Whether you are a new birth professional or just going through a dry spell, it never hurts to evaluate your marketing strategies and try something new to attract clients. There are many ways to reach expectant couples, but here are a few tips we have learned over the years:
1. Word of mouth
One of your best advertising resources is your current friends, students and clients. Encourage them to tell others about you, and give each of your clients a stack of your business cards and/or brochures to give to their expectant friends.
2. Network with care providers and other birth professionals
It will serve your business well to deliberately reach out to area care providers and other birth professionals, and earn their respect as a peer. This may take some time, but if a local doctor or midwife begins to see a noticeable difference between your prepared clients and those who are unprepared, you may soon have that provider sending you referrals. Other birth professionals can send clients your way if they are too busy, in another part of town or taking time off.
3. Be amazing
Your client is always your first priority, but as best you can, take advantage of opportunities to talk with and get to know your clients care providers. Introduce yourself, be respectful, and show them what an asset you are to the birth team.
4. Be easy to find
List yourself on national directories, local networking sites or make your own website (an easy thing to do with many of the free hosting sites). Be sure to keep your current schedule posted and be prompt about replying to messages. After you have established a relationship with one or more local providers, ask if you can leave fliers, brochures and/or business cards at their offices for patients. You can try to do this before establishing a trusting relationship, but some providers may not be willing to refer to someone they don’t know. Try to balance what you know (does this provider encourage their patients to use a doula?) to determine the most appropriate method and timing for approaching him or her.
5. Think local
Place posters, fliers and other marketing media in the local public places where pregnant women may happen upon them: fitness centers, grocery stores, libraries, community centers, day cares, or even restaurants.
What other marketing strategies have worked for you?
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