In a recent blog post, I discussed the power of branding and how, for private practice rehab therapists, your brand deserves upfront, company-wide attention.
Your brand is a promise to patients and prospective patients, after all, and with this promise comes a set of expectations that drives not just your visual identity, but the entire patient experience.
Whether your clinic offers physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech-language pathology, or a mix of these rehab therapy services, your brand exists at the core of your business and drives nearly everything you do.
So, since we covered the basics in my previous post – what a brand is, where a brand lives, and what a brand does – it’s now time to discuss the process of building your brand.
Below, I’ve outlined a simple three-step process that can help you strengthen your existing brand or develop one from scratch.
Step 1: Define Your Brand
Remember, a brand is a promise. This promise communicates to your customers exactly what they should expect to experience when they’re in contact with your practice.
Start by defining yourself – your values, your vision, your culture – in a way that will help you to understand your promise and how it should be delivered.
Step 2: Identify Your Touchpoints
As discussed in my earlier post, your brand lives within those who experience it, not on a piece of stationary or within a brochure. So, it’s critical you identify all the ways in which your patients interact with your brand – your touchpoints – so that you can determine how you can best reflect your brand promise during each customer interaction.
These touchpoints may include phone contacts, reminder texts or emails, waiting-room ambiance, gym cleanliness, the way practitioners interact during evaluation and treatment sessions, marketing materials, website design, and so on.
Step 3: Develop a Brand Strategy
After defining your brand promise and identifying your touchpoints, you must now develop a cohesive strategy for communicating and representing your brand. This will encompass areas such as core brand messaging, phone etiquette, dress code, greetings, protocols for handling customer complaints, and more.
Don’t let the big brands fool you. Branding can actually be quite simple.
By understanding your brand promise, where your brand lives, and what your brand can do for your practice, developing a brand strategy that differentiates you from your competition can occur rather naturally.
Respect the importance of your brand, however. Its ability to create empires is as powerful as its ability to destroy some of the strongest companies around.
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