Video Marketing for Physical Therapists: Targeting the Right Patients and Bringing Transparency

The process of video marketing for physical therapists is one that requires showcasing exactly what makes you different from your competition. No doubt you have many other physical therapy clinics competing with you in your town or city. You might have even lost many of your patients to your competition because your competitors offered something different or innovative.

While this might sound like pure business logic, the real problem is your competitors either do a better job of marketing, have stronger relationships with referring physicians, or have some sort of financial relationship with doctors/hospitals.

One way to “even the playing field” is to use video to share your high quality care.

In a visual culture, video marketing is one of the best methods of bringing differentiating yourself and what better way to do it than with patient testimonials on camera.

Patients who seek physical therapy want more transparency about how your clinic operates. They also want educational information about what you provide and what sets you apart from others. Even if you don’t feel like you are a leader with your treatment techniques or outcomes, patients still want to learn more about you.  Video is a great way to create a long-term competitive advantage.

Many who seek physical therapy do so out of necessity or due to physical pain. So the video marketing you do needs a serious approach. How do you properly convey who you are, though, in a marketing video?

Some Topics for Your Videos

  • Most companies have a mission statement.  Creating a video about your mission statement and your goals for patients is important.
  • Telling stories about what led you to pursue a career in physical therapy is a great lead-in for patients as a way toward more trust.
  • Telling stories about patients you’ve worked with in the past can help demonstrate your empathy.
  • Even better is when you equate your founding to perhaps your own physical ailments. If a specific physical therapy experience helped you overcome a past medical issue or injury, this enhances your sense of understanding about how other patients feel when they seek physical therapy.
  • Expert interviews are great ways to establish authority and differentiate your self from the competition. Pick topics that you specialize in and share your knowledge with your community (see the example below).

Transparency About How Your Clinic is Run

Secrecy in any company, especially a medical clinic, frequently turns off prospective patients. They want to see what you do.  With consent of your medical staff (and even patients), footage of actual physical therapy techniques taking place is a great way to share your clinical expertise, culture, and to improve transparency.

Social Proof

As we have mentioned before, and as stated in the Neilson’s Trust in Advertising study, ratings and reviews come in second or third when it comes to consumer action and advertising trust.  If ratings and reviews are trusted, certainly patient video testimonials are also going to be a great trust builder for your practice.

Targeting the Right Patient Demographic

In Dan Kennedy’s book, No B.S. Direct Marketing: The Ultimate, No Holds Barred, Kick Butt, Take No Prisoners Direct Marketing for Non-direct Marketing Businesses , he provides readers with some simple yet crucial advice when creating your marketing message.  Match your message to your market and use the right medium.  You should absolutely apply these simple principles to your video marketing efforts.  If you are trying to reach the senior demographic, use senior testimonials, and have them discuss their success with their “senior” diagnoses (e.g. stenosis, osteoarthritis, balance disorders, etc.).  If you are targeting younger athletes, then consider using video but delivering it via 15 second snippets on Instagram.

Use Keywords in Your Videos

We recommend that you also use specialized keywords (both short and longtail) to increase the likelihood that your videos will rank better in YouTube and in some cases, even on Google. You can increase the chance that your videos will rank by posting them on your social networking platforms and encouraging likes, comments, and shares.

Video is a great online marketing tool, no question about it.  It’s well within the financial reach of any physical therapy private practice.  When you create your videos, consider your demographics, use video to share transparency about your clinic, and use them for social proof or patient testimonials.  Good video can create a competitive advantage for you so have fun with it.

Local Physical Therapy Social Media Marketing 101

physical therapy social media marketing

You’re already a talented and invested physical therapist. You’ve probably got a steady stream of patients who trust you and are seeing results. What’s next? How can you grow your client base and keep your patients healthy, even after their sessions are wrapped up?  We suggest physical therapy social media marketing.

You don’t need to be a trained marketing professional to develop your online community. In fact, sometimes that authentic novice approach can help your business stand out among all the cookie cutter stick-to-the-book traditional tactics. So, in between sessions, give a few of these channels a try.

Pinterest

If you’re not on Pinterest already and think it’s just for crafters and bakers, it’s time to get reacquainted. Pinterest was the fastest growing social network over the past year, and it has qualities that you won’t quite find on Facebook. “At their core, the difference between Pinterest and other social networks is why people use it,” Kevin Roose explains, “— to plan for the future, rather than exhuming the past or analyzing the present.” On Pinterest, health-and-recovery-minded users, like your patients, plan for the future by pinning wellness tips, healthy recipes, and inspirational quotes. “Pinning says ‘I want this.’ It’s aspirational.”

Your physical therapy practice can be a hub for such holistic aspirations. Of course you’ll have boards dedicated to PT-specific topics (i.e. Knee Pain, Spine Rehab, Shoulder Problems, etc.) and other subjects that would be a perfect fit for Pinterest‘s “Health & Fitness” category, but you should also tap into the most popular categories like “Food & Drink.” For example, you could pin anti-inflammatory foods, therapeutic teas, protein-rich smoothies, and so on. Latch on to another popular category, “Women’s Fashion,” by pinning workout gear that your active or working-to-become active clients would be interested in. Think beyond the walls of your practice and consider the entire lifestyle of a person on the road to wellness. The topic“Physical Therapy” has 1.78 thousand followers; start showing a few of them why your PT brand is worth following.

Blog

Don’t freak out just yet—you don’t need to write a novel or post every day to have a quality blog for your practice. You also don’t need to be a tech wiz. With platforms like WordPress, Blogger, and Tumblr (the second fastest growing social network over the past year), it takes minutes to set up a blog and begin participating in one of the biggest trends in marketing: content marketing. Content marketing is an approach which focuses on creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract and engage with an audience. Blog posts are an excellent vehicle for such content, whose keyword-rich format can also help your business by improving your search engine optimization.

Okay, enough jargon. Think about what your client base would find compelling, informative, and shareable. You could write a 300-word piece about five ways to improve shoulder mobility. You could invite a guest blogger (i.e. a patient) to share how PT has changed her life. You could ask your chef neighbor to type up her favorite smoothie recipe and share a few tips on healthy eating. Compile a list of your top ten favorite outdoor activities in your city. Host a giveaway, like a free resistance band, for a randomly selected commenter. Are your own ideas flowing yet?

Facebook & Twitter

You have a Facebook Page, right? Maybe a Twitter profile, too (if not, we can set these up for you)?  These platforms are easy to get started on and are an effective way to build and engage with your online community. Like with other digital tools, it comes down to sharing high-quality, relevant content and interacting with your audience in a meaningful, authentic way. Since Facebook and Twitter are typically more well-known than the other channels we’ve mentioned, we won’t go too in-depth on the mechanics, but do know that having an active presence on these sites is becoming more of an expectation than a bonus for businesses. If a patient is in a work meeting and has a quick question (“Is the office cancelled today because of the snow?”), they’re probably going to pop on over to your (hopefully existent and active) Facebook Page or Twitter profile for real-time, up-to-date info. Trying to build up a collection of testimonials? Encouraging people to review you on Facebook is a great way to do so. You can then take these positive reviews and highlight them on your other channels, perhaps after turning the quotes into mini works of art with some free, easy design programs (i.e. Canva).

Practice patience

Be patient with yourself as you experiment with what works for your audience. You may be surprised by what resonates (or doesn’t), and just as your practice was built brick by brick, it will take time to develop your online community. Trust that the new growth you’re cultivating online will circle back to a more enriching experience at your clinic, for you and your clients.

How We Can Help

[note_box]E-rehab.com publishes regular, fresh, and engaging content for its members.  From videos to memes, we provide a variety of content to compliment your social media marketing strategy.  Contact us us to learn more about how we can help you with your social media marketing.[/note_box]

Stop the Lead Generation Madness

Each day I speak with a client or prospect that wants to generate more business from the web.  They are overwhelmed, confused, have been burned and simply don’t know what to do.

It’s not surprising when you consider all of the possible forms of advertising communication as diagrammed here in The Conversation Prism:

JESS3_BrianSolis_ConversationPrism4_WEB_1280x1024

 

Your head really starts to spin when you think of social media:

By Brian Solis and JESS3 (http://www.theconversationprism.com/) [CC BY 2.5], via Wikimedia Commons

Here are E-rehab’s Physical Therapy Online Marketing Recommendations

1. Make sure you have a great website – it’s one of the most trusted forms of advertising according to Nielson.

2. Make sure you have a mobile optimized website.  30% plus of your physical therapy website viewers are going to visit you on a smartphone.

3. Send out an email newsletter (examples here).  It is the cheapest, fastest, and easiest way to welcome, communicate, and stay in touch with past patients.

4. Ratings and Reviews – online reviews are the second most trusted and actionable form of advertising according to Nielson.

5. Create videos about your practice, your expertise, about patient reviews, and patient testimonials. Here are examples of reputation videos at Terrapin Physical Therapy’s YouTube channel.

6. Use Facebook and Twitter to communicate social signals to the search engines and to demonstrate your expertise and credibility.

7. Create a blog and optimize the posts to rank for common conditions you treat like MBF Rehab has done.

Invest in the Hub & Spokes

physical therapy online marketing hub and spokes

[info_box]You can spend hours every week chasing after the latest tech that might generate new patients. Our advice is to stop the madness and create a solid online marketing platform that includes the seven components above. We call it the Hub & Spoke Model. Your website is your hub of online marketing and the other components are the spokes. Invest in these and you will build your brand and develop more business from community members that have a need for PT.[/info_box]