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Fertility and Poly-Unsaturated Fatty Acids
Starting or expanding one's family is a major milestone. It's something that more and more people seek out health care advice and support for.
What's Chiropractic Research Worth to You?
The Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research (PCCR), in celebration of its 20th anniversary, has announced it is spearheading a fundraising campaign to support chiropractic research.
The Food Conversation: Nutrition and Your Practice
It's morning and your first patient rolls in with a triple espresso steaming in one hand and a frazzled, desperate look in her eye. "You gotta help me, doc, I am constipated unless I drink one of these, and I am exhausted and anxious all the time."
Improving Communication Between AOM and Biomedical Providers
How comfortable do you feel talking to Western medical providers? If you are like me, you may not feel as comfortable as you would like. Some of my interactions with MD's haven't been the fruitful steps toward integrative medicine for which I had hoped.
Nuts Reduce Risk of Heart Disease, Cancer and Other Health Problems
Several recent studies suggest regular consumption of nuts may provide a significant degree of protection against certain types of cancer, heart disease, possibly type 2 diabetes and some neurodegenerative diseases.
Acupuncture Rising: From Acupuncture Anesthesia to Assisted-IVF, Part 1
Acupuncture's cultural and historical roots go back to the emergence of Chinese civilization. For more than 2,000 years, acupuncture needling has been continuously practiced on the largest population in the world.
The Short Leg Dilemma
When evaluating a new patient, it is common to note a relative shortening of one leg to the other. Some patients will even tell you they have one, and then pull out the store-bought heel lift they read about online.
More Chiropractors Required
An intriguing study published in the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine examines how "chiropractic care affects use of primary care physician (PCP) services."
Getting a YES: An Effective Strategy for Overcoming Patient Objections
Patients make more excuses for declining care from an acupuncturist than perhaps any other type of doctor. Various reasons hold them back from making a commitment to care.
Harvard Health References Flawed AHA Position Paper
In its special health report, "Stroke: Diagnosing, Treating, and Recovering From a 'Brain Attack,'" Harvard Health Publications includes information from the American Heart Association's 2014 position statement on cervical manipulation and cervical dissection – a statement the American Chiropractic Association emphasized in a letter to Harvard Health mixes "scientific facts with half-truths."
Modernization of Chinese Medicine
Language – written, spoken, signed, or otherwise is learned as a means to express our individualized perceptions about the world around us. Language is designed to communicate our personal experiences.
Change Lives by Supporting Chiropractic Research: Are You In?
The Palmer Center for Chiropractic Research (PCCR), in celebration of its 20th anniversary, has announced it is spearheading a fund-raising campaign to support chiropractic research.
A Chiropractor's Guide to Yoga
"Doctor, can I continue to do yoga while undergoing your care?" "Is it OK for me to go back to yoga while I'm getting my back treated?" "It is safe to start my yoga classes again after my neck pain improves?"
Help: A Need at Every Level
One of the great gifts of training in acupuncture is the ability to take good care of oneself. I recently had a bout of frozen shoulder — an inflammatory syndrome which can be debilitatingly painful and take years to resolve.
Surprising Reasons for Orthotic Efficacy
Clinical outcome studies show orthotics are effective in the management of a wide range of injuries, including plantar fasciitis, Achilles tendinitis and patellofemoral pain syndrome.
Patient-Centered Care vs. Payer Restrictions: Your Ethical Obligation
Do you have an ethical obligation to evaluate your patients, make a diagnosis and provide evidence-based, patient-centered health care, irrelevant to the payer restrictions?
Fish Oil: A Key Component of 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?
Do Some Good and Grow Your Business with Cause Marketing
Cause marketing is truly one of the best ways that you can promote your services as a acupuncture professional. Cause marketing refers to a type of marketing where a business partners with a non-profit organization to help bring awareness to a charitable cause.
Practice Policy (Gone Bad): The Sign
Every once in a while, you see something and think to yourself, That's a really bad idea. Case in point: I went to see my medical doctor the other day. Just after being "roomed," as they say, the nurse checked my vital signs. Then she left.
Dorsiflexion Dysfunction: Evaluation & Manipulation Techniques
Almost every condition from the foot to the hip can be attributed to the inability to dorsiflex the ankle mortice and other joints that participate in dorsiflexion. Let's start by understanding normal versus abnormal dorsiflexion.
The Zen Art of "One Point"
We were always told in our Zen Shiatsu training (by Japanese and Japanese American instructors) that our ultimate aim was to to find that "One Point." To be so focused we could touch just one point to transform Qi throughout a client's body.
Healing Trauma: Cultivating Resilience and Presence Through Mindfulness, Part 2
In the last issue of Acupuncture Today, the first part of this article introduced the topic of trauma and resilience, and their relationship to the autonomic nervous system response and the concept of the spirit being grounded in the body, and suggested the importance of mindfulness as a tool for healing.
Practicing with Authenticity
To extrapolate from the above quote, patients love healthcare providers they can trust. One way to earn the trust of your patients is by practicing with authenticity. What does that mean, exactly?
Oriental Medicine on the World Stage
"Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt." This simple, yet powerful statement was lived out time and time again by so many of the athletes from around the world during the Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles.
An Acupuncturist's View of Medicinal Marijuana
The use of cannabis for medical purposes is very controversial. Use as a panacea by physicians uninitiated to the proper application of herbal medicine, as well as an excuse for recreational use have greatly confused the issue.
News in Brief
Call for Abstracts Announced - Parker Las Vegas 2016; Logan Adds Doctorate Degree; New Role for Dr. James Edwards.
April, 2010, Vol. 10, Issue 04
Is This Any Way to Run a Business?
By Cary Bayer
Retail advertising, discussed in my previous column, requires precise advertising layouts and copy. Make certain that the words "50 percent off" are not only prominent in type size, but the very headline of the ad as well.It should look something like the following: "50% OFF MASSAGE SALE." Directly below that, indicate what the actual cost will be for first-timers who respond. For example, if your normal fee is $70 for an hour-long session, indicate that your price has been slashed to $35. One effective way of doing this is to use the universal language of the line through the center of some image or piece of copy. Also, make certain that it's clear to any reader of your ad that the offer is only for new clients.
The buy-one-get-one-free promotion is the one I recommend more highly than the 50-percent-off special, because the new client gets to experience your healing art twice and also pays full price for it once. Your message should feature the word "free" in very big and bold letters. In recessionary times, that word is of huge importance to people. It seems as if every single aisle that I push my shopping cart through at my grocery store has a promotional offer featuring the word "free" in big letters. The supermarket isn't the only category of business doing buy-one-get-one-free appeals; so, too, are restaurants, bookstores, clothing stores and many other retail establishments. Your layout should look something along the lines of: "Buy One Massage, Get One Massage FREE" or "FREE MASSAGE when you purchase one massage for (your price)."
Don't waste any valuable advertising space mentioning the many modalities you practice. Most people, especially those who aren't familiar with massage, don't know much about neuromuscular, deep-tissue or Swedish, and they couldn't care less about each. LMT lexicon is great to share in more appropriate settings such as local chapter meetings and state/national conventions but not to the average consumer. The average client or prospect of massage wouldn't know their myofacial if it hit him in the head. Instead, talk to them about the many benefits they will receive from their service, not the service itself.
Keep your communications simple, particularly in your ad, where less is more. Open space in the ad is of value; it helps convey the feeling of relaxation the client desires to experience on your table and that you're eminently capable of delivering. Ad messages that are very copy-heavy are less effective than ones that have more "air" or negative space in them. Empty space is a good thing; think of it as a kind of Zen approach to advertising.
I recommend that any offer you're touting should have expiration dates. This can be inserted right underneath the price. If your ad comes out at the beginning of the month, give the reader about 30 days to take advantage of your special. This encourages a prompt response if people are to gain the price break. Creating a sense of urgency is important. After all, why shouldn't they get cracking to get a free massage?
I wouldn't waste ad space communicating that the new client needs to redeem their free massage within a week of getting their paid massage. That's something you can convey when they call you on the phone and book a paid session. The reason for the free massage within a week of the paid one is to give the client the experience of enjoying your work on a weekly basis so that if they become a client, they have established a small habit of seeing you weekly. Naturally, at the bottom of your ad, you'll need to include your name, phone number, Web site (if you have one), address (if you have an office) and license number.
Incorporate these creative elements in your ad and you will have some new customers. One client of mine had 19 people respond to such an ad. Sixteen of these people never came back as regular paying clients. On one level, you might argue that the advertising was a waste of several hundred dollars. After all, that's a lot of free massages to give out. If you're paying attention to the numbers, however, you will have noticed that I didn't mention the other three. One became a regular monthly client. One came in regularly every two weeks. The third opted for a weekly visit. One other thing about this weekly client: she is a medical doctor, and has been referring many patients who have also become clients.
When you consider that 16 massages were given away for nothing, was this promotion worth it? If you think it was a waste, you might never be able to grow your business. Let's try to analyze what these new clients will be netting the therapist. Let's suppose each client keeps up the massage frequency they have begun. Then let's suppose each client remains a client for what most therapists say is the average length of a client relationship: three years. At a $70 massage rate, the monthly client will pay $840 the first year and a total of $2,520 over the course of this estimated three-year term. The bi-weekly client will spend twice that amount, or $5,040, in those 36 months. The weekly client will pay $10,080 in that period. If you add all this up, you reach a total of $17,640; and that doesn't account for any MD referrals. To generate such revenues, the advertising expenditure was about $400.
To paraphrase the famous old National Airlines advertising slogan: "Is this any way to run a business? You bet it is."
Click here for more information about Cary Bayer.
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