Create Buzz by Using Word-of-Mouth Marketing for your Physical Therapy Clinic
People take reviews pretty seriously. But even more powerful than online reviews are word-of-mouth reviews, when your patients either recommend you or warn away their friends and family. What type of experience are you providing your existing patients? It’s important to know this before you start marketing.
You can count on unhappy patients complaining publicly, so how do you keep current patients happy and create positive buzz about your services?
It’s the little things. To truly set yourself apart, you have to cultivate a positive reputation, so your patients rave about how caring, creative, generous and effective you are.
Give Potential Patients the Warm Fuzzies
Your patients have choices when it comes to their physical therapy. And it’s well known that people make purchasing decisions based on emotion rather than logic. And, many decisions are even made subconsciously!
So what can you do with these insights?
Cause your patients to feel good about both you and your practice. Smile, laugh, be happy and you’ll make them feel the same in return. Prioritize the patient experience and create those warm fuzzies mentioned in the previous section, but this time in person.
This will help you establish an excellent reputation, make more money, and boost staff morale, and can prevent early patient dropouts.
- Smile more often. Smiling, as they say, is contagious, and a true smile that engages the eyes, can actually make you happier. And smiling communicates openness, warmth, and, per WebMD, intelligence. These are all wonderful traits that help develop a positive rapport with patients.
- Listen. A good bedside manner involves more than just using clinical jargon and expecting patients to understand. It’s important to really listen to learn what they expect from therapy, their achievement hopes, and their fears. This means you’ll be able to personalize the experience and tailor your treatment plan, their home exercise program, and their goals so that you both get the most out of every appointment.
- Keep positive. Focus on the bright side, always, and especially when you’re around your patients. Be nice to your staff and be aware of your body language and what you say. Stay aware of and avoid anything that could cause your patients to think you are other than kind and caring.
Determine Patient Loyalty
You know the value of happy, loyal patients, and that a patient’s attitude – along with the patient-provider relationship – can significantly influence a patient’s recovery. Their attitude, after all, marks the difference between a patient dropping out of therapy early or completing their course of care.
But, you may not know how to determine which patients are happy and loyal and which are on the edge of leaving you, and maybe even physical therapy altogether. A great tool for measuring patient loyalty is Net Promoter Score (NPS) tracking. This involves asking patients one question: On a scale of 0 to 10 (with 10 being most likely and 0 being not at all likely), how likely are you to recommend our practice to a friend or family member?
NPS, when it’s used consistently, can help therapy professionals get actionable information that can be used to reduce patient dropout rates, enhance outcomes, and minimize litigation risk. This is especially true if you add an optional text box to collect additional feedback. It’s also important to note that NPS measures loyalty.
Based on their responses to the question, patients are scored and put into three groups: Promoters (loyal patients), Passives (satisfied but not yet loyal patients), and Detractors (dissatisfied patients). Promoters are significantly more likely than Passive or Detractor patients to complete their entire course of care, complete an online review, and return to see you again.
The goal is to move as many patients as possible up the scale by responding to specific patient feedback and analyzing the information to detect trends that may have negative impacts on the patient experience. The more Promoters your clinic has, the better.
NPS is easy to implement, and software can make the entire process even easier. But, no matter whether you’re doing it yourself or using software, you won’t see any benefits from NPS unless you act on the feedback you receive!
Get More Professional Doctor Referrals
Once your patients are happy, turn your attention to referring providers. You can save advertising dollars by focusing on building relationships with others in the medical community who can refer their patients to you and your services. Position yourself as an expert and demonstrate your value.
- Make sure your contact information is current on your website, business cards, review sites and social media accounts.
- You can use Google Docs to create and share an easy, fillable patient referral form for physicians and other providers. Include the URL on your business cards and all of our marketing materials.
- On one day every quarter, visit some of the largest physician groups near you. Introduce yourself. You want to stay top-of- mind, just in case they have a patient who needs physical therapy.
- Maintain relationships with your partners, like athletic trainers, yoga teachers and massage therapists. Take someone out to lunch. Also, if you help out where you can, they might return the favor.
Word-of-mouth marketing can be the most engaging and effective form of marketing. Capitalizing on it means building strong relationships and nurturing them through good times (lots of patients) and bad (things are a bit slow).
Next Step: Get to Know EverEffect
Ready to rev up your Digital Marketing for your Sports Physical Therapy Clinic? As a Google Partner, EverEffect has exclusive access to Google expertise – a distinction given to only a select number of Google Partners worldwide.
Now, we can help our clients and potential customers learn the latest industry trends and how to best leverage them through exclusive webinars with our Google experts. It’s just one of the great benefits that come from the experience, dedication and results-driven success our clients receive. Tell us your story via our online contact form or give us a call at 888-506-2183 for a face-to-face.