This isn't the story of a startup that's been around for 2-5 years, but one of a company that has, over the last 16 years, been slowly honing their content and strengthening the trust of their viewers.
Chicago based Veritas Health is an online health publisher that specializes in musculoskeletal health. They have four sites: spine-health.com, arthritis-health.com, sports-health.com, and osteoporosis-health.com. All content on the site is written by physicians (they currently have over 150 physician contributors) and peer reviewed for accuracy and comprehensiveness.
Their sites have almost 20 million cumulative page views per month. And according to Alexa, a company that provides commercial web traffic data, one of their sites (we're not sure which one) recently beat out WebMD and Mayo Clinic in number of monthly page views.
So what have been their keys to success? They have slowly built a reputation of being consistent, reliable, and trustworthy. They make sure that their content is focused and of high quality. They also have made it a priority to put the patient first, knowing that most people will google a health issue first before going to a doctor.
“In consumer health, high-level content is readily available,”said Veritas Health CEO and founder Stephanie Burke in an interview with Built in Chicago. “But if you have a serious health issue or you're in a lot of pain, you need in-depth information — fully reliable, comprehensive, and noncommercial information. If you're a doctor you get this level of information from medical journals. If you're a patient, you can get this level of trusted information from the peer-reviewed information on Veritas Health websites.”
Veritas Health is so trusted as an expert that many doctors will refer patients to their sites. All of their online content is free and they currently have the support of over 100 hospitals and healthcare clinics. Once they built up their reputation online, they were able to successfully branch into other mediums and have since published four books and fifty videos.
The takeaway message: Success doesn't always happen overnight. Consistency, reliability, and competence are key factors in gaining the trust of the public and the respect of other professionals. Veritas Health has been able to master the slow burn, and they're not going anywhere anytime soon.