Want a steady stream of new physical therapy patients coming in to your practice? Then you need more than just one form of PT marketing…
That’s why I put together 19 of the best, tried-and-true physical therapy marketing strategies for you to use.
DON’T reinvent the wheel!
Even just a couple of these could change your practice — so here you are!
1. Define your Unique Selling Proposition (It’s easier than it sounds)
Before you invest your money into any physical therapy marketing materials, you should examine how your practice and approach differs from your competitors.
I see this a lot:
Business owners simply skip this critical first step in physical therapy marketing.
But here’s why understanding your competition is SO important:
It helps you form your Unique Selling Proposition — or USP.
Your USP clearly communicates to prospects in your physical therapy marketing how your practice, approach, and YOU are different (and better!) than your competitors.
All you need to do is define your USP as a crystal-clear statement —
And then you’ll use it in ALL of your physical therapy marketing strategies.
If you’re the only physical therapist in town, say it! That’s pretty unique, and it’s something local residents would want to know (to save drive time!).
Or, if you’re the only physical therapist around who uses a certain method or technology, also very important to showcase in your physical therapy marketing!!
Here are some examples of physical therapist USPs to give you more ideas:
- The ONLY Physical Therapy Practice in Jonestown!
- The Only Physical Therapist in Effingham Using Deep Tissue Laser Therapy
- Where Seattle’s Holistic Physical Therapy Meets Clinical Yoga
- We 100% Guarantee You’ll Feel Better BEFORE Your Treatment Plan Ends
DON’T skip this step!!
Without a well-defined USP, all of your physical therapy advertisement money could be wasted. Your prospects don’t want to figure out how you’re different/better —
They want to SEE it right away…
Which brings me to this next one…
2. Stand out with a professional, unique logo
Having an attractive logo professionally designed for your practice is important for 2 reasons:
- It helps you look like a professional trustworthy business
- It creates name recognition
Both of which amount to more leads and patients!
Something like this:
Or this one:
Prospects who have medical troubles — and thus, need a physical therapist — don’t want to risk going to a less-than-awesome practice…
So get a legit-looking logo that communicates you’re the BEST at what you do!
Once you have that, you’re going to permeate the rest of your physical therapy marketing materials with it…
Such as these super affordable ones:
- Chapstick- as low as 33 cents!
- Pedometers- 92 cents, can’t beat that!
- Pens- just 99 cents
- Aluminum sports water bottles- $2.95 each
- Car magnet- $8 each
- Logo design- $995
With prices like those, your logo and branding should be on TONS of physical therapy marketing materials, creating awareness of your practice all over town!
And you’ll want to include this marketing must-have too…
3. Create an irresistible special offer that gets new patients calling
Your special offer has 2 MAJOR functions in your physical therapy marketing:
- Enticing prospects to trust you and give you a try
- Rewarding current patients to ensure future loyalty (and encourage referrals!)
So a special offer isn’t an afterthought for your physical therapy marketing.
It needs to offer a risk-free way to try out your practice, no matter how vulnerable your prospects feel.
Here’s an example from one of our client’s physical therapy postcards:
Here’s the front of the design:
This physical therapy postcard campaign clearly appeals to elderly folks who have trouble maintaining balance, so their special offer providing a FREE balance consultation would not only be helpful, but it’s something very much wanted and needed.
If you’re worried that discounting your services — or offering free consultations — will jeopardize your practice’s revenue, think again:
The idea behind special offers is you want to drive in LOTS of people to your practice.
Once you prove to your prospects that you’re the best fit for their individual needs, you’ll have more people to convert into long-term, loyal patients who will gladly leave their health in your hands.
To help you out —
Here are some special offers PROVEN to work in PT marketing:
- FREE consultation/ balance screening
- FREE neck and shoulder massage
- FREE fall risk assessment
- FREE exam with this postcard
Another smart idea:
Grab this FREE download with more physical therapy advertisement ideas than you can dream up:
Now that you have a USP (#1) and special offer ideas your prospects will jump at (without hurting themselves, of course!), check out #4…
4. Market consistently year-round for more leads (and less hassle)
No one knows when their body may take a turn to Painsville. That’s why in order to be THE physical therapist people call when they need help, you need to consistently stay top of mind for them all year round!
The key to generating a steady stream of leads (and new patients) all year-round is through consistent physical therapy marketing.
Check out this example:
A New Orleans physical therapist decided to try mailing postcards consistently to reach residents in his area. The owner said that because of their constant marketing and presence, which has over time generated awareness of their practice and multiple services, their patients and revenue have correspondingly increased too!
“I’ve been getting these postcards from you for over a year, you must have good service — I want to use YOU.”
I recommend you plan your marketing for the year —
Not just for the next 1-2 months you’d like to see more people in your practice.
5. Use this time-testing marketing tool and STOP hitting the pavement…
Believe it or not, direct mail remains the most preferred form of marketing…
And, it’s also MOST likely to generate your practice leads and sales.
Check out these statistics:
- Direct mail produces up to 500% more responses than all other marketing methods. (DMA 2015 Response Rate Report)
- 92% of consumers prefer direct mail when looking to buy a product. (DMA 2015 Response Rate Report)
- The average return on investment (ROI) for direct mail marketing is 18%-20%. (DMA 2015 Response Rate Report)
Not just any old postcard design will get you leads.
You need to make sure your physical therapy postcards each have the 10 postcard design elements on them, otherwise you risk your physical therapy marketing campaign not giving you the best results possible.
In short, your physical therapy postcards need to:
- Grab attention
- Clearly communicate your USP to prospects
- Mention an irresistible special offer
- Provide your practice’s contact information
- And entice your prospect to ACT NOW on your offer (aka, call you!).
Another reason you should market consistently?
You undoubtedly have competition looking to take away your business!
Whatever marketing medium you’re using, there are 3 rules for winning the physical therapy marketing game:
- Reach prospects FIRST
- Reach prospects more often
- Stay top of mind for when they need you!
Start planning — and running — your year-long physical therapy marketing campaigns to stay in front of your prospects (and customers) with your USP (#1) and professional logo (#2).
6. Use these 16 website tweaks to generate more leads online
Check out this CRAZY statistic:
95% of people who see some form of your physical therapy marketing will head straight to your website to decide whether they’re going to contact you… or not.
95% is almost ALL of them.
Your website has mere seconds to grab your prospect’s attention before they either leave your website or decide to stay and continue reading.
But guess what:
96% of prospects WILL statistically ditch your website without taking any action!!
Therefore, your website MUST not only look professional, but it must be designed to capture contact information and turn it over to you.
I found that there’s 16 website design elements that help to generate leads, and they’re not difficult to implement…
You can download a list of them for easy reference —
Here’s a website my team made:
Notice the phone numbers on the top right hand side of the page yelling for prospects to call them — love that!
Place your phone number in the same spot on EACH page so prospects don’t need to hunt for it. The top of your website works great because that’s where everyone begins!
It’s just one example of making sure your website obviously encourages prospects to contact you (but more is coming in #7!).
If you want an expert hand to tweak your website — or create an entirely brand new one — we design websites for an EXTREMELY affordable price.
7. Capture up to 96% more leads right from your website
Like I mentioned above, 95% of people will visit your website once they see any physical therapy advertisement you promote — whether it’s:
- Direct mail (physical therapy postcards)
- A Google ad anywhere online
- Facebook — specifically ads
- Or even a Google review.
But like I said:
A staggering 96% of people will LEAVE your website…
Which is a HUGE waste of marketing money!!!
One tool you can use to capture more leads from your website is pop-ups…
But not “just pop-ups.”
Pop-ups aren’t anything new obviously, but they do work in capturing more leads from your website, specifically when you use a super enticing special offer (#3).
Word to the wise:
If you do use pop-ups, make sure to test and re-test them often. That’s the only way you’ll see which designs, colors, and special offers produce the most leads for your practice!
Or, if all that sounds too technical, we created the Catch-That-Lead Tool to manage your pop-ups and online leads for you. It’s the most affordable way for you to get MORE leads out of your PT marketing expenditure and capture more leads from your website.
8. Nail your Google listing to generate FREE leads from Google
Register for a FREE Google Business Profile account. It’s how you’ll update your Google listing for your practice, meaning…
When someone googles for a practice like yours (or YOURS directly), one of the first things Google shows from its search is your Google business listing (like the one above).
Your Google listing shows pictures of your business plus all information googlers want to see right off the bat. This information gets pulled automatically from data you enter in your Google Business Profile account.
So you need to make sure you have this data entered correctly, specifically:
- Your business’s actual name
- Address (Google will verify it)
- Phone number
- Hours of operation
- Category of your business
You’ll also manage and respond to your Google reviews from your Google Business Profile account — more on why that’s important in #9 next.
Again, make sure you keep ALL your contact information updated in your Google Business Profile account since inaccurate information will actually prevent Google from bringing up your practice in searches.
Meaning, your business may end up showing up LESS in Google searches —
Which is NOT what we want considering Google is the #1-used search engine in the U.S!
So if your address OR hours change (like for holidays) make sure to update it in Google Business Profile!
Another benefit to keeping your information totally up-to-date is you’ll be found easier on Google Maps.
If someone uses Google Maps to search for a local physical therapist, your correct and updated information on the internet (including Google Business Profile) will enable your ranking in Google Maps to be higher than those (meaning, your competitors) who don’t take the time.
So make sure your contact information is correct on these websites too:
- Other social media accounts
Plus, Google Maps results show up even BEFORE organic results…
Meaning, prospects see Google Maps results FIRST when they search on Google.
The first organic listing for a in the above search comes AFTER those Google Maps results.
Remember that Google LOVES consistency, so just keep your business information updated across anywhere it’s listed online and work on getting LOTS of positive reviews for your practice on Google, which I talk about next…
9. Use Google reviews as 90% trust and act on them
Consumers today rely on reviews to make purchasing decisions, particularly when they’re considering a brand new business.
Check these out:
- 85% of consumers trust online reviews just as much as personal recommendations
- 68% of Americans said positive reviews made them MORE likely to use a business
- 84% trust Google reviews specifically just as much as word-of-mouth recommendations
You want to get LOTS of 4- and 5-star reviews of your business specifically entered on Google.
Here are some ways to do that:
- Have patient-facing staff members ask for reviews
- Make sure patients know HOW to leave a Google review
- Add a link to your Google reviews in your email signature
- Then email gentle reminders that you’d appreciate a review
- Automate your review-getting process (read how here)
Here’s an idea of what you can add to your email signature:
“Have feedback about our service? Leave a review!”
And make sure you respond to ALL reviews because your communication online will show prospective patients (and doctors) that you care enough about your business to respond to all feedback — good or bad.
30% of consumers will actually look at how you handle negative reviews before deciding whether to contact you or not.
So it’s worth your time to respond to negative reviews!
Even if you can’t remedy whatever went wrong which resulted in a negative review, at minimum your attempt to fix a problem shows prospects that you care.
Here’s one more point about reviews:
When you have lots of 4- and 5-star Google reviews, your Google listing will automatically stand out to prospects and even doctors searching for you because they’ll immediately recognize your golden stars.
And guess what:
Star rating is the #1 factor used by consumers when judging a business’s credibility.
It’s like Google has trained us to recognize that stars = ratings, and the more, the better!
And if you need a step-by-step guide to gain more reviews, grab this:
10. Update your online listings to reach 93% of online prospects
As many as 93% of all online experiences begin with a search engine, according to SearchEngine Journal.
While many of the people who receive your physical therapy postcards will search for you by name and go directly to your website (remember #6 and #7!!), many of them will simply search for what they need, like:
“physical therapy in [your town].”
And they’ll see several listings, many of which will be search and review sites, like:
- Google Maps
- Angie’s List
- Yellow Pages
Make sure you’re listed on those sites, too — and that your business profile is correct, up-to-date, and filled with photos of your facility and team —
Or you risk LOSING all of those prospects to your competitors.
Here’s a great example of a thorough listing on Yelp, which is likely one of the first review websites to pop up:
I love how they uploaded several pictures of their work — that’s what prospects want to see.
Any business that gets up close and personal with its clients (dentists, doctors, estheticians) should use pictures of their staff in their marketing because prospects then feel like they know you and can trust you more easily.
Here’s a listing on Yellow Pages I found:
Love that they have 19 stellar reviews!! Would love to also see more photos!
Don’t just sign up for accounts with online listing sites and think you’re done…
Keeping your listing current means setting aside time to upload new photos regularly and asking your happy patients to leave you a review on the site (remember #9)!
Along the same line as online listings comes social media, up next…
11. Target and reach prospects (including doctors) with Facebook
First, get a Facebook Business Page for free.
I recommend running Facebook ads at the same time you’re mailing your physical therapy postcards.
You can MATCH your Facebook ad’s special offer and design with that of your physical therapy postcards.
So your prospects see ONE cohesive marketing message whether they receive your postcard in the mail or see your physical therapy advertisement on Facebook.
Because here’s the truth:
Social media is not going away, and if you look around in life, it’s clear people are glued to their smart phones constantly in-taking social media content. So your marketing MUST be there too.
Now get this golden nugget:
You can TARGET the same prospects (or doctors) with your Facebook ads as to whom you’re mailing your physical therapy postcards.
This coordination of mailing matching postcards plus simultaneously showing Facebook ads online gives your prospects the perception that your PT marketing is everywhere…
It’s called Everywhere Small Business. With it, your physical therapy marketing gets blasted using:
- Direct mail
- Google ads (across thousands & thousands of internet websites)
- And Facebook ads
YOU don’t have to do anything.
We’ll run your direct mail campaign at the same time we design and run both Google and Facebook ads online.
Your Google ads get blasted across hundreds (and thousands) of different internet websites in the Google network… including many HUGE website you’d be surprised at, such as:
- And MORE!
And your Facebook ads?
They reach prospects where they browse, click, and “like” up to 50 minutes each and every day.
Watch the Everywhere Small Business video to see how this program works.
No matter what —
Plan to integrate social media into your physical therapy marketing, and ensure that your special offer, messaging, and design are all the same!
12. Improve your Google ranking with search engine optimization (SEO)
Search engines work by finding websites which match the keywords your prospects search with.
So if your prospects enter “[Your City] physical therapy” (aka “Chicago physical therapy”] your website will rank higher in Google to the degree that your website pages have the keywords aka “Chicago physical therapy” in them (as well as other factors that are more complicated which we won’t get into detail on here).
The business owners you see above have websites that are built to be found by Google when prospects search with “Chicago physical therapy”, and that’s really good SEO for you because they’re on page 1 of Google (aka, EASY to find!).
To get your website found on Google (the world’s most-used search engine), your website’s data must be accurate and filled with keywords your prospects use to find a business just like yours.
Make a list of these keywords using Google’s free keyword planner tool, and have your website guy (even if that’s you!) use them on the pages of your website — your homepage, your About Us page, etc.
But it’s NOT only keywords you need.
Here are some tips to increase your website’s SEO:
- Each page’s title (learn about page titles here) should be different
- Homepage’s page title should have “physical therapy” (or the like) + your city & state
- Your contact data (on your contact page) must be correct
- Your business’s data must be referenced (cited) on other popular web pages
- You should have and use a free Google Business Profile
SEO is NOT a one-shot deal — much like PT marketing in general!
So beware of any company that claims to guarantee to get your website to #1 on Google in a short amount of time…
SEO is a continual process since Google and its algorithms (formulas) change all the time. That’s why getting reviews (#9) and making sure your website is set up to capture leads is 100% worth your time (and it’s WAY less complicated too!!).
13. Create a video of your services for 80% more leads
Get a professional video made that clearly shows prospects how your practice helps them (especially if you have any special technologies!).
Check out these stats on video marketing:
- Increases (FREE) traffic from search engines to your website by up to 157%
- Using video on a landing page can increase leads by 80%
Visitors stay on websites 88% longer when there’s video to watch.
I recommend getting a video made that introduces your practice to prospects by giving them a tour of your space in under 2 minutes.
This one is simple, under 1 minute, and does the job!
14. Ask for referrals since 92% of people trust them
According to a report by Nielsen, 92% of consumers trust referrals from people they know.
Not surprising, right?
When you ask someone for a referral, you’re usually asking them because you know and trust their insight!
Don’t assume your clients know you want to grow your practice though.
That’s why you should add a line at the bottom of your invoices that says:
“We LOVE referrals! Get a FREE massage for any referral who becomes a new patient with us!”
You can also add this to the bottom of your email newsletter!
Know another great thing about referrals?
You don’t have to PAY to generate them as new fresh leads.
Instead — just reward your current clients who give you referrals…
Which will make them feel valued and save YOU extra dollars in your sports medicine advertising plan!
15. Use live chat to talk to 92% of website visitors
The beauty of live chat is it puts a real person on your website, answering questions even after your business has closed for the day.
Here’s why live chat’s so valuable today:
- 92% of consumers love using live chat on a website (Zendesk Report)
- 44% find live chat one of the most valuable website features (Forrester Report)
- 77% won’t contact or even buy from a business without live chat
Live chat turns your website into a real human interaction so prospects get answers immediately, and most live chat assistants are trained to direct calls to your business when possible… getting you real leads in REAL time!
Here are a couple live chat companies you can check out:
Plus, most live chat systems today have a mobile app so that you can respond to your online visitors’ questions on-the-go and never miss a beat (or lead)!
Point blank — your website NEEDS to operate to get you leads, not just be a fancy (or expensive) spot on the internet (remember #6 and #7!!)!
16. Close up to 80% more leads with your current prospect lists
The MAJORITY of your leads will not close right away.
In fact, about 80% of your leads will close ONLY if you follow up with them on a consistent basis.
But don’t worry —
Following up with your leads can be done automatically with free email marketing tools.
Most email marketing tools have ready-made templates where it just takes a couple clicks to design professional-looking emails you can set up on an automatic schedule to send to your prospects. (No graphic design skills needed!)
That way, you can send consistent emails to your prospects with information like:
- What makes your practice different (your USP from #1!)
- What your practice LOOKS like (with pictures!)
- If you have any special therapies or technologies
- How you’re better than your competition
- And any special offers or promotions you’re running.
When you consistently send out physical therapy marketing communication to your prospects, they’re less likely to forget about you and thus —
MORE likely to contact you when they need you.
You can use that same email marketing tool to send out a monthly newsletter to keep your current patients feeling like they have a good relationship with you and your practice. Feature practice updates or even special events (maybe on nutrition and healthy eating!) that they’d be interested in attending too.
Again, you can set up these automated email campaigns in most email providers — such as MailChimp — or we can set these up for you easily for a fee.
17. Turn NEW movers into automatic new patients without lifting a finger
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, a little over 11% of the American population moves every year. Many of those people need new local physical therapists!
With our New In Town program, you can reach new movers in your area every month without you even having to think about it, which makes it one of the easiest-to-implement physical therapy marketing strategies…
Here’s how it works:
- You tell us your target demographic and service area
- We design physical therapy postcards for your business
- Every month, we automatically send all new movers that fit your targeting criteria your physical therapy postcards
- They call to redeem your offer, then you wow them with your service and create new patients!
And this is cool:
Your physical therapy postcards are personalized with the first name of the recipient (they can also be customized for each recipient to match their demographics), so they take notice of your PT marketing right from their mailboxes!
Here’s an example:
Where you see <<First>> in the above holiday card is where the first name of each recipient would get printed — automatically!
By automatically mailing to all the new movers in your area, your practice can simply receive a steady stream of new patients who need your help.
18. Reach out to other similar businesses and form partnerships
What other businesses have (or know) prospects who may need physical therapy?
How about these:
- Massage parlors/high-end salons
- Assisted living communities
- Personal trainers for athletes
Just to name a few!
Partnering with local doctors is the most obvious form of referral marketing for physical therapists, so make sure you have a healthy stack of physical therapy marketing materials on hand to give out — brochures work great!
19. Track your results like a PT marketing pro
Only TRACKING will show you what parts of your sports medicine advertising create leads (and income) for your practice.
So — HOW do you track?
A new caller sheet is one way!
All you do is print off a stack of these sheets, give them to your receptionist (or keep them by your phone for whomever answers it), and ensure that each and every staff member knows to use them to:
- Gather ALL vital information from prospects calling in
- Find out which physical therapy marketing they saw
- And ensure if they don’t book an appointment, that you collect their email address to follow up with them
Another way to track:
Google Analytics — a free tool from Google that tracks the following:
- Who visits your website
- Where they’re from
- What pages they visit
- How long they stay there
- And WAY more!
Here’s a practical way to use Google Analytics:
Let’s say you mail out 5,000 postcards, and you check your Google Analytics account and notice 500 people visited your website, with 100 people landing and spending 1-2 minutes on your “About Us” page.
But… maybe only 5 people made it to your contact page to actually contact you and become real leads for your business.
Here’s an idea:
Why not put a pop-up form or lead capture form on that “About Us” page to capture more of the leads who read all about you, and turn them into tangible leads you can contact and invite in for a consultation!
However — the most important metric to track?
Return on investment (ROI)!
The ultimate measurement of all your physical therapy marketing efforts = how much sales they generate for your practice.
I’m always asked what response rate you can expect from your direct mail, and my reply is always the same:
You should be asking how much SALES your marketing can generate!
It’s endless — as long as you’re consistent with your marketing.
Consistency can make or break your marketing campaign (read why here!).
That’s why I leave you with this testimonial of a Rhode Island physical therapist who went from drumming up leads door-to-door his first year to growing a prosperous practice with new business coming in each month!
Here’s his postcard design:
So there you have it! 19 physical therapy marketing strategies to use to grow your practice — no guesswork required!
If you want more help on a one-on-one basis with your marketing, contact one my marketing experts for a FREE consultation by calling 800-628-1804. Their advice is 100% FREE, and I promise you’ll learn a thing or two about marketing for physical therapists!
Or, you can always email me directly at Joy.Gendusa@PostcardMania.com.