resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
The Rest of the Patient Story
I've written previously about allowing a patient to tell you their story – about taking the time to listen and engage all the aspects of their case history, the injury in question, and the related issues.
An Interview with Amanda Shayle
JW: Can you share with us some of your history and how you became an acupuncturist? What did you do prior to becoming an acupuncturist? Where did you go to school?
Business Lesson #1: Adapt or Else
My wife and I recently enjoyed an excellent meal at a restaurant recommended by some friends. We often have concerns about restaurant recommendations, as many have been disappointing.
News in Brief
A Moment of Silence for Dr. Stephen Press; New ACA President Elected; F4CP Offers New MemBership Benefit.
The IME System: A Current Public Health Risk and Solutions That Are Working
I strongly believe in the independent medical examination (IME) system. There are far too many doctors in every profession who are not following E&M protocols and never claim MMI (maximum medical improvement) has occurred for their patients, which has caused financial stress for many private and public carriers.
Asking Patients the Right Questions
When was the last time you asked a patient a question? Maybe 30 seconds ago? But, are you asking the right questions to elicit valuable and useful information? As a healthcare provider, you've likely spent hundreds of hours learning to ask the right questions to gather critical health information from your patients.
Essentials of Assessment: The Squat
The squat is a simple, fast and functional tool to evaluate patient symmetry and function. As simple and easy as it is to implement, it can yield considerable amounts of valuable, clinically relevant information.
How to Find and Fix TL Nerve Impingements
The thoracolumbar junction (TLJ) and the peripheral sensory nerves that exit from it are frequent, important and rarely recognized sources of lower back, pelvic and hip pain. Let's outline a clear exam protocol for diagnosing the problem.
NCCAOM Launches New Membership Organization
The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM) recently launched a new national membership organization, the NCCAOM Academy of Diplomates.
Recording and Appropriate Billing of Timed Physical Medicine Services
There is a common misunderstanding about timed therapy services and although you do have some knowledge of timed service documentation, based on your comment on the 8-minute rule, your understanding is correct, but incomplete.
Roots in the Community, Branches Far Beyond
The Jung Tao School of Classical Chinese Medicine (JTS) was founded in 1998 by Sean Christian Marshall in Sugar Grove, North Carolina, a small community near Boone in the state's westernmost mountains.
The Art of Listening
One of the most important clinical concepts for me was voiced by the legendary physician William Osler. "Listen to your patient, he/she is telling you the diagnosis." After treating literally thousands of patients, it can become almost second nature to quickly discover clues which reveal the underlying diagnosis.
The Value of Melatonin in Breast Cancer Prevention and Adjunctive Treatment
Although melatonin (MLT) is best known for its sleep-aid properties and as a natural remedy to prevent jet lag, extensive experimental studies suggest it possesses anticancer activity through several biological mechanisms.
Building Relationships and Referral Networks with Allopathic Practitioners
Dr. Doug, an orthopedist of 20 years, had heard stories from patients who tried acupuncture. While he was able to address many of their complaints effectively, some appeared to gain additional benefit when their care included TCM.
Energy: For Life and For Death
Energy is a deep topic in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Qi is understood to underlie all of existence, animated or not, and the qi of the living is studied with special attention.
Health and Wellness Partnership
Yo San University of Traditional Chinese Medicine and The Wellness Center at the LAC + USC Historic General Hospital recently joined forces to extend care to the residents of Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles.
Constructing Our Reality: The Primary Channels and Perception, Part 1
My favorite topic of discussion within Chinese medicine is the acupuncture channel systems. First of all, each of us have them. They are part of our bodies; not something external to us. To learn about the acupuncture channels is to learn about ourselves.
Transparency is Key at ASA First Annual Meeting
On March 4th and 5th the American Society of Acupuncturists (ASA) held a successful first annual meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Vitamin D Fails to Help Knee OA? The Proper Perspective
The March 8, 2016 issue of JAMA includes a study about vitamin D supplementation for osteoarthritis of the knee. This is a really weird study.
The Power of Eccentric Exercise: Hamstring Injury Prevention and Rehab
For almost 20 years, I've worked with professional athletes who make a living by running really fast. It goes without saying that hamstring injury (HSI) prevention and rehabilitation is a big part of what they expect from a sports chiropractor.
Musculoskeletal Disorders Take Center Stage
Looking for the latest on the musculoskeletal pain epidemic and the increasing premium placed on preventive strategies including chiropractic? Check out The Impact of Musculoskeletal Disorders on Americans – Opportunities for Action.
August, 2007, Vol. 07, Issue 08
The Importance of Reactivating Clients
By Jenn Sommermann, LCMT
Where, oh where, have my former clients gone? This is a question we all ask ourselves. Whatever happens to some clients? Was it something we said or something we did or didn't do? In order to be successful and have a full practice, it's important to understand why clients stay and why clients leave your practice.Some of the answers might surprise you. Some reasons make sense and others are beyond our control. Whatever the answers, information is power and it's imperative to the success of your business to understand what is happening and what you can do about it.
So, you have been seeing a client for several years and, all of a sudden, they disappear. They don't reschedule and they don't call. What happened? Well, short of asking them (and I do suggest that therapists survey some of their closer clients for these answers), you cannot assume you know the answer.
Some of the reasons clients discontinue treatment are: relocation; job change; loss of job; they are not getting the same value or perceived benefits; they are not interested in trying new modalities in health care; loss of interest; they found a more suitable therapist for them at that time; they are no longer satisfied with the services; they had a bad experience; they don't have a good reason and finally, you are out of sight, out of mind.
As you can see from the list, some things have nothing to do with you and would not warrant you trying to reactivate them. If a client moves out of state, unless they come back to visit friends, you are not likely to see them on your table again. Depending on how long your therapeutic relationship has been, you may have known about their relocation in advance.
I have found that when most clients discontinue treatment, they do so because you have slipped from their minds and consciousness. You know the saying, "Out of sight, out of mind." Nothing could be truer in the massage industry, especially in the absence of pain. If your client is in pain, massage may be at the forefront of their minds. If you provide relaxation and maintenance massages, you easily might slip from people's minds as they go about their daily activities.
So, what to do? REACTIVATE THEM. After all, reactivating is easier and less expensive then drumming up new clients. Since you already have enjoyed a therapeutic relationship with these people, they trust you, they like you and they have an affinity for massage. In essence, they are already trained. All you have to do is plant the seed and call them back into your practice. You might need to provide an incentive, but it's well worth it.
Here is what reactivation looks like in my practice. When I have not seen a client for about two months, I send a handwritten letter. I find the personal touch is better and clients seem to respond more favorably than an e-mail or phone call. In it, I say that I am thinking of them, that I hope they are well and taking care of themselves and that I am here for them if they need a massage. That's it. Sometimes I follow it up with a phone call a week later, but often the phone is ringing before I get the chance.
The response is amazing. I have about a 75 percent reactivation success rate. My former clients are delighted I thought of them and wished them well. They are surprised I took the time to contact them and they usually are very anxious to resume the therapeutic relationship.
Reactivation does not have to be complicated and can be very successful. If you go through your files on a monthly basis, you probably can find a few clients each month to reach out to. I send about two or three reactivation letters each month and it keeps the energy of the practice flowing. If you really believe in taking care of your clients, this step should be very easy for you.
Now that you have them back in your practice, you must keep them there. Remember, they probably dropped off because you were out of sight and out of mind. So how do you fix that? Well, that's a topic for another article.
Click here for previous articles by Jenn Sommermann, LCMT.
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