Social Media

How to Build Your Personal Brand for your Direct Primary Care Practice

Building a Personal Brand can help you build your Direct Primary Care practice. By having a trusted personal brand, more people will be willing to sign up with your Direct Primary Care service.

But, many of you reading this are unfamiliar with how to build a personal brand. So, I wanted to show an excellent example of how to get this done.

Dr. Kendrick Johnson is a Direct Primary Care doctor with Ark Family Health and he recently made an excellent post on LinkedIn, which helps build his personal brand. The post is titled “Why this Doctor Had to Escape the Healthcare System.” During the video, he tells a personal story, shows real emotion, and even vulnerability. He becomes a relatable person and builds trust with his audience.

Video of Dr. Kendrick Johnson posted on LinkedIn - this is a great example of how you can build a strong personal brand that will help you attract new patients to your practice.

Video of Dr. Kendrick Johnson posted on LinkedIn - this is a great example of how you can build a strong personal brand that will help you attract new patients to your practice.

So, the first part of building a strong personal brand is building brand recognition. Brand recognition is exactly what it sounds like: the ability of a consumer to recognize one brand over other brands. In other words, it's the ability of consumers to identify your product by its attributes and design elements.

But, in this case, it’s you and your face, your body, your beliefs, and the stories you tell. And no, you do not need to have a perfect face, body, belief system, or stories, but you do have to share these elements (aka your personality) with your audience.

So, in the example above, Dr. Kendrick Johnson is introducing himself to his audience by telling a story about himself. He even tells a very touching and relatable story about his father.

Importantly, he Dr. Johnson uses a medium that many people use - LInkedIn, a very popular social media platform. This sort of professional discussion about the role of a physician in society plays really well on this medium. In fact, LinkedIn is probably the perfect medium for this video.

And, because Dr. Johnson delivers a strong message with a great medium, he has great results, and this is based on the engagement that this post has received - over 100 reactions and several comments with thousands of post views.

The third part of this formula is consistency. If Dr. Johnson can create unique, engaging, thoughtful content that demonstrates his trustworthiness and compassion on a regular basis, he’ll build a strong personal brand. If this is a one-off thing, Dr. Johnson’s efforts here won’t be as impactful.

Consistency is key. Consistently generating high-quality content helps you win on social media platforms.

Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more content and more informational blog posts and courses.

Sincerely

-Dr. Paul Thomas

One Daily Habit to help you Market Your Direct Primary Care Practice

If you want to market your direct primary care practice, the best thing to do is to document what you do on a daily basis with pictures and short videos. This is a daily habit that can be very powerful for the growth of your personal brand and your business brand.

This is really important because you build a relationship with your audience, and they get to know and trust you. By seeing you consistently speaking about our sharing about your business or yourself, your audience will slowly get to know who you are. They will create a clear and consistent image of who you are as a person and as a doctor, and what your business offers.

Also, this is absolutely free! It only takes a few minutes of your time to get a photo or a video of you in your office doing what you do on a daily basis. Have your assistant or a physician colleague in your office help you with this. Have them hold your camera or iPhone or smartphone between you and the light source (window) in your office and share what’s going on that day.

You will get so many offers from people trying to help you to market your practice. If you have a smart phone and 30 minutes each day, you can absolutely do this on your own. The more you practice, the better your content will become. The point being, people who offer to shoot a glitzy video for you will charge you $2,000 - $3,000 for the video. AND the end result will not be as powerful as consistently telling your story on your own terms.

If you shoot a video with your smartphone, you can upload the video file directly from your phone to your YouTube Channel in a matter of minutes. You can then copy that YouTube video link and paste it into a blog post (just as I’ve done here) and this creates a loop. If customers find your YouTube Channel, they also find your Blog, and if they find your Blog, they also find your YouTube channel.

Keep it short and simple - address one topic at a time! Do not overwhelm your audience with too much information. If you remove a toenail, share about that one thing. If you lowered the cost of medications, share about that one thing. If you try to do too much in this format, it will be distracting or disorienting for your audience.

Remember, you have the attention of your audience for about 7 seconds or so.

If you want to learn more about this, take our Sales Funnel course where I show you more tips and tricks to grow your audience and get more patients to enroll in your practice.

Thanks for watching and have a great day,

-Dr. Paul Thomas

How to Consult with Specialists as a Direct Primary Care Doctor

How to Consult with Specialists as a Direct Primary Care Doctor

This is a big one for folks taking the plunge into Direct Primary Care - how do you as a Direct Primary Care doctor consult with specialists? Because you’re not “in-network”, how do you get patients the care they need outside of your office?

There are a number of ways to go about this and I’ll tackle three of them in this blog below. This blog post was prompted by a community question:

Message: Dr. Thomas,
I am about to start a DPC clinic. I completed family medicine in 2005 and am tired of the headache and hurdles of traditional primary care. One of the biggest things holding me back is how to refer to specialist? In one of your videos--you mentioned using a specialist service(for difficult ekg reading, endocrinology..etc). What was the name of that service?
Also--how do you deal with preventive stuff---like colonoscopy? stress test--if needed?

Any help in this category is greatly appreciated.

I am glad you got away from the insurance companies. I own a medical and day spa and will incorporate the monthly fee to cover facial/massage on the months the members do not need medical care.

Thanks again,

Option #1: Use the time that you have

Because you’re a Direct Primary Care doctor, you now have more time to read up on diagnoses and more time to guide your patients through the care that they need. By leveraging the increased time that you have, you can take care of more problems in your office and therefore have to refer less often.

Option #2: Develop close relationships with specialists in your community

If you are able to develop close relationships with specialists in your community, especially the private and non-hospital-affiliated specialists in your town, you can discuss cash prices for your patients.

I try to keep in close contact with my physician colleagues, and that’s part of the reason why I attend Wayne State University School of Medicine alumni networking events. Many of the opportunities that you find to lower the cost of care for your patients will come from your network.

I try to keep in close contact with my physician colleagues, and that’s part of the reason why I attend Wayne State University School of Medicine alumni networking events. Many of the opportunities that you find to lower the cost of care for your patients will come from your network.

For example, by working with a local gastroenterologist in our region that owns a free-standing endoscopy suite, we were able to get cash prices for Esophagogastroduodenoscopies and Colonoscopies. They are roughly $1,000 each, which pays $400 for the facility, $300 for the Gastroenterologist to perform the procedure, and $300 for the Anesthesiologist.

Another example is Cardiology. We worked with a local cardiologist to get pricing on common tests that we need for our patients. Specifically, the Echocardiogram is $199, an Exercise Stress Test is $99, and a Holter Monitor is $99. These are very reasonable prices and they help us make better decisions for our patients.

Additionally, you can request visit prices/appointment prices from the specialists in your community.

Option #3: Leverage an online or e-Consult platform

As a Direct Primary Care doctor, you have the option to consult with specialists via online or e-Consult platforms. The platform that I, and many DPC doctors, use is Rubicon. Rubicon allows you to write up a consult and include PDF files or image files - EKGs, skin lesion photos, pathology reports, lab tests - and send this information to the consultant/medical specialist of your choice. The Rubicon platform has over 100 specialists and sub-specialists from Cardiology (Electrophysiology, Pediatric, Heart Failure, Lipid Disorder) to Endocrinology, Plastic Surgery, Transgender Health, and Women’s Health. The spectrum of consultants is quite broad here and the responses are very often thoughtful and helpful.

This is a great service and I enjoy using it, but be aware that you are liable for any decisions that you make for your patients based on using this service. Finally, if malpractice litigation was brought against you or Rubicon for an outcome related to using this service, you would be responsible for not only your only legal costs, but the legal costs related to Rubicon’s involvement. Caveat Emptor, read the Indemnification clause from Rubicon’s Contract:

14.      INDEMNIFICATION; LIMITATION OF LIABILITY:

14.1.    General Indemnity: RMD and CUSTOMER will each indemnify, defend and hold harmless the other and its officers, directors, employees, agents and Specialists from and against any and all direct third party claims, costs or expenses (including reasonable out-of-pocket attorneys’ fees), and payment of damages awarded by a court of competent jurisdiction in a non-appealable final judgment or agreed to in settlement (“Claims”), resulting from the gross negligence or willful misconduct of the indemnifying party; provided, that the indemnified party promptly notifies the indemnifying party of the Claim, gives the indemnifying party sole control over the defense and settlement of the Claim, and reasonably assists the indemnifying party in the defense of the Claim at the indemnifying party’s expense, provided such settlement provides for a full release of all Claims against the indemnifying party and its affiliates. For clarity, CUSTOMER’s indemnification obligation will include indemnification for the gross negligence or willful misconduct of all of the Users and Drafters.

Yeesh.

Thanks for reading, thank you for the question, and let me know what topic you’d like me to tackle next!

-Dr. Paul Thomas with StartUpDPC

How Personal Branding can help you grow your Direct Primary Care Practice

Intro

Tonight, I went live with the Direct Primary Care Alliance and talked about how personal branding can grow your Direct Primary Care practice. This is a huge topic, and I tried to tackle as much as possible in under an hour!

Currently, I’m working on my second course on this subject, Personal Branding for Direct Primary Care Doctors. If you haven’t seen our first course on Building a Sales Funnel, check it out here.

Why it’s important to Build a Personal Brand as a Direct Primary Care Physician.

2019 Dr. Paul Thomas on Building a Personal Brand to grow your Direct Primary Care Practice.png

Why is it important to build a personal brand as a Direct Primary Care Physician? Simply, building a personal brand is a great way to attract new patients to your practice. People/your potential customers spend a lot of time on Facebook. Instagram, and LinkedIn and these can be places where you can show your authentic self, where you can demonstrate your caring and compassion, where you can develop genuine relationships with people through social media.

Building a personal brand is all about communicating your character to your community or to your target audience. You can share about your successes and failures, your hopes and dreams, what you believe in, and why you decided to start a Direct Primary Care practice.

When you do these things, when you share about yourself in an honest and transparent way, your story and your character will start to resonate with people in your audience. They will identify with you and start to trust you for the person that you are, the caring, compassionate, and authentic physician in their community.

When you are a primary care doctor, you’re asking people to trust you with their most important resources: their health. By communicating your character, your ethos, and your values through these social media platforms, you can start to build that foundation of trust.