Word-of-Mouth Marketing Strategies

The art of word-of-mouth marketing has transcended time and technology, remaining a potent tool for business growth. There is immense value in positive patient experiences shared among friends, family, and communities. Check out how to effectively use word-of-mouth marketing to propel your physical therapy practice to new heights. It’s the low-hanging fruit you don’t want to miss out on. Of course, marketing can support this — and if you have questions there, we can help. 

If you have started a company or have an existing business with ambitions of growth, you need customers. That includes both new and existing customers and with ever-increasing distractions, it is an endless task to stay top of mind with your customers. Marketing is the tool that helps keep those customers coming, and, in my opinion, word-of-mouth is the king of them all.

Word-of-mouth marketing has been around for a long time, but it often comes in many forms. I grew my last business to $230 million and didn’t spend a dime on marketing for the first five years of growth. Understanding the various types of word-of-mouth marketing and how to tap into them will help you better utilize tools as well as help your customers help you grow.

The Original Word Of Mouth

Once upon a time, we were hunter-gatherers, and if we came across something life-threatening, then yelling at everyone else was a very effective way to market such dangers. Now, we do it at kids’ soccer games, barbecues or even standing in line at the post office. What we say to others matters. Whether it is bad or praise, it comes off as a personalized recommendation or point of caution.

We do it in almost every conversation we have. Discussions like where to eat, favorite park, favorite cheese—all of these are our preferences that we share with others. Sometimes we share it directly with someone we’re talking to, but oftentimes it is conversations that are overheard. The overheard conversations are where word-of-mouth marketing takes on a new ability to reach so many.

Digital Word Of Mouth

Social media has changed the way we talk to our friends, family, neighbors and the world. It has made the world a much smaller place. We can easily send direct messages, but instead, we share a video or picture, and the world is able to see it and thus listen in on our conversations.

This is what powers the social media marketing industry. These conversations that are open to the public are integrated with various advertising, and thus we trudge through the advertising to follow the conversations and updates.

In fact, it seems one of the most popular forms of social media marketing is “boosting” posts, so they are more often in our feed than otherwise. Of course, we can spot these advertisements, so we skip through them.

However, I believe the most powerful advertising we often don’t catch on to is when the shared post or video is a recommendation. My son and daughter now send me many videos via text message of their favorite videos that never cease to make me laugh. Those videos themselves often share a brand or idea, which is marketing.

Utilizing Word Of Mouth For Your Business

Getting your customers to talk about your business isn’t easy, but it can come from a number of methods. You could make the best product on the market, which is so superior that people want to just talk about it randomly to their friends. In my own experience, that is rare and would most likely require your product to be the elixir of life.

Short of immortality, you can also do something spectacular that makes your business stand out from the crowd. If you gave every customer a car or built a rocket to Mars, then I guarantee they won’t forget you. This, however, can be expensive and require a lot more effort than it’s worth. Shy of creating a publicity stunt, let’s look at options that might have some middle ground.

This means you still need to provide a great service or product paired with customer service as the baseline. This prevents customers from wanting to do or say anything negative, so your efforts will tend towards a positive trajectory. So the real work is around having something that is easily accessible for customers to then share with friends and family.

In the digital world, this is referred to as content and comes in many forms. It can be a video, picture, phrase or business name. If you produce it, then it gets expensive, and it’s difficult as it will be biased. Your “brand” will always be what you want it to be and not necessarily what it is to the various customers that want to share it. An example of this is an outdoor burger store that the business owner feels has the best burger in the world, but to most people, it is just average, and really why they go there is that they can bring their dog. Chances are, many of their friends also have dogs and would love to be customers knowing they can bring along their furry friend.

The uniqueness of word-of-mouth marketing is that it has to be authentic. Customers who like your business are happy to help spread the word if given the right incentives. A great way to incentivize local customers to help create and share content is by holding contests or giveaways that have prizes for the best ad created. You could also work with local micro-influencers who can create lots of content that can be shared both in their network and with others.

The benefits of both of these methods are that they create a variety of content from the customer’s point of view. Additionally, micro-creators who only have a handful of followers are looking for quick ways to make money, and they have followers who actually live within your business’s local area.

Many companies try to control their “brand” and, unfortunately, miss out on many opportunities to utilize customers’ word-of-mouth marketing. Instead, they spend a fortune advertising their biased view of their company. Allowing customers to create varying content from their perspective makes marketing simple, affordable and most importantly, effective. This is how word-of-mouth marketing can help in driving new customers and helping your business grow.

Transform your physical therapy with our efficient physical therapy marketing solutions. Elevate your reach, reputation, and impact with Perform Practice Solutions. Schedule an appointment today at (833) 764-0178 and visit our IG @performpracticesolutions

Reference: [https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesbusinesscouncil/2023/08/11/how-to-effectively-use-word-of-mouth-marketing-to-drive-sales/?sh=4b0793be1b6b]

Building Employee Experience

Providing an exceptional customer experience has become paramount in attracting and retaining clients. And it can have a profound impact on the success of physical therapy clinics. Explore the key factors that contribute to a positive customer experience below and learn how they can revolutionize your clinic’s reputation and growth.

Have more questions? We’ve run quite a few clinics ourselves — and consult on dozens and dozens more. We’ve seen a thing or two and would be pleased to chat with you about your challenges. Reach out! We are here. 

We’ve heard the adage that happy employees make happy customers, but new data reveals just how significant the impact of the employee experience is — and how to use it to unlock organizational growth.

Decades of business strategy have urged leaders to concentrate the bulk of their business efforts on the customer experience. A recent Columbia study found “that executives talk about customers 10 times more often [in earnings calls] than employees. And when they do, executives perceive customers to be analogous to opportunities and employees to risks.” And even when companies talk about a good employee-experience game, they still actually act on customer experience.

While prioritizing customers over employees can drive short-term revenue growth, it will cost companies in long-term employee retention and engagement. According to research by Salesforce colleagues and I conducted, a company could increase revenues by up to 50% by improving the employee experience.

I wanted to identify the key drivers of the employee experience in order to help executives improve it. For my forthcoming book, The Experience Mindset, my colleagues and I conducted a new study of thousands of employees and executives from around the world and across multiple industries. Using regression analysis, we pinpointed the five most important factors in creating a better employee experience:

1. Mutual trust

There are two kinds of trust: your employees’ trust in your organization and your organization’s trust in its employees.

Mutual trust results in employee empowerment. It demonstrates management’s confidence in its workforce, which fuels employees’ trust in leadership and each other. It also motivates employees, promotes creativity and collaboration, improves retention, and reduces risk aversion, all helping the bottom line. That empowerment and trust is evident at companies like Apple, where store employees needn’t request special approvals to solve many customer problems, and Ritz-Carlton, where workers can spend up to $2,000 to fix a guest issue without managerial approval.

Mutual trust also helps workers feel heard. According to McKinsey, that kind of inclusion leads to a 47% increased likelihood that employees will stay with a company and a 90% increased likelihood they’ll go out of their way to help each other.

When Clear Co, a Toronto-based financial lending firm, started experiencing hyper-growth, CEO Michele Romanow wanted to modernize its processes while maintaining its entrepreneurial culture. So she set up an email inbox with the colorful title, “The stupid sh*t we do!” and asked employees for ideas on streamlining the business and removing preventable frustrations.

According to Romanow, this simple exercise accomplished two goals. First, it gave employees a sense of ownership and involvement in improving their day-to-day lives and helping the company. Second, it created a feedback loop permitting leadership to build employee trust while surfacing and addressing issues before they metastasized.

2. C-suite accountability

Closely related to trust, C-suite accountability means ensuring company leadership is committed and responsive to both the business and its workers.

On one level, accountability is about a willingness to ask questions and actively listen to the answers. A leader can’t address employee needs they don’t know about. More broadly, it speaks to culture: An enterprise with strong C-suite accountability understands the importance of employee experience and prioritizes it.

There’s often a difference between companies’ talk and their actions. We found in our research that while 49% of C-suite executives believed their company excels at acting on employee feedback (honestly, a low number), only 31% of workers agreed. That gap can swallow growth, momentum, and talent.

Create a culture in which everyone understands that employee experience is a collective responsibility. Hilton, for example, established cross-functional teams that ensure a formal, structured way for the C-suite to keep tabs on employee experiences. As Chris Silcock, Hilton’s EVP and chief commercial officer, has observed, “How you treat your team members guides how they treat your customers.” Hilton has repeatedly been named one of Fortune’s “Best Companies to Work For.”

At your company, this could look like an experience advisory board to help break down traditional barriers and facilitate brainstorming and ideation; a center of excellence to deliver best practices where there are knowledge or skills gaps; employee resource groups to provide peer-to-peer counseling and boost career development; or “voice of the employee” surveys to solicit and gather employees’ needs, wants, and expectations.

3. Alignment of employee values and company vision

Employees want to align with their company’s values, but that makes the C-suite responsible for clearly enunciating them — and then making sure corporate actions are consistent with them.

Clear goals with well-defined milestones and success metrics connect employees to their company’s mission and help them understand their role in advancing it. We found in our research that ensuring employees feel valued and core to the company vision is a significant driver of reported increases in revenue. However, only 36% of employees reported feeling that way.

A company culture that supports an experience mindset understands the intrinsic connection between what it does internally for employees and how that translates into its customers’ experiences. Airbnb, for example, hired the first head of employee experience at a major U.S. corporation, in 2013. “Culture is simply a shared way of doing something with passion,” CEO Brian Chesky wrote then in a Medium post titled “Don’t F*^k Up the Culture.” “The stronger the culture, the less corporate process a company needs. When the culture is strong, you can trust everyone to do the right thing.”

Alignment is a major part of that culture, starting before employees even join Airbnb. The company conducts two separate “core values interviews” run by team members outside of the hiring function so they can assess cultural fit independent of the job opening’s specific needs.

4. Recognizing success.

As the activist and philanthropist Lynne Twist has observed, “What you appreciate appreciates.” Recognition can be a cost-effective way to boost employee engagement, which has positive spillover effects on loyalty, retention, and productivity. Workers who believe their success will be recognized are 2.7 times more likely to be highly engaged than peers who don’t, according to the employee engagement firm Quantum Workplace.

Praise is not the sum total of recognition, of course. It also involves identifying and nurturing potential, giving employees the skills needed to grow. Unilever, for example, created a leadership development program encompassing the entire organization. In leadership development workshops, employees create individually tailored “future fit plans,” each focused on a purpose that’s both important to the individual and in keeping with company goals. The result? Ninety-two percent of those who attended a workshop said that their jobs inspire them to go the extra mile, while only 33% of those who had not attended felt the same way.

5. Seamless technology to reduce employees’ day-to-day friction

Too often, executives throw technology at problems as a way to fix company performance, productivity, and costs but give too little thought to how it fits into the rest of the organization’s infrastructure, existing processes, and people’s workflows. As engineer and management consultant W. Edwards Deming put it almost 40 years ago, “Eighty-five percent of the reasons for failure are deficiencies in the systems and process rather than the employee. The role of management is to change the process rather than badgering individuals to do better.”

A common employee complaint is the sheer volume of applications they need to navigate between to do their work. Enterprises use an average of more than 1,000 different applications, only 29% of which are integrated (i.e., communicate with one another).

Technology is not an end in itself but a tool for increasing productivity and reducing effort. And yet our research shows that technology is one of the most poorly rated dimensions of employee experience: Fewer than one in three employees said their company’s technology works effectively, and fewer than one in four said they’re equipped with seamless technology. Even the C-suite gets this: Only 52% of executives said that their company provides employees with tech that works effectively.

Can you imagine asking your customers to toggle between multiple tabs just to place an order with you? Probably not — most companies work hard to reduce this kind of friction for customers. Yet that’s what we ask of our employees every day when the systems they use aren’t integrated. The result is reduced satisfaction and a terrible employee experience. We must ensure that both the customer experience and employee experience get equal resources. Saving customer time nets out little or no gain if you’re shifting that effort to your employees.

Revitalize the Employee Experience

Covid-19 and the Great Resignation inspired workers to reevaluate their priorities and empowered them to act. That has spurred companies to relearn what was once a given: that their most valuable resource is their people.

What began as a wakeup call for how leaders can save their companies from a talent exodus can also be an opportunity for growth and competitiveness — but only if they learn to balance their customers’ experiences with those of their workers by focusing on trust, C-suite accountability, alignment, recognition, and technology.

These five elements are intertwined. Each builds on the others to establish a stronger employee experience and unleash new value. Happy workers make happy customers, and managing the nexus between the two will make leaders and investors happy, too.

Take your physical therapy clinic to the next level by prioritizing the customer experience. We are dedicated to selling efficient physical therapy marketing solutions and helping clinic owners achieve their goals. Give us a call at (833) 764-0178 and visit our IG @performpracticesolutions

Reference: [https://hbr.org/2023/07/5-factors-that-make-for-a-great-employee-experience?ab=HP-latest-text-3]

Maximizing Online Presence

A strong online presence is vital for the success of any business, including physical therapy clinics. Here we highlight the importance of cultivating a robust digital footprint with some key insights on how to thrive in the digital landscape. Remember — we have a complete marketing arm that can either consult with you to share best practices and give you some pointers, or you can use our full services to ensure every facet is managed, with excellence. It’s really worth a call! 

In today’s digital age, it’s becoming increasingly common for individuals and businesses to conduct due diligence on each other before entering into a relationship or making a significant decision. Due diligence involves conducting research and analysis to gain a comprehensive understanding of the person or entity you’re dealing with. And with so much of our lives taking place online, it’s no surprise that a significant part of this research involves examining an individual or business’s online presence.

Your online presence encompasses all the digital footprints you leave behind, from your social media profiles to your website, online reviews and more. It can reveal a lot about your personal and professional life, your values and your behavior. With the increasing importance of online presence, it is vital for businesses to focus on digital PR to build trust, credibility and visibility.

How Online Presence Affects Due Diligence And How Digital PR Can Help

The primary purpose of due diligence is to identify potential risks and uncover any relevant information that may affect the decision-making process. This can include financial, legal, regulatory and reputational risks, among others. By conducting due diligence, organizations can make informed decisions based on accurate and reliable information.

Reputation Management

One of the key aspects of due diligence is to ensure that the business or individual has a good reputation. Online presence, including digital PR, can help to establish a positive reputation and build trust with potential investors, customers or partners by distributing unbiased stories on authoritative news and industry sites, which can help build social proof and authenticity. Conversely, negative information about a business or individual online can significantly impact due diligence, leading to distrust and potential investment or partnership withdrawal.

In my practice, there was a case where we integrated with a European-based payment system. They were genuinely interested in gathering information about our company. Subsequently, an article documenting my meeting with the President of Estonia, Alar Karis, provided valuable support in establishing a positive reputation.

Financial Viability

Financial institutions and investors often conduct due diligence on a business to assess its financial viability. A strong online presence, including a well-designed website, active social media profiles and positive media coverage, can indicate financial stability and a promising business. It can also make it easier for compliance teams from financial institutions to find out more about your business online. This is particularly important for small businesses that may be seeking funding or investment, for example.

A professionally designed and well-maintained website can indicate that a company is dedicated to investing in its online presence, which can suggest financial stability. Furthermore, the content featured on a website plays a crucial role in providing indicators of a business’s stability and growth.

Case studies can serve as valuable tools for assessing the financial viability of a business. By examining real-life examples of a company’s past projects or client engagements, case studies offer insights into its financial performance, success factors, and the impact of its services or products. Not every client I’ve worked with is willing to go public. However, if they are open to it, I always strive to formalize the outcomes of our collaboration in a case study. When you publicly showcase that you have successfully collaborated with large and medium-sized companies (which my company has done and seen success in), it further reinforces your credibility and trustworthiness.

While not directly financial in nature, online reviews and ratings can provide indications of customer satisfaction, which can have an impact on a business’s financial performance. For example, we display all the badges that we received from G2 and Trustpilot on our service pages.

To assess a company’s financial viability, it’s important to look beyond its website. News articles, press releases and industry reports can offer valuable insights into a company’s financial performance, funding rounds, partnerships and other critical financial details, all of which contribute to the overall picture.

This information plays a crucial role in helping potential investors develop a comprehensive understanding of the company’s financial standing. As an illustration, my company consistently publishes press releases highlighting notable achievements, including when we participated in the Native Advertising DAYS event and expanded into the Middle East.

Industry Standing

A business with a positive online presence can help you be seen as a thought leader and an authority in its industry. Digital PR campaigns can help to create a brand identity and position your brand positively in front of your target audience by showcasing your brand’s unique selling points, which can help increase brand loyalty.

Having an active social media presence means consistently engaging with your target audience, sharing valuable content and fostering positive coverage. For example, my company has successfully achieved this through webinars with industry experts, which are hosted on platforms like YouTube and LinkedIn. These webinars provide an opportunity to showcase thought leadership, engage with the audience and generate positive coverage.


Having a strong online presence can also help small businesses to open up new revenue streams. By making it easier for customers to find your business online, you can increase your customer base and ultimately drive sales. This can help to generate more revenue, which can be reinvested into your business to drive growth.

A well-crafted digital PR strategy that includes sponsored content and press releases can help organizations to increase their online presence and ultimately drive business success.

Elevate your PT clinic’s online presence with Perform Practice Solutions. We are dedicated to creating efficient physical therapy marketing solutions and helping clinic owners achieve their goals. Give us a call at (833) 764-0178 and visit our IG @performpracticesolutions.

Reference: [https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesbusinesscouncil/2023/06/12/online-presence-and-due-diligence-why-your-digital-footprint-matters/?sh=33efbdb8184f]

The Power of Embracing Imperfection

Running a PT clinic is a challenging task that requires a great deal of skill, dedication, and hard work. It is easy to fall into the trap of perfectionism, striving for flawlessness in every aspect of your business. While striving for excellence is admirable, it can also be a double-edged sword that can hold you back from reaching your full potential. 

“Perfectionism is a symptom of something,” Thomas Greenspon PhD, an expert on the topic and a recovering perfectionist himself, told me. “It’s not the disease.”

At its core, perfectionism is about anxiety — you’re afraid of failing or afraid that making a mistake means that there’s something wrong with you. “Perfectionism is more than pushing yourself to do your best to achieve a goal; it’s a reflection of an inner self mired in anxiety,” he adds.

According to Greenspon, the most highly successful people are actually less likely to be perfectionistic, because perfectionism can leave you overwhelmed by doubt and indecision and make it difficult to bring any task to a conclusion.

So what’s driving your perfectionism? Is it about proving your worth to others? Is it about avoiding feelings of shame or judgment? While you may think you’re trying to impress a boss who seems judgmental, oftentimes we’re proving ourselves to our parents — who may or may not still be present in our lives — or to an internalized critic we’ve learned to hear above all others.

Like a lot of anxiety, perfectionism can become a comfortable habit. If we’ve been leaning into it since childhood, maintaining the self-talk that powers our perfectionism feels like a superstition or an indispensable ritual. As entrepreneur and startup cofounder Sehreen Noor Ali says, “Our self-talk becomes like an old friend that maybe should’ve been ditched a while ago.”

Your perfectionism, your old friend, won’t go away overnight. Nor will exercises alone assuage it. So my goal here is to help get you on the road to recovery by suggesting new ways of thinking. Here are three to try:

1. Find the motivation

Like breaking any unhealthy habit, it helps to feel really motivated before you start to tackle your perfectionism. I find this question really helpful: What are you missing out on because you’re scared to be less than perfect?

For example, my fear of being shamed for public speaking held me back from applying for a TED talk. For years I’d made fun of TED to anyone who’d listen. I even wrote an article about how overrated TED talks are. But in truth, I desperately wanted to give one, because I knew they lend credibility to speakers and authors and help you get to the next level in a speaking career.

Voilà, there was my motivation. I also realized that if I was going to be a perfectionist, I’d never reach that level, so I applied to seven various TED and TEDx talks. I got rejected from all of them. It hurt but frankly, I wasn’t ashamed. It felt like a badge of honor; it became a punch line for me.

And then one day I got an email from the TED team asking me to do a talk. Turns out they had seen my submissions and enjoyed them, even though they passed on them at the time. If I hadn’t found the motivation to “ditch that old friend,” as Noor Ali put it, I would’ve missed my chance to land a coveted TED spot, which opened a lot of doors for me.

So what are you missing out on because you’re afraid to be less than perfect? Identify and name that experience, and you’ve found your motivation.

2. Isolate your inner critic

You wouldn’t be a perfectionist without the thoughts that keep you there. Many perfectionists have common barbs we like to fling at ourselves.

Here are some examples of the perfectionistic self-talk I’ve heard in heavy rotation:

• Mind-reading: “If I don’t give it 110 percent, my boss will find someone who does. They’ll just fire me”;  “My parents gave up a lot to send me to excellent schools and prepare me for a successful career, and I can’t let them down”

• Labeling: “The typo in my article wasn’t a careless error — it happened because I’m lazy and didn’t spend enough time proofreading”; “I can’t be mediocre; it’s not who I am”

• Avoidance: “I’m never going to be able to write a good book, so I’m not even going to try”

• Catastrophizing: “I don’t deserve what I have, and I’d better work harder if I want to keep it”

• Should statements: “If I don’t run at lunch today, I’m going to get out of shape … so I should go, even though my knee hurts”

What voice speaks those lines in your head? Is it a specific person? Is it you? Can you take a moment to notice the next time you automatically chime in with a justification for your actions? How do you feel when your inner critic takes over? What emotions precede it? What could help calm your anxiety in the moment?

Here’s one way to calm your negative self-talk, and you’ll love it because it involves a little self-criticism. I say this with love, but being stuck in our heads — ruminating and focusing on our flaws all the time — is very self-centered.

For this method, I have my former therapist Wilma to thank. One day when I was anxious and frazzled about bombing something, Wilma said, “Why do you have to be so special at everything? Whoever told you that?”

I looked at her and said, “I’ve always been special, since I was three years old.”

To which Wilma replied, “Well, who says?”

Who says, indeed? Where did I get the belief that I must be special and outstanding at everything?

Anxiety expert Alice Boyes notes that this narcissism is self-protective. “You end up believing, ‘The only way I’ve succeeded in life or the only way I’m being accepted and loved … is by being excellent, by overdoing everything,’” she explains.

But that’s another thought trap of perfectionism. The truth is that “not being the best at everything isn’t a threat to you. It isn’t a threat to you getting what you want out of life.”

Sometimes when I’m stressing about a looming failure on my horizon, I’ll just tell myself, “Why can’t you do bad work or have a bad day like everyone else?”

Reminding myself that I’m no more special than anyone else is not self-denigrating, and it isn’t a way to let myself off the hook. It’s an act of self-compassion and a way to gently but effectively expose and address the underlying narcissistic tendencies that power perfectionism.

3. Learn to set “enough” goals

Dare yourself to set “enough” goals and practice using only appropriate effort — rather than going all out and putting in extra effort. Appropriate effort is about doing something well but removing undue emotional investment in the outcome; it’s the opposite of our culture’s expectation to always go above and beyond and always do our very best.

Buddhism teacher Sally Kempton writes that appropriate effort is any effort that doesn’t involve struggle. For Kempton, the secret of acting with appropriate effort is to ask herself, “If this were the last act of my life, how would I want to do it?”

How can you bring appropriate effort into your life? Why not practice being a C+ student? I know that probably made some of you gasp, but just hear me out. Not every project demands your best work. What if you gave only 79 percent? What if your next report doesn’t have prose that rises to the level of greatness? The key is to acknowledge the outcome. Will what you do be good enough for your boss? Will what you achieve be good enough for you? The answer to both is, almost surely.

Think about some happy accidents. Was there ever a time when a meeting was canceled or a deadline was extended, and you magically struck upon an idea or a solution that you’d been striving for? When the mind is free, creativity tends to happen. Remember that the next time you’re inclined to overwork and imagine brain space literally opening up as you decide to stop for the night.

To try this, practice on something outside of work. You could use exercise as a stand-in for setting limits on work time. Science shows we need only a certain amount of cardio and strength training every week to achieve our goals. So if you normally exercise for an hour a day, cut it to forty minutes. See what happens. Is the process less stressful? Do you dread the gym less? Here’s a heads-up: if you’ve been conditioned to achieve, as most of us have, this will make you feel like a failure for a short while. But only for a short while.

You may just find that what you gain — more calm, easeful workdays, more unimpeded time and headspace — is worth what you’ll lose in so much anxious striving. And is that such a loss anyway? Of course not. Know that it’s OK to do some things less well in order to have the complete and healthy life you want.

Perform Practice Solutions helps you navigate the challenges that come with running a PT clinic. From selling your physical therapy practice to social media marketing, we are dedicated to helping clinic owners achieve their goals. Give us a call at (833) 764-0178 and visit our IG @performpracticesolutions.

Reference: [https://ideas.ted.com/3-ways-to-break-the-perfectionism-habit/]

The Importance of Engaging Your PT Staff

You know how important it is to create a positive experience for your patients. But did you know that engaging your employees can play a crucial role in this? According to a recent study by Harvard Business Review, engaged employees are more likely to create better customer experiences. Learn how by reading below. 

An organization’s employee experience (EX) has been connected in recent years to how it delivers its customer experience (CX). Given changing dynamics in the labor force and all the ways technology makes it possible for companies, employees, and customers to be connected, I believe it’s time for leaders to double down on the idea that EX is now the key driver of CX and to find smarter, strategic ways of connecting the two.

Consider the workforce challenges that currently vex most companies: the dearth of workers skilled for the new demands of business, high turnover rates and the associated costs of recruitment and training, and difficulties in engaging employees given hybrid and other new ways of working, people’s elevated expectations for authentic DEI, and broadscale shifts in workers’ values. Amid all this, companies struggle to ensure they have a knowledgeable, experienced, and motivated workforce – one that is equipped to deliver a good customer experience.

And EX has grown in importance to customers. As more customers look to align their purchase decisions with their values, they have become increasingly interested in how companies engage with employees and tend to prioritize doing business with those that value their employees, treat them fairly, and prioritize their well-being. And employees are interacting with more customers more directly – and because of that the nature of employee engagement has more impact on customers.

According to PwC, companies that invest in and deliver superior experiences to both consumers and employees are able to charge a premium of as much as 16% for their products and services. And MIT researchers found that companies in the top quartile of EX developed more successful innovations, deriving twice the amount of revenues from their innovations as did those in the bottom quartile — and their industry-adjusted Net Promoter Scores (NPS) were twice as high.

EX is defined as the sum of everything an employee undergoes throughout his or her connection to an organization, from the first contact as a potential hire to last touchpoints after the end of employment. It requires a holistic, focused, and purposeful approach, but most companies design and manage EX as a set of discrete elements of employment, e.g., flexible work arrangements, rewards and recognition programs, or wellness initiatives. That mode of thinking is outdated. Today’s EX is created through the overall company culture, and all the in-between moments, including the ways managers engage employees on a daily basis.

Creating a Compelling Customer Experience

With all its moving parts, the customer experience requires the consistent, cohesive engagement throughout the organization that EX excellence can foster. To tap the power of EX to create compelling CX, business leaders must align the two, directly connect employees and customers, and use tools and processes to identify and report on the impact each has on the other.

Identify the parallels between the employee and customer experience.

So how do leaders design EX to better align with CX? First, identify where the biggest gaps exist. A company cannot expect to deliver a tech-enabled, seamless, and intuitive CX, for example, if everything it does with employees is on paper, slow, and bureaucratic. And it’s unlikely that employees will deliver highly empathetic, caring, and personal service if their employer doesn’t cultivate an organizational culture that embraces those values.

But when employees understand that their experience is aligned with the desired CX, they intuitively start contributing to it through their own actions and decisions. For an example, consider the fun and freedom that empowers Southwest Airlines employees to make its CX so enjoyable.

Second, to improve CX through EX, companies should find creative ways to directly connect employees and customers regardless of whether “customer service” is in their job description. Adobe, for example, uses listening stations where employees can go either virtually online or physically in an Adobe office location to hear from customers directly and learn about their successes and challenges.

By shortening the distance between employees and customers, managers enable employees to cultivate the customer understanding and empathy needed to identify and make CX improvements. It also increases employees’ sense of purpose and agency because they see the impact they make, which also leads to better customer experiences and could also positively impact employee retention to boot.

A third way to leverage EX in CX efforts is to integrate customer and employee journey maps to identify and diagnose customer problems. Some CX problems result from gaps or inconsistencies in employee skills and knowledge – or ineffective policies and outdated systems that negatively impact employees’ attitudes and their ability to do great work.

A map that correlates and calibrates the journeys of customers with the journeys of employees helps identify employee pain points that negatively impact the customer as well. Insights into what employees are experiencing provides a unique perspective on customer processes and systems that can’t be derived from customer data alone.

For example, when Best Buy mapped its employee journey, it discovered that employees were having trouble adopting a new point of sale (POS) system it had rolled out.  And at the same time, the company knew customers were complaining about long waits at checkout — and could have written it off as a standard customer service issue. Instead, Best Buy used employee research and an experience design approach to improve the system and to bring in new technology that reduced POS training and transaction time.  At the time these changes were rolled out, they reduced frustration for employees, which improved employee retention, while improving CX.

Have a single view of performance across both dimensions.

Finally, providing visibility into CX and EX performance together further advances CX efforts. Companies can provide a complete view of the interlinked employee and customer experience by integrating KPIs from both areas into a single view with a dynamic report instead of using separate datasets and dashboards.

With simplified, integrated reporting, managers can better diagnose and track issues.  Healthcare facilities services provider Medxcel uses a composite site-level metric to assess how each of its sites is doing on customer relationship health, customer transactional performance, and employee engagement.

Also, when employee performance is reported relative to customer metrics, employees tend to become more engaged with the organization and adopt a stronger orientation to business results.  When O2, the telecommunications business that is part of Madrid-based Telefónica, wanted to transform from a mobile service provider to a digital telecommunications brand, it published an employee dashboard that summarized customer results from activities related to the initiative and reported the results in weekly leadership team presentations. This prompted employees to feel more ownership for the transformation and to want to develop innovations that advanced the company’s new identity.

When you have better employee understanding of the desired CX and their impact on it, you can also inspire greater commitment to the organization and its goals. Even more evidence that it makes sense to prioritize EX in CX efforts — especially now.

Ready to take your PT to the next level? Perform Practice Solutions helps you reach your goals and save money. Connect with us today to learn more about how our physical therapy marketing solutions can help you drive success for your business. Give us a call at (833) 764-0178 and visit our IG @performpracticesolutions.

Reference: [https://hbr.org/2023/04/engaged-employees-create-better-customer-experiences?ab=hero-subleft-1]

10 Ways to Scale Your Business

Every entrepreneur dreams of scaling their practice to new heights. However, simply growing your clinic or practice is not enough to achieve sustained success. To truly make an impact, you need to approach growth strategically. Check out these ten successful tips for scaling in a sustainable and effective way. From building a strong team to utilizing technology, these strategies will help you take your business to the next level. 

Are you looking to grow your business or scale it? In order to highlight the difference, an article by Harvard Business Review highlights the main difference: “Growth means adding revenue at the same pace you are adding resources; scaling means adding revenue at a much greater rate than cost.”

These days, it’s not easy to be an entrepreneur. So if you don’t want to become a statistic, ensure that you tap into these 10 ways to scale your business:

1. Create and follow a plan.

If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. The most successful businesses have a vision for growth and then reverse engineer the steps required to achieve each goal as part of their planning process. And then—most importantly—they follow their plan.

All too often, companies set goals at the beginning of the year, getting people excited and pumped up. But by March, hardly anyone is following a cohesive plan. Building various lengths of objectives will help keep you focused and aligned.

My company follows the entrepreneurial operating (EOS) system, where everything is broken down into “rocks,” which are the most important things we need to accomplish in the next 90 days. We also have a one-year plan, a three-year vision and our 10-year target; this last one being our North Star for our company and our employees.

It’s important to note that when creating your plan, you don’t aim so high that you can’t meet your targets, nor do you want to make things too easy that you don’t challenge yourself.

As you evaluate your methods to achieve your goals, if you find yourself saying: “it’s the way we’ve always done it,” this is a clear sign you need to revisit that process and innovate your plan.

2. Maintain focus.

As an entrepreneur, it’s easy to get distracted by shiny object syndrome or be tempted to offer many products and services. Instead, have a core focus and niche so you stay in your lane and deliver what’s promised to customers.

Determine what your key revenue drivers are and double down on those. And if you’re interested in launching a new product or service, test the market first to see if people want it and will actually pay for it. Too many companies spend money on R&D and marketing a new product or service only to find out it’s a failure because no one wants it; don’t let that happen to you.

3. Document your processes.

It’s tough to scale without established, documented organizational processes. To ensure everyone is working off the same page, develop KPIs and SOPs that break down the steps and strategies you follow as an organization and within your teams. Once documented, they are easily accessible by new hires or team members, reducing ramp-up time and training.

4. Have proper lead gen and marketing plans in place.

Without a healthy and growing pipeline, you won’t be able to scale. Inbound and outbound marketing is a must for brand awareness and new business growth. Work closely with your clients and use them as raving fans to attract more business. Asking them why they value your product so much and sharing this feedback is the perfect way to bring in new clients.

5. Be a squirrel when it comes to funds.

Yes, you’ll need to spend and invest in the business, but be intentional when you do and learn to save where you can. Do not buy things you don’t need that won’t directly correlate to a proven ROI for your business.

For example, you can be the CEO but don’t have to take a CEO salary; you should be the last person who gets paid and will often be the lowest-paid employee on your team at first.

In addition, don’t plan too far out or count on money you haven’t closed yet. Always work within the current operating income so you don’t overextend yourself. Finally, track your burn rate consistently so you know how much runway you have with your reserves.

6. Partner with financial professionals.

Managing our business’s finances is crucial to your ability to scale, so ensure you have a solid bookkeeper and CPA to lean on for counsel.

7. Invest in yourself.

Becoming a better leader and businessperson takes work, so don’t be afraid to invest in a coach. Do your homework and be clear about how and in which areas that coach can help. Also, consider joining a community like Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO) or Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO), which can connect you with other entrepreneurs with similar scaling goals.

8. Strategically hire FTEs.

If you need to have FTEs, hire people who may cost more money but bring the skills to perform and immediately put speed on your side.

Most small businesses trying to scale make the mistake of trying to hire, train and onboard entry-level employees to save a few bucks, but they often end up spending more overall in the time it takes to achieve the same results with a more experienced hire.

Also, ensure all teammates have a number or metric you can measure them by. This way, their role is very clear and they know what success looks like.

9. Outsource when you can.

Not every position needs to be an employee. Consider hiring fractional CFOs, COOs or contract workers for positions or jobs that don’t have full-time work—or when client contracts may be short-term. This ensures you get an experienced professional aligned with your capacity.

10. Learn to delegate.

It’s tough to create and execute your vision if you’re in the weeds of your business. Learn to delegate so you can work on the business instead of in the business. Trusting the professionals you’ve hired to do their jobs will free up your time to focus on your number one goal: scaling your business.

Following these 10 principles can help you move from growing to scaling your business and avoid being a casualty of a challenging entrepreneurial climate.

Perform Practice Solutions helps you understand your customer’s needs, reach your goals, optimize your time, and save money. With our innovative coaching platform, transparent billing platforms, and marketing services, we provide frustrated and hard-working PT, OT, and Chiropractic owners with an alternative way forward. Visit our Facebook page or give us a call at (833) 764-0178.

Reference: [https://www.forbes.com/sites/theyec/2023/03/01/the-top-10-ways-to-strategically-scale-not-just-grow-your-business/?sh=32f3dc84f9e4]

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Perform Practice Solutions helps clinic owners nationwide adjust to the changing and challenging reality of practice ownership. With its innovative coaching platform, transparent billing platforms, and marketing services, Perform Practice Solutions provides frustrated and hard-working owners with an alternative way forward. It's not easy, but it is possible.