What are your competitors NOT doing that families and schools really need?
8th August 2016
If you can answer this question then you are truly innovative. Entrepreneurs are always thinking about the problems people have and the ways they can solve them. The trick is to identify gaps in the market or even developing products and services that people don’t even know they need yet.
How can this apply to private practice? Have you carefully mapped the services that your competitors offer? Have you asked schools, families, pre-schools and childcare centres what they really want?
The following ideas are a hybrid collection of ideas and real programs. Please take the list and run wild with it.
Student screening programs
It’s time to develop the complete and remarkable care package. Pre-screening questionnaire (preferably electronic) for the teacher to complete, pre-screening letter templates for parents, fabulous student screening tools, preferably standardised, one-page template summaries, teacher feedback meetings, group program proposals, teacher in-service (face to face or skype) and parent feedback. We tend to screen pre-schoolers, but it is applicable to older children too. Imagine this entire package presented in a smart print and pixel brochure, ready to take to meetings or send to prospective schools. The brochure makes it a stand out. Top if off with a simple promotional video, only a couple of minutes and WOW; you have made a powerful memory. The addition of video takes it to a whole new level. I will leave you with the challenge – could you be so bold? I hope so!
Many of our clients are socially fragile and find it hard to visit new places and meet new people. Does your practice have a welcome video showing them the carpark, building, rooms, bathroom and toys? A positive visual orientation may support them nicely in the transition to working with you. Similarly, do you have individual staff welcome videos that families can play for their children? Would a quick phone or video call settle the nerves of a child about to start with their new therapists? Imagine.
Downloadable social stories
In the same vein as welcome videos, how could a downloadable social story about your business, team and facilities help new or returning clients. A great student project perhaps?
Keen to write a book but not sure where to start. Put off by the time and costs of self-publishing? Cut your teeth on an ebook. Spend some time unpacking all those book topic ideas. Get them out of your head and onto paper. Could you write a mini book, a few thousand words on school readiness, handwriting, the development of social skills, executive function, emotional intelligence or your favourite children’s books? The list goes on. Work on the content, insert the images and then hunt down the technology and services that convert it to an ebook. You will still need a designer to do the internal page layout and the cover but it will be money well spent. There are services that will help you with the entire project including loading your ebook onto global sales platforms. It’s ok to keep it simple and sell or gift it from your website.
These are the sorts of ideas that a business coach is really good at creating and building with you. Nice to have a sounding board, new ideas dropped in and some accountability to ensure you get things done.
What are your next innovative service delivery steps?
This article featured in the August Edition of Paeds Biz