during the development process. For many people - mostly aunts, uncles, and grandparents of the newborns - a quick look through this gallery might be their only exposure to the PLHS brand, and we wanted to make sure they had a good experience.

Later, we decided to take advantage of the huge amount of traffic to the baby gallery by teasing other content items. We added a modest rotating carousel to the top of the page: not large enough to be intrusive to folks just trying to get a glimpse of the newest addition to the family, but not so small that it was simply ignored. The result: while most people continue to go straight for the cute baby pics, a few users come back to the teasers, and we’ve observed a small boost in traffic to other content areas on the site. It’s not like using babies as pitchmen (we’re looking at you, E-Trade), but it doesn’t hurt to take advantage of their popularity.

Speaking of pitches, this is where we make our shameless plug. If you’re in the healthcare industry and would like to talk about website development or online marketing strategy, drop us a line. We’re not nearly as cute as newborn babies, but we’re way better at marketing and advertising.