If you’ve made the decision to have in-office dispensing of podiatric products you may now be wondering how to market these products to your patients. There are several ways to make these offerings known without going a “hard sell” route. This is known as passive marketing. Below are some possible options:
Physician recommendations—patients are not told to purchase a specific product. Instead, as a physician you can recommend that a patient use a “good moisturizer,” for example. When asked for suggestions, you can then discuss the products you dispense that you believe are the best.
Waiting room exposure—many practices will have a binder in the waiting area that contains high quality photos of the products available at the office as well information about the foot care products being offered. Reinforce the binder with a sign that says something along the lines of: “We carry several products such as pads, arch supports, skin moisturizers, ankle supports and healing products in our office as surveys have indicated that our patients appreciate the convenience of purchasing the products here.”
Display case—another way to showcase your products is by having a display case in the reception area with the actual products in it. These should be professionally arranged. The cases can sometimes be negotiated for free through one of the companies whose products you are carrying. If that is not an option you should be able to purchase a case relatively inexpensively.
Staff non-selling—if you go the route of having information about your products in the reception area, train your front office staff to answer questions about the products featured. Staff should not “push” products but merely be able to show what you offer and list the attributes of the product. By telling patients that similar products are available at the pharmacy but you carry these for their convenience you take away any perceived pressure to purchase.
At the Institute of Podiatric Excellence and Development (IPED) it’s easy to accrue information on a wide variety of topics such as in-office dispensing and other practice management concerns. That’s because at IPED our mission is to bring the experience of podiatric professionals from all stages of their careers together for the mutual benefit of all. We take a multi-dimensional approach to making this information accessible to our members, through the use of blogs, webinars, videos and face to face conferences. To learn more about the benefits of membership, contact our Executive Director Ruth Ann Donahue by calling: 978-296-7634.