Marketing a Private Practice

What is this all about anyway – how exactly do you market a private practice? Isn’t quality of care enough? No! These days there are so many jumping on the bandwagon, purporting to have marketing gimmicks and techniques for you.

Recently, I had a client who was asking me, “How do I know who to go with, how do I know who will get results, what gets results and what and who doesn’t?” He was being courted by a ‘marketing expert.’ I said, “Great, if he gets the job done.” But the first thing you have to ask the ‘marketing expert’ is – what does he think the end result of marketing is? And after that, you should speak to some references. He came back to me and told me that this guy said the end result would be name recognition, getting the word out and making him known to the community. My first response was that this guy does not know his marketing technology. These things he mentioned fall under public relations, notmarketing! Marketing has only one purpose: to find, create demand and SELL SOMETHING. Period. Marketing is done after public relations. PR is however, commonly the missing step.

What we did was this, and you should try it:  I had the client list every single marketing action he has ever done that actually acquired new business. After all, he is in business and something is working! Once we listed all of them, there was something extremely evident: there was no consistency to his marketing. He would do something, it would work, and instead of continuing to do it, and more often than not, he would let it go for a while.

One example was public speaking. He told me that when he did any kind of public speaking he got a lot of new patients. I asked him how often he does this. He said, “A few times per year.” So I said, “Well for starters, how about doing them every month!” We then listed out locations where he could speak, how to contact the location and how to get agreement to present there and away he went; getting a lot more business consistently from this onesource!

The overall message is: your marketing has to be consistent, repeated over and over again. Its purpose and end result has to be known by all concerned.