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About Philippa Kennealy

 

Philippa Kennealy MD MPH CPCC PCC is The Entrepreneurial MD Business Coach who wants to help you build your business!
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Recommended Books and Programs
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Friday
Sep262014

Tackle marketing your physician practice or business like a pro

Once in a while, a really useful book drops into my lap, courtesy of kind publicists and generous publishing companies, and "The One Week Marketing Plan" by Mark Satterfield (A) is one such book.

Probably the most daunting task a small business faces - be it a medical practice or an entrepreneurial start-up - is how to market oneself effectively (get results!) and efficiently (not be hugely time-consuming or demand large budgets).

The idea of marketing seems to bring on an attack of fear and dread in most of us, and as a result, we tend to proceed in a scattershot and highly unsystematic fashion, much like throwing a bowl of spaghetti at the wall and seeing what sticks.

Satterfield thinks this is a foolish and unproductive approach (I agree) but instead of being critical, he gently takes us by the hand and walks us through a planning process, that, if done diligently, can be accomplished in ONE BUSINESS WEEK!

In his book, he has laid out a clear and rather detailed strategy for each of five days, and each day's chapter ends with "Your Task for the Day" so you are clear as to what you must accomplish:

Day 1: Choosing the niche that you are best equipped to serve or that best matches your interests - it takes courage to narrow your focus, but this is essential for crafting a message that those special people will sit up and listen to.

Day 2: Create your free offer - give away something that your niche person (your "target market") will value. This may be a report, a white paper, a "This is what you need to know about your health" video, a mini-course, a mini-consultation... you decide. 

Day 3: Create a website to put that free offer out into cyberspace. Once you have your freebie ready, the trick is to be sure that you can capture a way to communicate in the future with that person who is taking you up on your offer. Satterfield describes how to do this.

Day 4: Send out regular messages about your free offer and your services or products. This is so-called "drip marketing" and he evens writes your 7-email sequence for you!

Day 5: Take steps to generate traffic to your website to expose large numbers of your target market to your offer and your marketing messages. This is a meaty chapter that is well-explained (and also well-covered in another favorite book "The New Rules of Marketing & PR: How to Use Social Media, Online Video, Mobile Applications, Blogs, News Releases, and Viral Marketing to Reach Buyers Directly" (A) by David Meerman Scott, that would be great companion to Satterfield's book)

There you have it - a basic 5-day marketing stratgey. Of course, the average working physician isn't likely to pull this all off in 5 days - unless you take a vacation week and dedicate it to these activities, as laid out for you.

But wait - we are not done - there is a second half of the book that ups the ante ...

Boosts to your marketing: these include chapters on social media marketing, starting a blog, video marketing, publicity, direct mail (again with your letter content laid out) and the king of all activities if you can pull them off, joint ventures. 

There are numerous resources offered throughout the book which adds great value - I assume they are tried and tested by the author himself.

Whether you are a new entrepreneurial physician business or practice on the block, with lots of capacity to fill, or an established one requiring a polish of your rusty marketing plan, this is the book that will provide that much-needed "kick in the pants"!

Monday
Sep222014

Physician entrepreneur minds the ankles by inventing a shoe

Dr. Barry Katz is a radiologist with ankles on the mind. And an entrepreneurial physician to boot (read on ... the pun will become obvious!) Having suffered ankle sprains when playing basketball as a younger man and noting the same problem in his son, he was bugged by the idea that there was no good way to prevent them ... at least, until now.

Teaming up with his orthopedic and podiatrist colleagues, and scouring the medical literature, internet and other places for insights as to the cause of these ankle injuries, he invented a shoe to prevent the sprains from occurring. Ektio Shoes was born.

And, to assure a good working knowledge about the business of creating and selling a specialty product ... after all, he nothing about shoes! ... he endured the grueling experience of retruning to school for his MBA. Which, in his estimation, has paid huge dividends.

Listen to Dr Katz tell his inspiring story, and then share your thoughts here below.

Tuesday
Mar182014

Physician leaves medicine to found own software business

As a neurology resident, Scott Zimmerman MD became aware that medical practice, beyond the rarefied atmosphere of training, was unlikely to fulfill the needs of his creative spirit.

With this foresight, he began to teach himself coding, scouring as many resources as he could find, between call days and patient care hours.

Zimmerman had spent his undergraduate years at Columbia University, cultivating an interest in economic development, poverty alleviation, and harnessing scalable instruments (namely software and tax policy) to address social ills.

Driven by these passions, his first software applications found their focus.

His gradual realization that medicine was unlikely to offer him the professional fulfillment he sought resulted in a move full-time to software and then the development of his own business -- Xola.com, an integrated booking, marketing, and distribution software used at this time primarily by the travel industry. 

This is a longer interview than usual (about 33 minutes) and I apologize for not sounding smooth (I had had oral work that day), but please enjoy my interview with Dr Zimmerman here -- it was a fascinating, wide-ranging and very insightful conversation and he offers great advice to those of you seeking to divert your futures to a non-clinical career outside of medical practice.

Then please add your thoughts or comments below.

Monday
Feb032014

Physician entrepreneur "serial student" with insatiable desire to learn

Dr. John Shufeldt is a driven man.

While many might consider being driven to accomplish a key ingredient of success, in this case, John is driven to learn, by being a "serial student".

His entrepreneurial bent manifested early – in the slew of moneymaking activities that marked both his childhood and his medical school days. While he always knew he wanted to be a doctor, he couldn't help his desire to improve processes and "things" that he noticed weren't optimized. 

As he describes in his interview with me, his other overwhelming inclination -- his fierce desire to learn -- has had to be assuaged by going back to school every 10 years. First, his MD, followed by his MBA and 10 years later, his JD. That 10 years is almost up and he is getting set for his next adventure as a student.

When I gently accused him of being intimidating to normal folks like us, he protested and pointed out, as he did repeatedly in his book "Ingredients of Outliers" (reviewed here last week), that his journey has been a succession of small "fast failures" (one key to success, by the way), punctuated by intermittent successes. Of course, I think he's being unduly modest… but let's see what your opinion is!

Listen to his fascinating story here, and then return here to add your comments, as I'd love to hear what you think!

By Philippa Kennealy

Tuesday
Jan282014

Book review: "Ingredients of Outliers"

With areas of my office piled high with books (I am a "book pack rat"), once in a while I'll come across a good read about which I feel the urge to enthuse here on my blog. "Ingredients of Outliers" is such a book. (I must fully disclose that I was mailed a review copy when I learned of the book via a press release).

Written by a multifaceted physician/attorney/entrepreneur, John Shufeldt MD MBA JD, this book is subtitled "A Recipe for Personal Achievement". Naturally, the personal/professional fulfillment and happiness physician coach in me was intrigued!!

The term "outliers" was coined most distinctly by Malcolm Gladwell in his 2011 book "Outliers", and Shufeldt has taken it upon himself to explore how this information can help his readers make that leap from ordinary, or modestly talented, to outlier (even if you don't have 10,000 hours to accomplish it!)

In a self-deprecating manner, Shufeldt intertwines stories about his personal journey with those of many highly accomplished, successful men and women to illustrate the points made about each of his "ingredients". Through his entertaining storytelling, he emphasizes his own failures, along with anecdotes and vignettes about the rags-to-riches and humble beginnings of others, including those of many familiar contemporary and historical names.

The 16 chapters detail the "what" and "how" of each ingredient, examples including humility, failing fast, persistence, preparation, kindness, efficiency and so on. And each chapter ends with "Food for Thought" – a brief summary of the chapter's key ideas – and "In Other Words" – a collection of relevant, inspirational quotes.

The net effect is that of an encouraging guide with shared insights being delivered by a highly accomplished and humble man who seems to have surprised himself and others along the way!

Next week, I will have the pleasure of publishing a podcast interview with Dr. John Shufeldt in an attempt to unravel and expose for you the source of his success.