Chiropractic CE

Strategies to Grow Your Chiropractic Practice

While this may seem like old news to some of you, it is always important to make sure we are doing everything we can and staying up to date with how to keep our practice alive and running smoothly. The answer to getting new patients and keeping them may seem like a straight-forward answer: do your job and do it well. In today’s world, there are many other factors that need to come into play when creating and maintaining a successful practice in the eyes of patients. Now more than ever as a provider, it is important that you have both an online and offline presence working together to support each other harmoniously for a practice that patients trust.

How Do I Get New Patients to Trust My Practice?

            First, we need to look at the big hurdle of getting new patients into our practice. This may seem like a pain, especially when trying to obtain new patients who have never even dreamed of the idea of chiropractic work trusting you and coming into your office for the first time. There are several ways to achieve this, not the least of which is just making sure you are up to date on your education and all of what we will talk about below.

Get some traction into your office by:

  • Online Presence. Perhaps the biggest of any tips when practicing in today’s technological world is having an online and social media presence. In fact, it’s essential. Starting with your practice website, and moving into social media giants like Facebook and Instagram which contrary to popular belief is not just for millennials. All online platforms need to be engaging or trustworthy or they will move on to the next chiropractor that pops up on Google. When picking you or the chiropractor down the street, the provider who has the stand out online presence gets the patient. Make sure you:

    • Post tips and advice to your social media that patients are asking about their health problems that chiropractic therapy could solve for them.

    • Create engaging and useful posts on your website. Having an appealing blog focused on what potential new patients typically are looking to get out of chiropractic services will attract new patients naturally online.

    • Overall, be HONEST and REAL on all platforms – patients want real people to be a part of their healthcare not a robot with unrealistic promises. This adds value which in turn adds trust, and therefore attracting new patients.
  • Your brand. This goes along with your online presence but can also have effects offline as well. It is imperative for you to have a clear and strong message about who you are. Your brand tells your patients what they can expect from your services, your commitment to them, and what defines you amongst your competition. These aspects are represented visually and verbally from your content online, to your logo, and the physical appearance of your office. It is important that each interaction your patient has with you, your office, your staff, etc, can all connect to your brand, or the patient may go elsewhere. There are so many chiropractors out there for a potential patient to choose from, and you need to ask yourself a few questions to determine your brand:
    • What makes you different from other chiropractors?
    • Why should they choose you?
    • Why should your patients trust you for their chiropractic care?
  • Advertising. Again, with technology everything is at your fingertips and advertising for your business has never been easier or more cost effective. You can invest in targeted paid advertisements for your business with large platforms like Google, Facebook, and even industry specific websites and news publications. Targeted advertising can help you reach anything from specific age groups to interests and in large numbers.
  • Get involved. It is important to get your business name out there locally. People like doing business with one that shows they care about the community. There are a number of ways to get involved in your community:

    • Volunteering your services-this could be potentially offering a free session to local veterans, athletes, teachers, nurses, fireman, policeman or 1st responders.

    • Attending local meetings and educating others on your business and chiropractic therapy like your child’s PTA or your local chamber of commerce.

    • Holding lectures and seminars in your community to educate the public on chiropractic care.

    • Reach out to primary care physicians (to potentially refer patients to them and vice versa), physical therapists, local gyms, local attorneys (for personal injury patients.)
  • Incentives & Referrals. This particular tip can work for both getting new patients into your practice and for retaining current patients. You could offer something to current patients like “15% Off Your Next Session” if they refer someone who books a new patient session. 80 percent of people trust advice provided by friends and family and are therefore more likely to walk through your door and give you a try. Just make sure no matter what incentive you use to limit how many you give as well as putting an expiration date on them to control how many free/discounted services you will provide by a certain date.

Using any of these in your own variety will help attract new patients to your practice. The key with any of these is to set the expectation and deliver on it.

How Can I Get Patients to Come Back & Stay?

            The heartbeat of every practice is not only getting new patients, but getting them to return and keeping long-time patients. How do we do this? At its very core, the key to retaining your patient base is simple…relationships. You must truly care about the work you put out and how your patients are receiving it and you. How you cultivate the patient/provider relationship has everything to do with loyalty, respect, and adding value. To keep your patients, you want to look at things from their point of view and find further ways to serve those needs and wants. Focus on what you can deliver to the patient long-term for their care.

Some Ways to Keep Patients Coming are:

  • Deliver results! This seems like such a given but it is so important! Patients want to see that the money they’re spending on treatment is being put to good use. They want fewer missed work days, better range of motion, less pain….just to name a few. Basically, if you have the credentials, make sure you commit and implement the expectations you set for the services you provide for your patients.
  • Adjusting your schedule and making it easy. As people in the world, we are in a stressful time and environment, and what patients desire now more than ever is convenience and ease. These could be small things like in the way you communicate with your patients on a daily basis. Things such as being able to send appointment reminders and options to reschedule via text message or email are huge conveniences patients look for. Also think about your patients….does your schedule work for them or are there several missed opportunities because you don’t have the means to meet the demand of your patients schedules? Try different times of the day, or offer extended hours on certain days, or even a weekend day if that works for you to give your patients more variety and therefore retaining them.
  • Setting the expectation and giving them solutions. Patients want to be aware of how their troubles are being addressed as well as give you anything they expect you to handle as their provider in regards to their problems. As the provider, it is important to know all of this information from the patient in the beginning and then refocus on what you will be able to deliver in their treatment plan.
  • Finally, most likely the most important piece, is develop value. This starts from the minute they inquire about services to the time a conversion is made and beyond. If a patient is stating they do not have the money for services, then they do not see the value in receiving your care. Value is the number one key to getting and retaining a patient. There are four phases of value:

    • Developing Value-educating the patient on how chiropractic therapy will solve their symptom or complaint with x,y, and z treatment options and have succeeded in doing so before.

    • Distributing Value-this is in the execution of your treatment which is where all your education, training, and continuing education come into play. Your customer service skills being just as important as your clinical delivery and results at this phase of value.

    • Adding Value-this is the patient’s perception in how chiropractic therapy is adding to their life. Patients will not continue to invest in your treatment (or anything for that matter) if they do not see it adding anything to their life short or long term. It is the confidence your patient has in you and your work to refer others.

    • Seizing Value- getting paid! Never undervalue your services worth in this phase. If you are taking the necessary steps in creating value before this phase, you should never feel struggle around charging (or the amount to charge) for your work

How Can I Do It All?

            There is a lot to think about and implement when maintaining a successful chiropractic practice. In fact, it all seems like it’s a bit too much doesn’t it? How can one possibly apply all of these aspects into a single meeting with a patient or even a phone call? The truth is that just like with anything else, to be successful it will take time. Set an expectation, add value, and execute. Follow that main guideline, and then do the next right thing to keep building on your practice. The more you care about your patients and your work, the more progress and success your practice will see. The only question left now is, what are you waiting for?