Owning a podiatry practice in today’s medical environment is no easy feat. In fact, many doctors feel overworked, underpaid, and disillusioned with the field altogether. It doesn’t have to be this way, even in today’s environment. In fact, with effective marketing, your practice can not only survive, but thrive, allowing you to live the kind of life you want to live.
Why Your Traditional Marketing Isn’t Working
When most people think about marketing a podiatry practice, they think about taking out ads in the paper or on the radio, or paying to be in the yellow pages. Unfortunately, what this usually amounts to is shouting about your practice to the void and hoping the right people get your contact information and decide to call you. There’s no easy way to tell if it’s working, and ends up costing you money to be ineffective.
Even more than that, the content of this marketing tends to be very “ad” like: it’s all about you. You tell people about the services you offer, the cutting-edge technology you have in your office, the years of experience under your belt, etc. You hope people will be paying attention and impressed, and so come to you to fix their problems. And hey, everyone else is doing this, so it must work, right?
Wrong—it just means you won’t stand out from the crowd. In a world that is already saturated with ads, you, doctor, will be easy to forget. That doesn’t mean there is no hope for your marketing, however.
The Secret to Successful Podiatry Marketing
The secret to successful podiatry marketing is this: it’s not about you. Your current and potential patients only care about your experience, your education, or even the technology in your office insofar as it helps them. It’s not because people are terrible or selfish, but because they are busy. They have their own lives, jobs, families, and obligations filling up their minds. They don’t have time to think about you—UNLESS you can solve a problem they have.
At Top Practices, we call this “entering the conversation that is already going on in their minds.” See, as a doctor, you want to see patients who need your help. You want to reach out to the people who are already bothered by or worried about their own or a loved one’s foot and ankle problems. Those are the people who are likely to make an appointment and come into your office.
To catch those people’s attention, you have to be communicating to them about what they already want to know. They are already looking for the answers to their pain. You just need to speak to them about their concerns and about how you can help them fix it all.
Everything You Need to Market Your Podiatry Practice
Exactly how you reach the people you want to reach is your marketing strategy. These are the action items you put into practice, and then follow up on to see if they’re working. A well-rounded marketing plan covers four basic areas, what we call the “four pillars.” These four pillars are web, referral, internal, and external marketing. Each of these areas helps you meet potential and current patients where they already are, allowing you to communicate effectively with them. More importantly, they are meant to work together to coordinate your message and help you better reach people.
Web marketing involves everything from your website to your social media to your local search optimization. It means having a great website with regularly updating content, fully active social media, and accurate social listings that you can use to acquire good reviews. Referral marketing is essentially word-of-mouth recommendations from other medical practices, local shoe stores, sports organizations, and anyone else you have a good relationship with. It involves making and maintaining those connections so they are more likely to send potential patients your way.
Internal marketing is a way of connecting with the patients you already have, and the people who have expressed interest in your practice, so they know to return to you in the future or recommend others to you. By using newsletters, e-mails, and other campaigns, you stay connected to them so they don’t forget about you after you’ve solved their problems. External marketing allows you to get out into the community and meet people there, through sponsoring events, hosting health fairs, and so on. Traditional ads like radio spots or newspaper articles can fall into this category, and work for you if they are done right.
How Top Practices Can Help
All of this can seem pretty overwhelming, particularly if you aren’t sure what to do or how to get started. This is why Top Practices exists. Not only do we know the Four Pillars of Marketing work, we have strategies and techniques to help you effectively implement them for your practice. Our Mastermind Group allows you to speak with and learn from other podiatrists who have faced the same challenges—and have found a way through them. We also have services like the Virtual Marketing Director (VMD) Services for online, e-mail, and database marketing that can help execute your marketing plans for you.
If you’re tired of feeling stressed and overworked in your practice, know it doesn’t have to be that way. You can grow your practice in today’s environment, and live the kind of life you want to live now. Contact Top Practices for more information, or check out more on our website. You can reach us through e-mailing [email protected], or by calling (717) 725-2679.