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March, 2012

How Mobile Marketing Can Bring You The Patients You Want

By Chandler George, DC

What does it take to bring new patients through the door? As a chiropractor, you've probably tried everything under the sun. You've had promotional offers. You've given away free consultations and free adjustments. You've been a guest speaker, done commercials on the radio, even built floats for the local parade.

Every step of the way you have to chase new clients and it can feel like you have to literally drag them through the door to get them the help they need.

Who Are You Chasing?

It's ridiculous. The clients you chase after aren't believers in your services. You have to fight their mind set every step of the way to get them to take you seriously and follow your advice. You know chiropractic works to help people, but you're waging a war to pull in exactly the wrong type of people.

As a result, patient turnover rates are high, payment rates are low, and your business just isn't where you want it to be. This isn't to say that you don't have good patients. It's just that those patients likely came to you in a very different way. You didn't have to chase them – they came to you wanting your help and valuing your services as a professional caregiver and healer. The problem is that these good patients are the 20 percent you love, while you spend most of your time and resources trying to convert the doubtful 80 percent into new patients. No wonder so many chiropractors struggle and get burnt out!

Imagine a better way ...

Try and picture a more ideal situation. Stop for a moment and visualize your practice transformed by:

  • Patients that come to you actively seeking your expertise.
  • Patients who want what your practice has to offer them in terms of pain relief, improved health, and enhanced overall well-being.
  • Patients willing to pay you cash up front because they believe in the value of chiropractic care.
  • Patients who keep marching in the door one after another, letting you be a full-time doctor instead of a full-time marketer.

Sounds like a dream, right? But it doesn't have to be. Even though you're imagining it now, this could be the reality in your practice faster than you think if you're willing to change the way you approach your market.

New World of Mobile Marketing

This ideal situation is within reach thanks to the power of mobile marketing for local businesses like chiropractic clinics and offices.

Mobile marketing combines the existing systems for getting your practice's message out into the market with the booming mobile space. After all, some 2.6 billion people made local Internet searches last year, and there's no reason more of those searches can't lead straight to your practice. There are 51 million smart phone users in the world, and many of them rely on those devices to give them information that includes local businesses they can visit now. What makes these users different from any other potential patient pool is that they are actively seeking things they want right now and they fully expect instant gratification.

Particularly for Gen X and Gen Y clients, you just aren't going to reach them if you're using traditional marketing practices. They don't open their e-mail, much less their snail mail. They consider the whole thing passe. What they want is something that shows up on their phone when they're looking for answers – something optimized for the mobile world where they thrive and something that primes them to take action. That's mobile marketing in a nutshell, the wave of the future nestled in the palm of a hand.

Mobile marketing includes leveraging the tools you hear about as the "next big thing" in the media. It means getting yourself situated in Google Local, setting up Facebook Pages, creating QR codes and mobile coupons, building your FourSquare profile, and syncing your mobile efforts with any existing web sites or mailing lists your practice uses to reach out to patients. In short, it's all the things you've been meaning to learn about or do for your business executed to perfection.

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