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Building a medical practice is a daunting task. People’s health and lives are going to be in the firm’s hands, bills will be paid, insurance agencies involved, and the opportunity cost of having countless other medical professionals available will be given up over your practice. When a doctor decides to make the leap of opening their own practice, many are faced with the fear of what if they don’t succeed. They may have been rockstars at their previous practice. They may be highly intelligent allowing them to come thus far in their profession. Yet, running a business is not just a matter of being good at your profession, its an entire system of its own with tons of ins and outs that a first time entrepreneur may not know how to navigate right off the bat.
Now, if you have your practice already open, what does your schedule look like for the month ahead? Is it filled with holes or is it so full that you have to turn down clients? Dr. Nina Bal, Star of the Show BodyFixers, has 5 indispensable tips for you that can make the difference between an elite medical practice and a subpar one. These 5 tips can serve as both a North Star for medical professionals just starting up and those who have been in business for years.
1. Be Relationship Focused, Not Quick Sale Focused
“People buy people, not a clinic” she says. “Clients will follow the doctor they love and trust everywhere and this is the base of building a strong repeat of business and a loyal client base.” How do you feel when an Apple commercial comes on TV? Or when you go to the store to buy your new Iphone? Do you feel like someone is trying to pressure you into “buy now or we aren’t your friends?” The entire marketing plan of a corporation like Apple is to finesse the customer into feeling like they are in a relationship with the brand. Apple wants the user to feel like the brand of Apple is an extension of who they are, its not just about a relationship with the brand, it’s the customer’s relationship with themselves.
2. Consolidate a strong client base
Being in the people business, you have to be able to communicate efficiently and effectively with your customers. Yet, how can you do that if they are each scattered throughout different sections of your brain, and not continuously communicated with via an email list or another consolidated system? Nina encourages that this is essential for a strong business. “Loyal clients have to be rewarded, with a discount referral system for example, or a VIP newsletter subscription. Ideally with monthly direct debits.” Reward systems keep your client base focused on you as their go to expert. It enhances the feel of being in a relationship with the business and ensures them that all their needs are continuously being met by this one business. Why would they need to go anywhere else when you’re the one who has their attention, and you’re the one taking care of their needs? As Dr. Bal puts it, “Treasure and make your clients feel very special, they might forget what you said but they will never forget how you made they feel.”
3. Be an expert practitioner and the one stop shop for your customer
“According to the very latest techniques and trends, you have to offer a wide range of services and treatments as much as possible so you won’t refer your client somewhere else. Learn from every single small mistake by developing incredible experience to pass to your team.” Your experience, the quality of your service, and the ability to cater to all your clients needs, ensures new business will be coming in your door, your clients will tell others about you, and no one will be able to say they are ahead of you in their offering. Nina encourages you to focus on quality and a constant state of developing so that your customer is always in the best hands possible.
4. State-of-the-art Experience and Social Media
Today’s generation is in the service business. People care more about how they experience the transition from hearing about your services to having them in action and the feeling they feel after. In that case, “Every detail has to be taken care of, studied and paid attention to” affirms Dr. Bal. “From welcoming them, to offering tea and coffees, from the design and quality of the clinic furniture, to the impeccable state of the toilets, flowers in the corners, leaflets of services provided, lovely smells, everything has to look and smell the very best, everything has to be top quality. Similarly social media and your website have to reflect yourself and your clinic. It has to be professional, personable, informative and updated.
5. Top-of-the-line Customer Service
“Go the extra mile to make your clients feel you are giving them a 5 stars service, and beyond.
Which might mean replying to email in the evenings , weekends. Efficient, well prepared, kind and knowledgeable. Be prepared also for the worse, by doing everything as it should.”
Dr. Nina’s 5 tips are coming from being one of the top Cosmetic Medical Practices in the UK. What better a place to derive medical practice wisdom? One of the top Cosmetic Practices seated in one of the fashion capitals of the world. Dr. Bal faces fierce competition in her field, yet these principles have helped her navigate her way to the top. At the core of it, its all a matter of perspective to Dr. Nina, if you view the firm you’re building in a specific light, you will treat each dynamic of the business and its customers that way.