One of the scariest elements to marketing is the financial commitment it takes to get something accomplished. If you are financially strapped, your marketing endeavors may seem like an unattainable goal. I am here to tell you there are baby steps you can take to get yourself closer and closer to the “marketer” practice you want to be.
1. GET CLEAR
When I speak about getting clear, I am not just telling you to get a clear marketing vision and practice vision in place. I am working under the assumption that as an aspiring marketer and a business owner you have already done this very important step.
What I mean by GET CLEAR is to clarify the type of patient you wish to attract and do your homework to determine what that patient’s daily habits may be – What do they like to do in their spare time? What newspapers and magazines in your area do they most likely read and subscribe to? Where do they eat? If you don’t know the type of patient you want, how will you possibly attract them to your practice? Discovering the appropriate answers to these questions for your practice is the foundation on which effective marketing efforts is laid. GET CLEAR on the “who, what, where and why” before you even take a step into the “when and “how”.
2. GET FOUND
If you don’t have a website – get one. It doesn’t have to be the custom, Cadillac site that you are wishing for. If you can’t start there, start somewhere. If you don’t have a website, your image is archaic. There is no other way to state it. Then, when your website is live, take whatever you can afford in your budget and optimize your site. SEO is the only way your site is even worth having. If it’s not found, it may as well not exist.
3. PROMOTE FROM WITHIN
Use your existing patient base to spread the word about your practice – especially your favorite patients! You want more like them, right? Then ask for referrals. Share the address of your new awesome website and ask them to share it with friends and family. Post it on your Facebook page (which is something else you need to have for your practice, by the way) and encourage your patients to share on their own pages. Create a referral campaign in your practice. Depending on the regulations of your state, develop something that encourages and creates more referrals from your patients. Do this part with gratitude and be passionate about asking. Give two business cards and ask for referrals to every patient, every time. At Jameson, our clients have taken the referral systems of their practices to unbelievable heights – simply by thinking creatively and promoting their practices passionately. It is without a doubt a powerhouse internal marketing tool.
If all three of these options are too much, pick one. Start with one thing and take the first step to becoming the Marketer Practice you want to be. In time you will be able to look back and see just how far you have come, simply by taking baby steps.