Don’t Miss this Physical Therapy Marketing Opportunity
Physical therapy practices are challenged with creating patient loyalty and retention. If your patients don’t keep coming back chances are your practice won’t be successful in the increasingly competitive rehab space.
It’s common knowledge that it’s easier to get a former patient to come back to you again then attract a new patients who has never been to your practice.
A big mistake practices make today is focusing their sales efforts on attracting new physician referrals and neglecting to properly retain their existing patient base.
That is where mobile marketing comes into play.
Our mobile marketing services are a great way to not only tap into the massive mobile audience but also use cutting edge technologies to retain and build loyalty with your patients.
Our suite of mobile marketing services not only produce results, they also help build serious brand loyalty. We help practices by building premium mobile friendly websites and QR code campaigns, that together can provide you with a rich set of tools that will result in more patient visits and help retain and bring back old patients.
[blockquote align=”left” variation=”orange” cite=”yelp.com” citeLink=”https://yelp.com”]”best way to find great local businesses”
“People use Yelp to search for everything from the city’s tastiest burger to the most renowned cardiologist. What will you uncover in your neighborhood?”
I have received a number of reports from my clients that Yelp drives some business to their practices. While no one has ever told me that Yelp’s paid advertising generated ROI or new patients in the door, there’s no doubt that businesses receive traffic from Yelp.
Why? It’s because geographic searches for physical therapy practices (e.g. physical therapy Los Angeles) often result in multiple links on page 1 of the Google SERP (search engine results page). See below for an example.
People click on the Yelp link which may take them directly to the PT practice website or a list of practices in that geographic area. Viewers then click on the practice’s business listing link and end up on the PT practice website. Therefore, it stands to reason that having a presence on the Yelp can pay off.
Second, you need to get reviews from your patients.
Yelp Now Allows Business Reviews on Mobile Devices
Yelp now allows people to review businesses right on their smartphones (long overdue in my opinion).
Now, when your patients are on heat or ice or a modality, encourage them to review you on Yelp.
The fact is that about 18% of consumers consider reviews when making provider choices.
As a physical therapist, we do our best to provide great care but unfortunately, we are not the best at sharing our good deeds.
My advice is to work on your physical therapy reputation management. Take advantage of Yelp, get a bunch of reviews, inoculate yourself against bad reviews (which are likely to happen at some time or another) and you will build your brand online.
1. Claim your Yelp business page.
2. Put a link to your Yelp business page on your mobile website.
3. Then make a point of trying to get 1-2 Yelp reviews per week!
4. While you don’t want to buy reviews (it’s against Yelp’s Terms & Conditions), at least let patients know the option exists. [/note_box]
How should online promotion be done for physical therapy websites? That’s a question that many practice owners struggle with and as such they spend hundreds or thousands of dollars per month on promoting their business online the wrong way. They are “hyper sold” the idea, by the big box corporate marketing companies, that they should show up when people do a geographic search (e.g. physical therapy Solana Beach) or a search for back pain treatment in their city (e.g. back pain treatment in Solana Beach). But do people really do this type of search? Is it common? Most importantly, does it generate new business?
With few exceptions (yes, I know there are some clinics that do more than 5% direct access), physical therapy clinics receive most of their business through word-of-mouth. They receive referrals from physicians, family members, and friends. The direct access patients are usually those that come back a second time without seeing their physician first, because they were educated by the PT practice direct access “next time” is possible.
So, if the above is true, what is the most important way for you to promote your physical therapy practice online? The answer is to dominate page of a search engine results page when a prospective patient does a name/reputation search. Let me go through the thought process and share some proof with you.
Let’s look at a practice that dominates the search engine results for a geographic search. As you can see, when you do a search for “physical therapy Solana Beach”, this practice has all of the top listings.
If this really matters, then we should see lots of searches and traffic to the website from viewers that were using the search phrase “physical therapy Solana Beach”.
As you can see, the search for “physical therapy Solana Beach” is relatively rare (in fact, the one result we see “Solana Beach Physical Therapy” is the name of competitor in the area). What you should notice is that a search for the name of the practice (any type of search with the word “Gaspar” in it), is the most common type of search. This is the name/reputation search I was referencing above.
Therefore, this is the type of search you want to dominate page 1 of Google for – a search for your business name.
Note on Geographic Search Engine Marketing: I am not saying that you shouldn’t invest some time and money to get your practice listed for a geographic search.
This type of search, as noted above does happen, but it is much less common. As such, you should make sure match your dollars invested proportionally to the potential return on investment.
Here is an example of a practice that doesn’t have the best online reputation when you do a search for them by name. Personally, I know this practice delivers excellent care. However, it only takes one or two unhappy people that post negative reviews, to give others that have been referred to the practice, (and do a name/reputation search) a negative impression.
The Solution is Both Simple and Affordable.
First, Claim Your Listings
you should to go to www.getlisted.org and claim your business listings. Enter your business name and zip code, see which listings you haven’t claimed and go through the process. It is rather labor intensive but not technically challenging at all.
Words of Caution:
When you do claim your listings, make sure you are not duplicating an already claimed listing.
Do NOT do it part way. Fill in all of the information for each listing.
Make sure your Name, Address, Phone Number, Web Address, match exactly what you have on your website.
Consistency will help you maintain good search engine rankings or possibly improve them if you are not ranked as high as you’d like to be.
Second, Get Some Practice Reviews
I recommend you use mobile website and your desktop physical therapy websites to boost your reputation.
After you have claimed your listings, encourage your patients to review you on Google, Yelp, Yahoo, and the Yellowpages.com. By doing so, additional positive search engine listings will be present when prospective patients do that all important, name/reputation search. They will see lots of colored stars and great reviews which will confirm in their mind that the referral to your practice was a good one.
Put links to your review websites on your mobile optimized version of your website. You can show patients how to start the review process right on their mobile phone while they are in your clinic! As a side note, they can also easily get to your social media properties like Facebook and “Like” your business page.
Here’s a Good Example
Take a look at this SERP(search engine results page). This practice dominates the listings, there are lots of stars (though I would suggest they improve the 3-star Yelp listing), and even a video on page 1. This is how you want to dominate the page.
In summary, physical therapy websites often get lots of traffic. Because you are a referral business, the most common search is for your business name. Invest your time in making a great impression when patients that have been referred to you do the most common search for your practice – the name/reputation search.
Do a search for your business name.
Claim your listings “properly”, consistently, and completely on getlisted.org
Encourage reviews on your practice. 1 or 2 per month is all you need.
DO NOT get a bunch of reviews at the start then stop acquiring reviews. This could hurt your search engine rankings. Consistency matters.
How many visitors do you have see your website each month…100, 200, 300+? In a service business people judge what they can’t see based on what they can see. Ask yourself this question, “Have you chosen a business because of the look, quality of information, or usability of a website?” If you are like most, the answer is “yes”.
Do you spend hours at community events, visiting doctors, volunteering hoping to get in front of patient or referral source? The fact is that lots of people are visiting your website right now and many are potential patients. Let your website do the work for you. With this in mind, here are 5 ½ solutions to common mistakes many make why you should fix them fast.
[info_box]1. Fresh Content – updated content gives you credibility. It gives viewers the perception that you use the most popular communications tools (i.e. the Internet) to keep your patients and prospects informed. It’s not easy to repeatedly create fresh content but E-rehab.com can help.
2. Interactive Content – too many websites are just online brochures…and poor ones at that. Make sure your website provides viewers with interactive driving directions, videos, contact forms, FAQ, social sharing functions and ratings and reviews capabilities.
3. Appointment Requests – anyone with a smartphone has it within 3 feet of their body 90+% of the day. Take advantage of this and fast-paced world we live in by giving patients the option to request an appointment right from their smartphone…and your desktop website too.
4. Optimized for Google – the 900-pound gorilla of search, Google, is how 50% or more of your website traffic will come from. Make sure that your website is designed and optimized to show up on Google. If you are having trouble with this, we can help.
5. Analytics Enabled – what pages are patients visiting, how long are they staying, what search engines and key phrases are they using to find you? All of this business intelligence is necessary to help you make decisions about what is and what isn’t working with your online marketing efforts. Make sure you have an analytics program easily available to you; moreover, make sure you understand how to use it.
1/2. Mobile Optimized – What does mobile optimized mean? It means that your website is built with the mobile user (someone that is viewing your website on their smartphone) in mind. It means that the mobile user won’t be waiting 10-20 seconds for your big graphics to download to their phone. It means that the viewer will be able to:
1. click one button and call you,
2. click one button and map your location on their phone,
3. click one button and fill out an appointment request form,
4. click one button and “Like” you on Facebook,
5. click one button and save your mobile optimized website right on their home screen like the Doodle Jump, Angry Birds, or Bejeweled apps,
6. click one button and write a draft review of your practice on Yelp,
7. click one button and send you an email.
These are some of the outstanding opportunities that are available with a mobile optimized website.
The most common mistake when posting to Facebook is businesses don’t have a strategy. When developing a physical therapy marketing Facebook strategy first decide why are you posting this? What is it that you want to accomplish from this? Who is your Target Audience? What is the action item for the reader? Posting just to post will accomplish very little and is the quickest way to get “hidden” from news feeds.
“Sharing” is a great addition to Facebook and a great way to drive people to your Facebook page. When posting on Facebook only about fifteen percent of your “fans” actually see your post. One way to boost this percentage a bit is to encourage sharing. Try using these keywords “Like, Comment, Share”. For example, “LIKE if you agree!” When your fans interact on your page their activity shows on their news feed and leads to your post and YOU.
YOU (through your own personal Facebook profile) can also share your business posts. Make sure you are posting as yourself and not as your business. Then go to your business page, click the share link under your business post, and then share on your own timeline. Also, ask your Facebook frends to share your post as well! The greater the number of shares a post has the more exposure your business page will get.
-Key point… Make sure your post is “shareable”. Is your post valuable? If the tables were turned, would you want to share the post?
Engage Engage Engage.
Spark conversations about your Facebook posts. The key is to keeping your wall “alive”. Once you a start conversations though, you need to make sure you respond as well. It’s social media – back and forth. The average business takes twenty-two hours to respond, while customers expect a response within the hour or they will consider the conversation over. Another great thing about engaging your current followers is that their comments show up on their stream for their friends to read which indirectly serves you.
Easy Tools. Drive People to You.
• An easy way to get people to your Facebook page is by simply adding a link to your Facebook page in your email signature:
###-###-#### Facebook/Username Like Us!
• Also, adding your social media buttons to your webpage creates an easy way for your clients to connect with you.
• Adding your Facebook URL to business cards, marketing material and newsletters are great ways too!
Keep posting! This does not mean 10 times-a-day but on a regular schedule maybe two-three times a week. Obviously we know with everyone’s busy schedule it is hard to keep up with this; so, that’s why Facebook created “Scheduled Posts”. If you click on the clock on the bottom left you can pick a date and time for a post to go out.
We hope these 5 Facebook physical therapy marketing tips will help you generate more fans and more business. If you have questions, don’t hesitate to contact us.
Online blogging has given individuals and businesses alike the opportunity to reach out to others, spread their message, and gain support for their practice and profession.
Physical therapy blogs are a great way for physical therapists to explain more about their work, inform the public about health conditions, and connect with potential patients.
While blogging about physical therapy can seem more daunting than posting about the movie you saw last night, it is a great chance to gain awareness about your services. Keep reading for some physical therapy blog ideas, and let us help you make your blog a success!
What to Blog About
While the idea of starting a blog may seem exciting, knowing what to write about can be a gigantic challenge. Listed below are three of the most important things that you should stress when writing a blog for your physical therapy services:
1. Remind Readers to see a Physical Therapist First! A common tenant in medicine is the use of conservative treatment before other options are explored. Too often, patients think that they should turn to prescription drugs or invasive surgery for treatment before looking into conservative care. Throughout your blog posts, strive to make sure readers realize that seeing a physical therapist should be their first step before they investigate other options. Write some posts about the ways that physical therapy has benefited real-life patients.
2. Show the Benefits of Physical Therapy. Physical therapy is a clinically proven way to treat a wide variety of different movement disorders. Unlike other treatment options, physical therapy rarely has any negative side-effects and is good for the body and mind. Use your writings to prove to readers that seeing a physical therapist is a fast, easy and affordable solution that actually work! Interest your readers in subjects about new therapy techniques and how they are being used to treat various conditions.
3. Toot Your Horn About Your Training and Accomplishments! While doctors are often viewed as professionals, the general public knows little about physical therapists and aren’t sure if they should trust them. Use your blog to showcase the extensive training and accomplishments that you and other therapists have undergone. Consider writing a section on “what it takes to become a physical therapist” and go into detail about your journey to become a therapist.
Using some of the physical therapy blog ideas listed above, you can start to write posts that will interest your readers while gaining their trust and friendship.