How to Make Your Practice Special! Part 2/2
This week’s theme is your USP – Unique Service Position! What special features, qualities and benefits position your holistic health practice as unique in the healthcare marketplace!
In addition to knowing yourself, you also need to know about your fellow practitioners. Just as athletes and armies study their opponents, you should learn the strengths and weakness of your competition. They may be your colleagues and your friends. Even if you are not a competitive person, your practice is in competition with their practice. It’s not personal, it’s business! Conduct thorough research on colleagues and competitors in your local area who target the same niche as you do. Call and ask them what conditions or populations they work with, what sets them apart and why you should choose them. Ask if you can stop by their office to meet in person – a friendly professional visit. Bring them a small gift for their office such as a treatment product or flowers. Look around their office to get a feel for their space and how they present themselves. Offer to trade treatments to get a sense of their techniques, policies and procedures, skills and techniques, personality and professionalism.
Your USP answers the question: what is unique about you and your services? Make it about benefits and outcomes; it answers the question: what results do your clients get?
Don’t overlook simple changes that can have great impact. Here are a few suggestions to give your holistic health practice a unique competitive advantage:
– Focus on your target market. Identify your niche and market to their needs. Narrowing down your niche will help you craft a compelling message that makes your marketing more effective.
– Look at some common problems people have with your modality and build your practice around solving them. What are some typical complaints people have about your particular field? For instance, some acupuncture patients appreciate the results but they don’t like the needles, so you could offer them acupressure instead. For clients need an appointment after work, so offer evening hours. Simply eliminate the reason for a complaint and market that as a competitive advantage.
– Focus on the aspects of a healthcare practice that are desirable to your target market. Listen carefully to your clients to uncover what they like most about your practice. Also find out what they have liked or disliked about their experience with other practitioners. Enhance desirable elements and eliminate things that people don’t like. Examples of service features that your target market might like are: evening/weekend hours; special techniques; a family-oriented practice; house calls and so forth.
– Add extra value. Use every possible opportunity to give your clients extra service. Small client-attractive services or products that add little to your cost or time can have a huge impact on the client’s experience. Exceed their expectations! It can be as simple as offering a glass of water or a free product sample. The key is to offer something useful that people really need or appreciate.
– Offer a money back guarantee. This shows self-confidence! If you don’t believe in yourself, how can you expect others to do so? This is a powerful differentiating factor that eliminates people’s resistance and inspires confidence in you.
– Express your unique style or identity. I’ve seen various examples of professionals with a personal style that people like. Examples: My clients always find my massage clinic beautiful and calming. My dentist has a beautiful aquarium in his waiting room. Let your personality come through – it’s more appealing than a boring rubber-stamp office.
Create ways to stand out from the crowd, to get potential Ideal Clients to notice you and to realize that you have the answer to their problems. Your USP – Unique Service Position – is the answer that you will give when someone asks you, “Why should I choose you?” This is a crucial component in your marketing materials that will magnetically pull clients into your holistic health practice! What makes you so special? Share your USP in the Comments below!