How do you define your target patient population?

(Robin Dickinson) #1

So one common marketing tip is to define your target and then find where they are already found. Plus that’s a great way of designing your office to meet the needs of your patients.

For example, if I wanted to see mostly older adults, I might befriend estate attorneys and travel agents and encourage them to send me referrals. And I wouldn’t have low sofas that are hard to get out of.

In my case, I enjoy seeing young families so I really worked to appeal to the midwives and lactation consultants in my community. The vast majority of my patients were either referred from their midwife or from a friend who sees me (who was referred by a midwife). This has helped me keep a large percentage of my patients pediatric (last I checked, 25% were 10 and under) and of course about as many are their parents.

This has of course influenced by office design (I have a play room). It also played a role in my pricing structure (I don’t do age tiers or I’d go broke, instead it’s full price for each of the first two patients from a household and discounted price for each additional, regardless of who sees me first).

I also prefer people who might be my friends or neighbors (more working and lower middle class) so my prices and general aesthetic appeal to more down to earth normal people. I am told I don’t look or act like a doctor so people are comfortable with me and send their friends who don’t like doctors. :wink: What this means on a practical level is that I can wear jeans to work whenever I want.

I also have a small but growing trans population. The privacy of DPC is well suited to people who are transitioning and feel awkward going to a doctor where they have to give personal information to multiple random staff members.

How do you define your target? Particular ages, occupations, geographic areas, etc? How does that change the way you set up your practice or market yourself?

(cjs56) #2

This sounds like a good practice. Plenty of peds.
One of my best friends from residency…who was always interested in HIV… has a concierge practice in TX.
But, he also has some transgender patients. it has helped his practice.
My perception from California patients is that transgender patients are always nervous about a physician who is not transgender or if they think the physician is not same gender loving.
Not to worry. Just be yourself.
I would not focus on this type of practice unless I was very interested in it…medically speaking.
Otherwise, you will be bored.
On the other hand, if you think this is a vulnerable population (which it is) and you would like to help, then make your web site or office a tad bit friendly with respect to that population. That is, a picture is worth a thousand words.
Your kindness, open mindedness, worldly and pragmatic approach will increase your patient load from all around the bases.

(cjs56) #3

1.Probably would have to go to an area that is affordable for housing IF looking for young families.
Unless, they are well off already.
2. If looking for well-off retirees, than look at Frisco, CO, some places in FL, the Hamptons. Need I say more?
3. If Middle America, then no worries. Because there are all ages.