I’m Dr. Hassan, a Board-Certified Physiatrist and Independent Practice Owner. I help physiatrists start and grow their own profitable practices so they can achieve financial independence and live without limits.
Creating a successful and profitable practice is no easy task. It’s reliant on many outside factors, including competition, timing, and demand, which you have very little to no control over at the beginning. Assuming all of these external factors are in your favor, having a sound practice plan can lead to having a successful practice.
Here are four steps to consider when you build your practice from the ground up:
1. Determine your practice niche
What service or product are you providing? This question isn’t an easy one to answer, and it’s not as easy as you may think. For example, Nike is in the sportswear business, but when you buy a pair of Nike shoes and a T-shirt at the mall, you’re purchasing a lot more than sportswear. You’re buying an image, a feeling. You’re buying the Nike brand.
Richard Thalheimer, the former CEO of The Sharper Image and the founder of richardsolo.com, has worked in specialty retail for more than 30 years. When asked what business he’s in, he’ll tell you convenience or innovation before he specifies any particular industry. And he’s built one of the most influential brands in America.
Keep in mind; there’s more to a product than, well…the product. Your brand is what sets your practice apart from your competitors.
2. Select your market
Who are your ideal patients? This step is a bit less interpretive than the first, though equally important. Who are your ideal patients? Or, more importantly, what do you know about them? Understanding your ideal patient is the key to success. What do they do? Where do they hang out? What do they watch on television? These are just a few of the questions that you should answer about your ideal patient.
Knowing the answer to these questions can answer many questions of your own regarding devising a marketing strategy. Richard Thalheimer understands his market for The Sharper Image, probably as well as they know themselves. From an article in the LA Times, Tracy Wann, who was the President and Chief Operating Officer under Thalhiemer, says, “Richard has the amazing ability to figure out the things that people want to have.” This ability to perceive your consumers’ desires can only result from knowing them like your neighbor.
This will also help with online ads, which ask for the interests of your target audience.
3. Create a marketing strategy
How do you speak to these patients? This is a combination of understanding your brand and your patient. As mentioned in number 2, understanding your patient can answer many questions concerning your marketing strategy. Where should you advertise? What’s the voice of your brand? What kind of prices are reasonable for this demographic?
To engage a patient and sell your product or service to them, you must know where your advertisements will be noticed, how to speak to them, how much they will be able to spend, etc. This step should have been combined with the last because who your market is dictates your marketing strategy entirely.
4. Learn by example
Seek advice from those who have done it. Look for books written by doctors who have started their own practice and have done so successfully. Remember, building a successful practice is not all about the dollars and cents. Equally as valuable is your brand equity and your ability to engage your patients, which is only attainable by understanding them.
Assuming there is a demand for your product or service, and you can compete with other doctors, following these four steps shall guide you in the right direction.
Wondering how to generate the start-up money to build your practice? Check out this discussion on locums and receive practice tips to get you started!
Attention, Physiatrists! Stop leaving money on the table. Sign up for the free video series: How To Build A Profitable Practice in 90 Days or Less: http://www.sixtytosuccess.com
I’m Dr. Hassan, a Board-Certified Physiatrist and Independent Practice Owner. I help physiatrists start and grow their own profitable practices so they can achieve financial independence and live without limits. Follow me on social media @DrHassanRehab.