We’ve been talking about the 3 Ms this month; namely Money, Marketing and Me (Me being the brand YOU).
And in 2021, now more than ever more, your marketing efforts are going to be key to the success of your Private Practice.
Here’s where I see many Clinicians go wrong with their marketing:
It’s referred to as ‘putting all your eggs in one basket’ – namely the social media basket.
Don’t get me wrong. Social media can be a great way to promote your Private Practice, and many Physios, Osteos and Docs have nurtured a fabulous following on their wonderful curated social platform.
But here’s the thing. If it can happen to Donald Trump, it could happen to you.
🤯 At any point in time, your shiny Instagram of Facebook profile could disappear in a puff of smoke, whipped away by the Zuckerberg Gods for absolutely no obvious (or fair) reason.
😞 Believe me, I’ve seen it. Five of my biz chums have fallen prey to this in 2021, and despite protesting and begging, they’ve remained locked out of their Kingdoms. Pantsorama.
😳 You don’t own your social media online presence. The social media platforms do. It’s rented land, and so it’s very important that you have ‘land’ that belongs to you- namely your website, and your email list.
Yep. Even in this brand new decade, your email list is still ‘trumps' social media.
Why? Because it’s so much more effective at converting followers (i.e. readers) into people who actually book in to see you, or refer patients to you.
If you’re only really communicating to your audience on Instagram, Facebook (or even TikTok), beware.
You need to start building that marketing email list today.
Let’s get clear on what that looks like.
Firstly, your marketing email list is separate from your clinical email list.
It’s a GDPR compliant email list that people choose to opt-in to. You’ve probably heard of Mailchimp, but there are others too, such as Convertkit (my personal recommendation).
Your email list should appeal to potential patients, and you can also use it to appeal to potential referrers. Don’t just use it for patients you have already met (although it makes total sense to invite them).
How do you get people to sign up to your list?
Let’s start with what NOT to do:
Don’t put a sign-up box on your website that says “Sign up to our newsletter” – nobody cares about your newsletter. In fact, go one stage further and ban the word ‘newsletter’ from your vocabulary.
Don’t try to appeal to everyone all at the same time. You need to appeal to different individuals in different ways.
Instead, focus on building a lead magnet, which attracts a niche group of people (and before you panic, yes, you can have several different lead magnets to appeal to several different groups of potential followers).
What’s a lead magnet?
OK, so the term might be a bit cheesy, but you’ll recognise the concept.
You give me your email address, and in return, I give you something awesome which will be super helpful and help you do/understand/achieve something you couldn’t do before.
It might be mini video series which is emailed to the recipient, it could be a downloadable pdf guide, an invite to a webinar, or even a quiz.
What makes a lead magnet more enticing?
🧐 Remember that the lead magnet is all about the audience member and not about you.
🤭 Don’t make the mistake of making something you think will be ‘useful’ or that the audience ‘needs’. Instead, it needs to something that is going to solve a problem that is really irking your audience, and ideally, something that helps them swiftly (i.e. the illusive ‘quick win’).
🙋🏽♀️ Don’t make it overly complicated (so please don’t waste time writing an entire book chapter), and remember it needs to serve a niche, not everyone.
🙋♂️ For example, if you’re a Physician who wants to gain referrals from other Clinicians, you could think back on common questions that you get asked on a regular basis. Which problems show up all the time?
🎓 Let’s imaging you’re a Respiratory Consultant with an interest in the early diagnosis of lung cancer, and the question you’re asked ridiculously frequently is “My patient has an incidental lung nodule that was found on a CT scan; how should they be followed up?”.
📹 You could make a guide that they sign up for (which could be in video format with you discussing this issue on camera, and maybe even talking through an anonymised CT).
📣 Include a call to action at the end of the video (“if you have any patients, I’m happy to see them” etc.) but don’t hammer this home. Your expertise will shine through, and most clinicians will stash you away in their brain for the go-to person, the next time they have a funny lump showing up on a scan.
❓When it comes to lead magnets for potential patients, ask yourself, what is a common problem that repeatedly crops up for a common group of patients? Remember, the more niched it is, the more powerful your lead magnet will be.
🏌🏻♂️ Let’s say you’re an osteo who loves to treat golfers. Could you produce a lead magnet that would help newbie golfers identify and correct a single common error that may contribute to their back pain?
You’ve designed your lead magnet. What next?
Once you’ve devised your lead magnet, you’ll need to think about how it’s actually delivered.
Will you be putting a sign-up box ‘advertising’ the lead magnet on the home page, or maybe a blog page where you talk about golfing injuries? You might even decide to have it on a stand-alone webpage, or a hosted landing page that’s provided for you by your email marketing provider.
If you’ve made a video, is that going to be hosted on Vimeo or YouTube, and will you need to write a short sequence of emails that links to your videos will be sent out in?
Once you’ve put together your sign-up box, remember to make sure you ‘tag’ the people who will be signing up to your lead magnet, so you can distinguish them from other people who’ve signed up to your email list in other ways.
And finally, think about how you’ll direct traffic to your lead magnet. If you already have a social following, fantastic! Tell your followers about it, share the link, and grab those sign ups!
Why not put a link to your lead magnet landing page or sign-up box in your clinical email signature? Remember that sometimes referrals will come from people who remember your lead magnet, and who pass it on to a friend or colleague in need, even if they don’t make use of it themselves.
So, get building that lead magnet, and if you need help with growing your email list, why not consider joining the Private Practice Ninja Academy, where you can learn email list building and all the marketing skills you need to grow a successful Private Practice.