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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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
News in Brief
A Moment of Silence for Dr. Stephen Press; New ACA President Elected; F4CP Offers New MemBership Benefit.
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.
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.
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.
Filling the Gap: The Role of Alternative Practitioners in a Broken Health Care System
I have been asked many times what got me into alternative medicine. My answer is simple: I want to truly help and make a difference in people's health.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
November, 2013, Vol. 13, Issue 11
10 Event Planning Tips for Your Practice
By Stephanie Beck
Have you always thought about planning a holiday event for your clients, but you just have no idea where to start? With the holidays approaching quickly, I think I can help you still make this dream a reality.
Have you ever heard of Small Business Saturday? First, there is Black Friday (the Friday after Thanksgiving), then Cyber Monday (the Monday after Thanksgiving) and a fairly new day to celebrate and support small businesses known as Small Business Saturday – is the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Although your event doesn't have to be during the holiday season, with that time of year quickly approaching, I thought it might be a good time to share the top 10 tips for throwing a successful event.
You can also reference these at other times during the year; for example, if you are planning a grand opening or customer appreciation day. For several of us, October through January is that time of year when most people are making their plans. If your practice normally takes a little dip in appointments, you might want to consider planning an event during that time.
Whether it is an online or live event, sometimes the thought of hosting can be intimidating for small-business owners; and it can be even more overwhelming if you are a solo practitioner. Granted, there are lots of details to manage when you are planning an event, so I have compiled these 10 tips to help you plan and execute your next event with ease.
Start with an end in mind – what is the ultimate purpose of the event? (Besides the obvious, which might be to sell services and products.) What are other possible outcomes you would like to achieve? Is it to attract local radio, TV or newspaper attention? Is it to create local awareness of your practice? Increase your mailing list of potential new clients or patients? Get rid of some slow-moving products? Whatever the objective is, always start by setting achievable goals. Once you have that completed, you can start building on your foundation.
Determine what kind of event it will be – will there be any food and beverages? What is going to be the main draw? Will you invite a guest speaker or provide educational training? If you are just getting started, I recommend trying to keep it small and manageable your first time out.
Consider how many people your facility is capable of handling, and you may even want to limit the hours, rather than have a full-day event. Sometimes manufacturers are willing to send in samples or a sales rep to answer questions or demo products to help with launches. Perhaps you are adding some new treatments, so is there a way for people to experience a small sample of the new treatment?
Determine what kind of help you may need to hire or ask friends to help. If you are going to be the one performing treatments, you need someone you trust who can be a good host/hostess to mingle, ask questions and entertain your guests while you are performing treatments.
Select the right date – because "timing is everything." When you are selecting the best date for your event, be sure to coordinate with your community calendar so you have the least amount of conflicts; or plan your event as part of your community event. Also consider how much advance notification people need to plan to attend. Will it be kid friendly or do people need to get a sitter? Are most of your clients working during the day, so an evening or weekend would work better? You may want to ask some of your best clients for their feedback so you can figure out the best time.
Create and set a budget for the event; things start adding up when you have an event. You need to set a limit ahead of time to determine what you can afford and have an estimated return on investment (ROI) planned. Perhaps you hadn't planned on actually making money the day of the event because your ultimate goal is to build your mailing list or acquire some new potential patients. As long as you can afford to invest the amount of money and never expect a return, because nothing in life is guaranteed. Don't spend more than you can afford.
Ultimately, no one ever plans on losing money. I just don't want you to overspend or create undo stress in your life because the results didn't happen as planned. Unforeseen circumstances can happen in any community. Sometimes it makes sense to partner with another local business to share some of the costs; or getting a sponsorship or selling tickets in advance might be an option to help defer some of the costs.
Craft a marketing plan – no surprise on this on,e right? Determine how you are going to best promote the event. Email, direct mail, social media, print media (such as radio or newspaper), flyers, postcards, signs at your facility, local TV spots, online community calendars, Craigslist, social media or other online ads, telephone calls ... the list goes on. There are many different ways to get the word out. Be aware that some advertising spots have to be planned 60 days in advance, and always allow a minimum of three weeks for any print materials to be ordered. (If you wait too late, you may incur rush fees for getting a job completed quickly.)
Contact your local media – they can be your best friend when it comes to building awareness of your event in your community. Most magazines, newspapers and radio stations have a submission section on their websites; this is the perfect place to submit a press release to the local reporters and bloggers about your event, and invite them to attend. Also send them a follow-up press release after the event so those who couldn't or didn't attend will see a value and make more effort to attend your next one.
Hint: consider adding a charity drive, as this helps encourage local media to participate. Toys for Tots, Make a Wish or a local food drive for your community's food pantry is a great way to encourage participation and build local goodwill.
Start the social buzz – obviously as the author of Social Trigger Points, I would be remiss if I didn't advise using social media to get your ideal target audience excited about your event. Post photos or get your fans to participate in your prep work by asking for their advice. Maybe even create a social contest around the event. Remember, social buzz isn't just prior to the event; enlist the help of a friend, co-worker or staff member to post and tweet photos and updates during the event. This will encourage participation and drive up your social engagement.
Lead capture promotions: In order to make the most of the event, you'll want to develop a way to capture all your attendees' contact information. Whether your goal is to build your lead list or make sales, you will want to continue to connect with your guests for future events, offers and services.
There are multiple ways to capture their information; the most common is to have a prize or drawing where you get their name, email and mobile number to enter on a form. You can make it really simple and have a guestbook for people to sign when they enter. If you are looking for a new-tech way that is lots of fun, set up a mobile contest campaign. People opt-in using the mobile text feature on their phones and there are random text messages sent out during the event notifying people that they have won. There are specific rules and spam laws you need to follow to perform this type of drawing, so consult an expert before you try it. The important thing is to capture as many of your guests' information as possible so you can continue to connect with them after the event.
Make it a FUN experience – if it doesn't go according to plan, almost nobody will know, unless you make it known. We all know nothing ever goes off without a hitch. There is no such thing as a disaster the day of an event, so keep a cool head and look for ways to make it work with a smile on your face. Make plenty of mental notes and give yourself permission to decompress afterwards so you can make corrections for next time.
The money is in the follow-up – one of the most overlooked parts of planning an event is in the follow-up afterwards. In the rush of planning for the event, remember to make plans for the follow-up email, social media posts, press releases and other direct-mailing pieces.
Have a way to evaluate the response from the event. How many new clients did you get? How many of them were already your clients? Did you get to spend time with your ideal customers? Did you book any treatments? How many attendees booked massages following the event? Did your current patients increase their frequency of treatments after the event?
It's a good idea to create and schedule three to four follow-up emails to send out after the event. This is a good way to automatically cultivate all your leads and encourage any potential new customers to make an appointment. More than likely, you are going to be excited, happy and exhausted for several days after the event, so the more pre-planning you do and the more elements you can automate, the easier it will be for you.
Whether you are planning for Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Small-Business Saturday, a grand opening, customer appreciation day or any other event, with a little bit of planning, you can make it a great success; one that will leave all your friends and customers talking for days and asking when your next one will be! Follow these tips and you should be less stressed and have more success.
Click here for more information about Stephanie Beck.
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