What’s the difference between a recession and a depression? In a recession, your competitors close their doors. In a depression, you close yours. As physicians across the country increasingly worry about their economic and financial future, the specter of the largest recession in decades or possibly a depression looms large. For medical practices, the stakes are particularly high as patients delay elective procedures, and even ongoing wellness care or chronic disease treatment.
The question that looms large for many practice owners is: how do you prepare for an uncertain financial future?
When preparing for an economic downturn, it is important to understand the difference between Practice Marketing Resistance and Resilience. Marketing Resistance is the ability of a practice to withstand a disturbance in revenue flow by putting in place marketing processes that make it possible to return to normal operations with minimal disruption. Marketing Resilience, on the other hand, is the ability of a practice to recover after suffering great harm from a serious revenue disturbance and continue to operate in a devolving situation.
This article is developed using insights from Peter J. Polack, MD, a practicing ophthalmologist who specializes in laser refractive and cataract surgery. Additionally, he is the founder of Emedikon, a venture marketing firm that leverages his proprietary Practice Domination Marketing Protocol to help medical practices improve their marketing strategies. With a family background in ophthalmology, Peter has witnessed firsthand the changes affecting healthcare practices and delivery. For many years, he has been fascinated by the role of technology and marketing in the medical field.
Peter shares his insights on marketing through his blogs on Healio Ophthalmology and Eyes on Eyecare. He is also a prominent contributor to Quora.com, an expert platform where his posts have garnered over 4 million views. This gives him an unprecedented insight into what patients want, which informs how he views crafting excellent patient experiences, which we all know is the coin of the realm.
The good news, he reveals, is that in an economic downturn Marketing Resistance and Resilience programs as integral parts of your marketing efforts can be the deciding factors in whether your practice thrives, survives, or closes its doors. The key is to understand your practice’s situation and tailor your marketing accordingly. Here are three steps that can help your practice build resilience or resistance and prepare for an uncertain future.
Step 1: Marketing Triage
The first step is to perform Marketing Triage by critically evaluating every opportunity source you are currently investing in. Make sure you have a full inventory of every lead source that brings in opportunities. Are you tracking all leads that come in through the phone, email, website, or other sources? After you have built your lead sources list, assess each one’s ability to capture leads, nurture, and convert them into revenue. Are you following up with them in a timely manner and nurturing those leads through the entire patient journey? By identifying gaps in your lead capture and conversion process, you can prioritize your efforts and allocate resources to where they will have the most impact. In broad strokes, this means you will have to do a detailed performance evaluation of your traffic and funnels.
Step 2: Focus on High-Value Cash Services (for prospects who still have money)
During a recession, as we experienced in 2009, patients are more selective about the cash services they choose. This means that practices should focus on offering high-value cash services that you know will always be in demand by patients with discretionary dollars. In the marketing world, this is known as “marketing to the affluent,” a term of art first articulated by Dan Kennedy, whose book about it is on Amazon if you’re interested. By prominently marketing these services and tailoring your messaging to emphasize their value and affordability, you can maintain revenue and build a marketing list of prospects with disposable income. You can instantly promote directly and on demand to this audience (practically free) using email and SMS. The money’s in the list.
Step 3: Diversify Your Marketing Efforts
Finally, it is important to diversify your marketing efforts to reach a wider audience and maximize your exposure. This means using a mix of online and offline channels, such as social media, email marketing, search engine optimization, print advertising, and community outreach. There are only four ways to reach your audience of choice:
- Online + paid traffic – advertising on social media and various ad networks
- Online + free traffic – known as content marketing
- Offline + paid traffic – print, TV, radio, ads, billboards, local events, and sponsorships
- Offline + free traffic – referrals, word-of-mouth, waiting room signage
With a diversified marketing approach, you reach patients where they are and increase your chances of success.
In conclusion, building Marketing Resistance and Resilience requires a strategic approach that takes into account your practice’s risk tolerance levels and its unique situation and challenges. By performing marketing triage, focusing on high-value cash services, and diversifying your marketing efforts, you can prepare your practice for a recession and emerge stronger on the other side.
Designing Secure Commercial Spaces Without Compromising Aesthetics
In the realm of commercial design, security and aesthetics often seem like opposing forces. Business owners and designers alike grapple with the challenge of creating spaces that not only captivate and inspire but also ensure the safety and security of assets and occupants. The good news is that integrating security features into commercial spaces without sacrificing visual appeal is entirely achievable. This blog post will delve into innovative design strategies that harmonise security with aesthetics, including a look at the best deadlocks for front doors in Australia, ensuring your commercial space is both beautiful and fortified.
Embracing Technology for Seamless Security
Modern technology offers a plethora of options for discreet yet effective security measures. For instance, advanced surveillance systems can be integrated into the architectural design in a way that they blend seamlessly with the environment. Smart locks and biometric access controls offer robust security without the clunky hardware, maintaining a sleek and modern aesthetic. Implementing these technologies not only elevates the security level of your commercial space but does so without disrupting its design flow.
Strategic Use of Materials and Design Elements
The choice of materials and design elements plays a crucial role in balancing security and aesthetics. High-strength materials such as tempered or laminated glass, for example, offer excellent security without compromising on the visual openness that glass provides. Similarly, incorporating natural barriers like decorative boulders or planters can serve as subtle physical deterrents while enhancing the space’s visual appeal.
Lighting: A Dual-Purpose Tool
Lighting is another powerful tool that serves both aesthetic and security purposes. Well-planned lighting can highlight architectural features and create a welcoming atmosphere while ensuring visibility and deterring unauthorised access after hours. Motion-sensor lighting, in particular, can be a discreet addition that enhances security without detracting from the design.
The Role of Deadlocks in Aesthetic Security
A critical aspect of securing any commercial space is the choice of locks, especially for front doors which are the primary entry and exit points. Deadlocks offer a high level of security, making them an essential feature for commercial spaces. However, selecting the right deadlock doesn’t mean you have to settle for a utilitarian look. Today, the market offers a variety of deadlock designs that complement any aesthetic, from modern minimalist to classic elegance. For those in Australia, choosing the best deadlocks for front doors involves considering both the security features and how the lock’s design integrates with your commercial space’s overall look.
Collaboration Between Security Experts and Designers
Achieving a balance between security and aesthetics often requires a collaborative approach. Security experts and interior designers need to work hand in hand from the early stages of the design process. This collaboration ensures that security measures are not afterthoughts but are integrated into the design in a way that complements the space’s aesthetic appeal.
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Designing secure commercial spaces without compromising aesthetics is not only possible but essential in today’s world. Remember, the goal is to integrate security seamlessly into the design, enhancing the user experience and ensuring peace of mind for both business owners and visitors. With thoughtful planning and collaboration, your commercial space can be a testament to the harmony that can exist between security and aesthetics.
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