The truth about done-for-you health content
Originally published Aug 2017. Updated with even more awesomeness Mar 2019.
To be 100% transparent, the reason I’m writing this is to find out YOUR thoughts about and experience with done-for-you health content (here’s the link to the survey).
I’m speaking as a prolific creator of it.
Not only do I create the done-for-you health articles I sell here; but, I’ve ghostwritten and/or edited hundreds of health and wellness blog posts.
This is seriously my jam.
Especially well-researched authority-building health content.
But, let’s be honest … done-for-you health articles are NOT for everyone!
At the risk of losing sales, let me spill the truth about done-for-you health content. (I surely don’t want you to have buyer’s remorse!)
What even is done-for-you health content?
Done-for-you content goes by a few other names, like “whitelabelled” or “PLR” (Private Label Rights). It’s basically content (i.e. articles, programs, etc.) that you buy the rights to use as your own.
For example, the health articles I write are created specifically for health & wellness professionals who want to build their authority with credible, research-based content. They’re in Word docs, so you can edit them and use them almost however you want to.
You can re-purpose them in so many ways:
- customize & personalize them (more on this below)
- publish them as your own blog posts and say you’re the author
- copy them into your newsletter
- pull out excerpts and quotes for social media posts
- give them away as opt-in incentives to grow your email list
- add them to your paid health & wellness programs
- talk about the research in your podcast or video
The only restrictions I have are that you don’t re-sell them, don’t use them as guest posts on another website, nor submit them to your prof as your assignment (’cause that’s just icky!).
So, by purchasing pre-written done-for-you health articles, you’re essentially buying a license to use it from the person who sold it to you. And you have a lot of freedom to re-purpose it how you wish.
Why I think done-for-you content rocks (for some people)
As health practitioners, we’re also entrepreneurs and online business owners. And we’re often our own VAs, social media managers, customer service agents, and accountants. Sometimes we even design our own graphics and websites.
You get the picture. We wear many hats when we’re running our businesses. And that takes a lot of different skills.
I don’t know about you, but when I went to nutrition school, I wasn’t that interested in (nor did I learn) the basics of bookkeeping, social media management, nor graphic/website design.
So, this is why I think done-for-you content rocks (for some people) – because YOU don’t have to create it yourself.Done for you health content rocks because YOU don't have to create it yourself. Click To Tweet
Sometimes it just makes sense to outsource certain tasks and responsibilities.
To be honest, I keep farming out more and more things for my biz. Sometimes because they’re not my passion or zone of genius. Most times it’s because I frankly suck at them and hate doing them.
I stopped pushing myself to do stuff I wasn’t good at
Example 1 – I was a nutritionist
Three years ago I was a nutritionist. Now I’m a health writer, blogging expert, and research nerd. These are what I love to do. And I’m freaking good at it. (Oh, and I’ve been researching/writing science-based health info since I started university a long time ago – it’s not a new skill of mine.) 😉
Honestly, I didn’t thoroughly enjoy being a nutritionist and acting as a health mentor and coach. I had great clients, but it didn’t light me up. It wasn’t my zone of genius. It wasn’t my jam.
I’d rather research and write health topics All. Day. Long. rather than muddle my way through someone’s diet journals or practice food photography.
And I have tons of respect if you are absolutely fabulous at coaching and being a health mentor for your clients. I can imagine how it feels when someone tells you that they’ve met their health goals, they’re feeling so much better, and they actually looove your recipes. That your professional recommendations and support with a new nutrition and lifestyle plan has benefited them immensely.
Example 2 – I was a graphic designer (LOL)
In the course of my business, I’ve muddled my way through things … like graphics.
If I really tried to do them well, then I would spend SO much time trying to tediously grind through each one to do a great job. And that time is more valuable to me if I focus on my superpowers like research and writing. I don’t have an eye for visual design, so I made do with what I could and it was good enough for me.
NO LONGER! I’ve starting to get professional help with them because outsourcing stuff I suck at just makes so much sense.
You know how you feel when you’ve turned around someone’s health with a new amazingly better lifestyle? THIS is how I feel when someone tells me that the blog posts they buy from me helps them:
- “Look smart! I look like I’ve spent a lot of time researching those articles.”
- “Save a ton of hours from looking. I know how to do this but there are only so many hours in the day.”
- “Establish trust with people so they’re willing to pay for my services.”
- “Get guest blog opportunities. People trust and share what I write. Because people trust me I’ve been able to develop ambassador affiliate relationships.”
What I’m saying is that no one is great at everything. And being an entrepreneurial health practitioner takes a TON of different skills and a TON of time.
Perhaps it’s about “self-awareness” (have you seen Gary V’s video on it?):
THIS is why I love done-for-you health content.
If each of us goes “all in” on our strengths, we can rock as a team. We can change the world of health.
And we can ramp up your business.
Technically, I could keep pushing myself to be a graphic designer or a nutritionist, because of the narrative that says “that’s what I should do.” But my designs would NEVER be as good as what professional ones look like. My nutrition clients would never see and feel that spark of passion in how I help them.
If I forced myself to grind through every day, I would clearly be less effective and successful as my colleagues (you!) who are amazing with graphics and/or clients.
Do you remember those few teachers or professors who made each class a totally amazing, memorable experience? They’re the ones who filled it with enthusiasm and had that spark for their subject? Ya, that’s me when it comes to research and writing about health topics.
I would never help as many people or make as much of a difference if I constantly did what I “should” and spent So. Much. Time. on my weaknesses.
Pros of done-for-you health content:
- Saves you time because you’re not creating everything from scratch.
- You can have ready-made blog or newsletter articles that you just have to customize and publish.
- And saves money from hiring someone to create articles exclusively for you.
- You don’t have to pay a freelance writer $300 for each 500-word article custom written for you
- Not to mention saving frustration from doing something you don’t love that isn’t your superpower.
- You don’t have to feel overwhelmed doing tedious work when you’d rather help your clients or market your business instead.
Win – Win – Win!Done-for-you health content saves you time, money, and frustration #DFY #health #blog Click To Tweet
Some downfalls of done-for-you health content
Done-for-you content definitely solves a lot of problems for a lot practitioners.
Let’s be honest, even awesome done-for-you health content has a huge drawback. It isn’t unique to you.
Nope, it isn’t.
Others, sometimes hundreds of others, are marketing that exact same content at the exact same time as you.
So, herein lies two opportunities:
- Investing in a more exclusive (not as “mass market”) done-for-you product (more on this below).
- Customizing and personalizing done-for-you health content.
I would argue that you absolutely can use done-for-you as is, BUT you should make at least a small effort to customize it to your brand, your voice, and your audience. I highly recommend that you consider it 80 percent done, where you just need to tweak it by 20 percent before you put it out into the world.
BTW, if you pay for DFY content, it should be high-quality and error-free. If you ever find mistakes in something from me, please send me an email to let me know!
You should edit it so it represents your brand in your voice speaking to your audience.
I’ve listed a bunch of ways to customize “done for you” blog content here.
(I’m also creating a mini-course to walk you through how to customize “done for you” content.)
I would say that spending 20-40 minutes customizing each health article is well worth the serious discount from having a writer custom create something exclusively for you. And it’s certainly well worth the massive time and frustration savings if research and/or writing are not your jam.
You can think about it this way too: what can you create from scratch in 20-40 minutes?
If the answer is ‘awesome content that your audience loves and you’re proud of,’ then you don’t need DFY content.
The key to successfully using done-for-you health content is in the niche-specificity, plus quality, plus exclusivity, plus customization.The key to successfully using done-for-you health content is in the niche-specificity, plus initial quality, plus exclusivity, plus customization. #DFY Click To Tweet
What about SEO? (In other words what’s the truth about duplicate content?)
If you’re already ranking well on search engines and you want to maintain that status, you know you need at least a few epic, exclusive, high-quality long-form articles.
Congrats, by the way (I know how hard it is)!
Let’s face it, there’s definitely a difference in putting out content for paid programs and putting out quality content on the internet to build authority.
Done-for-you health articles are awesome when you need to fill a gap for content … and you’d want to get the most epic niche-specific DFY content (or two of them) and customize the crap out of it before trying to rank it on search engines. You definitely want to avoid duplicate content if you’re vying for that first page of search results!
Don’t forget, you can easily incorporate done-for-you health content for your free opt-in incentive, paid programs, or even your newsletter and social media content.
Cons of “done for you” health content:
- It’s not exclusive to you (but it doesn’t have to be generic or mass market, either).
- You will be competing with every other practitioner in your niche for your ideal clients’ attention. This is especially true if you’re all posting the same damn thing at the exact same time! This is why it’s so important to make sure it’s niche-specific and NOT “mass market” (i.e. NOT sold to hundreds upon hundreds of your colleagues, like mine that automatically discontinue once the 73rd person purchases it!).
- You still should spend some time customizing and personalizing it.
- The more you customize, the more it will speak to YOUR audience, and the more exclusive it becomes online.
- It’s going to need a lot of work to support your efforts to rank on search engines.
- If you’re ranking already, you know you need at least a few epic, exclusive, high-quality long-form articles–called cornerstone of pillar content. It can be tough and competitive. Technically, you can use the very best done-for-you article on the market (or put two similar ones together), customize the crap out of it, then keyword-optimize it. This is second best scenario for ranking on Google. If SEO is your priority, then you probably want custom epic content that’s keyword-optimized. I can help you with my freelance health writing service here.
I love done-for-you articles because they allow inexpensive outsourcing of some of the fundamental content you need to be successful online. You can multi-purpose them into blog articles, social media posts, free opt-in incentives to grow your list, and products and programs to sell to your clients. If creating these is not your jam, then you don’t have to labour at it for a frustrating number of hours or days.
The main problem is that they’re not exclusive to you. Other practitioners will have the same content as you, so you really should customize it, at least a bit. Consider done-for-you health content to be 80 percent done, where you take a high-quality piece of content and just need to make it yours. Also, done-for-you health content is duplicate content and won’t rank you on search engines; so if you’re already ranking well, you know how hard that was – congrats! You can avoid “mass market” done-for-you content by purchasing ones that have a maximum limit (like mine do).
The bottom line is that buying niche-specific done-for-you health content is a GREAT way to outsource things you may not have time or aptitude for, and costs just a fraction of hiring a ghostwriter to create this stuff exclusively for you. And it’s usually a high-quality product, especially when it was created by someone who’s superpower is exactly that.
These are my honest thoughts. I’d love to hear yours! If you have a few minutes to anonymously answer a few questions, there is a short survey below.
Here’s a link to an anonymous survey with these exact questions. THANK YOU in advance for sharing your thoughts. (I’ve also embedded it at the bottom of this post.)
Signing off and toasting: To honesty around the pros and cons of “done for you” health content
Over to you
What do you think? Do you have any comments or questions?
Are you interested in signing up to be on the waitlist for my mini-course on customizing “done for you” health content?
Would you mind answering these questions in this anonymous survey?
Did you know that I share a ton of great health news and content marketing strategies on Twitter? Follow me @LeesaKlich
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I'm Leesa Klich, MSc., R.H.N.
Health writer – Blogging expert – Research nerd.
I help health and wellness professionals build their authority with scientific health content. They want to stand out in the crowded, often unqualified, market of entrepreneurs. I help them establish trust with their audiences, add credibility to their services, and save them a ton of time so they don’t have to do the research or writing themselves. To work with me, click here.