A five-step process to embed and own physical therapy value within your community
Tannus Quatre, PT, MBA
STEP 5: AMPLIFY YOUR CONVERSIONS
[This article is the last of a 5 part series on building PT ambassadors in communities throughout America]
You may only be able to take one bite at a time, but you want to be fed for life. And that’s why we need to amplify.
Today, we’re discussing the last step of a five-step process which will build PT ambassadors in your community and mine – amplifying your conversions. [If needed, catch yourself up on steps one, two, three, and four first.]
Step one was about awareness – you’ve got to be seen before all else.
Step two was about engagement – once you’re seen, you have to become likeable.
Step three was about education – once you’re likeable, you can guide the conversation toward the value you have to offer.
Step four was about the conversion – actually making the sale.
But wait, we’ve made the sale. Now I just take care of my client and enthusiastically pat myself on the back for a job well done, right?
Not yet. That wouldn’t be thinking big enough.
Done correctly, amplification is the easiest part of the marketing process, and it’s also the most important. It’s where a 38 year-old becomes his family of five. It’s where his 14 year-old daughter becomes the volleyball team. It’s where the volleyball team becomes the club of 200 athletes who now choose you.
The objective of amplification is to work upstream toward more efficient sales using new resources which are now at your disposal post-conversion. Your smile, your personality, and your email campaign are now in your arsenal.
Happening within the walls of your clinic, amplification is done from the inside-out. You’ve got home-field advantage, and your competition is on the road.
The two objectives of amplification are repeat business and upstream business. Both fill your schedule by working together.
Repeat business is about becoming your client’s PT for life. Years ago, I heard this phrase used by Lynn Steffes, PT (@steffbiz), and it’s stuck with me ever since. The recurring value of a single customer is important to both you and them. For the customer (them), a relationship of trust and continuity of care. For you, a recurring revenue stream upon which the best businesses are built. Remember, we’re talking about being fed for life – not feast or famine.
Upstream business is the land of excitement and opportunity. It’s the key to serious growth, and it’s what separates the single shingles from multi-site practices which span regional footprints for decades. Upstream opportunities are those that come by leveraging the networks of those you serve, never stopping at a fork in the road.
Amplifying is easy and fun. You just have to pay attention, and the points below will put you well on your way.
CAST YOUR SPELL
One of my favorite physical therapy practices is Alpine Physical Therapy in Bend, Oregon. Founded in 2006, Alpine has a core belief which was explained to me by their owner, Scott Weber, PT, like this: “When I have a client in front of me, I make sure they know that they are the only person in this world who exists at that moment.”
This is casting a spell.
Casting a spell is about connecting at a level that your competitors will overlook. It’s a wooing process not unlike the time you tried to get that high school crush to fall for you. (OK, maybe a little different, but you get the point.)
Your best foot is forward in a way that your competition can’t copy, and probably can’t even see – the best kind of competition, if you ask me. Your spell forms the foundation for not only the best care possible, but for the amplification of this client into repeat and upstream business.
PARLAY YOUR GOODWILL
In betting, a parlay is taking winnings from one bet, and rolling – or parlaying – it into other bets. A parlay is the difference between turning a $2 bet into $2.30, and turning it into $2,000. So I’ve heard.
A parlay is bored with a single bet. A parlay looks at a single bet as the only way to another and another – where the payoff can be the difference of many multiples. In Vegas, you have to accept risk in order to reap a reward, so it’s not for everyone.
But we’re talking PT, so put your wallet away – this is for everyone.
In today’s context, goodwill is any relationship which can be “cashed in” for another benefit. If I take good care of you, I’ve created some goodwill. You may be willing to say something nice about me. That helps me earn more business. Goodwill is created every day in PT, but it’s often kept in the closet gathering dust.
Parlaying your goodwill puts it to work.
It leverages goodwill into future business, which allows you to generate repeat and upstream business. Repeat business is created by using goodwill as an excuse to call a client you haven’t seen in a while, just to check in on them. Upstream business is created by using a client testimonial within new networks to draw new clientele to your door. It allows you to ask for that positive online review which can be seen by thousands.
CONNECT THE DOTS
Oftentimes, we assume that our clients understand what we’ve done for them. Sometimes, yes, but this is often not the case. When not the case, you’ve missed an opportunity to amplify.
“Ben, when we first met, you weren’t able to stand for more than 30 seconds without pain in your low back. We’ve worked together for four sessions now, and the combination of manual therapy and your exercise program is now allowing you to stand for 15 minutes without pain. You’re also sleeping through the night, which was a problem for you before we started. I’d say that’s great progress, would you agree?”
Um, yeah. And Ben will now have a hard time attributing his improvement to anything but me. It creates a memory. An association.
Making sure the dots are connected for each and every client is critical to ensuring their success is attributed to you. If that sounds self-serving, then yes, you read me correctly. If you’re worth your weight, you have to serve yourself in order to serve others.
ASK TO MEET THE PARENTS
You’ve wooed them. You’ve formed a nice, healthy relationship. Now it’s time to meet the parents.
Literally and figuratively.
We’re talking about amplification here, and there’s no better upstream market than parents. The laws of nature dictate that the parents of she who stands before you are older than she herself. There’s a relevant correlation there that’s important.
Of course, we’re not just talking about the parents. We’re working upstream, and every relationship fork in the road is an opportunity to meet someone you can help. Children, neighbors, friends, church groups – all potential clients.
But you have to ask.
No matter how good you are, you care about your business more than your clients ever will. It’s natural. They’ll bend over backward for you, though, if you ask them, so make sure you do. It’s a key to amplification.
Being sticky is one of my favorite messages in marketing. Being sticky and creating repeat business go hand-in-hand.
Being sticky means you make it hard to get away from you. Your touchpoints are many, and they follow your clients around without bother.
Sticky means your clients get an email from you at least once-a-month. They get a handwritten birthday card from their PT every year. They get a call every three months just to check in. Examples of stickiness are endless, and your creativity and personality should lead the way.
To be sticky, however, requires dedication, diligence, and a belief that it is critical to amplification. I hope I’ve helped you with that last part.
THAT’S A WRAP
Well, there you have it. Through this series, I’ve attempted to share five simple and sequential steps you can use to build PT ambassadors in your market. I hope I’ve been successful in sharing the enjoyment that can be achieved while building your business. A dash of strategy, a focus on relationships, and a belief that you’re important enough to sell is all that’s required.
I’d love to hear from you if you have comments about this series, and especially if you have suggestions for future content that will help successfully build PT ambassadors throughout America.
Until next time!
About the Author:
Tannus Quatre, PT, MBA, is a physical therapist and entrepreneur dedicated to improving the profession through innovative business and marketing solutions. His work can be seen in such projects as PT Pub Night® and BuildPT.com, as well as through numerous speaking and authored contributions to APTA and PPS.
Part 1: First, Make Them Aware
Part 2: Engage Your Audience
Part 3: You Have Their Attention, Now Educate
Part 4: Pulling The Trigger: Converting Education into Clientele
Part 5: Feeding Yourself for a Lifetime: Amplifying your Conversions
This article is brought to you by PREFERRED Therapy Providers Inc. PREFERRED is the nation’s leading payor management services network. Our expertise is working with physical, occupational and speech therapy practices – from single clinics to multiple clinic locations.