If you’re looking to start your own allied health business in Australia, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we will outline the steps you need to take to get your business off the ground. We’ll also provide some helpful tips and advice for making your business a success. So, whether you’re a chiropractor, physiotherapist, or massage therapist, read on for all the information you need to get started!
There’s more opportunity than ever right now in Australia for those in the Allied Health industry. Gone are the days of big clinics and physical locations. Thanks to the pandemic, many allied health professionals are now moving to start their own telehealth practices, providing therapy via Zoom, Skype and even Facetime. While the opportunity to start your own business has increased, so has the competition and it’s important that you have a perfected allied health marketing strategy in place. You can also look to hire an allied health marketing expert like CJ&CO, who we found from a quick search online.
So let’s get into it. Here are some of our top tips on how to start your own allied health business in Australia.
#1 Get Certified
If you’re reading this, you’re probably certified with the governing body already, however, if you’re not – make sure you are. There are a number of different governing bodies in Australia, depending on what your specialty is. This could be Speech Pathology Australia, Occupational Therapy Australia, the Australian Physiotherapy Association or others.
Being registered in your profession opens up the ability to take on Medicare or NDIS (National Disability Insurance Scheme) clients.
#2 Become an NDIS provider
Taking on private clients is fantastic and part of an all round, well-structured allied health marketing plan. It’s important that you’re not reliant on any one source of revenue/leads/clients – like the NDIS. However, the NDIS is the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, with billions (with a B) being spent annually.
Provided you’re registered, you can take on self-managed NDIS clients, however, if you want NDIA clients, you’ll need to go through the process of setting this up.
This can be extremely lucrative and there have been many clinics that have grown 30x in size in a few short years.
#3 Get a website
One of the most important steps in starting your own allied health business is setting up an online presence. In fact, if you don’t have a website these days – you’re already behind. We recommend getting your website set up before even taking on any new clients (if possible). This way, when people ask for the URL of your website, you’re not scrambling to put something together.
Your website should be the central hub for all of your online activity. It’s where people can go to learn more about you, see your services, read testimonials and even book appointments. You can also use it to drive traffic back to other channels like social media or your Google Business listing.
There are a number of different website builders out there, but we recommend using WordPress. Wix, Squarespace and others are great if you don’t have any skills, but you’ll be quickly left wanting for more flexibility.
#4 Get on Google My Business
If you want to get your clinic found online, then you need to make sure that it is listed correctly in Google’s local directory. Getting this right will help not only for people searching for individual clinics but also if somebody searches something like “allied health clinic near me”.
Once logged into GMB – add as much information about your business as possible. This includes opening hours, address, services you offer and more.
The next step is to get reviews (if your governing body approves of this) – this will help with Google’s algorithm for ranking within their local search results: the more good reviews you have – the higher up on the page your clinic will be shown. It also helps with trust-building – especially if you don’t yet have a website.
Without question, choosing a business model for your allied health practice is one of the most consequential decisions you will make in terms of your ability to generate income. When it comes to an allied health practice, you’ll need to choose between a group practice model and a cj&co.
Helpful tips on increasing your online presence.
Cjco suggests the following tips to create a grow an online presence for an allied health business.
- When first creating your social media presence – start with Facebook and Instagram. Currently, they are the most consumer ‘engaging’ channels in Australia and will drive a lot of your potential new business.
- Don’t forget the other social media channels (Twitter and YouTube). They are great tools to gather new ideas and to publish content.
- When you have your next staff meeting, make sure all your practitioners have a LinkedIn account and have their current position set within your business. LinkedIn is the best empowerment platform for clinicians to highlight their tertiary qualifications and professional accomplishments.
- Create a social media calendar – either weekly or monthly. This will make it easy for you to plan and prioritise content.
- Building your social media base takes time. Don’t expect exponential growth in a few days or weeks. Like growing your client base as a clinician, you need to build your follower base online in order to grow.
There are some other advanced GMB strategies that we use for our clients, but this is a good starting point.
Starting your own allied health business in Australia can be a daunting task, but with the right planning and execution, it can be extremely lucrative. In this article, we’ve outlined some of the most important steps to take in order to get started. Make sure you get certified with a governing body, become an NDIS provider, get a website and list your business on Google My Business. Following these tips will set you up for success!
Best of luck with your new allied health business!