There are two ways to grow your practice…Actively or Passively. With the passive approach you do basically very little or absolutely nothing to promote your practice and what happens, happens. Similar to being in a sailboat with no one at the controls and just letting the wind take you where it wishes to. The size of your practice and your PVA one year or three years from today will be determined by which way the wind is blowing. Is that you?
On the other hand, the active approach has a specific plan, realistic goals and a means to achieve those goals. Below are 3 goals for your practice in 2015 and as well as a specific plan to help you to achieve those goals.
- Retain existing patients
- Find new patients
- Reactivate inactive patients
For existing patients, it includes everything that impacts their decision to stay with you from hours open, to availability of parking, to seating comfort in the waiting room, to everything in between. No detail can be overlooked or ignored.
How do you know what matters? Simply by asking.
Take a short survey of each existing patient and ask them what 3 things they like best about their experience with you and what 3 things they like the least. Then do a lot more of what they like and try to eliminate what they like the least. 50% of your overall marketing budget should be spent on keeping existing patients.
It’s that simple. Ask and do. Ask and do.
For new patients, the ways you can spend money is unlimited. The key is to be able to measure the results and do more of what works and eliminate what doesn’t.
Put a time and/or dollar cost on everything you do – be it telemarketing, a newspaper ad, a billboard or a speaking engagement and then measure the results.
What’s your dollar return on dollar invested?
25% of your budget should be invested in finding new patients. Test and fail with small investments and spend big with those that work. Don’t overspend on a test.
Your inactive patient base is literally your untapped pot of gold. The simplest, fastest way to increase your practices income is to bring back inactive patients.
Just by asking. Most of us never do.
The first of each month, invite back with an offer by phone and/or by mail, every patient who has ‘lapsed’. The longer you wait the less likely you will be to get them to come back. So this program must be structured and timely. Once a month … every month. Make it worth their while to start visiting you again. Some of them will start visiting you again just because you asked.
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