Raise Your Clinic Profile
Position yourself as the go-to person to raise your clinic profile and make sure that people see this. Consider what accreditations are used within your industry, or what other accreditations could you get to differentiate yourself from the competition. They may even not mean that much to you, but your potential clients will see it as an example of how much more professional or just plain better you are than your competitors because you have them.
We’ve already talked about lead magnets, and how important it is for you to use them as a way of capturing people’s data, so that you can then communicate with them, position yourself as the go-to person and ultimately – when they’re ready to purchase – it’s you they think of. You could also use white papers and other types of guides too though, and don’t worry about giving stuff away and thinking about the competition getting hold of them. Anything you’re already doing is out there somewhere anyway – how much better to be the first to give it to your potential client, and they’ll think of you before anyone else.
Blog at least once a week and when thinking about your blog try to think about the questions people might be asking regarding your industry; it can also be a useful resource to send to potential and existing clients to again position yourself as the expert. Remember, you can also tweet out your blog, post it on LinkedIn and share across any other channels, and of course your blog will have a lead magnet, along with all your social media icons and share buttons, so will give visitors every opportunity to interact with you. If it doesn’t, this is a real missed opportunity, so add them now.
The Higher Your Clinic Profile The More Success You’ll Have
I recently saw an excellent example of positioning from a website designer after the client had come on board with them. They had a series of emails welcoming the client, introducing them to the team and counting down from six weeks to when they’d start the website design. As they had a two week window to do the website, they also pointed the client to some of the blogs they had written, one of which focused on the advantages of working with a professional web design company. Each of the countdown emails also reminded the client what content they needed to provide, so, for example, they’d say ‘Hi John, only another 15 days before we start your website. By now you should have shared your copy with us so we can…’ The whole email sequence was automated but personalised brilliantly, really informative, and positioned the firm perfectly.
Opinion-based articles (often called op-ed or opinion-led) or by-lined articles in magazines or other media are also a great way of raising your profile. These are thought leadership pieces where your expertise can be evidenced and you can be positioned as a credible leader within your industry by offering advice and guidance. Normally the headline would be controversial such as “The Death of …. ”, while the body copy would be much more managed, and you should come down very definitely on a certain side of whatever it is you’re talking about so that you’re seen as a person with a definite opinion. Sitting on the fence is a not a position you want to adopt, nor is it one that you want to be seen to be adopting, as it’s often perceived to be weak (and you can get splinters!)
Every industry has awards and there are plenty of differing business awards that you can enter yourself into. Some of these are national ones like the ‘UK Top 50 Advisor’ award I won or the fact that I was a “Coach of the Year Finalist recently, or else there will be more regional or sector-centric awards you can apply for. This is an excellent opportunity for you to differentiate yourself from the competition. It takes a little bit of time and effort to actually put these applications together, but not only is it a great way to stand out from the crowd, these events are a great night out for your team and a real morale booster. There is a specific formula for writing winning award entries so it can be easier – and more effective – sometimes to get a specialist to do it for you, but it’s well worth the investment as being shortlisted, or a finalist, can be a great profile raiser for your clinic.
Your Clinic Profile Is Everything
Writing an e-book can be another good differentiator and a great way to be seen as the expert in your sector, but an even better strategy can be to write a hard copy book and then self-publish it. These days it’s a lot easier than it used to be, and you can use Amazon’s print-on-demand services which mean you aren’t required to bulk-order your books and fill your garage up with them. As far as positioning goes, a physical book that you can put into people’s hands will greatly increase their perception of you as an expert in your sector, and in the earlier example of The Lunchbox Doctor you can see the dramatic affect it can have. If you have no idea of how to start writing a book there are plenty of books and even online courses to help you take the first step.
If You Speak It Will Raise Your Clinic Profile
Speaking at events is another great way of getting in front of your potential clients and raising your profile, especially if you’re a keynote speaker. Becoming a good speaker does require effort, though, and for this I’d recommend joining something like the Professional Speaking Association or Toastmasters and attending speaking courses, workshops and training. Also, becoming a keynote speaker can take time as you often have to become very well-known within the industry. The alternative is to throw a lot of money at it to get you in that position. However, what you can do to circumnavigate this slightly, once you’re proficient at speaking and you’ve got your speech nailed (and this means getting honest opinions from people that can speak), is to arrange your own fringe events at your target industry’s main events.
These would normally be something like a three day conference, so the idea is that you gently highjack the main event by creating your own event one of the evenings. Invite VIPs and other people already attending the main event and offer a champagne reception or similar. It’s an opportunity for people to network, and then you can offer a high-value 20 minute skills session to whet their appetite on whatever it is you can do for them. Remember as well to give something away, ideally something that you need to send to them. Those who are interested in that are more likely to be interested in working with you so it’s another great pre-qualifier, plus when they check you out they’ll notice your clinic profile and how great it is
By Alan Adams The Clinic Coach