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Peter J. Polack, MD, is a board-certified ophthalmologist who specializes in laser refractive and cataract surgery. He is also the founder of Emedikon, a venture marketing firm that helps medical practices enhance their marketing strategies using his proprietary Polack Practice Marketing Protocol™.
As the son of a well-known ophthalmologist, Dr. Polack has a firsthand understanding of the changes that have impacted American practices. He has a keen interest in the role of technology and marketing in the medical field and has been sharing his insights with medical professionals through his blogs on ophthalmology marketing, which are featured on industry publications like Healio Ophthalmology, Eyes on Eyecare and Ophthalmology Management.
Additionally, he is a prominent contributor on Quora.com, where his posts have amassed over 4 million views, solidifying his reputation for understanding today’s patient experience.
Dr. Polack has explored the concepts of using the right marketing to build practice resistance and resilience in economically challenging times. Resistance refers to a practice’s ability to withstand a disturbance in “normal” elective or premium services revenue. Resilience refers to a practice’s ability to recover after suffering great harm from a serious revenue disturbance and their ability to continue to operate in a devolving economic situation.
Marketing is an essential component of any successful ophthalmology practice. However, many ophthalmologists fall victim to common marketing myths, such as the belief that new revenue requires new patients, that buying a la carte marketing services will suffice, or that revenue growth demands heavy investment in branding. The truth is, these myths are often counterproductive.
In his book, “The Ultimate Ophthalmic Marketing Guide,” Dr. Polack introduces the concept of Scientific Marketing Funnels™. This approach is data-driven and uses metrics that matter, rather than misleading clicks and likes, to measure marketing efforts.
By implementing The Polack Protocol™ and creating Scientific Marketing Funnels™, ophthalmologists can turn marketing expenses into investments (or, at the very least, self liquidating liabilities), prevent bleeding of advertising dollars misspent and untraced, increase their bottom line, and automate marketing to make it easier to manage, monitor, and scale. This approach allows ophthalmologists to manage their marketing department like they run their clinical department, with an evidence-based approach, just as they practice evidence-based medicine.
One of the hardest marketing myths to “unlearn” is the belief that more revenue is only done by acquiring new patients. This myth can lead practices to waste money on expensive marketing campaigns to attract new patients without considering the value of existing patients. The Polack Protocol™ is based on his 7R Marketing Strategy™ which is the crux of his “Ultimate Ophthalmic Marketing Guide.” His approach focuses on maximizing the value of existing patients and encouraging them to return for premium services.
Another common myth is that buying a la carte marketing services is sufficient for a practice to succeed. This approach can lead to spending money on unnecessary services that do not contribute to the practice’s bottom line. Polack’s 7R strategy and Polack Protocol marketing operations roadmaps provide a comprehensive and strategic approach that considers the unique needs of each practice and tailors marketing efforts accordingly.
Given that too many practices think an annual marketing budget is a marketing plan (when it is actually a spending plan), Polack asks marketing directors to take a look at these key marketing insights. First, review your strategy with the 7Rs method. Next, plot how you will deploy marketing operations to achieve those strategic results. Lastly, adopt, adapt and apply them for your specific issues and opportunities.
The final myth that Polack seeks to dispel is the belief that revenue growth requires overweighted investment in branding. Instead, focus on measurable and data-driven processes rather than branding efforts that may not provide a return on investment.
In conclusion, Polack hopes to help his colleagues maximize the value of their existing patients, tailor marketing efforts to their unique needs, and focus on KPIs that move the revenue, reputation and referral needles. By implementing Polack’s strategy and operations programs, ophthalmologists can turn marketing expenses into investments while they supercharge revenue growth.