Physical therapy marketing is not just about practicing what you have learned but it is also about creating awareness of your expertise. Competition dictates that you have to put yourself out there because there are just too many experts in the field that people are overwhelmed by the available options.
Doing physical therapy marketing online can be effective and can generate more awareness than traditional marketing can. It is also cost effective.
There is a number of online physical therapy marketing strategies that you can use in order to make your presence felt but you have to know how to use them properly to gain the most benefits. One thing you must is that even before patients know about your qualifications and the physical therapy services you can offer, they have to know you are around. Physical therapists can capitalize on the power of the internet to generate that awareness.
Local searches over the web is increasing everyday so make sure your website lands in the first page of any search engine like Google. Search engine optimization is a crucial physical therapy marketing strategy that would help you in this aspect.
It is easy to create a website but it must have useful content and information that would keep online visitors interest and recommend same website to their social network. Physical therapy marketing through your website must be helpful and relevant, real stuff and not just fluff. The contents including your credential should stand scrutiny and verification so people would know you are credible and trustworthy.
Another online physical therapy marketing strategy is distributing therapy newsletter to your patients, past and present. A therapy newsletter will tell your patients you care for their well-being and health. It is a powerful way of keeping in touch with them and establishing a relationship long after you have treated them.
Your physical therapy marketing should consider discharged patients as good sources of referrals as present patients. This is where the quality of your service is crucial. Satisfied customers will tell family and friends the great experience they had. Disgruntled customers will tell the whole world about the crappy service they got. No matter how effective your online physical therapy marketing is, if you do not back it up with superior services, your physical therapy business will come crashing down on you.
Physical therapy marketing is essential for your success as a private practitioner but the real deal is giving the best services to patients.
The Essentials of Physical Therapy Marketing
Often, physical therapy marketing is misconstrued as physical therapy advertising or promotion. Physical therapy marketing is actually far broader than these two. Promotion is a function of marketing and advertising is one of the sub-functions of promotion.
Physical therapy marketing covers the entire landscape of understanding your market and your prospective market, how to bring your product, in this case, physical therapy to your identified markets. Physical therapy marketing also includes the development of new markets.
Physical therapy marketing is also about the offering services that you can sell, rather than selling services that you offer.
Physical therapy marketing activities may include:
Business Development . In physical therapy business, this translates to growing your practice through advertising and promotion.
Product Development. The specific products involved are physical therapy services that you offer. These services might be the same with others but it is how these services are provided that might prove to be the difference between you and your competitors
Market Research. This would involve analyzing your current market to know the preferences and trends so as to help with your physical therapy marketing strategy.
Competitor Analysis. To keep ahead of competition and to be the provider of choice in your community, you must know your strengths and weaknesses and that of the competitor.
Pricing Strategy. Because of competition, prices of your physical therapy services must be reasonable and compliant with whatever legislation or state laws available. Physical therapy marketing demands that setting up prices must bring in profits.
Public Relations. Physical therapy marketing would mean that you need to be perceived in a positive way by the community where you do business. This would include not only your patients but the other health care providers and the entire community. Your good reputation should always precede you so that people trust you.
Customer Service. When everything else is the same, customer service can spell the difference between you and the competitor. Most of the time, excellent customer service would be the crucial factor when patients choose their provider. Customer service is an integral component of your physical therapy marketing strategy. At the core of your success are your patients and you must ensure that you always provide value as part of your customer service.
There are more physical therapy marketing activities but the aforementioned can jumpstart your success.
Gone are the days when people would use the Yellow Pages when doing a local search. Now, when people would like to get information, they search from the internet. This is why physical therapy marketing must also use the internet to generate leads for its business.
Physical therapy marketing aims primarily to grow the private practice and one way of doing that is to create more new business by getting new patients while maintaining the existing patients. The most powerful physical therapy marketing would still be the testimonials from very satisfied patients who serve as the human billboards of a physical therapy business. Traditional physical therapy marketing through newspapers, radio and TV ads can serve its own purpose but using the power of the Internet is far more effective in terms of reach and cost. Consider the global reach of Facebook and it has made its creator a billionaire.
Here are some basics of online physical therapy marketing:
Create your own website. Some physical therapy business owners think that they do not need to have their own websites because they already have Facebook pages but a social networking channel should be just a complement to your website. A social platform is just like building a house on rented land. To establish your web presence as part of your online physical therapy marketing strategy, it is best to have your own website with a domain that you own as well.
Do SEO for your website. There are several ways to do this but the most important thing is to use keywords to generate local traffic to your website. Your website should have the contact information of your clinic such as your physical location and phone numbers. The purpose of the SEO as part of your physical therapy marketing is to land you on the first page of any search engine like Google. Online searches usually just look at the first page of the search results.
Convert visitors of your website into prospects. Your website must provide a “contact us” form should they want to communicate with you. Another effective physical marketing strategy is to offer freebies to visitors using a sign-on page where they have to give their email addresses before they can avail of them.
Encourage insight and reviews. Again, positive testimonials from patients would validate your physical therapy business and that is like an online word-of-mouth physical therapy marketing.
Physical therapy marketing online does not need to be resource intensive because once your website is up and running, all you need to do is update it with new information.
Marketing is the key element to just about any successful business. A mediocre product can outdo a better product in the market because of marketing. Giant corporations like General Electric, Pepco and Verizon spend huge amounts of money for marketing but small businesses like a physical therapy business do not have that luxury. How else can you do physical therapy marketing ideas that are cost effective but would still bring in the results you would like to have?
Here are some physical therapy marketing ideas that would help grow your private practice and bring it not only to success , but to significance as well.
- Know your market. By market, this means your patients. A crucial factor in your physical therapy marketing is to what are their needs and how can you meet their needs? This might seem straightforward to you but sometimes, patients have specific needs that you might not be aware of like they prefer home exercises rather than visit your clinic.
- Stand out. Like any other business, there is competition. Excellent physical therapy marketing dictates that you take steps to make sure you stay ahead of competition. This means giving the best physical therapy services to your patients so that you leave a lasting impression. Follow this up with after discharge communication to keep in touch with them. Discharged patients are good referral sources. They serve as your word-of-mouth physical therapy marketing.
- Talk to your patients and other referral sources. One good way of talking to them is through a physical therapy survey. The anonymity of the survey ensures a candidness that might not be there on face-to-face conversation. This aspect of physical therapy marketing might require an investment but the wealth information you can gather will go a long way in planning your marketing strategies.
- Have an online presence. In this age, having a website is not rocket science. There are many providers that can develop your website for you at a minimal fee. This physical therapy marketing technique will have a wider reach than traditional marketing and will work for you 24/7.
- Use Google. Consumers like your patients are using Google to do local searches for products and services they are interested. And with good reason since Google is the number one search engine in the planet. You can use Google Places to list you in your locality and this is one of the proven effective physical therapy marketing.
- Use the power of social media. It does not take a lot of time to communicate and participate in social media channels like Facebook, Twitter and linked in. Physical therapy marketing or any marketing for that matter will be incomplete without social networking.
- Use direct mail. It’s old-fashioned physical therapy marketing but it still works for people who prefer the traditional way of doing things.
- Use email to constantly communicate with your patients. A relationship starts with communication and is sustained by communication. Communication can be in various forms like distributing a physical therapy newsletter to give them valuable information and at the same time, to remind your patients about your private practice.
Physical therapy marketing ideas abound and it is up to you to choose whatever is fitting and best applies to your business. The bottom line is it brings the results you want.