How to Build Your Physical Therapy Practice with Newsletter Marketing
How important are new patient referrals to the success of your physical therapy practice? We are confident that the answer ranges from very important to absolutely critical!
Growth-minded physical therapists are regularly looking for ways to expand their existing referral relationships and develop new relationships with orthopedists, athletic trainers, family physicians, occupational health specialists, sports medicine specialists, podiatrists, pediatricians and other health care providers.
The good news for physical therapists is that you have many types of professionals who can be sources of referrals that will help build your practice. The less encouraging side of that truth is that your competitors probably already have or are also seeking to develop relationships with those same sources of patients.
If you can identify with this, keep reading.
Don’t talk yourself out of marketing success
If you’re like some physical therapists we’ve talked to, you may feel as though one or several of your competitors has these referral relationships “locked down.” That assumption may be hurting your physical therapy practice. You can never stop working to build new and stronger relationships with the influential providers who can and should be sending you referrals.
Many referring professionals—including those in your community—are actively looking to deepen their referral relationships so they will have more options for their patients. You won’t know where those opportunities lie if you aren’t doing the outreach.
A steady flow of patients requires the right physical therapy marketing program
Despite the importance of nurturing existing referral relationships and developing new ones, many physical therapy practice owners do not put in the marketing effort required to consistently and successfully keep a steady flow of patients coming into their practice. But marketing can be easier and more effective than these professionals expect.
Newsletter marketing is a powerful tool for physical therapists who are serious about building their practices. Referral-generating newsletters, such as Update on Physical Therapy, are designed to benefit therapists who want to develop and maintain their relationships with referring providers.
Physical therapy newsletter marketing enables you to be the expert source that keeps health care providers up-to-date on developments in your field. Since you’re the source of this quality information, they’ll connect your practice with current and practical education. This helps brand your physical therapy practice as the innovative and knowledgeable expert in your community.
Shaping the way referring health care professionals think of you is extremely important when the time comes to make a patient referral.
If this sounds like a course you’d like to pursue, keep in mind that an effective newsletter marketing strategy for your physical therapy practice requires the following:
Frequency. You can’t expect to send out one or two newsletters and have the patient-referral floodgates open. WPI Communications clients who have used our practice-building newsletters over a period of time have told us that they note an uptick in patient flow after a newsletter is distributed. With consistency, you may well see spikes in referrals around the times when your newsletter goes out to providers. For this reason, it is important to send your newsletter consistently and with appropriate frequency. “Once in a while” or “sporadically” does not build loyalty and name recognition for your practice.
Credibility. Your content must be well researched and accurate for referring providers to know that they can trust you as a credible source. Your newsletter needs to deliver content about conditions, treatments and developments that are relevant in your field.
Such articles as these from Update on Physical Therapy are examples of the types of articles that your referring providers will benefit from reading:
- A Long-Term Follow-up of Achilles Tendinopathy
- Knee Extensor Strength Predictive of Function After Total Hip Replacement
- Physical Activity and Diet: Best Combination for Osteoarthritis
- Nonsurgical Treatment for Acetabular Labrum Tears
- Myofascial Trigger Point Therapy and Exercise Effective for Plantar Heel Pain
Professionalism. For your physical therapy newsletter marketing program to be effective, it must be professionally developed, designed and formatted. To maximize your referral-building efforts, every interaction you have with referring providers must reflect the professionalism of your practice. This is certainly true for your newsletter. You do not, in any way, want readers to call into question your professionalism or expertise.
Reach. Your physical therapy newsletter also has to reach the right audience. Sometimes, physical therapists make the mistake of limiting their marketing outreach, including their newsletter, to an audience that is too narrow.
We strongly suggest that physical therapists send their newsletters to as many referring providers in their geographic area as possible. You can even use your newsletter program to reach out to health care professionals you have not met. Simply put, the broader your reach, the better. If you limit your newsletter to referring professionals who know you well, you won’t expand your reach and build even more referral relationships.
But do be sure to include your top referring health care providers as well, because newsletters are an excellent way to cultivate continued loyalty among these professionals.
To easily and cost-effectively start building your physical therapy practice, download WPI Communications’ The Complete Guide to Newsletter Marketing for Your Physical Therapy Practice or contact us today.
[ Back to top ]