By Stewart Gandolf
Chief Executive Officer
Attract new patients to your medical office without sacrificing your reputation
Economic pressures can often squeeze the profits – and enjoyment – right out of your business. As a consequence, doctors, administrators, managers and staff often find themselves spending an inordinate amount of their time and energy trying to cut costs and optimize reimbursements.
The trouble is, while those strategies are certainly important, you’ve probably already made substantial progress in those areas, so any further gains will likely be incremental – not home runs.
Fortunately, you have a whole new set of untapped opportunities before you, many of which you may not have considered before.
Spend more of your time on high reimbursement cases (and watch your profitability soar)
Now you can systematically target exactly the cases you want most by utilizing evidence-based marketing.
When you and your partners spend a greater percentage of your time on the 20 percent of cases which generate 80 percent of your revenue, you will find that a lot of your financial frustrations will disappear.
While you’re at it, why not attract cases you enjoy?
Perhaps you derive a lot of professional satisfaction from certain cases or modalities. Or maybe you have invested a lot of time and money to develop a subspecialty or special interest.
Either way, why not install ethical marketing systems that ensure you spend more of your day with the cases you enjoy the most. And as an extra benefit, you’ll probably find that these same cases reimburse well, to boot.
Maintain your high ethical standards
Keep in mind that you absolutely do not have to turn your back on the patients who need you. You can – and must – continue to practice medicine both ethically and legally. (By the way, we take our own ethics very seriously as well.)
Still, as you grow and evolve, why not spend a higher percentage of your time on cases that make more economic sense?
Partners can accomplish this by shifting their case load so that they have time to see the more complex (and lucrative) cases, while the associates and physician extenders can accommodate the “bread and butter” cases.
Profitable growth can also support a new office or provider(s)
Business owners often face another dilemma – how to grow profitably in the long term, without taking on too much risk in the short term.
For example, many times the partners feel they are working too hard and want (or need) to hire another provider to cover call, leverage their time or handle routine cases. But they typically are also worried that they don’t yet have enough volume to economically justify the cost.
Similarly, you may see an opportunity in the marketplace for a new office, yet be hesitant to open it for fear of taking on a huge expense without having enough demand.
Ethical practice marketing can help solve both these problems. By creating ongoing patient acquisition systems, you can virtually assure the volume you need.
And if competition is an issue for you…
No one likes to admit it, but competition exists in every business, including healthcare. When it comes to the most preferred cases, the 80/20 rule often applies, i.e., 20% of the most successful often win 80% of the best cases, while the rest must fight each other for relative scraps.
If you are facing intense competition, you’ll agree that the stakes are particularly high. Any misstep can prove extremely costly to your organization’s health, and your own peace of mind.
We have utilized marketing many times to protect our clients against even the most aggressive competition, and we can do the same for yours.
Finally, build the reputation your business deserves by creating an organizational “brand”
Truth be told, the public has a hard time distinguishing your quality of care from anyone else. Fortunately, you can now borrow the best techniques from corporate America and celebrities to “brand” your business.
From now on, you can become the preferred provider in your town.
Better still, everything you do will be consistent with your new brand, from how staff answers the phone to how your office looks, the content of your brochure, and your patient’s experience.
You’ll finally answer the question, “Why you?” with a compelling and unique message and image. And as a result, you’ll have a powerful new competitive advantage.