Raising Chiropractic Awareness In Your Community
Let’s face it, most people don’t know or understand chiropractic. What they do know in most cases is incorrect, and you as a chiropractor should be taking personal responsibility for doing your part to educate as many people as possible on the benefits of chiropractic care.
So, where do I start you may be asking yourself? Well, the first place to start is with your own patient base. If you are not constantly reinforcing and teaching your current patients and their family, you’re failing. If you are not currently running patient education workshops in the office, the time to start is yesterday…well OK…today! Some good sources for material and teaching on the subject can be found with very little effort. Ask colleagues for recommendations or take a few of mine.
- The Chiro-Squad(R) Superheroes “Official Trading Cards” – These are fun and a valuable educational tool to be used to educate the children in your practice (and the parents will benefit to!) They teach kids Spinal Structure and Function, the Spinal Nerve Chart and the 33 Chiropractic Principles. These cards will educate and will increase referrals through education, community awareness and connecting kids to Chiropractic! For more information, visit www.chirosquad.com
- Powerful Patient Research Articles– Sometimes education and research material will seem uninteresting to the patient, or simply go over typical patient’s head. This particular collection, available through Chiro Advance Services, is full of educational research that’s put together using simple and relatable language and terms. The “Powerful Patient Research Articles” come on a USB Drive also, which allows you to print over 150 handouts to restock your research wall or education station. The packet also includes instructions to help you to make the most of this patient education program. To order, or for more information, visit www.chiroadvance.com
Another way to raise awareness in the community is to advertise your practice. There are prospective patients passing by your office every hour of every day and the reason they do not become patients is because you have not marketed or advertised your services to them. As with any thing else, marketing and advertising is sometimes a “trial and error” effort. You will most likely need to try many types of marketing to find the venue that produces the results that you are looking to achieve.
Write informative articles of interest to and for your community in the local newspaper. Focus your piece on education. The subject of your article should be of a “relatable” nature. Proper Nutrition, Exercise, Stress, Headaches… A symptom, problem or concern that most people will relate to. Don’t make your article an “advertisement” for your practice. Make it a source for council. Become an expert …someone the reader is looking for advice from.
Create a practice web site. In today’s day and age, having a practice web site should not even be a question. In most cases, you can have a user friendly, attractive, inviting site with all of “bells and whistles” included for under $1000. Your web site should be a place for a new prospective patient to go to find out more about YOU and chiropractic. You should include information relating to the specific technique you use, your education and experience, new patient office procedures and don’t forget your Mission Statement! Include patient testimonials, pictures of the staff, maybe a virtual tour of the office, article pertaining to Chiropractic, a calendar with upcoming events you’ll be involved in such as “Kids Day America”, Health Fairs, and New Patient Workshops… etc. Remember though, a web-site is useless if there is no traffic, so marketing your website is as important as building one. More information on generating traffic to your site can be found by contacting us.
An extremely powerful form of marketing that many Chiropractors are not aware of can be chiropractic telemarketing. The reason it can be so effective is because it is interactive and demands an immediate response. Let’s face it; we’ve gone over this before…most people don’t “get” what you do. They have a problem, they’re not feeling well, and they pick up the phone call an M.D, take some painkillers or an anti-inflammatory, and forget about it. The average person will suffer through allergies, asthma, headaches, carpel tunnel, sciatica, etc, and never even think of picking up the phone to call a chiropractor for an evaluation. Having someone contact your community by phone with an invitation to visit your office can be most compelling. Your potential new chiropractic patient can have his or her questions and concerns regarding chiropractic answered, voice opinions and preconceived ideas that they may have regarding chiropractic as a whole, (good or bad) and most important can ask and have answered very specific questions about you and your practice. More information on this subject can be found by visiting www.chirometromarketing.com
- Direct Mail can be useful, especially to your inactive database. As far as marketing with direct mail for new patients, you can expect maybe a 1 to 2 percent return on your investment. That’s about average. With the cost of postage today and e-mail so readily available, that may be the better option is choosing a reactive form of marketing such as mail. If you are using e-mail or snail mail to attract back patients that have “fallen off”, be sure to offer a free screening and consult to bring them back into the practice. Let your former patient know that you are truly concerned with their well-being. Anticipate in advance that they may be embarrassed or uncomfortable for not returning and help them to feel at ease with the thought of returning. Follow up with a phone call (personal, if at all possible) and just stay in touch every month or two. If you reactivate just one patient you are a success. You’ll be surprised as well; just how many referrals come out of your effort.
- Television / Radio- As with writing articles for your local newspaper, TV and Radio advertising has to have the WIIFM (What’s In It For Me) approach with your public. An “advertisement” for you and your practice is simply self-fulfilling and ineffective in reaching new patients. Unless you are a practice that focuses on Personal Injury, Accidents or Work Related cases, keep your ad more “information based” in it’s content. Maybe offer a Free Report or a Free Workshop on a topic once again that most people will relate to. Get involved in educating the listener on Chiropractic, not “selling” them on Chiropractic. People tend to be more open minded when they don’t feel like they are being “sold”, so with that in mind, if you are going to spend marketing dollars in this venue, make it about the audience, not about you.
- Yellow Page Advertising- Once again, unless your practice focuses on Personal Injury, Accidents or Work Related Injuries…all you need in the Phone book is your business name and phone number. Remember, you want to attract the 80-90 percent who “know not what you do”…These people will not be looking for you or any other chiropractor in the Yellow Pages. Your marketing dollars are much better invested in Pro-active advertising and education the public.
Remember, it’s about raising awareness. Don’t kid yourself into believing that people really know or understand what you do.
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