The ultimate goal in any business is to create a steady stream of new patients or clients. We’re all looking for it aren’t we? Nirvana. The short cut. The quick fix. The treasure trove. The Holy Grail.
Obviously I’m online all day long and I see all kinds of crazy promises and unrealistic sounding results.
“After deploying this one amazing strategy for only 4 minutes a day you will be rich and famous!”
“Yes – you too can increase your new patients and your profit by a million percent if you just do this one thing!”
OK. Let’s get real.
As it happens, I’ve just spoken with one of my oldest (I mean length of time I’ve known them!) Clients after a sweet online friend of mine shared that she’d had a car accident yesterday and was not at all well today. Luckily this Client was nearby and I have booked my friend in for assessment and treatment this afternoon. And I feel a lot better for knowing that she is being checked over by an expert.
Whilst I was on the phone though, it was apparent that they were extremely busy with the Principal being booked back to back for weeks. Their marketing was given a good old boost following their participation on one of my early online marketing courses. It seemed that they don’t do as much marketing now but do keep it ticking over. That massive and consistent effort has now propelled them successfully forwards and they are far better known generally in their community.
And this is what I realised after the phone call: that in starting to crank up the marketing machine, it’s like any other process where we need huge momentum at the beginning. We need to rev up the engine, get our foot to the floor and move up through those gears as quickly as possible. Once we’re rolling, we can slip into fifth gear and cruise along.
But stop the marketing machine altogether and the flow of new patients will begin to dwindle. And I hear this evidence from Clients time and again!
There is no such thing as an overnight success!
It takes real graft, grit and determination to create a sustainable and profitable business. It takes a massive marketing effort to get things moving forwards from a standing start. However much marketing we think is enough, it is probably not! Particularly on social media, news feeds and timelines move at an incredible rate. Most think that people will bother to visit their page. On the whole that’s not the case and only the odd post here and there is seen in the news feed as people idly spin through it looking for something to tickle their fancy – but what?!
If you want more new patients, you need to be building up relationships with them first. That’s why all that I teach about online marketing including social media is so crucial to developing those relationships. Everything I teach is all that I have done to create my own business. And I am delighted to say that in the past couple of months, I have now reached 5th gear!
How to create that consistent flow of new patients:
- Get clear on WHO you want to attract – no wishy washy ‘we can help everyone’ ideas! If you don’t totally understand your target audience and what they NEED then your marketing will flop!
- Make sure your messages are highly focused, quick to understand and with NO medical jargon. As I say endlessly, the man in the street has no idea what ‘musculoskeletal’ means and it’s a word he never, ever uses! Ban all references from your website, social media and marketing materials.
- Tell them about all the benefits of Osteopathic treatment for their particular case – again being specific to your chosen audience.
- Ensure that your marketing is crucial for moments in between patients and let it easily take the sting out of a no show or free slot too!
- It’s OK to share SOME posts on social media where you think the information could be useful. But I would seriously like to see far more original content being posted. If you read something interesting, just distill it down and write a short item about it and link everything back to YOUR website. Did you know that sending more people there yourself is your highest possible priority? You are seriously wasting your time if you are constantly sending YOUR traffic to national news agencies or company websites to read THEIR stuff.
- Don’t be overly concerned about being seen as ‘professional’ – and what is that anyway? Our own made up perception of what others may think of us? You have an awesome, idiosyncratic personality with all your wonderful little foibles! Sharing a little of your character in your marketing will help potential new patients to warm to you.
- Once you have done all this work and got a steady flow of new patients coming to see you, please, please do keep in touch with them via email at least every six months. Not only might they be reminded to come and visit you, they may also be nudged to recommend a friend to visit you too.
In a nutshell then:
TARGET AUDIENCE + CLEAR MESSAGE + CONSISTENT AND PERSISTENT MARKETING = INCREASED NEW PATIENT FLOW
Simply rinse and repeat!
If you’d like some help with the perfect marketing strategy for YOUR business, let’s work together soon to put that into action. Working one to one with me is the fastest way to propel your business forwards and treat many more patients.