Special Event: Health Care for Kids
Jul 28, 2004, 11:08
Kid's Health Care Event
Once or twice each year, you can hold a special event in your office called "Kid's Day". This is a special day that draws attention to the effectiveness of chiropractic care, as well as its importance in the total health care of children. Its objective is to generate goodwill in the community and in your office, better educate your patients who have children on natural health care, and to definitely generate new patients. The following outline lists out some of the specific action steps which will help you to make your "Kid's Day" a success.
Objectives for Kid's Day
- The first objective for Kid's Day is to better educate parents on the importance of regular chiropractic checkups and the tremendous benefits of chiropractic care for children. This would include mostly your patients, but you should also get other parents in as referrals from your existing patients.
- We want to create goodwill with your patients, as well as members of your community who are not your patients. You can do this by providing complimentary services and add "extra value" in your current services on Kid's Day.
- We want to generate new patients from the parentís referring in their kids of all ages. This can be grandparents referring in teen-aged children, as well as middle aged children bringing in their younger children.
- Duration of Promotion. "Kid's Day" can also be promoted as "Kid's Week" or "Kid's Health Awareness Week", "Back to School Health Check-up Week", "Back Pack Safety Day", or any other term that seems appropriate for your community. Read through the following action steps, and then decide if you want to have your promotion cover one day or an entire week.
- Date of Pomotion. Kid's Day or Kid's Week is usually held in the Spring or Fall. In Spring, it is usually held in April or May, as spring sports and summer activities begin. Spring vacation is also a good time.
It can also be held as a "back to school" promotion. Some offices prefer to have their back to school promotion during the last week or two of vacation, in preparation for school, and some offices prefer to have it after school has begun. Usually, we have found that Kid's Day works best once the children are in school and back from their vacations. You can call your local school(s) and ask them when they are recessed for either a holiday or a school administrative day where the children will not be in school. If you can set up your Kid's Day in conjunction with a non-school day, this will make it easier for the parents to bring their children.
Saturdays are a great day to have a Kid's Day, with Saturday morning cartoons, etc. Thursday also works well, however be prepared for a very busy evening, as kids will be coming in after school if you have it once school has begun. You want to schedule your Kid's Day during a time when it will not be disruptive with the regular flow of patients.
- What is Being Offered. Make a list of all the things that you will be offering to your existing patients who have children, former patients who have children, to your existing patients who are children, and to your community who have children. These can be complimentary scoliosis checks, complimentary exams and x-rays, and a complimentary lecture for patients and their friends and family, and back pack posture checks. For existing kids, free adjustments, crayons and coloring books, prizes and contests, etc.
- Special Class Just for Parents. About two weeks prior to your Kid's Day, you can schedule a special lecture on "Natural Health Care Methods for Children". Schedule your existing patients to come to it and send out a mailer and flyer to your patient base promoting this special lecture. This is a very important function for the front desk. The FDCA needs to keep a list of who will be attending the lecture and schedule them, as well as friends and family of those patients that she is scheduling who will also be attending. For example:
"Mrs. Jones, may I schedule you for our special workshop on Natural Health Care Methods for Children next Thursday, at 6:30 p.m.?"
"Yes, Sally, I would love to go."
"Great, Mrs. Jones, I have you scheduled for our workshop. It starts at 6:30. Now, Mrs. Jones, do you know any other parents that might benefit from learning more about natural health care methods in raising their children?"
"Hmmmm, why, yes, Sally, I do! My next door neighbor, Mrs. Smith, is always taking her children to medical doctors and I think that she would like to know about other alternatives."
"That's great, Mrs. Jones. May I schedule her with you as well?"
"Yes, for the time being. I don't know yet, but I will talk to her about it."
"That's okay, Mrs. Jones. I will put her down as a tentative attendee, and tomorrow, when you come in, we can confirm it. Here is some information about the workshop and a pamphlet on health care methods for children that you can give to your neighbor."
"This is great, Sally. Thank you so much. I am sure that she will want to come. I will call her tonight and I will confirm it with you tomorrow when I come in for my next adjustment."
The workshop should cover topics that are of concern to parents, which might include: colic, earaches, scoliosis, diet and exercise, Attention Deficit Disorder, bedwetting, and any other problems that your patients may have expressed concern about.
- Extra Services to Children Who are Not Yet Patients. During Kid's Day/Week itself, all children who are not active patients may receive complimentary consultations, scoliosis examinations, ear examinations (optional), and x-rays (optional).
- Current patients who are children. All current patients who are children may receive one free adjustment or therapy, on Kid's Day or during Kid's Week.
- Other Offers for Children. On Kid's Day/Week, there should be special videos for children to watch, such as cartoons, movies, etc., that are popular and that they would enjoy. There can also be special gifts, such as erasers with your clinic's name on them, pencils, rulers, balloons, stickers, crayons, and even chiropractic coloring books. You may even want to throw in treats, such as a few pieces of candy, popcorn, a granola bar, etc. These can be put into little plastic bags with your clinic's name on them, and handed out. You can also make up and give them and their parents a special certificate offering them a free adjustment or examination on their birthday, as well as a special treat if they come in on their birthday appointment. This treat could be an inexpensive toy, as well as perhaps a birthday cupcake. Also, it would be nice if a costumed character from a popular kidís television program (Sesame Street, Power Ranger, etc.) was at your clinic during Kidís Day. Make sure that this is promoted in all advertisements, fliers and newsletters.
- Kid's Contest as an Additional Offer. You can hold a drawing or coloring contest/essay contest for children. You can divide this into two to three age groups, have them draw/write about something depicting "how chiropractic has helped you" or "how chiropractic helps people", etc. Then judge which one is the best, and give the winner in each age group a $50 treasury bond (cost to you is $25), a gift certificate to a local video store, record store, or Chuck E. Cheese, etc.
- Additional offer for parents. Besides the special lecture on "Natural Health Care Methods For Children", you can put together a special informational pack for parents regarding their child's health care. Also, any parent who has kids under chiropractic care, or any parent who brings their kids in during the Kid's Day/Week, you can give them a special gift just for them as parents. This could be anything from a book or booklet on health care for children, a humorous book or booklet about the travails of parenthood, or some other gift, such as flowers for the mothers.
Promoting Kid's Day or Week
There are many different ways to promote this special events, these include newsletters mailed to existing patients (active and inactive), posters put around the office, press releases put in your local newspapers, newspaper ads in local news-papers, public service announcements for the radios, radio advertisements, and most importantly, doctor and CA promotions in the office to existing patients and the scheduling of them for their attendance.
Literature for Patients. Collect information on chiropractic and health care for kids. Assemble a pack for each patient that includes pediatric information from magazines and journals that you want to have your patients read. Also in your newsletter and in handouts, collect one or two nice success stories from patients talking about how chiropractic has helped their children.
- Newsletter. Send the newsletter out so that it hits the patient's homes ten to fourteen days before Kid's Day and one to two weeks before your workshop on kid's health care for the parents. Include in the newsletter promotional announcements about Kid's Day or Week as well as the lecture. Also include some informational articles about kid's health care and maybe a recipe for kids to use, etc.
- Personalized letter. If your computer has the capability to do a mail merge, the doctor can also write a personalized letter to just those patients who are also parents.
- Posters. Posters can be placed around the reception room and the treatment rooms promoting the offers for Kid's Day or Week as well as the special lecture on kid's health care. It should be on brightly colored paper. They can also be placed on bulletin boards around town, such as grocery stores, libraries, YMCAís, pre-schools and day cares centers.
- Answering Machine. As an extra promotional action, you can change the message on your answering machine to something as follows:
(Recorded by a 10-11 year old girl)
"Hi, you have reached _______________ chiropractic office. Our office hours are _________________. If this is an emergency, please call ______________. Remember, Chiropractic is for Kids, Too!
You could ask a patient's child to record the message and this gets more people participating in the program.
- Office decorations. You can get some balloons and put them around the office and hand them out to the kids. Small helium tanks (portable) can be rented for a very nominal fee. Special toys can be brought in and placed around the office and Barney and Walt Disney videos can be playing on an extra TV set. If you are having a coloring contest, put up on the walls all the posters from the kids that have entered the contest so far.
- Patient Statements. You can also include the newsletter or letter-size poster promoting Kidís Day in the patient statements. And/or you may be able to have it printed right on your patient's statement by your computer. Make sure that the statement is sent out well ahead of Kid's Day.
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