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Francine R. Gaillour, MD, MBA, FACPE Daring Doctors

Marketing Your Business? Look Like You Want to Succeed  

by Francine R. Gaillour, MD, MBA, FACPE

Are you in practice for yourself?  Or launching a business? Or adding specialized or integrative services to your current practice? 

What do you think is the number one thing business people (and that includes you) can do to successfully market your services?  

The number one thing you can do, according to Harry Beckwith, author of The Invisible Touch and Marketing the Invisible, is:  Look like you want to succeed.

What impression would you get if you went to your insurance agent's office and saw letters from the practice name missing from the building directory, or saw metal letters that were tarnished?  

Have you had the experience of being handed a tri-fold brochure that had obviously been printed on a low-end home printer? (Note: Printing your own brochures is OK by me, as long as you use good quality paper on an excellent quality printer and have a outstanding design layout).

How would you feel if you called your accountant and got his answering machine with a message that included barking dogs and a juvenile jingle? 

How much confidence would you have in a consultant who sent you an email without proper punctuation, or sent you a letter on blank paper without letterhead? 

Spend Little, Grow Little

All of these examples point to what I see is a common phenomenon with physicians as well:  reluctance to invest in marketing or "showcasing" their business. Or in developing their skills beyond a minimum required to maintain licensure.  

If you are serious about business, look it and act it.  Investing in good quality marketing materials, cards, office furniture (if you need an office), administrative help (or virtual administrator), consulting or coaching help---all of this signals that you believe in yourself.

If you don't believe in yourself enough to invest in "looking and acting" successful, no one else will believe in you.

I have seen several physicians who wanted to launch a side venture or consulting practice who approached their business in a casual manner, not attending to or investing in those things that tell people:  "I am in business, I take this seriously, I take you seriously as a client."  Unfortunately, their results reflected their effort.

Not Necessarily a Lexus, But Not a Beater

Looking and acting successful doesn't mean that you must buy a Rolex and Lexus.  And as a physician business professional you may think that having the Lexus (or if you're on the anti-material end of the spectrum, a Subaru) is statement in itself. "Looks" isn't just about what you "wear," it's about how you make people feel who are in your company or to whom you provide a service.

Look at yourself and your business as a total package. Look not just at your "special expertise."  Your patient or client is experiencing the whole enchilada of your business offering or practice---from the parking lot, to the receptionist, to the recording on the voicemail, to the brochures.  

Imagine you are a patient or client meeting you for the first time:  

Would your client or patient feel confident in you? 

Would your client or patient feel important?  

These are the reasons to invest what it takes to "look and act like you want to succeed."

 

Francine R. Gaillour, MD, MBA, FACPE is an executive coach and business consultant.  She is president of The Gaillour Group and director  of Creative Strategies in Physician Leadership.  Dr. Gaillour is a professional speaker on healthcare leadership, technology and cultural change.  

She can be reached at (206) 686-4205 or francine@physicianleadership.com

 

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Francine R. Gaillour, MD, MBA, FACPE
15600 NE 8th Street, Suite B1-173
Bellevue, WA  98008
(206) 686-4205
www.PhysicianLeadership.com 

Francine R. Gaillour, MD   2006 Ki Health, Inc.