Is your rehab department maximizing its potential? This post is the first in a series. It’s based on some items RehabVisions focuses on when we manage therapy departments, but it’s also a conversation starter about some things you could be doing differently.
Whether your department is in a hospital, skilled nursing facility or is an outpatient clinic, we’re betting you can take something away from this series. Enjoy!
Market Your Department
If no one knows about the great work that is happening within you rehab department, why should anyone bother to come to you for treatment? Get out and tell your story.
Informal marketing can often be the most effective way to reach your potential “customers.” In healthcare, most people rely on word-of-mouth referrals to choose their providers. What better way to reach your client base than by having a former patient recommend you? People need to be reminded of this. Be sure to ask your patients to share with their friends the good experiences they have had at your facility/location.
Likewise, your best salespeople are your own therapists. Allow them to tell their stories (with HIPAA regulations in mind, of course). Promote your rehabilitation outcomes. Tell these stories using your measured outcomes, and share through social media and news outlets. Real stories sell.
Don’t ignore your referral sources as a marketing audience. Be sure to communicate with referring physicians about patient progress and new programs. Often just reminding these people you’re around will make you “top of mind” when it comes to their next referral.
And just because you’re doing more informal marketing doesn’t mean you can be informal in your planning process. Plan your marketing “touches” on a calendar. Make marketing a monthly agenda item for staff meetings and continue to refer back to the calendar to keep your action plan going.
As therapists, we’re not always good about tooting our own horns but that’s exactly what we must do to promote our programs. The most important thing is to get out and tell your story.