Private Practice Product Knowledge for Your Marketing Expediter

Brain food
By Lynn Steffes, PT, DPT*

Private practices with new marketing personnel are looking for a quick launch of these key people into promoting their practices.

How do you rapidly enable these marketers to share the unique sales proposition (USP) of your practice in your unique market?: Through a strategic onboarding process that creates a marketer with strong product knowledge. Product knowledge leads to immediate more impactful results! I would like to share a plan for how new marketers can develop that private practice product knowledge.

#1: Competitor knowledge and differentiation.

Competitor review and research can assist in answering these important questions:

  • Who are your top competitors?
  • What are their unique strengths and weaknesses?
  • What is your market positioning alongside these competitors?
  • What do patients and referral sources tell you about the competitors and why might they have chosen your practice over them?
  • Why should patients and referral sources choose your practice?

#2: Patient/consumer experience.

Review patient satisfaction and outcomes surveys and reports. Interview a few patients. Listen for key information such as:

  • How was the patient referred to your practice, or how did they choose your practice?
  • What were their first impressions of your practice? Did it match their expectations?
  • What are the key things other consumers or potential patients would want to know about your practice? (Listen carefully for the words they use to describe your practice—these will be key for your customer relations and marketing!)
  • What clinical and convenience factors are attractive to your patients?
  • What is the overall customer service experience?
  • If your patients had physical therapy previously, how do they compare your practice to past experiences?

#3: Services/specialties/experts.

Spend time meeting with your service/product experts, perhaps observing or experiencing specialty services to assure that they are knowledgeable!

  • What are your clinic’s top service offerings?
  • Who are the team experts and what is their unique training and experience?
  • Does the practice have any unique equipment or facilities that can be used to serve special populations?
  • What types of patients and referral sources are a good match for these service offerings?

#4: Financial considerations.

Spend time with the intake and billing staff to learn more about who pays for therapy in your practice. Since payment is a major challenge/objection to therapy, it is key to know what the payment environment is for your potential customers!

  • What third-party payers does your practice work with?
  • Do you accept Medicare? Medicaid?
  • Are you in-network or out of network?
  • Does the practice have cash-based options for care?
  • Does the practice function with a direct access model?
  • What are typical patient questions/concerns about payment? Does the practice have specific ways of addressing these?

#5: Marketing history and results.

Take a look at the practice’s resources and prior activities.

  • How has the practice been marketed in the past?
  • What metrics does the practice track to determine which marketing activities are the most successful? (for example: number of referrals, social media engagement)
  • What collateral and materials are available for marketing? Do they accurately reflect the USP?
  • What social media platforms does your practice engage in? What are the activities and results?
  • What referral sources have been marketed to? How? What have been the results?

These top questions are areas for exploration that will provide a marketer with excellent practice knowledge and the ability to speak with both consumers and referral sources about your practice!

Lynn Steffes

Lynn Steffes, PT, DPT, is a private practice PT marketing consultant and developer of “On-Boarding Your Marketing Rock Star.” You can find her at every PPS Annual Meeting, APTA-CSM, and online at She can be reached at

*The author has a vested interest in the subject of this article.

Copyright © 2018, Private Practice Section of the American Physical Therapy Association. All Rights Reserved.

Are you a PPS Member?
Please sign in to access site.
Enter Site!