Marketing and Public Relations Committee Report

Michelle Collie

By Michelle Collie, PT, DPT, MS

The Private Practice Section (PPS) Marketing and PR Committee objective is to provide marketing and public relations educational programming and tools for members to use in their communities and with their local media. What follows is an overview of the resources members currently have to promote their practices and the profession of physical therapy.

Each month a new marketing toolkit is produced, emailed to members and available on the website, consisting of a press release, social media posts, and content for a blog or newsletter. Currently over 500 members are accessing this material each month, repurposing, posting, and sharing the content in their communities. We hope to continue to build on the number of members utilizing this resource.

The Fit Factor (www.fitfactorsurvey.org) is an interactive, online survey designed to increase consumers’ awareness of the scope of private practice physical therapy, drive people to local private practices, and provide a fun opportunity for people to benchmark where their physical health is compared to the rest of the population. In January of 2017 there were 3,730 visitors to the site, and since the end of 2017 we have been getting over 10,000 visitors a month. A monthly Fit Factor e-newsletter is now sent to all people who have registered on the site, utilizing content from the monthly toolkit. Practices are utilizing the Fit Factor in a variety of ways: at events to attract new patients, as a means to reengage with past patients, and as an educational tool in the clinic. Practices are adding the logo and a link to their websites, in newsletters, and on social media, or having patients complete the questionnaire in the clinic. Our goal is to continue to develop the Fit Factor including providing a version that members can brand to their practice.

Need an inspirational marketing idea? The 99 Marketing Ideas project launched in 2017 with the filming of a collection of video vignettes showcasing marketing ideas from private practice physical therapists. This is just the beginning of what will become a collection of real stories of effective marketing practices, tools, and strategies that colleagues have had success with.

MyPhysTherapist is our new social media handle providing consumer-ready posts that members can share on their platforms. Follow and share content from facebook.com/myphystherapy/ and twitter.com/myphystherapist. A task force is currently working on the development of a library of consumer-ready content for members. This will be readily accessible on the website and at our Facebook and Twitter handles.

Free for members, Marketing 101 is available through the PPS learning center. Marketing gurus Lynn Steffes and Scott Wick have produced a series of five videos covering an extensive number of marketing and PR subjects.

Finally, I am grateful for the work of our committee members, Scott Wick, Darren Rodia, Jamie Bryant, and Steve Albanese, and we welcome new members Josh Funk and Jan Schorpion. In addition, thank you to our board liaison Ali Schoos, communication and membership specialist Mariesa Bergin, and the many people involved in our task forces.

Please go to the recently launched, new private practice website (www.ppsapta.org) to find all of the mentioned resources and more! Follow and share content from MyPhysTherapist, post the content from the monthly toolkit, gain marketing ideas and submit your own idea, view the Marketing 101 series, read the endless number of articles, share the Fit Factor survey, execute what you learn, and watch your practice grow!

Michelle Collie, PT, DPT, MS, is the chair of the PPS PR and Marketing Committee and chief executive officer of Performance Physical Therapy in Rhode Island. She can be reached at mcollie@performanceptri.com.