I know what you’re probably thinking. You’ve already seen a ton of information about marketing for chiropractors out there. Or maybe you already have a marketing campaign in place that is quickly filling up your time and resources. Hear me out on this one; I promise to keep it short and sweet. It’s not your typical marketing tip, and it will take very little time and little, if any resources.
As chiropractors, when we think of marketing, we automatically think our target is the patient. With this plan, your target will actually be other local health-professionals. So I guess we could call this a marketing and networking hybrid strategy. It is the perfect way to market yourself and your business while making important connections with other practitioners. Let’s kill two birds with one stone, shall we?
The whole process could take an hour or less from start to finish. First, you want to make a quick list of the practitioners in your immediate area. Depending on if your office is in the middle of a busy city or out in a rural town, you could start by looking in a 1-5 mile radius.
Depending on your type of practice (family, sports, pediatric, etc), you can pick and choose which practitioners to include. Primary Care MDs, Orthopedic Surgeons, Neurologists, PTs, NDs, Acupuncturists, Pediatricians, and even Urgent Care Clinics could be on your list. You don’t have to go crazy right from the start with a lengthy list of dozens of clinics. You can always add more later on!
Start with just five or so clinics, and write down their addresses and emails. Then, type a short letter introducing yourself and your practice letting them know that you are open for business (if you are a new clinic) and seeing patients. You can give them more details on specific conditions that you can help with (neck pain, back pain, headaches) so that you will pop into their minds the next time they see a patient with any of those problems. You want to write this letter in a way that helps them understand that you are both on the same team! You are not here to compete with them, but rather help them with the burden of musculoskeletal patients. They need to understand that you are coming from a good place and that you want to take care of the community together!
You are not trying to “steal” their patients, you simply want to co-manage and provide the most comprehensive care possible. I would also include that when they refer a patient, you will be happy to provide prompt updates on the diagnosis and treatment plan. That reiterates the fact that you are not trying to take patients from their practice. Teamwork makes the dream work! Our dream in this case being to help patients heal and live long, healthy lives!
Another variable to consider is how much these practitioners already know or don’t know about chiropractic care. Inform them in your letter that if they are unfamiliar with chiropractic, you would be happy to provide more details as well as attach research articles providing them with informative research updates. That way they have a solid understanding of how you can help them and their patients, and they will be able to pass the information along to others.
Also remember that patients that have not been exposed to chiropractic care will get most of their information from the Internet, or from friends and family. This may or may not be a good thing, especially with how crazy the Internet can be. However, if their Primary Care Physician is recommending chiropractic care, that will help shape a solid foundation of their knowledge base of our profession.
In the letter, you can also remind them in your own way that this relationship works both ways. So explain that you also wanted to connect with them in case your chiropractic patients need referrals or specialists. That way they appreciate the fact that their clinic may also benefit from this relationship, and you will start to build trust with them. I cannot stress enough how important it is to build referral relationships with other physicians. It will provide value to their office, your office, and most importantly: a better outcome for the patients. It will help you build a good reputation and credibility in the community. Most importantly, creating a professional relationship with local physicians will help influence the manner in which they speak about chiropractic in the future. Meaning, you can be a part of the way chiropractic is viewed within your community.
Lastly, after sending letters/emails out, you may consider following up with a phone call. Some practitioners may have questions or might even want to meet you in person! Make sure all your contact information is clear in your letter so that they are able to reach you in the future. You can even send them some of your business cards in case they want to give them to patients. Honestly, there are many ways that you can expand on this very simple idea depending on how much time you have to put into it. You will get out what you put in!
Good luck Docs!
Dr. Jade Thompson DC