Although you might be a great practitioner with a wealth of knowledge in your field, the most important from a business perspective is how it translates into a customer experience. If the customer doesn’t feel like the experience matches their expectations, it doesn’t matter how “appropriate” the session or how skilled the treatment, they will walk away with the feeling that the service is sub-par.

These are few questions we constantly ask ourselves and our customers when delivering our services (this is an ongoing journey that needs to be reviewed and iterated on a constant basis)

Why do they buy from you?

Just over a year ago, we conducted a major review of the customer journey, especially what they do before they buy from us. The outcome of that research was eye opening in understanding what is important for our clients and what is background noise.

First, one of the most consistent and important comments was the friendliness of the staff. On a regular basis, the clients report that the friendliness of the staff, both the reception staff when being greeted and when finishing their session was a major buying decision. The friendliness of the practitioners was also extremely important, with the combination of professionalism AND friendliness being a major factor in their experience of the service.

Clients want to feel like they are welcome and in an environment where they feel like they belong. When they walk through your door, they often feel vulnerable and a bit anxious. As a health service, they are about to tell you about something that worries them, causes them pain or something that requires someone else’s help to improve. The faster you can make them feel comfortable and reduce their anxiety about their vulnerability, the faster they will open up and embrace your service.

Secondly, the thoroughness of the examination process has also been mentioned as an important factor. When we conduct our Full Body Assessment process, our aim as a practitioner is to get a very good idea of the client’s main issues and to be able to prioritize their goals and elements of their treatment plan. However, from a client perspective, it usually means we have gone deeper into their issues than they have experience with other health services. To them, it means that we are taking their worries seriously and are doing the best we can to address them. It is not whether our process is better or worse than the testing process at another health service (the tests are standard orthopaedic/Musculo-skeletal tests), however, the implementation is designed to really get to the bottom of the client’s issue and make it clear to them what we can (and can’t) do to help them with their concerns. Most importantly, the client feels this and respect the process and it helps them achieve their desired goals.

What was also clear was what was NOT as important to the client. At no stage during the interviews did any of the clients say that the practitioner “being the most qualified” was their biggest buying decision factor. They just assumed that we were qualified and knew what we were doing. Their most important factor was how we applied our knowledge, not whether we possessed the greatest qualifications in our field.

What are the biggest factors that are the MOST important in your client’s buying decisions for your service?

How do you implement these?

There are small (and big things) that we do to implement these “buying decision” factors into our service so that the client really feels that we have them in mind with every aspect of the service.

Sending a detailed e-mail and phone call to the client before their session helps them understand what to expect and hopefully eases some of their anxiety. (A known process allows the mind to wander less than an unknown process). Greeting the client by name when they walk through the door (this is not a hard process because we have their name in our booking system before they came in) is another step in making them feel welcome as soon as they arrive.

All the other small aspects also make a massive difference in the experience. In our practice, we always have a small number of new magazines (my favourites are New Scientist, Who and New Idea). The cost to the clinic is minimal (under $22 per week), but the clients love the chance the read the latest magazines (they wouldn’t buy the magazines for home (it’s an expensive luxury), but at the clinic, they will come in early to read the magazines). A particular client will come in early every Tuesday especially to read the latest release of New Scientist (which comes out on Monday).

After the examination by the practitioner, we send a letter and summarized treatment plan that day (and ideally no later than the next day) after the initial session. This is to both give the client a summary of what we have gone through in the treatment room (there is often a large amount of information overload after the session) and to reduce the risk of “buyer’s regret, so that the client reduces their “anxiety” about buying from you and can answer the question in their head, “yes, I have made the correct decision buying from you”.

What are you doing in your clinic to implement the aspect of your service that address the factors that affect the client’s buying decisions?

How are you memorable to the client when they are not in your practice?

It is one thing to work on the customer experience when the customer is in front of you, but most of the time, they are not in front of you. How do you make their experience memorable then?

Although these are not all the things you can do, these are a small sample of the practices we do at our clinic to make this possible.

Our clients are looking to us to provide them good quality information on their health and fitness and what they can do to live a better life. In order to do this, we supply from our website, newsletters, social media posts regular articles that aim to address their questions and the latest research in regards to health and fitness. This aims to elevates our status from occasional service provider to trusted advisor on health and fitness. The amazing social proof of the effectiveness of this strategy is when the customers start discussing with us, the topics we have just written about in our posts and articles.

In addition, when we send out client reports, we attach fact sheets that are appropriate to the client’s conditions. This allows them to read in detail, at their own pace, the particulars of their specific issues and to get a more, in depth understanding to what we aim to achieve from their treatment plan.

Finally, after a recent suggestion from one of our clients, we wrote a series of 7 e-mails to go out to our clients when they start our program (The 7 steps to success). These e-mails that go out weekly give the clients a step-by-step guide of what they can do to get the most from their program. We deliberately spread the information over a 7-week period because otherwise the amount of information would be overwhelming. However, spread the e-mails over 7 weeks, allows it to be “bite size” and digestible.

What are you doing in your clinic to make your service rememberable when they are NOT at your clinic?

Join the discussion and have your say?

  • Comment below!
  • Call us on (03) 9857 0644 or (07) 3505 1494 (Paddington)
  • Email us at admin@mdhealth.com.au
  • Check out our other Health Business blog posts here

Our clinical staff would be happy to have chat if you have any questions.

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