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Posted by Greg on May 15, 2014
Over the course of any given week, we speak with hundreds of therapists who are looking to grow their practice and offer increasingly impressive service to their clients.
One of the most common themes that come up in these conversations is that they want their business to really thrive - not just to stand out from their competitors, but to be the hands-down leader in the area. They want a full roster and a line out the door.
So we’ve combined some of the best advice we’ve ever received from highly successful therapy practices, and we’re giving them to you here today:
Word of mouth is far from dead, despite what you might hear about the rise of social media. In fact, some of your best advertising opportunities are right in front of you - the clients you already have.
Getting referrals from existing clients is an incredibly powerful way to grow your customer base. A referral shortcuts the customer acquisition process, because the referral takes their friend’s trust in you as evidence that you are a good person to deal with and that they will be in safe hands.
Create a referral program for your clients that will make it worth their while to tell people about you. Offer them a discount on every referral they give you, or give them a free treatment if a referral buys a package.
This technique increases your customer base while maintaining the goodwill you already have with your current clients.
2. Stop Avoiding Sales.
Selling is an integral part of any successful business. Many therapists are extremely uncomfortable with this, and feel like actively selling their services degrades them somehow, or that it’s manipulative to the customer.
But actively trying to find new customers, including upsells and cross-sells and promoting your practice is the only way you will grow.
Consider this: you trained as a therapist to help people. Your skills are in high demand and you are good at what you do.
Yes, sales feel manipulative if you are trying to sell a shoddy product or a service the customer doesn’t need. But you’re not doing that. You’re offering them improved health, pain relief and preventative long-term health care. That’s invaluable - so cast off any negative connotations you’ve got around sales. People need your skills, so make them available.
3. Get Innovative.
You’ve probably heard the saying ‘Build it and the people will come.’
That might be true of a monument or free burger stand, but when it comes to business, it’s wishful thinking.
You might not have a big advertising budget, but there’s no rule that says you have to run TV or newspaper ads.
You can always put up flyers or business cards in places like:
There are endless options when it comes to advertising your business. Find other businesses who offer complementary (but not competitive) services and promote each other.
These working relationships can become extremely valuable over time, so keep an open mind and reach out to as many other business owners as you can.