Did you ever think when you were smack dab right in the middle of rotations as a resident in medical school that you’d have to worry about marketing? They didn’t teach you how to get patients as a private practice owner when you were changing colostomy bags and reminding patients to cut down on their salt intake, did they?
But here you are.
And now you’ve realized that in order to grow your small medical practice without a marketing degree you’re going to have to do something about funneling patient prospects into your lobby because at this point? People don’t know you exist.
That’s not a very flattering truth, but it’s the truth just the same. And we’re here to deal with facts about how to get your practice on the path to receiving as many patients as you can handle. Roll up your sleeves, doc. It’s gonna get messy.
I’m sure you’ve heard the basics. You need a website (although you’re not really sure what it’s supposed to do for you other than contain your contact information) but that just seems like an overpriced virtual business card, right?
Depends. It is if that’s all you use it for, but there are wonders abounding in the online space, and when you know how to navigate around it, your entire world fills up with new patients.
So here’s what you DO know. You want to grow your practice, but you don’t have a clue how to use your website or your online presence to attract new patients. You’re painfully aware that you don’t hold any real marketing experience to be able to advise your current staff on how to market your practice and even if you did, they don’t have the experience to know what they’re doing. You need them managing patients and handling administrative tasks.
And you know you want your practice to have a 24/7 marketing strategy that works without you being required to keep your finger on the button, but you don’t have the time (nor the inclination) to set it up.
The smartest small practice owners know this secret.
Smart marketing a small practice is about knowing who does it best and leveraging their talent to work in your favor. That’s it. It doesn’t need to be complicated. You’re a medical professional NOT a marketer. It doesn’t make sense for you to try to learn how to become a marketer. Not only does it take years to get good at it, but it isn’t your forte. The dangerous belief that many business owners get entangled in is thinking they can do some marketing on the side while handling their medical practice at the same time. What they don’t realize is that marketing is the lifeblood of any business and when it’s treated like a DIY project, your entire business fails.
The “learning-as-you-go” marketing method usually slices the jugular of most practices. That’s because you don’t have time to just “figure it out.” Every day your practice doesn’t make revenue is that many days behind the curve. And that means everything you’ve bled for dies.
Focus on what you do best and delegate everything else.
Get clear on what matters most to you and focus on that. Everything else should be delegated to professionals who specialize in those skills and talents. What matters most to you is building a practice that can sustain itself long-term. You want your patients to bring their families into your practice. You want to establish generational relationships with them so that the marketing you do now will ripple ten, twenty, thirty years or more into the future.
If you can get your practice successfully marketed, then you can offer even better care for your patients because you can focus on their needs instead of the financial bottom line.
Certainly, you didn’t go into the medical profession so that you could worry about balance sheets and bank statements, right? You became a medical professional because you wanted to help people. Heal people. Give them hope. A reason to keep fighting.
But you can’t do any of that if you’re worried about your practice bringing in enough money every month. Financial trouble in your practice means you have to take off the stethoscope and put on your business hat and try to figure out how to keep it all afloat. And unless you managed to tack on a business degree with that medical one, it’s going to be too much for you to handle (It’s too much for anyone to handle).
That’s where hiring the right marketing team makes all the difference. It takes a village The experts who do this specifically for medical professionals like yourself. The dream makers who can take your practice from a scrawny adolescent to a bodybuilding champ. And believe me, you want to be up on that stage showing the public what you have to offer them.
But there’s another even more important reason to market your practice.
You believe deeply that small private practice is the answer to better quality patient care long-term. And if small practices were to disappear, the public would be faced with the monopoly of large healthcare groups that would dominate and control the freedoms that patients currently enjoy. You are what stands between that kind of strong-arming and giving patients a choice. You give them options. You give them hope. That means that your practice MUST succeed for the good of the community and for our nation’s healthcare industry as a whole.
What happens if the community doesn’t know you exist?
Your patients lose the opportunity to have you as their doctor. They’ll never know that something better was available to them because they didn’t know where to find you. And you didn’t know how to market yourself in a way that would shine a beacon in their direction. You are the life raft they need to regain control of their health and their lives. Without you as an option to large healthcare groups, you leave them all with very little choice and an inferior level of care.
There’s only one of you. Make them see you.
Your experience and bedside manner. How you make them feel. These are elements that build patient trust in you. You take time with your patients to talk with them. They feel heard when they come to you. They feel like they’re going to be alright. These are what distinguish you from the bigger healthcare groups. These are the good memories you build with your patients and they never forget how you made them feel.
That’s why you must get your marketing strategy under control. If you don’t have a strategy, then we need to talk ASAP. If you have one but it isn’t being implemented consistently, then we still need to talk soon. We have a team of experts who know exactly where to find your new patients and how to talk with them once we find them.
Want some help straightening your marketing strategy out? Need a little detangler to help create a system that generates new patient leads around the clock without the need for you to hover over it like some helicopter parent?
Give us a shout out here. We’d love to show you how we can turn your website into a lead generation machine.
After all, you don’t need a marketing degree to be good at marketing. You just need to know who to call.