If you’re reading this right now I hope it is because you are interested in creating and growing relationships with your customers — “customers” being an all-encompassing word for patients, clients, referral sources, employees, payers, influencers, and basically anyone and everyone who can help your business grow. In order for them to love you, you need to make them feel loved too.

Sharing is caring. When you share your deep innermost thoughts and feelings, it shows you care enough to put yourself out there.

Why do you think they have all those super mushy Valentine’s Day cards? “You are the wind beneath my wings. You are my reason for living,” etc. It makes the receiver feel special.

Show what you do

How can your marketing content make the reader feel special? Show, and tell, why you do what you do and who you do it for. I’ve seen a lot of really cute pictures on Facebook of babies with their first prostheses or amputee athletes participating in their sport posted by the patient care facility that provided the prosthesis with captions to the effect of “this is why we do what we do every day.” It’s touching when you see a smiling, tiny 2-year-old with her brand new prosthesis standing alongside her prosthetist.

Practical gifts

Everybody loves candy. Candy is a reward. Rewards are considered valuable. What do you have that you can give your customers that they will think is valuable? Coupons, of course.

What about other things, like information? Information is always valuable as long as you give it to the correct person. A calendar of events is valuable if you’re an amputee looking for adaptive athletic events. Brochures or lists of services your company provides can be valuable to a referral source who is trying to send a patient your way. So is a detailed map. What about a list of FAQs for people who wear AFOs?


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A video showing how you can take off a prosthesis with a locking liner where the sock got stuck in the shuttle lock would be like a box of Godiva chocolates to someone who can’t get remove his leg and just wants to go back to bed.

Gifts are fun. Who doesn’t like fun? Sometimes it doesn’t even matter what the gift is, it’s just fun to get it. What about gifts for participating in a contest? I saw a fun, engaging contest on the Next Step O&P Facebook page called “Reuse Your Socket” with a $100 gift card prize. All you had to do was upload a photo of your most creative use for your old sockets and people could vote. Everything about that was fun. (Go to www.facebook.com/nextstepoandp?fref=ts to see what they’re doing.)

You can always find things to do to enhance the relationships you already have and begin new ones. Just act like it’s Valentine’s Day by sharing metaphorical candy and gifts, every day.

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