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Here is to Wishing your Practice Fatness and Fitness in the Coming New Year
From the desk of el Presidente
Most individuals have a tendency to make New Yearís resolutions based on superficial personal aesthetics which subsequently vaporize in the month of January after the health clubs, fitness centers, diet centers and other entities have capitalized on our insecurities and holiday indiscretions. Why not turn the tables and focus on making resolutions for your practice that can simultaneously get it fatter and fit?
Think about what you have neglected for your practice that would make it really shine. We, in the field of regenerative orthopedic medicine fly in the face of current medical dogma on a daily basis. Big Pharma, orthopedic surgeons, endocrinologists, to name a few, are usually not our best friends. Marketing to our colleagues, though informative, is a low yield event. To my knowledge, Domino sugar has never come to our rescue and supported research on prolotherapy. So who can we turn to?
The patients get it! We treat them. They get better. They tell others and the word of mouth spreads. But this takes timeÖa lot of time. So how can you shorten that time period? How do you create those win-win situations? How do you get them to want you and what you have to offer? Itís all about helping potential patients see and feel the benefit of our treatments. You see, like it or not, we are all sales persons more or less; some more and some less. We are selling a cash based treatment and people are inherently cost conscious; most solely want what their insurance company will pay for and thatís it. We offer a revolutionary product. Our treatments can change patientís lives! So what?
Iíve made a lot of mistakes and spent a lot of money over the years in ďadvertisingĒ and ďmarketingĒ. Iíve been in radio ads and magazine ads. People generally donít want to be pitched. Iíve given talks to the wrong groups of doctors. Iíve gone to doctors offices and provided lunches (you really get to empathize with the drug reps on this one). This reminds me of one of my favorite Dan Hicks songs, ďHow can I love you when you wonít go awayĒ. Earlier this year, my practice worked the Pittsburgh Marathon pre-race two- day event that yielded not a single referral. Live and Learn. Well, Iím still alive and still learning my lessons.
I remember years ago when Ken Knott mentioned advertising in gay male publications/ community. Why, I asked? Kenís reply was simple and to the point. These are people who are invested in their health, fitness and appearance. They are a natural audience for the treatments that we provide. In essence consider your ideal patient and their related interests.
Recently, I contacted a local TV station to promote the concept of a story about stem cell treatments. It resulted in a professional four minute segment that was personal and to the point. It featured one of my patients undergoing a bone marrow harvest and having stem cells implanted in his knee. He was a near 60 year old athlete who didnít want to have a knee replacement. His testimonial though not flashy was believable, the audience could relate to him. The response to that segment was overwhelming!