Regardless of your status as a network physician, a practitioner in a private practice or even one with a concierge practice, your ability to generate income is directly related to your ability to treat more of the right kind of patients. Increasing your ideal patient load may no longer rest exclusively on the activity of your referral network.
Individual Practitioner as a Brand
You’ve trained in your specialty. You’ve build expertise. Yours is the reputation earned through years of practice, study and delivering successful results. When it comes to increasing your revenue, how many others know about you?
In a business environment, referrals are a critical part of ongoing success. If you’re solely focused on the charitable referral, you (and your practice) are missing income opportunities.
While your classmates from medical school and other colleagues may send their cases to you, the vast majority of those cases will occur outside of your connections.
Unfortunately for those patients and their primary care providers, you may not even be in consideration – even though you’re the most qualified person to handle the case.
Here lies the importance and power of personal branding. You may be the rock star of your physician group. You could be the up and coming physician who’s still in the process of building your reputation. Either way, the best way for you to increase your income is to find a way to treat more of your ideal cases.
The greatest challenge, then, lies in your ability to ensure that more of those prospective patients and the referring physicians know about you. That’s the essence of personal branding.
Connect With Individuals
As an individual practitioner, consider efforts to develop yourself – and your expertise – into a brand. Leverage the tools and systems available to connect with individuals. Influence, to the extent that you can, their decision to actively seek you out.
William Arruda is an expert in the area of personal branding. He coaches professionals and others on ways to establish personal brands in the market place. Arruda includes a brief video on why video bios are important at williamarruda.com.
Consider starting a blog or a practice group web site. The advantage to you is that you now have a tool for ensuring a higher probability that you are in consideration for those ideal patients/cases. Use it to connect directly with the consumer market, or as a basis for generating more referral sources.
Technology provides a distinct advantage to those who leverage it. From the examination room to the surgical suite, technology has impacted the way you practice medicine. Why not incorporate yet another type of technology to impact the profitability of your practice?
– Jim Ray launched owns a consulting firm focusing on physicians, attorneys and other professionals.