More Farming Less Hunting
The words “new patient bookings” or “new patients” are quite literally akin to a chiropractor’s aphrodisiac, or a seductive “quick fix” drug to MOST chiropractors.
Much like any “drug” or “dependancy” …”MORE”, never seems to quite scratch that itch, and worse than that, when anyone develops an unhealthy “addiction”, they tend to be looking for the next “quick” fix, or easy path as opposed to the the path that tends to bear long term fulfilment.
HUNTING vs FARMING
In the world of sales there tends to be a concept that most understand.
Hunting vs Farming . Both are important!
Hunting somewhat points to the process of “going for the kill”, or closing or making an “offer” to any given segment!
Farming however, is slower; “planting seeds” first, and nurturing the seeds, to achieve a harvest one day in the future.
Almost a “create the market”, “feed the market”, and eventually reap the rewards in the future, when the “customer” is in their most “need” or when they are “ready”.
Slow and Rhythmical vs Feast and famine!
Many know it as “Yo Yo Marketing” stated differently: Reactive, Episodic and Intermittent marketing.
When the need for new patients is high then off we go getting new patients. A sort of “fill your tummy now” and forget about the future …caveman-esque mentality. Very little to NO thought about creating the future “market”.
Boy is it heartbreaking to watch…
HOW TO GET QUALITY …
Getting high quality new patients has everything to do with “Need” and “Time with”
Need … is pretty obvious . If your product solves an important problem for the customer, then the motivation of the customer is naturally higher. We have all had the following experience: The patient that walks in and says “I’ve had every treatment and pill under the sun, and none of it has worked, and I need this sorted, can you help me” vs the patient that says .. “my wife made me come”. You get it!
Time with…The longer it takes to get a new patient the “better”. The best sentence I can hear in any business I own is “I’ve been following your stuff for ages” .
There is a phenomenon called the “mere exposure effect” which was a study done in prime mates that’s been applied to marketing. It plainly showed that the longer a prime mate “spent with” or that the opposite sex was exposed to another … the more “attractive” they became .
NOW FOR THE REAL KICKER….
Most people don’t realise that the path to getting highly motivated patients is… FARMING AND MINING, them yourself.
Of course if you’re omnipresent in your marketplace (i.e. 10 mile famous), that puts you in a favourable position for the customer to choose you when their need is high.
But, if you’re NOT in front of them at their point of highest need or pain, they will simply choose the option that is the most “in front of them”.
As they say “out of sight, out of mind”
The “longer” you therefore “date” before they need or choose to use your service… THE BETTER!
One of my mentors calls it the marching parade of interest. This refers to the “need” part. Meaning, the “need” isn’t always there when they first interact /swap details with you, but when it “flares up”, it’s akin to a marching parade that passes by quickly and if it’s not in the position of “front of mind” I.e. in the inbox, facebook feed, text , calls , post box, at the time of the “flare up” or “marching parade”… Then you’re simply going to see less “high need” or “highly motivated” or as many say (and I don’t like the term) “high quality patients”.
Not only that … by nature, even if it’s not about attracting the “high need” clients you need to remember that studies show that MOST PROSPECTS are NOT ready to use your service when they first interact with you.
Hence your responsibility to PLANT SEEDS and FARM those seeds over time
Content dear sir/mam. More content: emails, blogs, and other such pieces of value.
WE NEED TO CHANGE THE CONVERSATION…
One of the best explanations of how to sell effectively I have ever heard is from a mentor whom I have been following for years named Frank Kern. He brilliantly states that selling is easy, all you gotta do is “give people something that makes them happy, then sell them something that makes them happier”
In our space … that translates as follows “give them something that helps them, or shows them how to “get better/healthier” by themselves, then offer them a solution to just do it for them i.e fix it for them”
GET TO THE POINT RYAN…
The point is ..
- What’s your budget for simple lead gen (not for direct appointments). Things like free downloads etc.
- What is the size of your email list of prospects? Not your patient database (past and present)
- What’s your target for “downloads” and views per week? I.e. content/ value first!
- What is the goal that you’re aiming for to get your email list/list of prospects to in 2 years?
- What’s happening to those prospects, that for example opt into an advert advertising and “appointment” that end up not booking. (Hint: its alot of people)
- Do you have a long term nurture strategy for “prospects” I.e. weekly emails
- Do you have other long term nurture strategies- I.e. phone calls and text, post.
- Are you prepared to date for 2 years before they become a customer ?
Where to start …?
“Give them something that helps them, or shows them how to get better/healthier” by themselves, then offer them a solution to just do it for them i.e fix it for them”