Why Your Initial Offer Is Essential For New Patients
Don’t miss the forest for the trees.
Sometimes, it can get frustrating when you’re trying to determine how best to structure your practice’s pricing. And you’re not alone. This is, in fact, a challenge with any business people open.
The issue is that price tends to be exactly the issue that can make or break a business. In this, you really have to take a total view perspective of what you’re trying to get people to do, and set your pricing strategy accordingly.
And few things matter more when it comes to acquiring a new patient than making sure that they experience the value that your practice has to offer while making the barrier to entry for them as low as possible.
What is a barrier to entry?
A barrier to entry is anything that stands in the way of someone purchasing something. In the case of something like Netflix, the barrier to entry is $0, but you still have to sign up for an account, because they offer the first month free.
The goal in this strategy is to get someone using Netflix in the hopes that when the month free trial is over, they will decide to start paying for it.
This is not to say that you should offer anything outright for free — in fact, with more involved services like chiropractic, this can be harmful. It’s good to have the person “buy in” to the experience and to really see what you have to offer. People often do not appreciate what they get for free.
But that also doesn’t mean that you should be charging full price for someone to try your practice out. This doesn’t have to be too complicated. In fact, the simpler the offer, the better.
Deciding What to Offer New Patients
This can be one of the more challenging aspects of planning your initial offer. The key is that it has to be too good to pass up for someone who is earnestly seeking the help that you provide.
In more clustered cities, competition can be fierce, whereas in other parts of the country, it could be limited. This is one of the factors that should help guide your decision making.
One of the best strategies to start with is to look around at your local competition. What are they offering? How much does it cost? What are the services that you can provide that might sweeten the deal just a little bit more to encourage them to book an appointment?
However, this is likely different if your focus is on personal injury, like auto accidents and workplace negligence cases. In these situations, it will often be a settlement of some sort that will pay the entire bill. So what about these cases?
In this instance, you need to think about what goes beyond a dollar figure. How does your service shine compared to your competition? What are you offering them that no one else is? And if you have difficulty answering that question, it might be time to think about how you can differentiate your practice by offering something just a little bit more.
You Might Need to Test Several Offers
Helmuth von Moltke was a military strategist famous for saying that no plan survives first contact with the enemy. This is also true in business.
No matter how perfect your plan might seem in your mind as you think of it, the only true gauge of success is reality. Does it work in the real world?
Many practice owners end up thinking, “this makes sense, so it must work.” Unfortunately, practice owners are often too close to their businesses to really understand what the average consumer is looking for. This is why testing several offers is the best way to find what will work.
This doesn’t mean to try them all at once. Rather, run a different special each month, and send it out in your normal marketing and advertising channels. After about four or five months, you should have some actionable data that will indicate which direction you should go in.
At the end of the day, the best choice is whatever performs best for your practice.
They Must Be Wowed By The Experience
This first visit, although likely discounted, needs to be what truly closes the deal. Make sure to pull out all of the stops for them — especially when it comes to education.
Your greatest weapon in combating health issues for your existing and prospective patients is the knowledge you share with them. If you can show how your knowledge and treatment plan can be used to improve the patient’s quality of life, you will likely have a new patient for life.
But it all comes down to packaging your offer in the right way, and really making sure that they see the difference that your practice has to offer.
If you’re curious about how to put together your own initial offer, or would like to know more about getting the word out about your practice, please use the contact form below and drop us a line!