Let’s talk about WHY embracing technology is important as an acupuncturist!
You may already be very good at the YIN component of your practice: Diagnosing, taking care of patients, etc.
But many acupuncturists shy away from the YANG part of their practice: Marketing, sales, and technology. Some even go as far as to consider this component almost unethical. (yes, it does happen)
Here are some reasons WHY you want to make sure that the YIN AND YANG of your practice is in balance:
• You want Google (and your patients) to notice you. YOU. Not Groupn.
• You want HIGH QUALITY leads to notice you. For this we have to think beyond “local.” I spent a lot of time creating content for my website in such a way that it would weed out and filter in
• You want to expand the way you practice to include online coaching, guidance, or follow up with patients.
This tends to attract the highest quality patients who are proactive about their health and more than willing to do the work it takes to create and maintain health.
Of course, the kind of content you create is going to depend on the kind of patients YOU want to work with. I enjoy working with deep-thinkers who are as “nerdy” as I am. (Bio mechanics and exercise geeks, unite!) So when someone advised me to keep my content “light” or to “not bother writing because nobody would take the time to read it” I’m happy to say that I avoided this advice.
As a result, found it MUCH easier to work with people like me.. introverted deep thinkers who WANT to be informed with good content! This also helped me weed out those who really were not invested in doing any work, and made work EASY and FUN for ME.
IMO, those who can’t take the time to do a little research are unlikely to follow through when it comes to their treatment plans.
Keeping in mind that your audience, on the other hand, may be busy, extroverted moms who just want short, sweet, and light content, and I get it! You will still need SOME content, though!
• You want to create safety net of several sources of income to help keep your business stable during “dry” periods.
For example, January is typically slow for many acupunturists. Remember, Google mainly exists for those who are ALREADY LOOKING for an acupuncturist, back pain relief, fertility, etc. Relying solely on SEO and Google to book more patients may not get you the kind of revenue you need to keep your practice going for the long haul, and this will become even MORE important in the coming years due to more local competition in addition to practices that use technology to their advantage. (Read on)
• You would rather put in a big effort ONCE, and relax a bit, than play “hustle as you go.” (ME TOO!)
With coaching, not only can we cast a wider net to a non local audience, but we can make it easier on ourselves by adding value to our services on the FRONT end in order to have another source of income to rely on that will keep serving us. An analogy would be spending the entire summer building a high quality brick house, instead of having to repair a low-quality particle-board abode every month, watching the quality of your work go down as your fatigue and burnout levels rise. (The patient mill)
For example, you create an online fertility course to go with your acupuncture, OM, and/or Functional Medicine services.
Generally, you only need to create the content (.pdfs, videos, etc) once. Great. Of course, all those books and videos COULD just gather dust on your harddrive, but if you put them to work creatively, they can do a lot of the heavy work FOR you.
Who wants to have to explain the benefits of a Spleen qi tonifying diet over and over again? Not me! More people can be served on a deeper level without having to answer basic questions over and over again.
A few years ago, I created a signature “hybrid” program that included acupuncture, herbal consult and herbs, a FB community, and LOTS of coaching. This is what is commonly referred to as a “high touch” program, which meant that I could ask for premium prices.
Think about it. As a client, have you ever preferred to pay a VIP price in exchange for feeling cared for an solving a problem, over shelling out low fees here and there, but not really getting much out of it? Did you end up spending MORE in the end for diminished results?
• You can charge premium prices based on VALUE, instead of discount rates based on volume. (The latter just makes me tired!) So now instead of charging a discounted rate to get more people in the door when times look a little scary slow, you can launch your signature program for a premim package price (say $2K) without having to run yourself ragged and recover from burnout by March. Everyone wins!
You want to add more value to what you have to offer already, and increase patient compliance.
• You can do SO much more with email lists than you ever realized. Are you still going through patient files one by one, and sending out random re-activation postcards, emails, and newsletters? These are old-school methods. I’m not saying they don’t have their place, but having a master list of not only patients, but prospects and LEADS (in varying stages of “warmth) PLUS a powerful email automation system can allow you to put that list to work like other businesses do. You ARE a real business, right? So learning about things like landing pages, creating lead magnets, and linking them to an email system is a powerful way to build your practice.
• Your WEBSITE can do most of your “heavy lifting” for you. If your website is little more than a $3,000 (or more) brochure, stop procrastinating and get your online presence out of the year 2005! If you don’t have people interacting with your website, it’s time to re-think your approach. And the good news is that you don’t HAVE to drop 3K on it, at least not when you first start.
I’ll be showing you how you can make the most of “tech” for your practice in upcoming blogs!
I’ve been through all of this.. both as an acupuncturist, my own “digital marketer,” and now as a consultant to other acupuncturists, healers, artists, and a dash (for fun) those in the tourist/hospitality industry. My job is to make it as easy and painless as possible.. regardless of whether you want pure DIY, a little coaching, a little outsourcing, or a complete website or other systems built for you.