Spending money on marketing your chiropractic practice without having a marketing plan is like getting on a plane at the airport and not having an idea of what your destination is. For starters, a marketing plan should contain:
· Objectives of your marketing plan
· How you plan to measure results
· Planned activities by media such as Internet, direct mail, yellow pages advertising, newspaper advertising
· Print ad placement schedule including size of ad, date ad is to run, publication ad is planned for, and overall cost
· Money, if any, devoted to pay per click advertising (PPC). PPC is advertising which appears in the search engine results such as in Google on the right hand side of the search page. With pay per click, you pay a certain dollar amount for each time a person clicks on your advertisement.
· Schedule of events that will be supported by marketing
· Press release schedule by topic and date
Following is an example table of contents for a written marketing plan:
I. Cover Letter
II. Objective of marketing plan outlining what you are planning to accomplish and what measurable results you plan on achieving
III. Competitive Analysis listing your competitors and their strengths and weaknesses
IV. SWOT analysis outlining your company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Examples of each are:
– Strength- lowest price in the marketplace
– Weakness- limited channels of distribution
– Opportunities- Indian market because we have a product that is in high demand there.
– Threats- A new low cost competitor is entering the market that has the ability to produce a product similar to ours at a retail price of thirty percent less.
V. Target Markets- This section would list each market, the size of the market, the geographic locations of the market, the demographics of the market, and other relevant information
VI. Planned Marketing Activities- This section cover such areas as:
1. What is the activity?
2. What is the deliverable or end result of the activity?
3. When will the activity begin and end
4. Who is responsibility for the activity?
5. How much time will be required to complete the activity?
6. Will outside resources be used? What entity is the resource?
From a budget perspective, the following types of costs should be recorded:
– Print advertisement preparation cost
– Broadcast media preparation costs
– Print ad placement cost
– Broadcast ad placement cost
– Search engine marketing firm monthly cost
– Web site maintenance cost
– Yellow page advertising cost
– Telemarketing costs, if relevant
– Article writing and syndication costs
– Video production and syndication costs
– Social media development and maintenance costs
– Staff costs such as in-house telemarketing
– Advertising agency costs other than media placement costs where the agency is paid by the media a percent of placement
A marketing plan is a necessary component of marketing a practice. If you haven’t developed a marketing plan for your practice, the time to develop the plan is now rather than waiting until the end of the year.