Last Updated: May 1, 2019
There are many different types of ads that a chiropractic office can use for marketing. But, which ones work? Are offline ads better than online ads? What kind of ads should a chiropractor use? When it comes to both offline and online marketing, there are many things you can do as a chiropractor. I try my best to describe different types of chiropractic ads in this article. I hope it helps you and your office with chiropractic marketing.
Google Ads for Chiropractors
Using Google to advertise as a chiropractor is the best method for paid advertising on the internet. The top 3 ways to advertise on the internet are:
The biggest thing to look for in a Google Ads campaign is the return on investment. Google Ads will work in most cities. It all depends on the budget and how much an office is willing to spend. Think about it this way...An office spends $600 a month on Ads and they get 4 new patients. In this example, let's say a new patient is worth $500. They are making a total of $1400 off of Ads.
Now, Google is saying that there are more clicks available and they spend $1200 a month and get 8 new patients. A new patient is still worth $500, so they make $2800 off of Google Ads.
This is what is common for most Google Ads campaigns, the more you spend, the more clicks you receive, the more profit you make. Now, there is a lot more that goes into a campaign. For example, match types and negative keywords.
Match Types are the different ways you can set your targeted keywords at. This is what will determine how often your ads will show up. There are three different types, but for a chiropractic campaign I would recommend phrase match. If you have “chiropractor green bay” in phrase match as one of your keywords, your ad will show up anytime the words green bay and chiropractor are used. (in any order). This will catch all of the odd-ball searches there may be for chiropractic terms.
Another key thing about Google Ads for chiropractors is using Negative Keywords to optimize your campaign. These will be phrases that you don’t want your ads to show up for. An example for this would be a competing doctor in your city. Most likely, when a search is for a doctor name, the patient is looking for their own doctors site. It’s better to save money on those clicks and use it towards a patient who is more likely to convert.
There’s a lot more that goes into a Google Ads campaign, but I wanted to keep it brief here, so I can focus on other types of ads for chiropractors that work. If you'd like to learn more, check out the article my 2018 Chiropractic Google Ads Guide to Success article.
Chiropractic ads on Facebook can take on many forms. Unlike Google Adwords, which are intent based, Facebook Ads are shown to a broad audience. There are plenty of gurus out there that will typically charge you a hefty fee to overpromise and underdeliver on new patients for your office. If you are willing to take some time to set up your own ads you can see a much greater ROI since you aren’t paying over the top management fees to another company.
Community Expert Ads
I’ve seen the most successful ad campaigns develop by positioning yourself as a “community expert” in the field of health and wellness. These ads require a bit more time to develop results but are generally more sustainable over time. You’ll need to shoot high quality video with great sound and lighting. These videos can be pretty inexpensive and never burnout because the message changes each month.
Your first ad will usually run for two weeks. The topic of the video can be just about anything that offers advice that the viewer can do on their own, like “Things You Can Do To Overcome Headaches At Home”. There is no offer of services in this video because we are just letting Facebook compile a list of viewers to show your second video. Now you’ll have a qualified audience to show a testimonial type video.
If your first video was about headaches, your second video should be a patient testimonial about how you helped that was suffering from headaches. This second video will run for one week and only be shown to people who watched your first video. There is still no offer of services as you are still trying to further refine your list. This can also help peak their interest, making them more likely to watch your third and final video in the sequence.
Now we finally get to the offer. This ad will run in week four and be displayed only to those who watched BOTH of your first two videos. Since these leads are already qualified, you don’t need a big sales pitch. A subtle approach works quite well, actually. You can tell them that you have been able to help so many people find headache relief in your practice and you wish you were able to share that with more people in your community. Offering them a complimentary consultation will give them a chance to come in and meet you before making a big commitment. Remember, this isn’t a discount ad, so you don’t have to give everything away. This typically results in a much higher quality patient in the long run.
Discount Offer Ads
This type of ad can give off the impression that it’s working because it gets the phone to ring a lot. But over time, we have seen some issues appear with offering some sort of huge discount to entice someone to come into your office.
- Ad Burnout - Since your ads are being shown over and over to the same audience, they are typically ignored after a short time requiring you to constantly create new ads to keep them fresh.
- Used Car Salesman - No offense to anyone making a living selling cars, but let’s face it... there is a negative stigma attached to the profession. By offering some sort of “Amazing, Limited Time Offer” you position yourself to be seen in the same light.
- Race To The Bottom - If another chiropractor is also running ads in your area, you’ll be forced to offer something more attractive than they are. When they see this, they will turn around and lower their offer to the point it is no longer worth either of your time.
- Low Quality Leads - While there might be a lot of leads coming in, most offices don’t see many of these leads actually become paying patients. It ends up being a lot of work with little to no payout.
Dinner Talks have been around forever but Facebook advertising has given chiropractic offices a new opportunity to help increase their number of guests. Video ads can be the most cost effective option since there are other costs associated with an event like this. You’ll want to shoot a video of yourself, maybe even at the actual restaurant you’ll be hosting the talk at, talking about how you’d like them to join you for dinner so that you can talk to them about how you think you can help them with some of the symptoms they are experiencing. If you are able to make a connection in this short video invite people will be much more likely to RSVP. You can even have them invite a friend to come along to make them feel more comfortable.
Besides the ads you’ll want to make sure that you have a few key details worked out ahead of time. Someone will need to confirm each lead with a phone call and then you can send them a ticket to the dinner in the mail. You’ll also want to do a follow-up confirmation the night before. It’s always a good idea to get the restaurant involved as much as possible because any miscues on their part can lead to decreased results. Other than that, you’ll want to plan a great talk that encourages them to schedule an appointment before they leave the dinner. Having staff at the event with you will ensure that you can do this in an efficient manner and maintain a positive impression of your practice.
We have created a free guide for chiropractic Facebook Advertising. It has all of the information you need to create and set up your own Facebook Ads for free.
TV advertising for chiropractic is a difficult task. I can’t say that I know of a single chiropractor that has done well with television advertising for chiropractic alone, but in areas such as weight loss or functional medicine, I’ve seen impressive results.
If you are strictly a chiropractic office, and you are thinking about running 30 second TV ads, I would save your money. I know there are TV reps that will come in and tell you that it can’t fail, but I promise that it will fail. You may get a bit of branding out of doing 30 second ads, but it’s not long enough for people to take action.
In our practice we did longer TV spots for type 2 diabetes and Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. The 90 second and 120 spots that we did gave potential patients a chance to really hear what we had to offer. It also gave them enough time to pick up the phone and call us.
The key to this working seems to be that the commercials are shot in an interview style format. Something like one or two doctors being asked questions by a host. In this type of format we saw a great deal of success.
I don’t believe this vehicle would be very effective for general chiropractic, but if you are doing weight loss or functional medicine it can be a real game changer.
Every aggressive chiropractor I know has tried or considered billboards at some point for chiropractic marketing. It seems like it would be such a good way to reach large numbers of people, but does it really work?
A number of my close friends have used billboards. What I’ve heard from them is that they rarely pay for themselves. In general, they are best at creating better top of mind awareness. If everyday you can put your name in front of potential customers, they are certainly more likely to choose you when they are ready.
The caution for billboards is for newer or struggling practices. They are not a good way to generate a lot of new patients, and they can be very expensive. I’ve seen newer practices be put out of business by doing things like this. Billboards should only be put in place by practices that have extra money for branding, in my opinion.
As a marketer I want to see a measurable response. I want to know that when I spend money on something that I can see money coming back in from it. Billboards just don’t live up to the expectations that I have.
Radio Advertising for Chiropractors
From time to time I hear chiropractic offices doing radio advertising. In my opinion, general radio advertising is a waste of money. Most chiropractors do not have enough money to saturate the market with their radio message so their campaign falls short. 15 and 60 second radio spots are not long enough for people to be able to take action on. It may help to improve awareness of chiropractic in your area, but it’s not effective at generating immediate response.
Early in practice I had some experience with doing a radio talk show. We did a 45 minute show on one of the local stations about health. It went pretty well and certainly produced a trickle of patients each week. The problem is that you’re a prisoner to the radio station each weekend. Every Saturday at 8:00 am we were there doing the show. That got old pretty fast so we moved on to other avenues of marketing.
Chiropractic Print Ads
In our office we had a great deal of success with chiropractic print advertising. It was really the thing that exploded our practice in the first year. Year after year we were able to reach out to hundreds of people, and our office quickly became the most well known office in our city. The branding message we used caused my wife to become very recognizable in an area of over 200,000 people.
The reason most people fail with print advertising is because they listen to what the advertising reps tell them they should do. Remember that the advertising rep probably learned out of a textbook. Marketing is dynamic and you have to make adjustments on the fly to make an impact.
Print advertising is easy because you don’t have to go outside to do the work. You need to be a good writer, and you need to show your ads to a group of people. Whenever I created a new ad our staff would sit together and look at it. I wanted them to speak their mind about what they felt about the ad. I can’t tell you how many times their advice made a huge difference in the final product.
We also used to gather newspapers, and go through them together. The instructions were this… “when I turn the page I want you to instantly tell me what you look at first”. This process helped us to design some of our most successful ads.
Writing good ads is as simple as following an equation which goes like this:
- Have a great title but don’t make it overly crazy and turn your office into a sideshow act.
- There must be an interesting photo in the article, preferably something cute.
- The article must be written in ordinary language. I know you’re a doctor, but nobody wants to read that kind of language.
- The article must be about someone that has a problem that others can identify with.
- The article should talk about all the things they did to overcome the problem with no success.
- The article should then move into how they found out about chiropractic, and how they were skeptical at first.
- You can then tell the reader how amazed the patient was with the changes that happened.
- The article should explain some of the other things that chiropractic can help.
- The close is an offer to the reader to help them with the problems that they have.
That’s the typical flow of a great marketing article. If you follow these steps I know you will have success. The great thing is that stories that fit this model happen in your office every month. All you need to do is tell the story and you’ll have great success.
I hope this article helped you understand chiropractic ads better. If you have any questions, feel free to give us a call at (920) 857-1106. We are happy to help!
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