9 Proven Ideas For More And Happier Patients — Secure Your Competitive Advantage

What makes you better than the competition in your patients’ minds?

Any business that enjoys a durable competitive advantage is likely to have a long history of profitability — Warren Buffett

You must be able to emphasize, with clarity, the benefit you provide to your target market that’s better than the competition!   That’s your competitive advantage.

It’s a shame that far too many doctors don’t approach their business as it really is. There seems to be an attitude that simply by hanging their shingle over their door, patients will come!

Every business school in the country teaches that business success is a daily struggle for survival. Every day someone is going out of business. Likewise, every day someone is trying to build their business; however, in a crowded marketplace every time a clinic gains a new patient, someone else loses one!

Though you can make the argument that the world is your “patient” oyster, depending on geographic limitations, population density, availability, and opportunity, your pool is not nearly as large as you may believe.

The fact it is that every day your competitors are actively marketing to your patients. If they’ve done a good job of incentivizing, they are doing everything they can to compel your patient to become their patient!

This article has a single purpose: to show you how you can keep your patients (both current and past) from jumping ship. As we go along, you will also learn to attract more patients and increase your clinics traffic and profits.

There are only three ways to increase your business (incidentally, this transcends all industries):

I. You must increase your traffic.
II. You must convert the curious into believers.
III. You must retain your patients for many years.

These next points refer to vital attachments to the original three laws for increasing your clinic’s profits –

1a. Attract more patients – this tactic correlates with patient retention (points I and III) because, if done properly can lead to referrals of friends and family to your practice.
2a. Provide more services for the patients you have – you achieve this by incentivizing your current patient base.
3a. Raise your prices – if you ever analyze what the market will bear for your services, this strategy may have merit.  You still may want to proceed with caution when using this approach.

Competitive Advanage

Logically, the goal for every doctor, which owns their own practice, is to attract as many potential patients, convert those people into actual patients, and retain the “best” patients for years to come.

The question then becomes “How does someone stand out amongst all of the competition?”

Continue reading 9 Proven Ideas For More And Happier Patients — Secure Your Competitive Advantage

5 Valuable Tips: Building A Referral Business That Works!

A steady stream of patients is extremely vital for the survival of every clinic!  How effective is your referral program with your medical colleagues?

 

The best way to predict your future is to create it!” —  Abraham Lincoln

Medical professionals have built their success on forming and nurturing referral partnerships since time infinitum.  The most powerful of these referral relationships are created when mutual benefits are built-in to those alliances.

This is precisely the point of this article! We intend to show you how to create stronger ties with your medical colleagues. Additionally, this piece will teach you how to provide greater value and separate yourself from other doctors also seeking referrals.

The first place to begin is with the basic inventory of your current actions, for example:

  • What are you doing to position yourself with your colleagues to stand out from every other doctor that requests referrals?
  • Are you a good and beneficial referral partner? 
  • Have you established strong bonds of trust?
  • Are you providing a reciprocal benefit to your referral partners?
  • Have you established a sense (within your colleagues) of superior expectations?

Many clinic owners give no thought to the fact that success in business is an on-going competition for survival!  In order to thrive, you need to implement intentionality!  Every day, you must build into your calendar a plan and action to generate more and better patient leads.

According to noted business development guru, Jay Abraham, there are only three ways to grow your practice.  You either increase the number of new patients, get them to buy more medical services, or pay more for each proceedure.

For this article, we will focus on increasing the number of new patients. We will focus on the other two methods in future articles (as well as in past issues such as in “8 Steps For Increasing Business“).

CREATING AN ALLIANCE

In order for a referral program to work, you have to do some investigative work. You must figure out your colleague’s needs and motivations. There are both Referralpsychological and emotional components in play when referring patients. You need to know about your colleague’s current referral partners. Why is your colleague using them rather than someone else? How committed are they to these people? How open are they to adding to their list of referral partners?  Do they have long-standing ties such as school, social, or fraternal affiliations?

“More than features, more than benefits, we are driven to become a member in good standing of the tribe. We want to be respected by those we aspire to connect with, we want to know what we ought to do to be part of that circle.” – Seth Godin

As you can see, you may be asking someone to break or significantly bend long-established ties. In order to do so, you will have to consider “What’s in this proposed relationship for your colleague (ie. what’s in it for them?)?”

It may seem crass to say but we’re all motivated by self-interest. As such, as part of your detective work you need to uncover your colleague’s “why.”  In other words, what is the perceived benefit they stand to gain from you? Continue reading 5 Valuable Tips: Building A Referral Business That Works!

Save Thousands On Your Marketing & Still Get Killer Results!

Promotional efforts can be extremely expensive.  What if you could save thousands on your marketing and still achieve your best results? 

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), the average business spends 7% of its annual revenue  on their advertising; in raw dollars, if you make a few adjustments, you could save thousands on your marketing!

More importantly, not only can you save thousands on your marketing, you can do it and still get impressive results with your promotional efforts.

Business promotion is a core element of one’s standard operating costs, i.e. “the cost of doing business.” However, how one promotes their clinic is an invaluable commodity for the astute marketer, which requires keen senses!  Moreover, promotional better strategies allow you to save thousands on your marketing!

Your medical practice, like every other business, needs a steady stream of patients to stay solvent. Beyond word-of-mouth and family, you need to engage in some sort of advertising to succeed. Unless you’re prudent, you will probably fall into the government statistic. It also means you will likely be spending thousands on your marketing as well.  As such, it is in your best interest to figure out how to shrewdly boost your returns on investment (ROI)!

Therefore, let’s see where we can maximize our budget, and save you money immediately.

Every business school in the country teaches one very important principle, it costs you significantly more money to get a new patient than to maintain and do more business with your current patients!

*  It is 6 Times More Expensive to Win a New Customer than to Retain an Existing OneThinkJar.com

Additionally, according to Sales and Marketing Magazine, 80% of all people who inquire about medical services take action within one year (emergencies excluded). However, they seldom do business with the clinic they originally contacted. This means you are educating your prospective patients to do business with your competition.

Your best and most lucrative strategy then is to focus on and provide excellent service for your current patients! Above all else, it is far more logical to do business with those people that know you and trust you.

In fact, the evidence is in and the Internet is chock-full of information supporting Save Thousands on Your Marketingthis evidence! Author Tricia Morris, from Business2Community.com, writes an excellent, enlightening, and convincing piece on the subject. According to her research, “the probability of selling to an existing customer is 14 times higher than the probability of selling to a new customer.”

Her article titled “It is 6 Times More Expensive to Win a New Customer Than to Retain a New One” further points out the following interesting facts:

  • If satisfied by the customer experience, 73% of the customers will recommend a brand to others, and 46% say they will trust that brands products and services above all others. – SDL Global CX Wakeup Call Report 
  • 97% of global customers say that customer service is very important or somewhat important in their choice of and loyalty to a brand. – Microsoft Global State of Multichannel Customer Service Report 
  • 76% of consumers say they view customer service as the true test of how much a company values them. – Aspect Consumer Experience Survey
  • 62% of global customers have stopped doing business with the brand or organization due to poor customer service experience.  Microsoft Global State of Multichannel Customer Service Report 
  • Once a customer leaves, for in five say they will never come back, and if they do, 59% say they will be less loyal. – SDL Global CX Wakeup Call Report 
  • According to a new PwC Survey, more than a quarter of the U.S. CEOs are increasing their spending on advertising this year. But the most valuable promotion will come to those who not only invest in winning customers by keeping them.

Okay, you now know some very intriguing statistics. So what are you going to do about it? Where do you begin? Moreover, who’s your audience?  Maybe most important of all, what do you say to these existing patients?  How are you going to increase your ROI and the effectiveness of your advertising? Continue reading Save Thousands On Your Marketing & Still Get Killer Results!

Ninja Video Marketing Secrets Revealed!

In an ever-changing world, business owners are seeing that video marketing increases engagement, conversions, brand loyalty, and provides a far greater customer experience. *

 

It was Sun Tzu that wrote (in The Art of War), “Thus those skilled in war subdue the enemy’s army without battle…. They conquer by strategy.” Video marketing is proving to be a formidable weapon in the daily skirmish for business dominance!

When you opened your clinic, you opened it to be triumphant!  Unfortunately, it’s not easy to have a successful clinic.  Prosperity requires a lot of energy, work,  diligence, and a strong yet engaging tactics.

What if you could increase the effectiveness of your email campaigns by nearly 20%? Does that seem like a bold and unrealistic claim? According to  Business2community.com, using the word “you” in an email subject line open rates of that email by 19%!  Further, according to Infographixdirectory.com, eight out of 10 website visitors who watch an online video view the advertisement in full, 26% looked for further information on the business and 15% visited that business.

How would your tactical tool case benefit from having such a weapon at your disposal? What an essential strategic component a 19% boost in your email and 80% ad readability be towards your goal!   Your promotional platform would be profoundly enhanced!

At the end of the day, your aim is to access as many viable and profitable options as possible. Your goal is to find the best marketing option which yields maximum influence and provides an excellent return on investment (ROI).

A well thought out strategy also requires that you continually remind your Video Marketing Secretscurrent patients that you are the best resource.  Like most doctors, you need to overcome patient anxiety concerns; which mean, you must put future patients at ease.  There are many patients that are completely unnerved by the cracking and popping. You must find a way to address that feeling and move past it as quickly as possible. Simple words on a page do not convey the same message as an empathetic voice on the screen!

*  According to Forbes, 59% of executives would rather watch a video rather than merely reading a lot of text.

Your video allows those people that don’t know you to engage and emotionally connect with you.

More importantly, your video marketing allows you to place emphasis on your unique and highly skilled services. For example, if you treat a lot of patients with fibromyalgia you should include brief videos from satisfied patients. Likewise, if your practice deals with chronic headaches and migraine relief, that too should be highlighted in your video.

Let’s discuss the readership within your advertising. According to Ragan.com, shoppers who viewed videos were 174% more likely to purchase than viewers who did not.

The statistics that we have been talking about are compelling and impressive. However, your video must have a very targeted message. You don’t want to play around with videos that are either so boring they don’t get shared or so vague they don’t connect with your viewers. Focus your video around clear objectives and calls to action.  Create an environment where patients know what they’re supposed to do and can easily take the next step.

The good news is that you don’t have to spend a small fortune to get exceptional quality videos. Current technology allows for a lot of options without a huge expense. In fact, depending on the model, your phone has impressive video capabilities.   All you would really need is a tripod and some basic lighting tips (available on YouTube).  You could then submit that video to a company who could do your video editing for a very reasonable price.

If video editing is your concern and your anchor, then allow me to introduce a brilliant company to you.   Like many of you, I am not very technical.  Many of my projects were being put off while I either learned how to do something or hired someone.

Learning how to do something, though self-gratifying, ruins your timelines. Unfortunately, the danger with hiring an unknown entity is that you have no assurance of the quality of their work. Without further ado, allow me to recommend **Fiverr.   The company’s platform is based on contracting technical professionals who will do your finish work for you. The work they do is provided in $5 “gigs”  (hence the name). More importantly, Fiverr features reviews from past clients of all the professionals that work for them — thus eliminating any trepidation.   So, you submit your video to a company like Fiverr who could do your video editing for a very reasonable price.

DreamGrow.com (which is a source of social media and content marketing information) states that videos can make you some serious money. Adding a product video on your landing page can increase conversions by 80%.

Continue reading Ninja Video Marketing Secrets Revealed!

The Secret to Success: Branding

Branding:  Don’t be scared to present the real you to the world, authenticity is at the heart of success.

 

Branding is one of the most important aspects of any business, large or small, retail or business to business (B2B).  An effective brand strategy gives you a major edge in increasingly competitive markets. But what exactly does “branding” mean? How does it affect a small business like yours?

Your brand is that ADHESIVE image you carry, that has the ability to STICK to the minds of people you meet physically or otherwise. Brand yourself positively because whoever gets to know you when passing by takes your image along!” ― Israelmore Ayivor, Daily Drive 365

Recently, John Williams wrote in a very informative article in Entrepreneur Magazine, titled the Basics of Branding.  He points out that simply put, your brand is your promise to your customer. It tells them what they can expect from your products and services, and it differentiates your offering from your competitors’. Your brand is derived from who you are, who you want to be and who people perceive you to be.

Now that you know what branding is, how do you attain it?  How do you form it?  How build your business off of it?

The first place to begin is to look in the mirror.  Who are you?  Who is the principle patient?  What is your specialty?  If you don’t know, you will need to do some soul searching.  Figure out where your passion lays.  Maybe your answer is right in front of you?  Do an inventory of your entire patient base and establish each patient’s unique need.  Clarity may be closer than you think.

The next step is to figure out your practice’s mission.  Based on that information establish the unique benefits and features of your services.  Now build off of that Brandingby establishing what your patients think of your service.  Finally, determine what qualities you want patients to associate with your practice.

Congratulations, you have just determined your unique selling proposition (U.S.P).  In short, that unique benefit, essence, appeal or promise that you hold out to the patient (one that no other doctor offers).  It must be a clear, concise, compelling reason that makes your patient aware of what your practice can do for them. Continue reading The Secret to Success: Branding

Legally steal your biggest competitor’s best patients!

To succeed in your practice, you must develop better marketing strategies so as to legally steal your biggest competitor’s best patients!

 

The idea of stealing may seem rather provocative as business development strategy plans go.  Rest assured; we are not speaking about doing anything that is improper or felonious!  However, if you want more patients, read on and learn why it makes sense to legally steal your biggest competitor’s best patients.

For the record, we’re discussing something that occurs on any given day, in any number of businesses throughout the country.  Every day, at least one company is trying to get more clients/patients.  That means they are calling, emailing, sending 4-color brochures, or knocking on the door of new prospects.

Question:  Where do you think these clients come from? 

Sadly, despite all the advances in the fields of manufacturing and DNA research, Legally steal your biggest competitor's best patientsthere is still no new patient factory!

You know, the kind of factory that churns an infinite number of new patients like candy bars. And all they know is that they need to do business with you!

That means that all those new patients must come from somewhere.  They either come to your competitors, or you try to convince people to have “never-used-a-chiropractor-before” to say “yes!”  Additionally, those patients who have never used your service before, they only account for 5% of the available market.

An astute business development strategy focuses on the 95% of proven believers in your medical services.  Incidentally, those patients are available from you and every other practice owners in town (generally within a 15-mile radius).  Hence, legally steal your biggest competitor’s best patients.

This article is designed to challenge the views of many doctors.  First, treat your medical practice, and its growth and development, like every other business — strategically.  There appears to be a mindset afoot that rejects traditional game plans concerning business development and attracting more new patients. Continue reading Legally steal your biggest competitor’s best patients!