Most physical therapy marketing blogs, including ours, focus on getting more new patients and growing your practice. But, what if you are happy with your practice’s size, number of patient visits, and revenue? What can you to do sustainably manage your PT practice? From your print to digital marketing and across your staff and departments, your clinic needs to continue to adapt and change, even if growth is not a key objective of your business plan.
4 Principles of Sustainable Practice Management and Marketing:
Marketing supports ALL your business plans and goals, not just growth-oriented ones. You still need to run marketing campaigns and programs to support consistent patient and referral volumes.
On a monthly basis, every PT practice should:
- Send a newsletter to patients and doctors
- Complete at least 4 offices visits (1 per week)
- Review your website and make updates
- Post at least 2x per week on social media
Monitor Stats and Analytics
Practice owners and VPs should be able to tell you exactly how many patient visits and the number of referrals for each week. Sustainable management is rooted in knowing your business stats and analytics. If you don’t watch the numbers, you might see visits slip by 1 or 2 per week…but at the end of a month that is 4-8 visits (or $400-$800 in revenue). A good checkpoint is to compare the monthly number of patient visits and referrals against last month’s data and last year’s data for the same month. If you are within <10% difference, then you are on track!
Watch the Competition
Sustainable maintenance does not equal static maintenance. Your practice still needs to keep current and dynamically adapt to changes in your local market and industry trends. This is a great opportunity to use social media to do some of the work for you! Like the Facebook pages and follow the Twitter handles of other clinics in town to stay up to date on what they are doing. You can check these updates 2x per week when you post to your own clinic’s accounts. Watch for announcements on new treatments being provided (dry needling, personal training, yoga), new sister clinics, relocations, or mergers. This information can have big impacts for your stats and business.
Plan for Big Projects
Most of your monthly marketing projects should become fairly automated over time. However, sustainability needs to be supported by larger, marketing projects that can keep your programs up to date.
- Create a marketing plan with 4-6 big projects for the year.
- Segment them out bi-monthly or quarterly and look for efficiencies.
- Try and pair one management project with a “growth” project to keep your practice well-organized and current
Some examples of “big” projects are:
- Redoing your website (design, content, SEO, functionality etc.)
- Creating a stock of newsletter content for future use
- Updating your logo and branded office supplies
- Renovating the waiting area
- Adding a new social media platform such as Twitter or LinkedIn
- Refreshing office and complex signage (especially for outside signage)
- Introducing a new service and planning for a promotional launch
These principles of sustainable practice management can easily be applied to clinics in both maintenance and growth phases of their business cycle. For those in maintenance mode, the key takeaway is be current to be sustainable.