Lost A Sale, But Initial Phone Consultations — A Big Part Of Brilliant Customer Service
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Treating LBP in Golfers: Beyond Basic Assessment
The drive to master the most efficient swing demands a tremendous amount from the lower back. Maintaining stability in a flexed posture, supporting torso rotation and repetitively supporting the golf swing all put the lower back in a vulnerable position.
Relationship Marketing: A Modern Approach
Remember when you used to get real letters in the mail? Not the automated type, but the real deal, hand written with a personal message just because someone was thinking about you? You know what I'm talking about.
Exercise Recommendations for Healthy Aging
Aging is inevitable, but how you age is not. Common physical signs of aging include decreased muscle mass, decreased muscular power, increased body fat, and decreased aerobic (lung) capacity.
Patient Retention Techniques
When talking about techniques to grow your business, we tend to focus on the "large" aspect of the patient base, that is, on strategies to attract new patients. However, it is important to remember that "loyal" is equally, if not more, important.
Technology Meets Practice: Chiropractic Every Day
About a year ago, I had an interesting conversation with a DC who made house calls. When I asked why, she was quick to explain she learns much more about her patients when she sees them at home than she could ever observe in the office.
Integrative Sports Medicine
One of the most rewarding and challenging clinical scenarios is the treatment of athletes.
The Ethics of Herbal Prescribing
While teaching ethics classes, I often encounter licensed acupuncturists who are surprised that our use of herbs and supplements has a specific section in the material. It is often an aspect within ethics that clinicians don't think of in practice.
It's Time to Wake Up
It is time for this profession to wake up and tell someone about the healing benefits of acupuncture. This is the time for Asian Medicine. Its popularity, growth and unusual acceptance is nothing short of amazing.
What to do When Today Sucks
Have you ever had one of those days when nothing went the way it should have? The patient with migraines got worse instead of better from a treatment similar to one you've effectively used on him before.
Making Public Health a Chiropractic Priority
As highlighted in this edition's News in Brief, Rand Baird, DC, MPH, FICA, FICC, editor and occasional author of our long-running column, "Chiropractic in the American Public Health Association", was recognized by the organization recently for 40 years of membership.
An Unexpected Superfood: All About Eggs
About 40 years ago, excessive dietary cholesterol was labeled a public health concern. Specifically, it was thought that there was a causal link between consumption of cholesterol-laden foods and increased risk of heart disease.
Aetna Updates 97140 Policy
In a development the Association of New Jersey Chiropractors is calling "a resounding victory for chiropractors nationwide," Aetna Insurance Company has updated its national reimbursement policy regarding 97140 (manual therapy), reaching an agreement two years after the association filed a declaratory judgment suit in federal court against the insurer.
ICD-10 Is Not Scary (and Not About Billing)
In my 13 years of consulting with doctors on billing and coding matters, ICD-10 has aroused the biggest combination of misguided fear and ignorance I can remember.
Healing Trauma: Cultivating Resilience and Presence Through Mindfulness, Part 1
All humans, by the very nature of being human, will experience moments of trauma and suffering. What, then, makes the difference in how the individual who experiences trauma, suffering, and spiritual loss reacts to such experiences?
Healing the Core: AWB Nepal Earthquake Relief Project
With almost 9,000 people killed during the earthquakes in April and May, another 23,000 suffering injuries, hundreds of thousands left homeless when entire villages collapsed, and many sacred sites destroyed, no one in this country of approximately 28 million has been left untouched by the disaster.
Lower-Extremity Overuse Injuries: Primer on Causes and Corrections
From ankle sprains to stress fractures, shin splints to plantar fasciitis, the research is clear: These common overuse injuries of the lower extremities – among dozens of others – may be related to abnormal foot function in your patients.
A War You Can Help Patients Win
The average American consumes approximately 60 percent of calories from sugar, flour and refined oils. A donut is a good example of a so-called "food" that represents these calorie sources.
Teaching Qi Gong to Children
Many of us have come to embrace Qi Gong or Tai Chi practice as a regular part of our lives. Qi Gong has been a stabilizing factor in my life for the last twenty years.
News in Brief
Support of F4CP Continues With Latest Donations; Walter Reed Honors Dr. William Morgan; Recognizing 40 Years of Public-Health Activism; Allstate Decision Reversed.
Acupuncture Treatment of Trauma in the Canine
From 1972 until 1976, John Ottaviano and I were treating dogs at five different veterinary clinics in the Los Angeles county area. Usually, we were at a clinic for seven to eight hours.
Online Marketing Basics: Website Creation
The various online marketing options make it a challenge, especially when all you want to do is help your patients feel better. With such a broad topic, I'm going to share some basics you should know about website creation.
Learning the Transformative Language of the Channel System: The Sinew Channels
The Chinese medical classics describe the energetic terrain of the body in much detail. The acupuncture channel systems, as presented in the Ling Shu illustrate the various expressions our qi energy can take.
Fish Oil: A Key Component to Positive Clinical Outcomes
Patients seem to be presenting with more complex problems, and many are responding to care more slowly or have completely unexpected results. Why?
ASA Ready to Impact Profession
The American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) is a 501(c)6 (pending), not-for-profit collaboration among state based, acupuncturist professional associations.
Preaching to the Choir: How to Extend Our Reach Beyond the CAM Community
Professional conferences offer unique opportunities to network, be exposed to cutting-edge innovators, share your interests and work, and be inspired.
Data: The New Frontier in Health Care
Your practice is empowered with the data you need to improve patient health, run a more efficient (read: profitable) practice, get paid in timely fashion and help show the efficacy of chiropractic on the national stage in the midst of sweeping changes in health care!
August, 2002, Vol. 02, Issue 08
Step Eight: Initial Marketing
By John Fanuzzi
As your staff trains and prepares for your spa opening (to be discussed next month), a parallel process must take place: the initial marketing that announces the event, clears the way for the opening, and builds a foundation for future promotions.When I think of marketing, I think of what it takes to make the phone ring to book an appointment or make a sale. Although sales and marketing go hand in hand and are often misunderstood, there is still a distinct difference.
When considering marketing, think of eight "P" words -- Prospecting; Positioning; Packaging; Presentation; Pricing; Promotion; Public Relations; and Profitability. Assuming we have a marketing budget for initial startup and the first year, let's get started and look at these "P" words.
Prospecting: When I hear the word prospecting, I think of looking for the gold. In terms of your spa, the search is no different. Gold is what we need to find. We need to find out who our potential customers are. It is a searching and seeking process. It is a time to be a detective and figure out how to get the best return on the time and money you've invested. Times have recently changed, and I think the best buy for your money is using e-mail in your local area to announce your opening and your services. It is probably more important today to get an e-mail address than a phone number. By using e-mail and building that list, you can send out current information about pricing, specials, new services, new employees, and last-minute openings. You should always include a link to your website in the e-mail. Learn from the beginning how to capitalize on this most effective marketing tool. Of course, there is also good old word of mouth and advertising, which certainly have their place and should be used.
Positioning: This is how you place your services in comparison with the competition. How are you going to win customers? Unique services, better prices, an immaculate atmosphere, the best customer service, a free food and juice bar, limousine service, valet parking, or the most caring employees?
Packaging: Everything in retailing depends on it. The beautiful label can often sell a lousy product. The same applies to the services you sell - the written description that makes the customer want to have the experience, the photographs of the treatment that enhance the description, and the beautiful presentation of the products on the shelf.
Presentation: Think of the first impression you get when you meet someone who's well-dressed, visit a beautifully landscaped home, or dine at a restaurant where the meal looks like a piece of artwork. Your spa should make that same impression every time, with every customer. The way you welcome each customer and lead him/her to each station, the cleanliness of the juice bar, the neatness of the front desk, the graphics of the spa menus, and the logos on the employee's shirts - it all makes a difference. Be creative, but keep in mind which details will bring each customers back with all their friends.
Pricing: I like fair pricing. Check out your local competition to make sure you are in the range of your local economy. Your published prices should not be too high, because you could price yourself out of the market, especially in the beginning. They should not be too low, because you could give the impression that it is an inferior service. You also could be working for minimal margins and could create price wars with the competition, in which case everyone loses. You can have specials, but don't devalue your services. If you list a higher price with the right packaging, you have added perceived value, and if it is performed elegantly you will easily get your price and have repeat business.
Promotion: In the initial marketing stage, and until you have full capacity, you will need to offer specials of all sorts. I would start by having an invitation with a RSVP to all of the businesses and influential people you know. Host a "spa party" at which you could offer a free chair massage, for example. Maybe you could sponsor a fundraiser for some community cause, with half of your sales going to a charity. You could develop an incentive program, such that, for each new treatment a customer tries, a friend receives a free treatment . You could cross-promote with other businesses, especially wedding, restaurant and hospitality. You could offer a free service after three referrals. Be creative.
Public Relations: Send press releases to all the local media for everything you do, and invite the press in for complimentary treatments. If you can afford it, hire a PR person. Write articles or a column for the local newspaper - make yourself an authority for your profession. Attend local chamber of commerce meetings and network with everyone, so you keep a hand on the pulse of the community. It's all about public image. What do your customers really think about you and your spa, and what are their perceptions? Long-term business success boils down to building and nurturing relationships.
Profitability: Don't be discouraged if you are not profitable the first year or two. You are in business to make a profit. It is important to squeeze every bit out of your marketing effort. Take advantage of free publicity. If you do advertise, make sure you get some articles written about your business. Ideally, you want happy customers to do the promotion for you. Successful spas do not need to advertise. When this happens, you can take that marketing money you don't have to spend and turn it into pure profit.
Until next time, keep an eye out for the most giving and loving employees -- next month, we'll discuss initial training.
Click here for previous articles by John Fanuzzi.
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