Posts

Wrong Approach to Marketing Private Practice

The Wrong Approach to Marketing Your Private Practice

You might be getting it all wrong when it comes to marketing your private practice—most people do! Here’s how to distinguish your practice effectively.

Frankly, most private practice owners get it all wrong.

They think they’re working hard at marketing—but in reality, they’re spinning their wheels.

Here are some classic ways that most private practice owners fail in their marketing—along with more effective alternatives that can make a real difference in practice building.

“Talking at” the prospective patient instead of listening to his or her unique needs.

Effective marketing is not a monologue. Honestly, whether we’re talking about a billboard or a website, prospective patients are turned off when they sense that your marketing is all about you. Patients want to hear about themselves. Good marketing is an invitation to an ongoing dialogue about the patient’s needs.

Having no idea about your target market.

If the audience you’re trying to reach with your marketing materials is “everyone in the local area,” you’ve already failed. Your private practice can’t cater to “everyone,” and identifying your ideal patient (demographics, buying habits, personal preferences) will make a world of difference in the long-term sustainability of your practice.

Thinking it’s enough if the community knows your name.

Once upon a time, the idea was to “get your name out there” and rely on name recognition as your primary marketing tool for private practice. But it’s not a small-town world anymore, and patients know they have a lot of choices in where to take their business. You absolutely must craft an effective message about your private practice and target it at the right kind of patient.

Betting on one marketing venue to bring in all your new patients.

You might think it’s not a good idea to spread yourself thin in terms of allotting a marketing budget to too many venues, and there’s some truth to that. But don’t swing too far the other way and put every cent into one single approach.

There’s a reason why private practice owners tend to think that marketing is overwhelming and difficult—without guidance, it can be.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

The PPW team

Mobile Marketing for Private Practice Owners

Private Practice SEO: What You Need to Know

In private practice, SEO is vital to understand. Here’s what you need to know about search engine optimization for your business.

As a private practice owner, you know that getting high-quality traffic to your website is important for new referrals and your professional reputation. But you may have been tempted to think, “I don’t have to understand that keyword stuff. I can leave the private practice SEO mumbo-jumbo to my website guy.”

This is a huge mistake. Sure, let your website guy handle the tech details, but as the owner and director of your private practice, SEO and keyword optimization are ultimately up to you.

The good news is, even if sometime it seems that private practice SEO is a tricky business, the basic components are fairly easy to understand.

What it all comes down to is that the best private practice website in the world is totally useless if patients can’t find it.

Here are a few of the most basic concepts behind private practice SEO. There are a lot of great guides out there online (and, of course, a lot of trash as well), but this will get you started in getting your business onto Google’s first page of results for your keyword.

The right SEO keyword phrase

First, you’ll need to make sure that you optimize for the keyword phrase that will bring the right search traffic to your site. In general, it needs to be local and specific, such as “Baltimore physical therapist.” You’ll need to do keyword research with a tool like Google Adwords—what sounds like a great keyword phrase to you may not be what potential patients are actually typing into the search bar.

Using your keyword often enough (but not too often)

You want your keyword to appear throughout your site. If not, search engines won’t pay attention. On the other hand, using a keyword too often, an outdated practice known as “keyword stuffing,” is the worst thing you can do for private practice SEO and will actually harm your chances of Google ranking your site highly.

Active content on your website

Having a private practice blog or adding regularly to a library of informative topic-based articles is a great way to keep your site fresh. It’s also an opportunity to add in keywords in appropriate places, and search engines will notice. Just make sure that you’re adding quality content that new patients will want to read.

Fast loading times

Don’t let your web designer make your site too Flash-heavy. These kinds of applications make your site look great, but they increase the time it takes for the site to load. That will hurt you in terms of private practice SEO results, and it may also drive away the traffic that you’re working so hard to attract.

Private practice SEO can be tricky to get right, and it’s an ever-changing target. That’s why it’s important to stay up-to-date and become part of a network of private practice owners who get regular training on essential business concepts.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

The PPW team

Dairy Consumption and Your Patients’ Health

Do yourself and your private practice patients a favor by learning all you can about dairy consumption and health!

This series of articles will not be “politically correct”. Nor will it likely be popular with the mainstream press. But the fact of the matter is, anybody with a degree in healthcare who has done across the board research understands the dangers of dairy products and human diet.

A landmark book on dairy and health called The China Study was published some years back. As serious students of health and nutrition, I recommend you get and read at least this book at least once.

There are several major problems with the consumption of dairy in the human diet, but by reading magazines and watching television you would never know it.

The dairy industry is a huge industry—unfortunately, one with an incestuous relationship with the FDA.

Almost everybody knows about struggling with lactose intolerance. Lactose is a milk sugar, which is difficult for some people to digest. But the dairy story goes far deeper.

One of my professors once said it best: Milk is designed to be a hormone delivery system from cow to calf. It is not intended for human consumption. Human milk is for humans, but only in the first two years of life.

Let’s first start off by talking about osteoporosis. Both doctors and patients alike are taught dairy builds strong bones. Yes calcium, and vitamin D are essential for human health, but there are far healthier ways to get both of these besides milk consumption.

One of the most eye-opening facts regarding osteoporosis is when scientists look at relatively primitive cultures, which are active, consume a plant-based diet, spent a fair amount of time outside and almost never get osteoporosis.

This is in stark contrast to developed countries, like the USA, where osteoporosis is rampant and people consume large amounts of dairy and animal products.

Also, milk contains certain hormones, like ILGF and BGF which are detrimental to human health. Some of these compounds have been linked to the development of cancers, especially prostate, breast and ovarian.

But, most importantly to your patients, dairy can aggravate inflammation.

And it almost always makes patients with peripheral neuropathy chronic pain suffer far more than necessary.

There are now many readily available alternatives. These alternatives include products made from almonds, coconuts, and rice.

It takes a little bit of experimentation to find exactly what works best for everyone, but making the shift towards a more healthy diet goes a long way towards providing healing environment for your neuropathy and chronic pain patients.

Do yourself and your private practice patients a favor by learning all you can about dairy consumption and health!

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

The PPW team

 

 

SWOT analysis for physical therapy business

How to Strengthen Your Physical Therapy Business Plan with a SWOT Analysis

Use a SWOT Analysis to Help Grow Your Physical Therapy Business and Avoid Significant Pitfalls.

Have you taken the time to do a thorough SWOT analysis for your physical therapy business? If so, have you done it again recently?

This tool could make all the difference in the effectiveness of your marketing strategy and many other key components leading to the success of your practice.

Here is a quick overview of SWOT analysis and how it applies to a successful physical therapy business.

SWOT stands for: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats. The first two are internal factors, and the second two are external factors. Although you may not be able to have complete control over each factor, it’s useful to identify all components and know how they are impacting your physical therapy business.

Strengths are any resources or capabilities that give you an edge over competitors. These can include factors such as the unique aspects of the service you provide; the geographic location of your physical therapy business, if it is a positive factor; and any special training or knowledge you have gained that is not available from most other providers.

Weaknesses are often the lack of strength in a particular area. Specifically, you might lack business training in certain areas, such as marketing. Or your physical therapy business might not offer products or services that are distinct from those of your competition.

Opportunities refer to factors that provide a chance to develop or expand the patient base for your physical therapy business. These might include new services you could offer, a partnership with similar providers to increase referrals, or the lack of significant competition in a particular market.

Threats are important not to overlook. Even though you may not be able to directly control a threat, it will certain impact your physical therapy business for the worse if not somehow addressed in your overall strategy for success. Threats can include anything from regulation changes to competitors with innovative services that address the needs of YOUR patients.

Keep in mind that a SWOT analysis is a subjective process. It’s a good idea to have a SWOT analysis performed by a third party who can provide an objective look at your physical therapy business. Then you can compare your internal SWOT with this other feedback and decide how to implement what you’ve learned.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

the PPW team

 

Private Practice and the New Word of Mouth Process

The Right Way to Market Your Physical Therapy Business

When It Comes to Promoting Your Physical Therapy Business, There’s Good News and Bad News.

Too many physical therapy business owners spend a lot of time fretting about the “right” way to handle marketing. After all, there is so much advice out there—and most of it is contradictory.

How is a physical therapy business owner supposed to know what’s right for his or her practice?

In the end, it’s a trick question.

There are only two WRONG ways to formulate your physical therapy marketing plan.

The first wrong way is to halfheartedly do too many things, and none of them effectively or with a strategy. It’s too easy to get sucked into spending tons of time on social media without knowing exactly why you’re there, or to divide four marketing hours into six different efforts with little return on your time investment. It’s essential to choose your promotional strategies carefully and always with a measurable end goal in mind.

The second wrong way is to do nothing at all in terms of marketing your physical therapy business, either because you’re “too busy” or because you’re scared of getting it wrong.

So… the bad news about marketing for your physical therapy business is this: Chances are, the way you’re doing it right now is NOT as effective as it could be.

And the good news? Small increments of effective change can work wonders for your marketing strategy.

You may want to take a close look at what you’re doing to promote your physical therapy business and what you expect to gain from it in measurable terms. Then consider whittling down your efforts to the one or two things that have shown the best ROI thus far—and really put your back into those one or two things to see even greater returns.

Or, if you’re guilty of total marketing inaction, it’s not too late to start effectively marketing your physical therapy business. What one audience are you trying to reach, and what do you hope to gain from connecting with them? Start there with just a few hours a week of focused promotion.

Effective marketing is essential to the success of your physical therapy business—yet you probably didn’t get any training in this vital skill when you were in school!

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

the PPW team

Healthcare Changes and Your Specialty Practice

Specialty Practice Can Benefit from the New Competitive Patient Mindset

Recent changes in the healthcare landscape can provide a boost to growth in your specialty practice—if you have the right goals in mind.

Many specialty practice owners have been viewing new healthcare laws and systems in the United States with a mixture of fear, outrage, and dismay.

You may be wondering how all these changes will affect your private practice… and assuming that things will be changing for the worse. How can a specialty practice possibly survive in this environment?

If you’ve been viewing healthcare changes as a circumstance that will doom your specialty practice, it’s time to think again.

Why? Because all of these changes can actually HELP you to grow your specialty practice to its upper limit—as long as you have the right mindset about the direction you’re headed.

All of these healthcare law changes have caused a shift in the typical patient mindset. It used to be that patients would do whatever their doctor said to do, or have whatever procedure was covered as standard by their insurance company.

These days, self-pay patients are looking at value. They want the most bang for their buck. That means they’re shopping around and looking for the provider who will provide exceptional care that justifies the cost of services. They view provider rates as an investment in their long-term health, and they want a good return on their investment.

This is great news! This patient, who is discerning and makes an informed decision when choosing a specialty practice, is exactly the kind of patient that you need to attract and keep in order to make your specialty practice thrive.

You don’t want patients who follow the old episodic treatment model: coming into the office when they’re in pain and then falling away. You want patients who seek expert collaboration and a long-term relationship working toward their continuing health. That patient is the very picture of loyalty, and he or she will joyfully refer you to family and friends.

When your patients are focused on their long-term health, then the long-term health of your specialty practice will be a given.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

the PPW team

The Critical Patient Moment in Private Practice!

Make sure your patient IS heard and feels heard in your Private Practice. 

One of the most common reasons that patients change doctors and therapists, or move from the public to the private practice pay system is they feel strongly their personal health complaints have not been listened to. And unfortunately, often times it’s an intense personal feeling that something is seriously wrong with their health.

In fact, I’m sure to consult somebody who has been to several offices, who will say, “Nobody ever sat down and listened to exactly what has been happening to me”. This is very sad. But also a key point for private practice owners worth visiting.

Once upon a time, I was taught by very senior clinician the following words: “LISTEN to the patient, for they will tell you exactly what is wrong with them.”

Of course you know, as a clinician, that history-taking is both an art and a science. Patients very often will give you clues to the underlying diagnosis.

But, more than that, it is essential that the patient get to know, trust, and respect you before you can ever have an effective relationship. Patients who don’t trust their clinicians won’t normally continue care in any self-pay setting, but—more importantly—they don’t get better.

So the reminder from today’s discussion is to simply take a hard look at your initial intake of all new and former patients. Make sure your staff knows the importance of adequate time, and not being interrupted.

Above all, make sure your patient is heard and feels heard. One of the best ways to ensure that this has actually happened is to conclude every consultation with the following words:

“Mrs. Smith, do I understand everything correctly? Is there anything else I need to know?”

Do this every time, and you’ll never have to worry about new patients in your private practice again.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

the PPW team

Wrong Approach to Marketing Private Practice

Beyond Excuses: Why Your Private Practice ISN’T Thriving (and How to Fix It)

If your private practice is floundering, or coming to a standstill, you might think you know why…but take a close look at the problem. Is it a reason, or an excuse?

Unfortunately, too often, private practice owners get in their own way when it comes to success.

It’s all too human to think we “know” exactly what the problem is. Maybe we also “know” why various solutions can’t possibly work to fix the problem. In a way, this is a victim mentality.

Most of us are guilty of this at some point in our personal lives. But if this mindset carries over into your private practice, things aren’t going to go well.

If you’re going to be able to overcome obstacles in private practice, it’s essential to remain open to new ideas, useful feedback, and even tried-and-true solutions that you’ve already tried once. You’ve got to approach each new obstacle as if you’ve never encountered it before.

Why? Because if you’ve already labeled and judged what’s before you, you’re not seeing it clearly. And that means you’re blocking your own success by dooming the situation before anyone has addressed it.

So… how to get past this stumbling block? There are two keys to implementing a “no excuses” mind-shift in private practice.

The first key is a willingness to change. What you’re doing now is not effective, so a fresh approach is called for. This is a huge one! Don’t underestimate how your resistance to change could be impacting your private practice.

The second key is to call in a fresh viewpoint, someone who can give you unadulterated feedback about what you’re doing in your private practice that could be done better.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

the PPW team

Marketing Your Specialty Practice

Specialty Practice Success Won’t Happen Through Traditional Marketing

Unless your specialty practice is brand-new, the backbone of your practice probably isn’t based on new referrals. Don’t overlook this key element of private practice success!

Whether you’ve been running your specialty practice just a few years, or dozens, there’s a good chance that the majority of your business is made up of repeat clients. In short, most of the patients walking in your door have been there before…and made the decision to come back.

If you’ve provided excellent service—not just a world-class treatment experience, but great customer service, too—then most of your patients will come back again and again. Maybe they’ll come in search of continued good health through maintenance. Or maybe a new injury or illness will arise, and because you’ve built their trust, you’ll be the first professional they call.

Eventually, nearly your ENTIRE specialty practice could (if you chose) be composed of regular patients who return time after time because of the relationship you’ve built with them.

But if you’ve paid any attention to the marketing how-to information that’s out there, you may be confused. That’s because the advice of traditional marketers is all about how to get new eyes on you—how to get in front of people who will buy what you’re selling.

The thing is, particularly in the service industry and in a specialty practice, the person who is most likely to buy from you is the very person who already has! They took that initial risk of trying your practice, found the benefits to be exceptional, and now have confidence that YOU are the professional who can make their lives better.

Now that you know repeat customers are the best customers, what can you do to encourage patients to come back?

First, say “thank you,” and say it often. Thank brand-new patients for giving your specialty practice a chance to help them. When they return for another visit, welcome them with open arms and an opportunity to give feedback—ask: “Can you let us know what made you decide to come again?”

Second, give those loyal patients a chance to get to know you better. Ask every new and returning patient if they’d like to join your email list. Send a monthly newsletter with practice news, including personal stories from your staff or yourself that make your office feel like a home away from home. It can also include a simple but useful health tip that’s relevant to your specialty practice, or a frequently asked question and your response. This doesn’t have to be a slick-looking newsletter template. In fact, many patients will respond more positively if it’s simple and has a “homegrown” feel, so that they know you’re actually writing it!

Also, have your staff maintain a list of patients who haven’t been in lately. Give them a courtesy call to see if they’d like to schedule a follow-up visit. This lets patients know that you remember them and care about how they’re doing.

The key to all of this is planning. You need an organized system, set to autopilot, so that these things will happen automatically at appropriate opportunities, and so that no patient gets overlooked. This is the only way to make effective follow-through happen on a regular basis for your specialty practice.

But most private practice owners won’t implement this kind of system.

That’s good news for you… if you’re willing to put in the time, knowing that your specialty practice can thrive while others barely survive.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

the PPW team

 

Private Practice Marketing Strategy

Private Practice Owner? Know These 3 Keys to Successful Team Management

No private practice owner can succeed without an effective team. Implement these 3 keys to team management and see your private practice thrive.

As a private practice owner, it’s your vision and knowledge that guides your business to success. Without you, your team is just a group of people with skills but without a shared vision.

But without your team, would you be able to be a private practice owner at all? Probably not.

If your private practice is thriving, most likely it’s because you’ve built an excellent team with good rapport and a solid understanding of how to work together to meet shared goals.

On the other hand, if your business is struggling, your team is a good place to look for answers.

Here are three essential components of team management that will cause a significant positive shift in your experience as a private practice owner:

1. Set clear expectations—and live up to them yourself.

You’ll need to implement a clear, simple set of expectations for team behaviors and protocols, and find ways to reinforce these messages on a weekly basis. Of course, you’ll also need to model these policies by following them to the letter yourself!

2. Offer your team reminders of your shared vision and measurable goals.

One way to keep your team in touch with vision and goals as a private practice owner is to hold daily or weekly team conferences. Your team will be able to touch base as a group, you’ll have frequent opportunities to provide feedback on measurable goals, and your team will be reassured and energized by regular communications. You’ll also be able to identify problems earlier and address them privately if needed.

3. Provide personal incentives as well as feedback.

Part of the role of a private practice owner is to know and effectively guide each team member. Understand what makes each of your staff “tick” and how to motivate them personally. Then you can provide frequent personal feedback tailored to that staff member in addition to using what you’ve learned to implement incentives for the group as a whole.

With these three components solidly in place, you’ll find that your staff will begin to come to work without that clock-watching “just a job” attitude. And, due to the likelihood of increased efficiency and customer service that will organically happen, you’ll also see the difference in your profits as a private practice owner.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

the PPW team

physical therapy business

Are All Your Marketing Efforts Going to Waste in Your Physical Therapy Business?

For Your Physical Therapy Business to Thrive, You Need to Be Able to Distinguish Between Features and Benefits.

There are many factors at play in creating and growing a thriving physical therapy business. But without a deep understanding of one key marketing concept, I can almost guarantee that your practice will not be sustainable.

Here is the most important factor in successfully marketing your physical therapy business: features versus benefits.

In short, features are facts (the “what”), and benefits are the reasons why those facts solve your client’s problem (the “why”).

On the surface, the difference looks pretty simple to understand. The thing is, it can be hard for many physical therapy business owners to put that understanding into practice when it comes to developing a consistent marketing message. Sometimes, what we view as key information just ends up making a potential client feel “talked at” instead of understood.

As a physical therapy business owner, you have to present your services as the ideal solution to your client’s pain. Many private practice owners make the mistake of describing abstract concepts, such as the details of their training and credentials or the jargon associated with certain manual manipulations. This approach misses the point, though.

A potential client who is searching the Web or asking friends for a referral is likely not looking for the use of any particular training or technique. What is he or she searching for? An end to pain and discomfort. So that’s where your marketing message needs to focus.

Does your marketing message convey the relief that clients will feel after working with you? If that’s not the focus of your marketing efforts for your physical therapy practice, you can bet that some other physical therapist in your area is using that tactic to successfully draw in new clients.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

the PPW team

distinguish your physical therapy business

How to Distinguish Your Physical Therapy Business: Stand Out from the Competition

In building your physical therapy business, the number one tool is distinguishing yourself from competitors. These tips can help.

One of the core aspects of marketing for a physical therapy business is to stand out from the competition. That’s easy to say, but how do you actually do it?

Here are 4 key approaches to distinguishing your physical therapy business from your competitors so that you’ll attract new patients and gain referrals.

1. Market to your ideal customer, not to “everybody.”

Spend some time identifying the kind of patient you really want to attract to your physical therapy practice. Think about demographics—things like that person’s age, income level, and education. Now think about psychographics, particularly that person’s buying behaviors. For example, do they always treat themselves to luxury items because “I deserve it,” or do they pinch pennies and prioritize just a few big-ticket purchases after careful thought?

Make sure that what you’re offering is specifically aimed at a narrow target market. The physical therapy business down the street is most likely spreading their marketing budget thin by trying to appeal to “everybody,” so you can stand out by only trying to attract a very specific group of people.

2. Offer service packages with distinctive, compelling names.

Packages make it easier for patients to decide how to purchase your services. Too much choice can be overwhelming, so make it easy by bundling services together. Then give each of those packages a name that conveys their benefits. In essence, you’re coming up with branding for each package.

3. Look for what your competitors don’t offer, and do that.

Do a little research. You should not only know WHO your competitors are, but also HOW they operate. Notice if there are any holes in what they offer. Now find a way to provide a service that addresses the gaps. This could be something specific to your physical therapy practice as a clinician, or it could be as simple as offering a payment plan when your competitor insists on pay up front every time.

4. Follow up.

This is such a simple concept, but it’s so important for the long-term sustainability of your physical therapy business. Strive to be a presence in your patients’ lives. For example, make a personal follow-up call the week after an initial appointment to see how your new patient is doing, and get feedback on their visit. Send patients a token birthday gift, something small but surprising. (Don’t just send a birthday postcard, since everyone from their dentist to their auto mechanic is already doing that.) Be memorable in every transaction.

How do you distinguish your private practice in your marketing? Join the conversation on Facebook.

 

self-care for private practice ownership

The Importance of Self-Care in Private Practice Ownership

Are You Practicing Good Self-Care? Why This Matters So Much for Private Practice Ownership

You probably tell your patients that they need to take good care of their bodies in order to function well and cope with the stress of illness or chronic pain. But are you practicing what you preach? Many private practice owners don’t follow their own advice!

Your private practice may be as unique as your individual human experience—but the basics of self-care are the same for everyone, doctor or patient.

Just in case you’ve forgotten, here are a few of the most basic needs you have to meet on a regular basis for optimum health: Adequate sleep. Good nutrition—not fast food and caffeine. Fulfilling relationships. Aerobic exercise. Time alone to recharge (for introverts) or invigorating time with others (for extroverts). Spiritual connection and a sense of meaning.

What does your health have to do with private practice ownership? Think of yourself, the owner and director of your practice, as the queen bee of your professional hive—the office and staff you’ve built. The hive depends entirely on you to survive. No matter how hard the worker drones are flying around and gathering resources, if the queen bee is in poor health, the welfare of the entire hive is at stake.

You’re not a machine or a robot, and you can’t keep going endlessly day after day without regular recharging, both physically and mentally. If you’re spending each day just powering through, you are probably not doing your best work (or being the best director for your staff). But if you show up at the office each day refueled and ready for anything, you’ll be able to provide effective leadership that truly builds a sustainable private practice.

Take a few moments right now to consider your self-care practices. Which areas are going well? Which ones need a little nurturing? Come up with at least two types of self-care that you’re going to focus on this week that will help build a long-term future for your private practice ownership.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

the PPW team

What Do You Promise to Patients?

Did You Ever Make a Promise to a Patient?

 

This is an area that far too many clinicians regardless of the specialty get into trouble with. It is so important to understand that the only real promise to patients you or I can and should make to patients is that we will do our very best to help them.

That’s it, nothing more. To make promises of anything more is just fraught with peril!

Furthermore, it’s not good informed consent it’s also grossly unfair to yourself and your entire team.

As the old saying goes under promise and over deliver. It’s a far better strategy for practicing long-term.

I know there are many legal ramifications and obligations too…

Let me tell you what I’ve heard as a consultant.

“This WILL Fix You For Good Mrs Jones!”

“I know Jimmy, you have been sick for years but with this NEW treatment if you are NOT FIXED in 3 weeks you can have all your money back!”

Huh?

Promise to Patients?

Yes!

But lets get real. Why not be 100% honest and say something like…

“We will do all we can to help you to the best of our ability…these are the risks associated with treatment…these are the risks if you do nothing…”

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join our team experts for a free strategy session HERE

 

Have a great day!

the PPW team 

follow-ups in private practice

The Power of Personal Follow-Ups to Build Your Private Practice: How to Use Personalized Marketing in a Digital World

You’ll have an edge on your competition when you follow up consistently and personally with your patients.

It’s a sad fact that most private practice owners don’t bother to follow up with their patients—and those who do, often are following up in an impersonal way. That’s bad news for those business owners, but it means you have a golden opportunity to tweak your practice follow-up to be more personal and therefore more effective.

Follow-up opportunities happen constantly, and many of them take place before your patient even walks out the door. For example, when your reception staff is checking out a patient after the visit, that’s a prime chance to get feedback. Does your staff inquire personally how the visit went and if there’s anything they can do for your patient? Does your staff direct the patient to a comment card? Or do they just not ask for feedback at all? You can get very strong and detailed feedback immediately after a visit, which is more valuable to your practice.

Now let’s consider post-visit follow-up. Imagine that a new patient has a consultation with you on Monday morning, but this person doesn’t make an additional appointment at the desk—she says to your staff that she will schedule an appointment later. Does your staff know how to handle a situation like this? Do they tell you about it in a timely way, or do they passively wait for the patient to call the office? Do you expect your staff to follow up with new patients or do you personally reach out to these patients with a phone call?

Just for a moment, put yourself in that patient’s shoes. Which scenario makes you feel special and cared for? Which scenario makes you feel ignored and like a number instead of a person? There’s a frequently quoted aphorism attributed to Maya Angelou: People forget what you do or what you said, but they never forget how you made them feel.

When patients feel that you care about them, they come back, and they refer family and friends. And that’s the bottom line of private practice building.

I invite you to visit here frequently for more tips about creating a sustainable private practice!

I wish you the best along your journeys!

Want to learn more about how to build your private practice?

Then Join my team experts for a free strategy session HERE

Have a great day!

the PPW team 

What’s a Perfect Practice?

This is exactly the very first question that must be answered by each and every doctor in private practice. Having said this, I will also tell you the major cause of failure in practice is a poor initial design or redesign.

This is also why in today’s world we advocate a reassessment by each member doctor every three months!

So think here in ultimate terms. We suggest a litmus test of 12 criteria, which when met, will propel you to personal and professional fulfillment. If you are in a group practice right now, especially as a newbie, you might have far less latitude in creation of your perfect practice.

By its very nature, private practice is entrepreneurial. Unfortunately, too many do not possess the needed skills to flourish, yet others are wildly successful.

Here is the one key difference.

The successful Private Practice Owners learn these entrepreneurial skills, and never stop growing.

This is a great part of the challenge of private practice, but hence the huge potential rewards.

And let’s keep it that way. Its one of the hallmarks of a free society, and really a privilege.

If you want a 9-5 type job, there are plenty out there.

My first criterion for our doctors is that emotional and financial rewards are far greater than the stress level.

If this is not true, why would you continue to tolerate it without changing how you operate?

Do you see how having a primary criterion like this can set the stage for success?

And how practicing without these criteria being met is a recipe for ultimate unhappiness and likely failure?

By now, you get my drift. This is why I am so adamant that doctors learn fully to “Practice by Design”©.

In reality, these are the ket elements of The 12 Secrets of Private Practice Mastery.

If you are ready to upgrade your personal and professional life for good, get started right now!

Just call us 781-659-7989 or schedule a coaching call or New Client Strategy Session FREE

How to Drive Referrals with Better Internal and External Events

“EVENT”. Even the title should conjure up images of excitement and anticipation.

And so it is with your family of patients, and your community…

 

Events have some key qualities that make them the perfect direct response advertising medium.

 

Here are a few of my favorites:

 

1.    They have a set date.

2.    The events take place only at a specific time.

3.  Events last only a specific duration.

4.  They create anticipation.

5.  Events create energy throughout the project.

6.  When done properly, the effects last for weeks and when done right, years!

 

Internal Events

 

 So, let’s talk about some events that can be used to help drive new patients into your practice and former patients back to your practice. Let’s start with some of the most common.

The first is some type of patient care classes. Now whether these are done regularly or only done periodically, when executed properly they are successful at not only educating your existing patients but also introducing new patients to the practice.  These classes also naturally generate large numbers of both patient referrals and better existing patient compliance.

 With regard to patient classes, I am a firm advocate in making these voluntary.  In fact, we never advocate force feeding any patient education. However when you tell your patients that their attendance is likely to increase the effectiveness of their care and shorten its duration, they are more likely to not only attend but bring guests as well.

 The key to making these patient education events successful, like all direct marketing is to stress benefits. Now obviously, two of these patient benefits, I mentioned above. The additional benefits include getting out of pain faster, spending less money on treatment, and certainly less time in your office.

 Don’t be afraid of stressing these benefits in all your promotional materials too. Just by doing so, you will find the effectiveness of your presentation improving as well as the class attendance increasing dramatically.

 Perhaps the next most successful events are health screenings of some type.  Health Fairs, when done inside your office can also be extraordinarily effective. I have done these in my office with MDs, DMDs and PTs too.

In Chiropractic, scoliosis screenings are not only legendary, but still remain a very effective way of introducing new patients to the practice. They are also very effective at educating parents of adolescents and children about the devastating effects of scoliosis on spinal and general health when left untreated.

Again, simply apply the same basic strategies. Specific date, time, duration, applied staff and office energy, and appropriate promotional materials, all stressing benefits.

 

External Events

 

 I really like external events, because they are very effective at not only bringing new patients into the practice but also very effective at introducing you to the community.  One of the largest advantages of participating in external events is that there is a wide array of media that is available to you. This includes newspaper, radio, external fliers, as well as the energy you and your team actually generates in your office.

   There are many types of external events that have proven quite successful for many practices around the country. Basic spinal Screenings, scoliosis checks, weight loss clinics, group body composition screenings, blood pressure clinics, SEMGs, etc. The list is limited only by your vision.

Just be creative here, but be very sure to  stay aligned with your personal direction and purpose. If you have a particular focus in practice, so should go your promotions. In this day and age however, a limited focus is not a strategy I advise, as the private healthcare market is just so competitive in so many areas.

 One of my favorites, out of all these external systems is forming alliances.

Why I mean by forming alliances, is that  you agree to sponsor events for a certain group or organization at their place of business. This group or organization, also in return agrees to prominently display your business cards and your literature in their place of business.

 Now, not only do you get the benefit of being a featured guest speaker or presenter, but also you become a known quantity. When a group member needs your services, the owner readily directs them in your direction.

 Honestly, I will refuse to speak for or work with any group or organization that does not reciprocate. My time is just too valuable, as should be yours.

Simply take a polite, business like stance, and be firm. Make sure staff knows your policy too. Last year, I simply refused to do an event for a very large fitness center that did not promote, or reciprocate as they had agreed to do with a prior event.

 Compare this with the strategy of blindly seeking places to speak, sponsor screenings, where there’s no reciprocity.  This can represent many hours of frustration, wasted energy and most especially a waste of finances.

 Plus, with this strategy, like me, you will get to build lasting relationships. In my main office, some of these relationships have spanned more than 20 years, and made me hundreds of thousands of dollars.

 With an effective marketing calendar, you too can skyrocket your practice, regardless of where you practice with effective event planning, and these very simple tools.

 Now, have at it! Only action produces results!

Want to really grow your private practice? Give us a call 24/7 at 781-659-7989 or take a look at our training and specialty practice opportunities at http://PerfectPracticeWeb.com

What Self Talk SHOULD You Change?

This guest post is from Dr Martin Russell, a medical doctor turned counselor who has brought the experiences from his own solo counseling practice online. He can be reached via his website: http://www.DrMartinRussell.com

You can often hear people say something along the lines of, “I know I really SHOULD, but somehow I just don’t!” Perhaps you have even said something like this yourself, even if you did mutter it under your breath. Don’t worry. It’s just words in common English usage. However you can interpret more from this statement than you will find in a dictionary.

Listening to people’s words is really fascinating. If you ever hear “I should…”, then here is the conclusion you can make – they won’t. “Should” automatically implies that they aren’t going to do it. If they were going to do it they would use some other phrase like “I will…” or “when I…”. “Should” = won’t happen.

Now before some of you protest too loudly, let me add that I don’t think this is bad. What you think you “should” do is actually unlikely to be correct. It may seem counterintuitive to respond this way, so give me a chance to offer two examples to see if I can make this clearer.

Firstly, if you have ever had a situation where you found that you were not as assertive as you wanted to be, your might have been left saying to yourself “You know I should have really laid into them and given them what for!”

Actually no. You almost certainly shouldn’t have done anything of the sort. Just because you underreacted the first time, doesn’t mean that the overreaction you are planning is any more appropriate. In fact it is highly likely if you stop and consider what you were actually proposing as an alternative, that you would have found yourself in some variety of disciplinary action or needed intervention by the police intervention. People can be pretty wild in their thinking and saying “should” doesn’t excuse it, rather it just allows you to beat up on yourself for not doing something more stupid even than what you originally did.

Maybe this is too extreme an example for you, but I’m wanting to make the point more obvious. Even in lesser instances this is still a common type of “should” that people use and it’s worth pondering how much of this is happening in any particular case.

Secondly, a “should” can be something that we learn from someone else at some time in our life, and then keep for ourselves from then on.

People throughout our lives are giving us guidance, from the early years of parents and teachers, on to friends, peers, self-help books, lawyers and doctors, and on, and on. They are not always right. In fact the advice is so often conflicting that it is almost certainly wrong much of the time. And even if someone is confident in telling you what is correct, their certainty is no guide to how well their information will work for you. It may just leave you feeling still however like you “should” do as they recommended.

When you notice this type of “should” then you don’t need to persist with it unswervingly. Instead you can take a moment to stop, and reexamine the original information to decide how relevant it is to the particular situation you are considering. Even if it had value before, it might not apply so well the next time, and might need to be adjusted.

So with both of these examples, I’d suggest you apply them to the time when you hear “should” that really means “won’t happen”. Lighten up for a moment and give yourself a second chance to think it through, because maybe you can lose that “should”, and leave a whole heap of guilt behind with it as well.

To learn so much more about a better life and Private Practice, browse around here, then call me at 781-659-7989

Top-Down or Bottom-Up Strategies for Your Private Practice?

Patients naturally want the best of what you have to offer—and want to be told what’s the best, even if they can’t necessarily afford it right now. Top-down products naturally have a certain emotional appeal, as well as a status attachment. Your private practice is no exception.

One of the key areas that we see private practice owners frequently making mistakes is with the description, pricing, and “feel” of your products and services.

Too often, the tendency is to present in price from the bottom up, rather than the top down.

And too often, this turns out to be very expensive mistake.

Why you might ask? It really comes down to some basic human psychology. Patients naturally want the best of what you have to offer—and want to be told what’s the best, even if they can’t necessarily afford it right now. Top-shelf products naturally have a certain emotional appeal, as well as a status attachment. Healthcare is no exception.

If you think otherwise, not only are you doing your patients a disservice, you’re probably leaving thousands of dollars per year of potential revenues for your private practice on the table.

Another key is just making sure that you have multiple options, so the patient always has a choice. For example, products and services typically should have an A, B, and possibly C version. The A version would be your absolute best; the C would be a viable lesser-priced option.

Finally, the key to making this all work is to make sure that every team member is educated as to what exactly constitutes is included in each package of care. It’s also imperative that where legal to do so, you publish for all to see. Make sure that any appropriate disclaimers such as “this is a non-covered service” and “your ABN applies”, et cetera.

Also, be sure to include the forms of payments that you commonly accept. Make it easy for your patient to assume the services they desire!

Above all, make sure whatever you are marketing and representing in your office is top-down, completely compliant with your state and federal regulations.

The most important thing is to always make sure you know precisely what your private practice demands in terms of products and services.

Go to great lengths to train your staff make to it easy for your patient to be get what they want, and you’ll never want for business!

Join the conversation here on Facebook or just call us 781-659-7989

Better Design Means a FAR Better Private Practice!

Design a powerful private practice that supports YOUR dreams, and not someone else’s!

Last time, we spent our time together gathering the key pieces of data needed to design a powerful private practice. The two big issues for all business and private practice owners are, of course, time and finances. Taking the time to carefully outline needs, wants, and obligations—doing so in a visible format reaps big benefits, and far better designs.

Doctor with clipboard

Now that you have your key pieces of data, how do you make better design decisions for your private practice?

The first thing is to understand that time gives perspective. This is so critical. Don’t make big decisions quickly; every option should be explored. Ask yourself, are there people in your life a big decision will impact? If so, be sure to include them in your discussions and outlines. This is also where keeping a journal of some type can really help greatly. Use it to organize your thoughts and fact-finding.

Next, make sure you have dedicated quiet time to really sort all this out. So often, bad decisions come in haste, when under stress. The more relaxed and comfortable we can be, the easier we can tap our internal reserves.

Once a decision is made, outline it again in writing. Don’t ACT on a major, non-urgent decision for at least a few days. Let some time pass—let it sit with you and see how it really feels.

To build an extraordinary life will require an EXTRAORDINARY private practice! Can you see how applying these careful steps can make a huge difference?

Think for a bit: might things be different now if you applied this strategy to who you hire? How about that office space? And would you still be working for third-party payers if you applied all the key strategic thinking we are talking about here?

Finally, understand that no one can create urgency for you unless you let them. Sometimes the best decision is to decide, “I’m not making any decisions today!”

Like any super-successful private practice owner, you’ll be saving your energy, cutting your stress, and really building a powerful private practice that supports YOUR dreams, and not someone else’s!

Count yourself among us who choose to live and practice by design, not default!

Join the conversation here on Facebook or just call us at 781-659-7989