The importance of market research
Market research is important for understanding who your customers are, what they need, and what they want from a therapy provider.
It allows you to identify business opportunities and form strategies that will contribute to the success of your private practice.
Step 1: Know your target market
You will, of course, already have a good idea of your target market - but how well do you really know them? A good understanding will really make a difference, as you can tailor your offering to better meet demand.
We’ve put together a short list of exercises here - they don’t take long and will give you some important insights, leading ultimately to more clients.
Step 2: Know your competitors
Think about the following questions:
- how many other private practices (your competitors) are there in your local area?
- what services do they offer?
- what do they charge for these services?
- which of them is considered the best? (and why?)
If necessary, ask friends or acquaintances to look at their websites and let you know their impressions from the perspective of a client. It’s useful to step back and look at things from a different point of view.
Based on the answers to the questions above, how could you adapt your private practice to deliver a better service and stand out in the market?
Step 3: Talk to your clients
A great way to improve your business and give clients what they want is to ask for feedback. You could:
- ask them to fill in a customer satisfaction form at the end of a session
- send them a questionnaire or survey to fill in
- interview clients personally
- write a post on your website asking for feedback or run an online survey
What questions should you ask? This will usually depend on the sort of therapy business that you run. But here are a few general examples:
- why did you choose [your business]?
- what did you like about the service [your business] provided?
- what didn’t you like?
- what other areas could be improved?
- do you think the price was too high, too low or just right?
- would you recommend [your business] to a friend?
- what other businesses did you consider before choosing [your business]?
Read our article about satisfaction surveys here.
Step 4: Analyse the data
Assess the data you’ve collected from the above steps, looking for patterns that suggest changes you can make to your business.
These might include adapting your service to better meet your clients’ needs or differentiate yourself from your competition, carrying out a better marketing push to boost the visibility of your private practice, or making a slight change to your pricing.
Our article about What to sell should be helpful here.