Is your group practice struggling with getting the daytime slots of your clinicians filled? One of the biggest struggles group practice owners have when it comes to scheduling new client appointments is getting their clinicians clients scheduled before 2PM.
Here are a handful of strategic steps for increasing your clinicians’ daytime schedule.
- Attend local business networking events. If you have your marketing plan in place, you’re likely networking with local therapists and wellness providers. Marketing to local businesses (even those flower shops, clothing boutiques, gyms, etc.) isn’t only for having them refer clients to you. Their employees may need counseling at some point. Starting a dialogue about how you can help their employees as a local area therapy group practice is an often-missed discussion. Because the employees of these businesses are close, they’re likely able to pop in for a lunchtime session.
- Offer early morning hours. Did you know that you could offer to see them before they start work? I know, you knew this. But are you suggesting this to clients who work the 9-5? If they are adults asking for 5PM or later appointments, it’s likely that they work 9-5. If your therapists are full after 5, try asking next time if they can pop in for a session before they start work! So easy, but often receptionists will just say a clinician is only available during the day, without providing some ideas like therapy during lunch breaks or teletherapy.
- Reach out to stay-at-home parents. Not sure how to find them? Host free new parent workshop (one where babies are welcome), and watch them come! New parent Facebook groups are all over the place, and these are another great place to get the word out.
- Become a resource for home-schooled children. There are a plethora of home-school Facebook groups and meetups to market your group practice in. And remember, marketing to home-schooling groups and websites isn’t just for child therapists. Kids who are home-schooled often have a parent at home during the day, too! Adult therapists, you can find your ideal clients as well.
- Cater to shift workers. There are whole industries that require shift work or extended on/off shifts. If these are ideal clients for your therapists, are you networking and marketing in these businesses? A great way to reach more people at once is by offering a workshop or training at a workplace so their employees can get to know you.
- Cater to entrepreneurs and business owners. If you have clinicians who work with business owners and entrepreneurs, start marketing that! Your local chamber of commerce has all the local business owners right at their fingertips. Just be sure that you do that marketing and not your clinicians, as you don’t want them to end up in a dual relationship.
- Ask existing clients. Your clinicians’ current clients may be able to move to an earlier spot. I’m continuously surprised by how many current clients are willing to adjust when my clinicians are looking to move into more daytime scheduling!
- Only offer the daytime slots. This seems obvious. “That’s what I’m trying to do, Maureen!” Hear me out. There’s a difference between offering daytime slots to clients when you are full and offering these slots intentionally and confidently. Instead of feeling guilt and apologizing for your full schedule (or having your receptionist apologize for your clinicians), have a script that exudes confidence and excitement for getting that client in with that specific clinician. When it’s a great fit and your receptionist knows it, sharing that excitement, offering what they have left (if daytime is all that is left), and problem solving with them works a lot of the time!
- Use Google ads and Facebook ads. Finally, we get to digital ads. Find a good Ads person who can write good ad copy, and watch clients who have daytime availability start to trickle in. It’s all in the wording of the ads, but it works!
This list isn’t exhaustive, but it’s a great start to getting your gears moving and thinking about marketing your group practice in a different way.
How do you get clients to schedule during the day? Share in the comments below!* The content of this post is intended to serve as general advice and information. It is not to be taken as legal advice and may not account for all rules and regulations in every jurisdiction. For legal advice, please contact an attorney.