A little follow-up to the post on valuing a practice.

It’s surprisingly difficult to get CAM practitioners to consider buying patient or client files. To me, it’s a no-brainer.

In most of these cases, the alternative health practitioner in question is getting out of the business, at least in that geographic area. They’re moving, retiring, starting something new, whatever. (If they’re not getting out of the business in your area, then buying their files is maybe NOT such a good idea, but more on that another time.)

This situation offers you a number of great benefits – whether you’re just starting out, or are already established.

They’re already converts
Most people who come to see a naturopath or acupuncturist are already converts. They don’t need to be sold on the concept. Why spend your money marketing to the masses, when you can just find the ones who already dig what you do?

Instant growth
Absorbing someone else’s practice can turbo-boost your business almost overnight. Done properly, many of the active patients from the old practice will stay active in yours. You can literally go from zero to busy in a week or two.

Measurable Return
It can be challenging to measure your return on money spent on marketing efforts like advertising, networking, free speaking gigs and writing articles. Buying a practice lets you measure your return very accurately. You won’t have to wonder if you got your money’s worth. (And the odds are very good you will!).

Time Savings
Buying a practice gets you a big pile of patients with one business deal. Ongoing new-patient marketing consumes your time – there’s copy to write, ads to proof, prices to compare, etc. It’s a weekly time-sucker. It may be effective, but it can be labor-intensive to do.

If you factor in advertising costs, your time, expenses to marketing and ad professionals, print materials and the host of other costs associated with new-patient marketing, you may just find that buying a practice is actually not as expensive as you think.

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