Tell me your answer to this question, and I will predict (with a high degree of certainty) how quickly and effectively you attract and engage doctors:
Who are your ideal doctor prospects, and what do they want and need?
Every day I speak with financial advisors who want to get better results in the medical market. I observe that their answers correlate with their current level of success.
The Answer from the Struggling Financial Advisor
Some financial advisors say, “I can help any doctor with my proprietary system.” I ask, “How is that working for you?” The answer is almost always, “Not well.”
Imagine someone with a rare cancer. Would they seek treatment from a family doctor? No! They might travel to see a specialist who treats patients with this rare medical concern every day. We all know intuitively that experience matters! Doctors want to work with financial advisors who work with doctors like them every day.
Because I care about you, I’m going to say something that you might not want to hear. Doctors don’t care about your process; they care about whether they can trust you. Again, they want to know that you work with doctors just like them.
The Answer from the Thriving Financial Advisor
If the financial advisor says, “I help private practice physicians in their 50’s move up retirement by 5 to 10 years,” I know that they have already gotten great results. Now we can scale lead generation, tune up the digital sales funnels and cultivate a culture of introductions.
The specificity with which you describe your ideal doctor client– and your insights about conversations they’re already having in their minds–is like the pressure you apply to the gas pedal in your car. Increasing the specificity of your ideal clients, like getting a heavier driving foot, accelerates progress. You get to where you want to go faster.
It’s Time to Revisit Your Focus
Whether you’re new to the medical market, or you already work with doctors, I invite you to revisit the question of whom you want to serve.
Why? COVID was a game-changer for doctors. It impacted different groups of doctors differently. However, the illusion of complete job security was shattered for all. Physicians and dentists are exploring the “what if’s.”
The speed at which your referral-based practice grows is driven by:
- Your ability to deliver the right message to the right person at the right time
•The strength of the group members’ affiliation
•Your perceived value.
How Do You Find Your Focus?
Finding your focus can feel like a daunting task. How do you choose your ideal doctor clients? Which group best supports your own business model?
Here are three steps.
Step #1: Choose a category of doctor
When you hear the word “doctor”, you may picture the physician who cares for you and your family.
There are many different kinds of doctors. Each goes through a separate post-graduate program and addresses specific health concerns.
Here is a list of the categories of doctors, listed in order of mean income. While physicians top the list, all doctors have the potential to accumulate significant wealth with a sound business strategy and smart planning.
- Physicians ( MD or DO)
•Dentists and Orthodontists (DDS) •Podiatrists (DPM)
Other groups of health care professionals make excellent groups of clients
- Pharmacists (PharmD)
•Physician Assistants (PA’s)
•Nurse Practitioners (ARNP)
- Physical Therapist (PT)
Step #2: Choose a “Flavor”
When you order a deli sandwich, you may choose turkey or tuna or cheese. This is the main flavor of the sandwich.
Similarly, you can choose different flavors of focus. Here are the three most common flavors.
1. Target by medical specialty
Physicians and dentists naturally gather on the basis of medical specialty. We belong to many specialty associations and attend local, state and national meetings.
This makes targeting by medical specialty the easiest way to slice the doctor pie.
2. Target by a doctor’s ownership stake in the practice
Today about 80% of physicians are employees and 20% have an ownership state in their practice. Targeting on the basis of who signs the doctor’s paycheck is the most strategic for you. An employed physician with a hospital-sponsored retirement plan has different financial needs than physicians who own and run their own practices.
3. Target by career stage
Here are the financial stages of a doctor’s life.
Undergraduate degree (4 years of college–usually age 18 to 21)
Medical school (4 years –usually age 22 to 26)
Residency (3 to 5 years–usually age 27 to early 30’s) The doctor starting getting paid!
Optional fellowship training (1 to 3 years)
First “real job” usually (usually mid 30’s)
Mid-career ages 45 to 55
Later career 56-65
I got my undergraduate degree (4 years, SF Bay Area) went to medical school (4 years, Boston) and then surgical residency (5 years, Seattle). I practiced in Seattle. And I stay connected with people in all parts of my life.
Given your own practice focus, it might be most logical to target by career stage.
If you want to join the ranks of high performers, don’t try to be all things to all doctors; join the high-performing advisors who work with a
group of best-fit clients
Step #3: Ask key questions
Ideally the answer to all three of these questions is “Yes.”
Do members of this group share an experience? Do they have a similar challenges and similar sources of pain?
Can you reach this group of doctors? Do they belong to a specialty association? Read a specialty publication? Attend medical meetings?
Do you enjoy working with this group of doctors?
What’s the Right Focus for You?
There is no right way to focus. The only wrong way is trying to be all things to all doctors.
Would you like some help identifying the best-fit focus for you?
You’re invited to participate in my first live virtual Find Your Focus in the Medical Market Masterclass. Think of me as your tour guide walking you through my native land of medicine. I’ll share with you the hidden gems that are like the great restaurants only the natives know. Then you’ll learn step-by-step tactics for choosing and testing your niche.
I will deliver this course LIVE July 21st and 22nd, 2021 from 11 AM to Noon Central. You will also have the option of attending office hours July 23rd, 2021 at 11 AM Central. This is your chance to get 1:1 coaching from me. Click here to learn more.
Whether or not you enroll in the Masterclass, please take some time to strategically consider whom you want to serve and what problems you solve.