Chiropractors are now looking newer and more innovative ways to market their practice.
Discover how to market your practice by training your staff to use internal marketing. Heidi Farrell leads chiropractic teams to greater levels of success through a systematic process of self-discovery, self-discipline, accountability, training, goal setting and motivation. Listen to the audio interview with her below.
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Dr. Smith: Hello and welcome everybody. I am Dr. Tabor Smith. Welcome to Practice Growth Strategies. I have a very special guest for you today. I have been trying to catch up with Ms. Heidi Farrell for a long time. She is a very busy person, and, as we all are. I am so looking forward to this because she is really going to help us get some things together in our practice. Help us to get some systems and things that will help us grow our practice and our business. So, Heidi, how are you today?
Heidi: I’m excellent. How are you?
Dr. Smith: Doing great. Thank you so much for being here. We really appreciate it. I’m going to go ahead and ask you to just kind of introduce yourself, and let some of the chiropractors… I know most of us have probably heard your name before, but how did you get associated with chiropractic, and tell us a little bit about what you do.
Heidi: Sure, well I have been doing this now for probably about 20 years. I hate to say that, that kind of ages me, but you know. I got introduced to chiropractic in a unique way. Actually, I went with a friend of mine when I was living in Phoenix, and I must have been 17 I think. And, I watched him adjust her neck, and I thought, “No way I’m out of here. I’m never going to see this, and do this again.” And, I didn’t think a second thought about it at that time.
But, then later maybe a year and a half later, I applied for a position in Minneapolis and I had never really been to Minneapolis before, so it was like a new trip from St. Paul to Minneapolis. I grew up in the way country, so, St. Paul was big for me. And I went over the bridge, and the doctor said, when he hired me, that I would get my life out of working at the clinic.
And, I kind of laughed and said, “Yeah, yeah okay. How much are you going to pay me? What are we going to do?” But, it really did give me my life and not that he gave it to me, but being in that center under the philosophy and the understanding, helped me to grow and to become really good at what I did. So that is kind of how I got my start, and then I started working with North Western College of Chiropractic, which was an experience.
Dr. Smith: Yeah, I bet.
Heidi: Parker seminars, teaching… just kind of branched out, opened the door, and walked in.
Dr. Smith: Isn’t it cool when you finally get the philosophy behind chiropractic? I remember, I was a chiropractor and worked a year and a half as an associate in a practice where I didn’t really get it. You know what I mean? And, then I went and I worked for my mentor now, Dr. Shane Han, and I finally got it and, it changes you. You know?
Heidi: It’s like a light clicks on when you see these doctors or even CAs, go to a seminar and they sit in the front row and their eyes just open up and they just get amazed at what it is we do. And, also what it is we do for our practice members and their lives. You talk about turning it on. They finally get what that really means.
Dr. Smith: You’re right. And, that is the only way you can explain it, is you don’t get it and then you get it. There is no other way to explain that. It’s the same with our patients, it’s the same with us.
Heidi: And it’s almost not a gradual thing, although it is, it’s almost a bam. Like all of a sudden they heard something, and that was it. That was the connector. For me, I remember, at a young age, going to a Parker’s seminar in May, and I said to myself, something hit me from Demartini or whoever, that I wanted to be the best CA, the best chiropractic advocate, because I was a marketer, that I could be. I went back and that was it, that was the end of it. I had no missed Mondays. I brought in 45 new ones a month, I just went to town.
Dr. Smith: Awesome
Heidi: It was decision.
Dr. Smith: And, that’s really the reason we’ve got to have our systems, our education in place, is because that education has to be there. So, some of the people that come into our practice will have that shift. And I’ve had people come in, and they’ve went through every single talk, and every single part of my education, and they still didn’t get it. But, then I’ve had those people, those are the ones we love, and we treat their families. They’re the ones who went through and they did, it worked, they got it.
Heidi: Yeah, exactly. I was just talking to one of my doctor’s yesterday. Coaching about the same thing in regards to education, and he feels he’s a good educator. But why are these people still not getting it? And, the reality is, is how good you think you are may not really be the case, or, vice versa. Some people are never going to get it. No matter what.
Dr. Smith: I think this is a good transition into me asking you about what you do. I know you are associated with ChiroAdvance Services, what is that? What do you help chiropractors do?
Heidi: Sure, well I am actually the founder and head coach of ChiroAdvance Services. We like to call it CAS for short. We have been around for 17 years, approximately. And, we do management coaching. Our style is a little different because we work with teams. When I say teams, I don’t mean just the CAs, I mean the doctor and CA or CAs, or whatever, coming together and working together kind of like Starsky and Hutch, you look, I look. They train together, they market together, they practice together, they do the things they need to do so they are like one band, one sound.
Dr. Smith: Right.
Heidi: And, that’s my ultimate goal with the teams, and I think because I take that approach, where most management companies take a doctor approach I think, instead of a team one, I can hit them from both angles. Teach a report of findings so that the doctor and the CA can work on that and get better results.
Dr. Smith: And, do you see that as what makes a big difference between, from practice to practice, that team unity?
Heidi: I think so. I think that when a team is training, when they are in a good mesh together because they actually respect each other. You would be surprised, as a doctor, you’re not like this, but there are many doctors that do not respect their team. They treat them crappy. They don’t give them the energy they need. They expect them to do everything, but don’t tell them what they’re supposed to do. And, so there is a lot of challenge. That is why turnover is high.
Dr. Smith: Yeah, Yeah.
Heidi: You and I know that it costs $10-12,000 to hire a new person really.
Dr. Smith: Yeah, I find it is hard. I don’t what your clients tell you. But, for me it’s difficult to build that team unity.
Heidi: Oh, it is way difficult. Most people have never had that for themselves in a prior position or job or like you were saying, as an associate. So, they don’t know how to do it.
Dr. Smith: Right.
Heidi: They don’t know how to set up a team training plan. Which is hard. Even when I do them with teams it takes 45 minutes to an hour to do. But luckily we have the training kits, the scripts, and the what to say, the doctor role play, CA role play. So, we give that to them for 50 different training programs so that they know how to do, lead generation. Or asking for referrals over a the front desk, or scheduling.
Dr. Smith: I can see how that’s extremely valuable. If your team knows those skills and their working together, it would be hard for your practice not to grow when that’s happened.
Heidi: Just think about this one thing. I love this scenario. If you think about every visit, let’s just say its $45. If every visit is $45 and your CAs are trained on how to schedule them and stop them, don’t let them leave without an appointment. Just this one liner that I give my CAs they love, they laugh about it because it works every time. I usually tell them that when a patient is going, “Well, I’ll just call you, I will call you to schedule.” I tell them to say, “Judy, don’t bother. I got you Wednesday at 4, perfect. You don’t have to waste your time, call me if it doesn’t work.”
Dr. Smith: Nice.
Heidi: And, they’re like, okay. They don’t know what else to do.
Dr. Smith: That’s perfect.
Heidi: It works every time. They’re like amazed, and I’m like once they have the confidence, they do it again, and again, and again.
Dr. Smith: Right, I love that. And, that is probably just one tiny little thing that’s involved in all of your systems and things that you do. Which is going to lead me to my next question, are listeners out their are chiropractors. Obviously, they’re trying to grow their practice. That’s the reason why they’re listening to this podcast right now. Give us a tip, give us something, I know you’ve already given us good stuff, but what can we do even today or tomorrow, an implement that is going to help us reach more people?
Heidi: Do you want internal or external?
Dr. Smith: Let’s go internal.
Heidi: Okay, so internal is, well, each of them, both of them need, first of all need a plan. We’ve always said no plan is a plan to fail. So, most people, when I ask them what are they doing, they’re like, “Well, I need new patients, I need new patients.” And, I’m like, “Let’s take a look at your plan.” They’re like, “Don’t have one.”
So, once we do is we set up a plan where we balance out internal referral asking to patient gifting or education. But, every month we have something going on, and it could be, like right now we have plant the seeds of good health or, weeds or seeds, because you want to plant the seeds, but pull the weeds in your health. It could be as easy as a Mother’s Day campaign. Ultimately though we have something and we have big choices like June is national dairy month, so it’s cow week or cow month. Chiropractic Opportunity Week, “Mooove towards better health through chiropractic.” “Wouldn’t be an udder shame?” So, you have some fun with it.
Dr. Smith: I love that.
Heidi: Anyway, it is just a marketing thing like that. But, the tip I’ll give you that I think is the most important that you could get new patients right now, today from, is what I call your solid seven. These are the systems inside that cost you no money, and if you just practiced them and worked them each time, you’re going to get a lot of pay back. So, I will just give you couple. One of them is what I call the family system. Just, in a tidbit it starts with the phone, “Judy, is this appointment just for yourself or would you like to make that for your entire family for a health checkup with Dr. Smith?”
Dr. Smith: Nice.
Heidi: Or, it could be as easy as in the reporter findings the doctor saying something like, “John most of my practice members as they hear me tell them this about their body and their health, ask me why didn’t I hear this earlier? Why didn’t somebody tell me? Well, I don’t know that answer, but what I can tell you is let’s go home and get your wife and your kids and get them in here so they can be checked, because I don’t want them sitting in these chair 25 years from now asking me why they didn’t know. Somebody didn’t tell them. Can you agree with me on that? And, I will even do it on my expense over the next two weeks.”
Dr. Smith: That’s good.
Heidi: So, but then you need a follow up with the Chiro Touch pop-up and the CA, make sure she gets them within two weeks. So that’s a system. If you had 50 new patients and 25 brought one, what do you have? The golden visit. That is the time in the office when the practice members are the most excited.
Dr. Smith: Right.
Heidi: Hey, I feel so good. I can’t believe the headaches are gone. What do we usually do. We are usually like, “Oh good, awesome. Head on back to room one.” But instead if we just did, “Judy that is fantastic, can you just imagine what you’re going to be like six months from now when you really kick it into gear?”
Dr. Smith: Nice.
Heidi: Then I start saying something like, help me to help others now because you get it, but who do you know that you feel could benefit now by better health, because you learned through John, let’s share with somebody else.
Dr. Smith: Wow.
Heidi: Then I get them to turn it around to a referral. So I have like a golden visit certificate perks and benefits. Every office is different what they give, but we work it out with them.
Dr. Smith: That is awesome, and I can see how if your team was trained to where these types of responses just become innate.
Heidi: Ding, Ding, Ding.
Dr. Smith: Yeah, bam, bam, bam, every day referral, referral, referral, referral.
Dr. Smith: That’s Awesome.
Heidi: So, I use Chiro Touch so I would have a pop-up at visit number nine. That would be the golden visit. Golden Visit, Golden Visit. So if it happened already, great it has been checked off, or marked off, but if not, I’m going to make it happen by telling you how good you’re doing and how many differences I see in you. Tell me about what you’re experiencing. And then I turn it into a golden visit because of that.
Dr. Smith: That’s awesome.
Heidi: See, nobody tells you automatically every time. You’ve got to dig it out of our patients.
Dr. Smith: Yeah, Absolutely.
Heidi: Good time for a testimonial too.
Dr. Smith: What’s that?
Heidi: It is a good time for a testimonial too at that time.
Dr. Smith: Which is a big thing too. More chiropractors, we get so deeply involved in the every day monotony, we forget to ask for testimonials, we forget to post them to YouTube, or whatever it is that we have.
Heidi: Right, Right.
Dr. Smith: And, when patients see those when they’re searching for you, that makes a big difference.
Heidi: It’s huge. Testimonials, who would you go to? I mean, when you go online do you look at the amount of reviews you have? I do.
Dr. Smith: Right, right.
Heidi: When I’m looking for a hairstylist or who knows what. I know I need one today, but you know what I mean.
Dr. Smith: No, absolutely. These are just a few of the small things that you do. So, I see huge value in this. I want to know more. How do I find out more about how to get your services, how to get you to help me train my team?
Heidi: Yeah, absolutely. Well, we have a great program too called CA University, along with the general coaching for all clients, but they can have that separate too. If its just a team, that’s a good trigger to have. But, they can visit us at our website which is just, chiroadvance.com. They also are able to have a 30 minute just to talk about anything at all. That is perfectly open for them. They can call up off our website or off our email, and ask for that, and then discuss anything they want to which is awesome.
Dr. Smith: That is awesome. I appreciate you giving that value as well. So, Heidi thank you so much for being on here today and sharing those tips and strategies. I mean I really, really appreciate it, and those were some great tips. I’m going to direct everybody again the chiroadvance.com, and of course we’ll have that in the show notes below. Anything else you would like to add before we end here?
Heidi: Well, I think what you’re doing here is amazing. I love them, I watched them, I went online and did a whole bunch of them before this. Hopefully, people are really digging into that.
Dr. Smith: Awesome.
Heidi: I think this should become a theme for them for this year. It would be like the year of the team, the year of training. Just watch what happens when they train for like six weeks or eight weeks, and they will never stop once they do. Like a team huddle, you’ll never stop once you start doing it. At first it is awkward, but it works.
Dr. Smith: I think the team is what so many chiropractors out there are missing.
Heidi: Yeah, I agree. So, hopefully they pick up on that.
Dr. Smith: Well, thank you Heidi. Have a great day. Thank you again for being on and we will talk to you again soon.
Heidi: Thank you. Sounds good. Thanks for having me.