Ways to Grow for Less Cash
Physical therapists looking for the most effective ways to promote their practice should look beyond expensive pay-per-click and outsourced marketing solutions. Marketing doesn’t have to bankrupt a practice. In fact, it’s an opportunity to engage with the community and educate your future patients.
How can PT practice owners accomplish this? By using the right marketing channels for their practice.
Here are a few marketing techniques that can create a dynamic impact without draining your wallet:
1. Increasing Your Search Visibility
Almost every PT needs a website because how else would patients find your practice? Physical therapists will often rush to establish their website and stop dead in their tracks if they see little to no search traffic.
How do you generate organic search traffic—leads—in the first place?
Increasing your visibility or “SEO” takes loads of effort. Still, there’s one way to guarantee an uptick in search traffic: create a fantastic website full of helpful information for your patients. Practice owners should focus on the patient experience by asking relevant questions.
- Does your website load quickly?
- Is the website copywriting compelling?
- Are there high-quality images on the page?
- Can the patient find what information they need about your practice or services offered?
- Do you come across as a medical professional or an organization? (Hint: people do business with other people)
Answering these questions nudges Google in the right direction to display your website front and center. The idea is to bring value to your patients, even before you’ve scheduled them for a visit. If you need to dig into what your patients are searching for, check out tools like SEMrush to figure out the most relevant physical therapy keywords in your area.
2. Social Media
Marketing your practice through social media is a powerful way to reach a large (or targeted) audience. Creating social profiles is completely free but can be augmented with paid advertising campaigns. The ability to scale, engage, and reflect gives practice owners deep insights into their current and future patient base. Social media enables physical therapists to understand patient preferences and use them to generate more business.
With the opportunities for marketing using social media being clear, what social media platforms are best?
To give a clear answer for that, it depends on your therapy niche and target demographics. After all, TikTok and LinkedIn have different daily users. Here are a few of the most popular platforms and who they serve:
Facebook is the overall leader in the social media landscape. The demographics of Facebook are mainly young adults between 25-34, which could bode well for specific physical therapists. There is also data showing that many Baby Boomers are joining the network rapidly, increasing the age disparity.
Facebook is the perfect platform for practice owners to establish their clinic’s business page, raise awareness through paid advertisements, and create wholesome engagement with the local community. Most of these features are free, making Facebook essential for practice owners who want to get the most out of their social media efforts.
Instagram’s audience tends to be younger than Facebook and predominately female. There’s also a massive fitness community that could bode well for physical therapists offering sports-related therapy and rehabilitation. Posting educational content with relevant hashtags on Instagram is an efficient way to reach a niche audience. You can also run ads and direct people to your website using your “bio.”
Tweeting has become increasingly crucial for businesses as the 187 million users rapidly share information using 280 characters or less. While you can use some of the same hashtags to attract and market yourself to a specific audience, Twitter’s user base allows you to capture the attention of a predominately male cohort that is older than your average Instagrammer.
Using various platforms simultaneously can diversify your marketing efforts and help your physical therapy practice reach a broad audience. Social media allows businesses to get started for free and scale using paid advertising options.
3. Build Awareness Through Education
Harnessing the power of education is a must for any physical therapist who wants to market their practice affordably. Video conferencing and live stream companies like Zoom or YouTube make it easy to hold webinars concerning the hottest topics in the world of physical therapy.
For example, you could host a webinar on YouTube about what to expect after a knee replacement surgery. Include relevant details about the area you serve and post the webinar across social media to build awareness. By offering useful information, you’re providing value and establishing yourself as the go-to physical therapist for knee replacements.
PTs can also educate their patients by offering a free consultation—either in person or over the phone. People outside of the industry don’t know the full scope of benefits physical therapy provides or if they even need physical therapy in the first place. Engaging with prospective patients and offering them value through education can fill up your calendar and provide invaluable word-of-mouth marketing opportunities.
4. Patient Testimonials
One of the most potent ways to gain new patients and keep existing ones is by building trust. Trust evolves with consistency and a dedication to excellence. The most prevalent way you can leverage trust to gain new patients is by leaning on existing patient feedback.
Every practice should survey previous patients to ensure they’ve received exceptional service. People want to know that other people had a great experience, especially when trusting a PT with their quality of life. Post existing patient testimonials (or put a system in place to gain new ones) on social media and the PT website. This will spotlight your track record of success for people interested in physical therapy and boost confidence in the physicians who refer patients to your practice.
The Bottom Line
Practice owners don’t need to be marketing professionals to find clever and affordable ways to increase their search visibility, generate leads, and grow their patient base. Social media offers excellent opportunities to bolster your practice’s credibility and reach specific demographics. Being on social channels also provides a perfect opportunity to educate your audience and become a subject matter expert.
Great marketing revolves around quality content—like webinars and patient testimonials. Focus your efforts on strategies that provide value to your patients. If you’re a busy practice owner, consider streamlining your operations using MwTherapy’s all-in-one physical therapy software. MwTherapy provides effortless EMR, simple scheduling, transparent telehealth, and much more—all from an easy-to-use dashboard. Get started with a free demo today!