All of us want to open a practice to a large crowd with lots of new patients. This won't happen just because you put up a 'Now Open' sign. There needs to be a good amount effort put in, over a period of time, of:
However, you may have not had the time or the money to do this. Or, maybe you weren’t aware of the amount of work needed to open with a BANG! In that case, you might think the act of getting patients is a mystery, your kind of haphazardly doing things to bring them in, therefore growing at a snail's pace or you’ve recently hit a plateau?
Today we're going to discuss the 5 ways you get a patient and what you can do to increase that amount this month and through to the end of the year. Ideally you should be getting 25+ new patients a month comfortably. If not, listen up and see where you can put your energy to bring in more!
People you’ve known since before opening your practice. Some of these may be family and friends you feel more comfortable referring out, others will come to you because they’ve known, liked and trusted you for a while.
People you’ve met through networking. We won’t go too much into networking since we recently did a podcast on that topic, but networking is important. If networking is where you’re having the hardest time then we recommend re-listening to that episode #129. Find a few groups you feel comfortable in and focus your attention and efforts to meeting more people there. If you’re lazy in this area then know that your inability to grow your practice and get momentum stems from the fact that you aren’t getting out, meeting people, and engaging in your community. I know this is outside of some people’s comfort zone to go to events, mingle, etc, but this is how you get noticed and grow.
People who know you are typically the best patients. They’re in your office because they already know, like, and trust you. They also respect your time, knowledge, and care. They aren’t going to fall off after one visit, or be skeptical of your care. They’ll be committed, and more than likely become a raving fan if they aren’t already. Take care of these people so they spread the word, which leads us into the second reason people will come in.
A referral is typically the next best thing to the person who comes in that already knows you. A referral has already been told what to expect, which makes them committed to the process once they call and schedule. They chose you because they liked whatever the referring person said about you - the culture in your office, the way you treat, the care you give, etc. And they may have gotten 5 referrals from friends, but chose you as the best fit.
They read through your website, read your Google reviews, looked at Facebook posts and reviews, etc and determined they liked you best. This is why being clear on your brand is and maintaining a social media presence are so important. If you don’t have either of these, then an online researcher will probably not choose you. In today’s day and age it’s normal to have a website, be on Facebook, share on Facebook, Instagram, Snap Chat, etc. If you aren’t visible in these places then you’re missing out.
Another active volunteer or someone at an event that notices you’re the Chiropractor that’s giving and donating around town. We always give to local schools, so we have banners up at football fields, major intersections, and postings on Facebook pages, in school newsletters, event tee-shirts, etc. To some, this is important! They want to go to the person who gives back to the community. For us, this is an easy way to give and be involved.
Paid advertising and most likely some sort of discount- this will fill in the gaps, but it’s a mix bag of patient types, the new patient will come becasue:
Rich & I realized early on in building our practices that these first 4 ways were the BEST for bringing in patients because the patient came in knowing they’re in the right place:
There’s an element of comfort and likability. These new patients are all coming to see YOU!
For #5, this isn’t always the case. Getting patients through advertising, discounts, or lowest prices is the worst way to have patients come in. Rarely is that patient ever coming to see you, they’re coming to you because you have the lowest prices or you gave them a discount. We’d rather spend our time finding patients that are a better fit for our practice and that are coming to see us, than lose money for discounts, price wars, and advertising.
If you’re tired of trying new paid advertising, competing on price, and giving discounts, then Here are some tips to boost your new patients using the first 4 ways:
We've developed several affordable options for helping you find new patients. The ChiroPlanner is a planner that will help you stay on task as you grow your practice. With over 50 internal and external marketing ideas and a 100 day planner to visualize, plan, and act on your goals, it will compliment your efforts to be more successful!
We also created The Foundation, an online resource library for new Chiropractors who are working on and planning to open their first practice in the next 3-6 months. The Foundation will walk you through the steps of opening, provide you with checklist, templates, and countless resources as you prepare to open with a BANG!
If you're in practice and your new patients aren't sticking around to complete their care plan, then you should check out our ROF Systems Master Class. It's an online course, developed by us, based on the success we have in our practice. The ROF Master Class will take you through six weeks of learning the same system we use in our practice to have near 100% compliance with treatment plans, a referral practice that builds itself, and the same awesome patients coming for years, to get the care they need!