PT owners go in circles trying to attract new patients, keep them engaged and coming back. I remember how the constant search for referral sources feels like a running on a hamster wheel, never getting ahead.
Every practice owner I know wants to develop a long-range plan that includes a profitable sale down the road. But for a lot of overwhelmed, overworked PT owners who struggle to get patients through their doors, that feels totally out of reach.
My favorite marketing tool helps to solve both the short and the long-term problems. It gets more patients through your doors now AND boosts the value of your practice for an eventual sale.
Relationship-based marketing isn’t the typical, labor-intensive hunt for referral sources. Instead, it focuses on development of genuine, long-term relationships with people in your community who help the people who you want to help.
(I wrote last spring for Impact magazine about what relationship marketing means, and why it works so well.)
Relationship-based marketing works because it’s a two-way street. You’re not seeking out sources (people who might help you if you’re lucky). You’re establishing real relationships with partners (people who you can support and who will support you back).
Investing time and effort in relationship marketing creates a foundation for constant stream of referrals and sustainable growth, year after year. That means you can start to plan: to make yourself operationally irrelevant, and eventually to sell your practice for maximum profit.
Relationships are like muscle tissue. The more they’re engaged, the stronger they become. –Ted Rubin, social media and relationship marketing pioneer
3 ways relationship marketing boosts PT practice value:
Creates a bigger place for you in your community
Investing in relationships, you build deeper, more lasting ties in your local network of helpers. Your practice becomes part of a community of people who help other people. When it comes time for potential buyers assess value of your practice, they’ll want to see how established practice is in the community it serves. A well-known, well-regarded practice has much higher value.
Diversifies your referral sources
Buyers get nervous when they see a practice relies on just a handful of referral sources. By investing in a range of relationships with other service providers in your community, you create the diversification that buyers will want to see. That ratchets up the value of your practice.
Goes beyond YOU
The best relationship marketing strategy isn’t only about you. It involves your entire team. It’s part of the culture you create in your practice. Teach your team to invest in relationships that benefit your practice. That’s how you make yourself operationally irrelevant. And a practice that doesn’t depend on YOU to run well is exponentially more valuable.
Interested in the peace of mind that comes from knowing you have a full patient schedule, week after week?
Get a FREE copy of my guide, the Patient Visit Multiplier, packed with the fastest, easiest, most effective ways to increase referrals and reduce cancellations and drop outs.