Strategies to increase your supplement, topical and general product sales with no cost to low cost marketing tools
Boosting your supplement and product sales doesn’t have to cost you a fortune. With a little bit of elbow grease and some strategic effort, you can use no cost to low cost marketing tools to lay a marketing foundation that will enable you to grow at your own pace and take sales to a whole new level.
The first step with marketing your supplements or products is to have materials and content to educate the end user on the features and benefits. And the best place to initially get this information is from the manufacturer or supplier.
Contact your account representative or the company directly to ask them to provide any content (text, images, videos, downloads, etc.) that you can repurpose for your sales and marketing activities. Make sure to rebrand the materials with your name, logo and contact information.
Sometimes the content provided by the supplier is overwhelming. Try to simplify so consumers can quickly read and digest. If you need help with writing or design, find a freelancer to do this for you, as it will pay dividends in the future.
Informal, small focus groups
As with anything you do in advertising and marketing, it’s best to test out campaigns and strategies on a small scale to gather feedback. This will enable you to understand how your audience reacts to your messaging and approach so that you can make any necessary tweaks before you launch on a larger scale.
Look through your roster of patients to identify a list of 10 patients you think would be a good fit. Next time you see them, ask if they would be willing to provide feedback on your marketing campaigns. You can learn a lot from just having a conversation with a member of your target audience. Maybe reward them with something small for helping out. You could also ask if they would be willing to provide feedback via email from time to time.
Ask them clear and concise questions. Try not to confuse them with lengthy questions. Here are some ideas:
- What’s the first word that comes to mind when you look at this flyer (or whatever document you create)?
- Is the content easy to understand? (If not, investigate further.)
- Would you sign up to be on our email list? If not, why?
- Would you attend this event? If not, why?
You will undoubtedly uncover insights to re-strategize campaigns and create more powerful marketing materials.
A good way for patients to experience the benefits of certain products is firsthand. As one of your low cost marketing tools you can incorporate using various product treatments if it is a good fit for a patient’s specific situation.
For instance, maybe one of your products is magnesium oil or a pain relief cream. Ask the patient if they are OK with you using XYZ product during the treatment. If the answer is yes, it will provide an opportunity to talk more about the features and benefits.
Extend the conversation to introduce and share information about other products that maybe you can’t demo in person. You could also discount the products if they purchase that day. The goal would be to create a loyal customer who leads to repeat purchases.
You should also see if your supplier provides samples you can give away to patients. It never hurts to ask. They may give you some freebies or charge a small fee per sample. Either way, it may be worth the time and effort.
Such events can provide an opportunity to sell more products at one time and jump-start converting new, future and repeat customers. They can also be an excellent way to gather feedback to fine-tune your marketing strategies.
Start small (a group of 8-10), and once you have worked out all the kinks, aim for a larger group. Depending on the products you are selling, pick the most appropriate seminar theme. Maybe something general like “Healthy Routines for a Healthy Lifestyle.” Talk about nutrition, supplements, exercises and supporting products. Due to work schedules, planning this for an evening or weekend may be best for attendance.
Try running some free, fun, monthly giveaways as one of your low cost marketing tools. Each month pick a new product and randomly choose a winner from your email list and/or social media followers.
Send an email about the giveaway and share details about the product’s features and benefits. Maybe share a story about a patient who used the product and had success. Post the giveaway and product information on your social media accounts.
Be sure to make it clear when the giveaway ends each month, when you will be announcing the winner, and that there is no purchase necessary to participate.
You can also try a variation to get more eyeballs on your giveaway. Ask people to share your post and choose a random winner from the list of people who shared. The added benefit is that more people will see your practice name and lead to new patients. This is a good reason to make sure your social media and website are always filled with fresh and compelling content.
If you don’t already have an email list or you are not that active on social media, this may be just the motivation you need to start.
The checkout process is the perfect time to recommend products and have additional conversations with your patients about marketing activities like signing up for email lists, following you on social media, giveaways, specials and more.
In your practice’s patient management system, note recommended products and supplements for each patient. Have your staff review these notes before checkout to be fully prepared and confident for patient conversations. Track conversions and analyze how many conversations were had versus how many patients purchased. If conversions are low, try to figure out why.
Ask patients why they did not buy. It could be related to price, or they truly didn’t understand the product’s benefits. Tweak your approach until it is a success.
Low cost marketing tools: test and scale up
There are many ways to integrate supplement and product sales into your everyday interactions with patients. Get creative. Think outside the box. Never be afraid to try small marketing experiments, and if it works, light it on fire with more gasoline and scale up. Have fun and be patient. Marketing takes time.
JAY RESIO is CEO of SpineNation. A Pittsburgh-based marketing and technology entrepreneur, he founded SpineNation (digital health for back, neck and spine) due to his back pain journey. He had two degenerative discs, which led to herniating the same disc (L4-5) four times over five years and had five surgeries in six years, with two artificial disc replacements (L3-4, L4-5). Learn more at spinenation.com.