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How to Craft Compelling Patient Stories

How to Craft Compelling Patient Stories

Katie Sorce

doctor holding stethoscope

Genuine, emotional videos create brand preference for hospitals

There’s nothing new or revolutionary about using patient testimonials in healthcare advertising. Prompting a real patient (or actor) to say nice things about the hospital where they received care can come off as bland, feel-good messaging. Or it can be something a little more. Something that truly illustrates why the care the patient received was so important and how it positively impacted their life.

Different stories, but all exceptional

One organization that understands this idea is White Plains Hospital, located just north of New York City. For their orthopedics service line, they’ve told the stories of four very different patients: a professional golfer, a martial arts black belt, a teen dancer and a retired business woman. Though all dealing with different orthopedic problems, they all found relief from pain and an exceptional patient experience at White Plains.


Be genuine

When crafting patient videos, it’s important to tell a compelling story that will hold the viewer’s attention. Think of all the information, advertising and brand videos we’re exposed to every day. How do you actually convince someone to take two minutes out of their day to watch a video that might not even be relevant to them? You have to have a strong story, and you need to draw them in within the first few seconds.

When interviewing patients, don’t just ask them a list of questions and call it a day. Have a conversation, make them comfortable so they can let their emotions come through, and let them tell their story in their own words. These genuine stories will always be more powerful than a somewhat forced retelling of how great a hospital is.

Katie Sorce is a marketing coordinator for Smith & Jones. She contributes to research and strategy projects, manages social media and digital marketing accounts, and assists with content creation, account management, finance and operations. Smith & Jones is the healthcare marketing agency that specializes in branding and targeted service line marketing for hospitals, health systems and other care providers. Learn more at