It's unfortunate, but some podiatrists still believe that marketing is deceptive, however, do they really believe this, or are they simply saying this because it's much easier than admitting other podiatrists in their area work smarter than they do. I believe the latter to be true, however, I also believe that everyone has the capability of working smarter if they choose to.
Marketing is nothing more than exchanging information. If you have a service, a product, or a particular skill, which can be of benefit to the public, how can it be deceptive to exchange this information? As long as you market your podiatry business and services professionally and honestly then you can never be accused of deceptive marketing.
Have you got a particular service, product or skill that no one else in your area provides? If so, let the public know about it. I've seen podiatrists invest in Silicon Coach to do in-depth running evaluations, and then do zero marketing to promote this service. Having a service and not promoting it, is the same as not having the service at all.
You don't have to spend large amounts of money to market your services either. For example, internal marketing is an inexpensive way to promote what you have to offer your patients...and once again; it is not deceptive to do this.
At my podiatry business, we have one wall in each consultation room wallpapered with all the common conditions we treat. Is this deceptive? Of course, it's not. Instead, it's just one of many simple Internal Marketing ideas we use to educate our patients, and it does prompt a lot of questions during their consultation.
You need to remember that your patients need to be educated about podiatry, and all the services you can provide. You can never assume they already know. I learnt this the hard way. I had a close friend take their daughter to their local GP for nail surgery because they thought my podiatry business only made orthotics.
Remember, marketing is simply exchanging information, which I obviously failed to do with my friend. Marketing is not deceptive.
Having said that, does deceptive marketing happen in our profession?
You bet it does. Informing the public that you're the podiatrists for a particular sporting team or organisation, when you're clearly not, is deceptive marketing. Saying your a specialist in a particular area of podiatry, without having specialist skills, is deceptive. Using the Podiatry Association Member's Logo and Accredited Podiatrist Logo, when you're no longer a member or accredited, is deceptive marketing.
This is why you should regularly review your marketing, and making sure it's up to date because you never want to be accused of being deceptive, however, it can happen by accident. For example, if your website has not been updated for some time, make sure your marketing information is correct, and if it's not correct, have it updated immediately.
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