When a practice of orthopedic surgeons turned to Lexicon Medical to grow its business, they were surprised by what happened.
“They started getting referrals from physicians they had never heard of,” says Kristy Ryan, CEO of Lexicon Medical.
Ryan says before Austin-based Westlake Orthopaedics Spine & Sports signed on with her firm, the practice repeatedly received referrals from the same medical offices. Lexicon Medical, which markets practices across the state, changed that pattern when it began to consistently promote Westlake’s physicians to various specialties and practices.
“We’ve definitely seen an increase in our patient volume,” says Sherry Martin, administrator of Westlake Orthopaedics.
Six years after signing on with Lexicon Medical, the physicians at Westlake Orthopaedics are still clients.
“We’re in there routinely, so we know when staff in the office leave,” says Ryan, “then we’re right there meeting the new person.”
Calling the shots
Ryan, who is a President’s Club winner for sales achievements in the healthcare industry, says connecting with a practice’s staff is critical.
Kristy Ryan, CEO of Lexicon Medical
“If you’re only focused on marketing to doctors,” says Ryan, “you’re losing out on 70 percent of the referrals. Whoever is marketing to the office staff is going to capture the lion’s share of the market.”
Based on her business, Ryan believes physicians themselves make referrals less than 30 percent of the time. She says referral coordinators are normally the ones suggesting which doctor a patient should visit. That’s why her reps are trained to present information that these staff members need in order to make the referral process as easy as possible.
“If practice staff are only presented with brochures and don’t have the necessary information to make a referral, they are not likely to do it,” Ryan says. “We provide value when we come in: tools that a referral coordinator can use to make the process go smoothly.”
So why would a practice choose to outsource its marketing?
“There’s no learning curve with outsource marketing like there is with someone you might hire internally to market,” Ryan says. “Our reps are told which offices to market to and whom to target in each office. Then they are armed with questions to ask each office member and what message to share with each person in the office. They are trained to get past gatekeepers, gain market share for their clients and report their findings.”
Ryan, along with several seasoned staff members (nicknamed the “Dream Team”), carefully crafts a marketing strategy for each practice.
“We meet weekly to review the progress that our representatives have made and create road maps for them to follow on their next visits,” she says.
Ryan says her company manages all the marketing aspects for the practice, which allows the team to be creative.
“It’s so much fun when a new client gives us a wish list of offices from which to get referrals,” she says. “We come up with a plan of attack, and the clients get to see the results of marketing efforts. Even the most skeptical clients become believers and start getting excited about what we are going to do next. It’s very rewarding!”
You can reach Kristy Ryan at 1-855-MED-REPS or email her at email@example.com.