Let’s talk about your business. If you’re a private practice owner, you know how important is to get paid by the insurance companies in order to keep the lights on. You didn’t start this practice just to make money, though. If you’re like most private practice owners, you started your clinic to treat patients and control your own destiny.
One of our New Years Resolutions this year is to tap into the brilliant minds that are a part of the WebPT member base. We have over 8,000 members, many of them in private practice, and I think we could all benefit from tapping their collective knowledge. Between guest blogs and interviews, you will be seeing a lot more WebPT customers around here ready and willing to share their wisdom.
I recently had the opportunity to pick the brain of Adam Banks, CEO of NY SportsMed in Manhattan. This month we are talking all things marketing, so I wanted to see what a business minded clinic owner had to say about nurturing and growing a sustainable referral base.
Tell us a little bit about yourself, your practice, # of clinics, staff, location, years in business.
I run NY SportsMed in Manhattan. We opened our doors 5 years ago and each year we have made major investments back into the business. We opened 3 locations in the first 4 years. Our total staff consists of about 55 employees, inclusive of 14 physical therapists and a host of support staff. Each of our 3 locations located in very high-density areas of NYC and are very close to major transportation hubs. New Yorkers tend to be very neighborhood- centric. It was important for us to have multiple locations so patients don’t have to travel too far out of their normal commute to see a physical therapist.
I am not a PT. This has given me a unique perspective on the practice and has actually been a big help in building our business. I don’t look at the business the same way practitioners do. I am currently pursuing an MBA so that I am better able to manage a large and rapidly growing company.
Tell us something we wouldn’t know about NY SportsMed.
NY SportsMed has had the opportunity to work with some pretty famous clients. One of our PTs traveled with Bruce Springsteen’s band. Krista Simon was Clarence Clemmon’s personal PT. Krista actually went on tour with them, traveling the globe. She developed quite a bond with Clarence, so much so that he even mentioned her in his book. We were very saddened by his passing last summer.
What is one thing you think PT’s need to know when marketing to physicians?
Maybe its cliché, but I would challenge PTs to think outside the box and make it memorable. This past Christmas we must have gotten 14 baskets of candy in the week before Christmas. We received so many that we couldn’t keep track of who sent them. We decided to send Apple Nano’s as a “thank you” to our best referral sources last year. They are $50, about the same cost as a decent basket, and I know that we will be remembered for them. If you’re going to send a basket, be the first one to send it or send a Thanksgiving basket instead.
When it comes to social media marketing (SMM) for physical therapy practices, many wonder if it is worth the time and effort. When asked, how much business they have received from their social media efforts, the typical answer is, “I am not sure.” Some go as far as saying that they don’t get any patients from it at all.
The social revolution We are currently decompressing from our last month Social Media crash course. If you missed any of the content, including our Webinar, you can view it here and here.
Happy Friday to all of our hard working PTs out there! Over the course of this past week, we’ve highlighted why and how to use some of the basic social media tools for PTs. Today we want to wrap up our week with some next level tools for your benefit. Below you’ll find our list of best-of-breed tools and why you may choose to use them.
We know what you are probably thinking. Why would I use Twitter to promote my Physical Therapy Clinic? While Twitter may or may not be the right choice for you, it does prove useful in the marketing space. Boasting over 175 million users, Twitter is a great way to stay up to date on topics in 140 characters or less. Twitter works well if you want to find out if conversations are taking place about your business, and you want to join in (trust us, you do).
Facebook for your Practice: How to Setup your Page and Engage Both Your Current and Potential Patients
Facebook has become a part of over 750 million user’s daily lives. There is a pretty high chance that you have a personal account to stay in touch with your family and friends, but have you ever thought of having a Facebook page for your practice? Studies in healthcare marketing have shown that Facebook can increase revenue and loyalty.
How many visitors view your website each month? Analytical data from our clients tells us it’s in the hundreds of visitors …even more of you drive traffic with search engine optimization and/or pay-per-click ads. It just makes sense that you put some time into your website copy. Copywriting is meant to persuade someone to take an action. It’s not written words simply to educate someone.
How can a blog help to market your practice? Utilizing a blog on your clinic website can be a great way to promote your business. You can use a blog for any number of marketing initiatives. We will cover the benefits of using a blog for your business and some best practices to help you get started.
Getting Started with LinkedIn
Continuing our week-long social media theme, today’s topic is Linkedin. There are already over 17,000 physical therapists in the United States on Linkedin. But what is the value of Linkedin? Let’s start at square one.
LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network with over 120M+ members (think Facebook meets personal resume, but strictly professional).
Check out the video below to tell you a little bit more about LinkedIn:
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Why this matters to Therapists
Now that you know the basics of Linkedin, let’s talk in more detail about why it matters to PTs. Let’s say one of your patients makes a referral to a friend or a potential direct access patient is looking for a PT in your area. Chances are that they are going to search online. Go ahead and try it right now, Google your own name. What comes up?
Social Media has revolutionized the ability for people to connect with one another. While great for connecting with friends and family, it can also be a huge asset to your business. Contrary to what you may think, social media is not just for posting random thoughts or crazy videos.
Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube are avenues for marketing, clinic name recognition, and networking. It is the new generation of communication that can’t be ignored. If you are hesitant and don’t know where or how to get started, here is some food for thought:
5 Things to Think About Before Using Social Media for Marketing
1) Don’t believe the hype; at least not ALL of it
It’s important to assess the social landscape and see what is going to work for you. Healthcare and specifically Physical Therapy has never been a competitive market in advertising. So, it is not important to blast on to the scene with as many forms of social media as possible. It’s more important to be organized and calculated about time, strategy, and staffing. Social media can be time consuming, so choose wisely. If you aren’t keen on jumping on all the bandwagons, simply choose one and focus on it. Creating a profile and then never updating it is worse than not being there at all. If you are already familiar with Facebook for personal communication, start with it for your business marketing as well. If the almighty Twitter speaks to you, check out this presentation by Dale Boren Jr. and Casey Kirkes on how to use it for professional advancement.