[Image courtesy of stockimages at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.]

[Image courtesy of stockimages at FreeDigitalPhotos.net.]

We talk all the time about target marketing. Even though the concept is not complicated, it can be challenging to apply in your practice. So, we asked marketing author and coach (and our president), Cherie Sohnen-Moe, for some help. We gave her the kind of question we are often asked by wellness practitioners: “My target market is office workers over 40, how can I get more of them in my practice?” Here are Cherie’s ideas, condensed in the following non-verbatim nutshell.

The Business Coach Tells You How

Something as broad as “office workers over 40” is tough as a target market. First, how do you go about focusing on a market like that? You need to be able to easily pinpoint the people in your target market group. A group like office workers over 40 is so broad that it’s difficult. To help you refine that market, look at them according to their needs. You’ve got issues like staying healthy, staying agile, and maintaining immunity as people age. When you speak to those concerns in your marketing, you attract people into your practice who want those things. Ask yourself what one “targeted” individual looks like. How would you describe them? What are they involved in? What do they do? Keep following that thread.

Look at subgroups of office workers, for instance people with headaches. That is a target much more easily defined. Who else services people with headaches? List other healthcare practitioners, such as dentists, and support groups for people with a specific condition, whether it’s headaches or something else. Then take action. Do a headache presentation in a corporate situation, for example. (Cherie spoke at brown bag lunches at the telephone company when she was ramping up her massage practice.) How can you find those companies? Join the Chamber of Commerce, and meet people. Look at company websites. Find out which ones have company newsletters. Will they publish your article on self-massage, and let you promote yourself at the same time? When you have a chance to give presentations, take brochures and other materials to help educate the audience.

5 Engaging Ways to Reach People with Headaches

(Hint: substitute any condition you focus on and it will work!)

  1. Join networking groups. Networking groups have a built-in mechanism for sharing your expertise with the other members.
  2. Establish yourself as an authority in the condition on your website. Highlight your specialty in headaches and post self-care information. Include that kind of information in emails to your mailing list.
  3. Focus on headaches in your marketing materials. At networking meetings, presentations, and community events, share brochures, flyers, business cards, self-care handouts, and newsletters that focus all on bodywork for headaches. Put these out in your office, clinic, or spa, too.
  4. Try radio advertising. Remember to keep it brief — less than 30 seconds is a good idea. Here’s an ad you can use or tweak.

    “You know those days when you’ve been sitting at the desk too long, or taking care of a sick child, and missing your exercise class? Pretty soon you have an aching jaw or a sore neck to match that nagging headache. Would you like to learn more about an experience that can help relieve headaches and get you back to feeling yourself? Call me, Deanna Sylvester, at ______, for more information.”

    (Hint: see if the station will trade gift certificates for advertising.)

  5. Send a letter to chiropractors, naturopaths, MD’s and other healthcare professionals. Target practitioners who also have headache patients. If you can make a personal connection with the practitioner (for example, you have met them or work with their patients), mention it in the first paragraph. Briefly detail how your work helps people with headaches.

You DON’T have to do all of these at once. Pick one. It may be all you need. If not, try the next.

Cherie’s final words: “Take the in-between steps. People want to go from A to Z, but you have to take one step after the next.”

For more, check out Cherie’s book, Business Mastery, and our e-book, Marketing Communications for Massage Therapists.


[Modified from blog articles originally published on the Natural Touch Marketing blog in 2011.]