“What Exactly Do PT’s Do?”
As a Private Practice Physical Therapy Owner this is a question I get a lot.
It’s a question if you don’t know how to answer, can stop you from getting new patients.
Today we’re going to talk about a really cool strategy I’ve found to overcome this.
In this post, you’ll learn how to make yourself stand out from other private practice PTs, how to motivate patients to complete their plan of care, and how to market yourself better so you get higher conversions.
As Private Practice PT owners this is a question we get a lot.
Whether it’s from friends, family or other professionals.
Early on in my career, when I was still relying on physician referrals I would get this question,
“Why should I send to you instead of [insert competitor]?”
I used to be stumped by this question.
Today this is getting less relevant, as we’re slowly trending away from physician referrals and getting into Direct Access Marketing more and more.
However, while marketing to physicians is less important, the question is still relevant. Instead of getting it from physicians we’re getting it from the public,
“Why should I choose your physical therapy practice and services versus going down the street to your competitor?”
For those who know anything about Business Strategy, you’ll know this as customers basically asking, “What’s your USP?”
The usual answer Private Practice PTs come up with are the boring ones, the ones that all other owners say,
- We have high quality care…
- You get to see the same Physical Therapist every time…
- We do one on one…
- You get manual therapy every time that you’re in…
But the problem is….every other therapist says this.
Furthermore, while this may sound awesome to us PTs…The average patient DOESN’T CARE.
It’s like we’re talking about oranges, when what they really want to talk about is apples.
But what if I was to tell you there is a way we can communicate about what we do in the customer’s language?
It’s a method that not only positions you differently, but also convinces prospects to immediately flock to you and not your competitors.
And better yet…it’s an asset you’re already sitting on.
Sounds too good to be true?
The Asset You’re Sitting On
I’ve faced this problem since the beginning of my career. Recently I’ve been giving it more thought.
It’s not just communicating to prospects about what we do, but also to friends, family and other business owners.
The fact is, the world doesn’t really understand what us PTs do. Only patients, their family & closest friends truly understand what we do.
Bugged about this problem, I had a couple of conversations with key people in private practice PT, and an idea struck me.
Even outside physical therapy, this idea is well used, and is very effective.
What is this idea?
BEFORE AND AFTER VIDEOS
Think about it, by showing patient before and after videos we can clearly communicate to our prospects why they should work with us.
Nothing communicates better than results.
By using Before & After videos we can show the results that our work does.
Just as a patient comes in, let’s say her name is Mary, you ask them a series of questions,
YOU: Within the last month, between 0 and 10, what is the worst pain that you’ve had?
YOU: Ok, so 7 out of 10 pain. What were you doing when that happened?
Mary: I was going up and down the stairs at the end of the day.
YOU: Alright, can you take a video of that?
Today it’s very easy for them to comply with that request. Everyone has smart phones, and it’s the easiest thing for them to get a friend or family member to film them going up and down the stairs.
But imagine that video. You’ll see them grimacing. You’ll see them struggle with the stairs step by step. Maybe they have to rely on the handrail or both handrails to pull them up.
So that’s something functional you can work with. It gives you a pain scale to work with.
Then imagine 4 weeks and 8 PT visits later….
You ask them to take the video of them doing the same activity, and you can vividly see an improvement. In the video you can clearly see them go up and down the stairs with no pain at all.
Here’s an example of one Before & After video we did 7 years ago. He had a partial thickness rotator cuff tear and wanted to avoid surgery. We replicated what he was doing at work with a simple scaption range of motion. You’ll see the dramatic improvement he had.
That’s a visual improvement. It’s a miraculous development.
As PTs we see this every day, but the world doesn’t see this. So they don’t understand the work we do. They don’t understand the change that we bring about in our patients’ lives.
Imagine if you did this for every single one of your patients.
How would that dramatically change not just your practice, but the private practice industry in general?
This is something I truly believe, and something we should all be working towards.
Here are some other benefits of taking Before & After videos:
The Patients Can See Improvements.
As humans we’re forgetful creatures.
I’ve had patients who personally have tripled their strength who told me they just kind of felt the same.
But that’s what progress feels like. Unless we’re reminded of where we were, we have no idea of how far we’ve gone.
However if you can show them a video of where they were when they came in, and where they are now, the patient can clearly see that there’s an improvement, and they’ll be motivated to continue treatment.
You can use Before & After videos to track administratively what’s going on in your practice.
Picture this: You have Therapist A who saw 20 new patients and at the end of the month they had 2 before and after videos. Then you have Therapist B who saw 20 new patients and had 18 before and after videos.
What does that tell you?
Well it’s clear that Therapist B likely has more visits, more completed plans of care, less patients that drop off their schedule and go missing. There are probably getting significantly better results from their actions.
That’d be helpful in administering your practice.
Over here at Madden PT we have prints out of Physical Therapy patient testimonials all over our walls.
However there’s only so much the written word can do to convince people.
They’re static, and don’t really capture the imagination.
For example we have a testimonial which reads, “I haven’t been able to golf in 8 years and now I can golf.”
That’s really cool to read, but imagine how powerful it would be if we had a 15 second video of her not being able to swing her golf club in the first day, and then showing another 15 second video of her playing golf after her treatment.
How much more powerful would that be?
Wouldn’t you want to immediately sign up with that practice if you SAW a result like that?
Of course you’d need to ask for permission and get the patient to sign a release, but videos like that could dramatically improve your conversions.
So in closing, you should start thinking about implementing Before & After videos if you’re not already.
– Help you track the results of your PTs
– Help Patients feel motivated to continue with their treatment
– Help with your marketing, and positioning yourself away from other private practice PTs
This is an idea I really wanted to share. But watch this space. I’m currently working on a project with several private practice owners around the US to implement and make this simpler.
It’s time for the world to know what we do.
All the best,
P.S. If you are interested in learning more about my testimonial process– the process that over 400 practice owners and I use to help market and attract new patients– then be sure to grab a copy of my free book, Killer Marketing Secrets for Private Practice PTs.
I write an entire chapter about how to create a stellar patient experience in your practice that not only benefits your practice morale but also your bottom line.
If this all sounds good to you, then click the link below and grab a FREE copy (I also include some awesome bonuses)