DPC Branding & Marketing
As two individuals who have worked together to create a cohesive brand for Dr. Gupta's clinic, Dr. Gupta and Alex share about their collaboration and have tips on marketing to your local community, social media and designing with a purpose.
This recording was done as part of the My DPC Story Fireside Chat series. You can watch more Fireside chats HERE.
Whether you are planning, already in DPC or looking to rebrand, this is a great episode to listen to!
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Hi guys. Welcome. We are joined by Dr. Aliyah Gupta of family, first DPC, as well as Alexa, Torres of care identity. And so I'm going to hand it over to Dr. Gupta first to introduce herself and share with us a little bit about her branding journey so far.
Thank you so much, Mary Elle for having us on here. I love your podcast and just been working my way through all the episodes so happy to be here and so happy to have worked with Alex, I have to call her Alex because I knew her as Alex in the beginning. So they, Alex to me. And so I um, opened my DPC in 2018 in June 1st, 2018 to be exact.
It was a very fast decision. Basically. I had to leave my urgent care job in January when they stopped paying me. And as I looked around for other things to do, like most of us, I found my way to the DPC model and just fell in love with it. I knew I was going to be starting from scratch with literally one patient.
And I also knew I was going to be in an area where I hadn't worked before I had no patient base to draw from, and it was just going to be from the ground up. And then of course, in all of my prior jobs, I never had to think about marketing. I had worked for an HMO. I had worked for the urgent care.
I'd done some academic work in between there. And basically I just signed up, signed the contract and got patients. So I never had to think of. What is a brand, how to get patients, how none of it. But of course, when you're opening any type of solo practice you have to start learning that. I also didn't know that DPCs are small businesses and that all small businesses have to market.
And so entering this whole space was exciting, but challenging because it was definitely uncharted territory for me. And so the first thing I knew is I would meet a logo and I would need a website. So I started fooling around with the logo online myself, and I had some ideas of what I wanted.
I was looking for something that combined kind of old world and new world. So I wanted the which is the snake figure. And then I wanted the traditional cross. That's like the red cross on top of it. And so in DPC, when you start out, you try doing all these things yourself and quickly, I discovered this is very challenging.
So I knew I was gonna need help with that. And then in terms of marketing, I thought, everybody goes to Google. Now everybody goes online. Your website, I think, should be a place that you invest time and money. And I knew there was no way on God's earth. I could build it myself. So I started looking around for other websites that I liked within the DPC space.
And so kissy Blackwell, who has clarity direct, and the Atlanta mutt, who was in Michigan, both had great websites. So I looked at them and I called both of them up and said, Hey, who did your website? And he said, oh, it was my cousin, our. So I said, okay, fantastic. I love your website. Let me reach out to Alex.
And that's how we started our journey, Wonderful. And I think that one of the biggest benefits of having both of you here today is that we're hearing about branding from both sides, from the physician side, as well as the person who is doing in developing the branding. Alex, we'll turn it over to you in terms of what Aliyah shared and where she was coming from. I'd love if you could also touch on not only who you are, who your, what your company is, but also where do doctors usually find you at the same point Aliyah, was that when she found you or what are the, all of the use cases that you found when people contact you and Carrie identity?
Amazon did such a great job. Marketing Alexa, which my family does call me where Hispanics I am bilingual. So from there, that's where I just pulled Alexa from, but my whole life I've bombed by Alex. With that being said, I started branding over 10 years ago, just general branding, all types of companies.
And then when Casey came to me in 2016, she had a shared the whole entire DPC model with me. And at the time I branded her just like I would brand any other company that had branded five years prior to her coming along. I except I didn't really realize how many doctors were going to like her site and call me.
So that'll answer your first question where the doctor's finding me through and the DPC community through PC's website and they've seen her work or some of the doctors through referrals, word of mouth. Maybe someone told them in the community about me. And that's where I bought a lot more traffic without being said, I never marketed myself.
Honestly, I really didn't feel like I needed to for years because people hired me for my design in my work. And I have a degree in interior design, believe it or not. But I graduated during the recession in 2009 and I didn't want to lose my skills. So that's when I created a brand for myself, not realizing people were going to start asking me to create their brand.
And that's how I even got into branding in the first place was because people really liked what I did and they wanted to hire me to create their brains as well. So I've been doing this probably like 12 years now, roughly if I'm exact. And then as far as. Just general. I now am in trying to create more resources for the community.
I started honing in more, just in DPC. I feel like there's such a need. And I do agree with Elio. And she says that a lot of people, especially any type of business, everyone wants to try and do it themselves to save money. But in the end, sometimes you end up spending more money, trying to do all these things at different times.
And so throughout just my years of branding in general, I have four core things that we'll get into later, but four core things that you need to kind of at least get started. And then of course you can pay for extra things as you need to later on. But with that being said, there's always four core things that you want to get started.
And then I created a package to make it, to give people quality, but also make it in my opinion, something that is affordable especially because I love branding. Loved startups. I feel everyone should be a business owner, but that's just me. So I just don't really have a passion to help people and get them established.
That's wonderful. With you specializing in branding and marketing and then collaborating in the DPC ecosystem, I think that is so invaluable, so I think that's actually a great point, a great place to start off with. Before we take questions from the audience Alex, can you start with those four core things that people should be aware of or focusing on as they're developing their brains? So the main four things I'll get straight into just the list, but your logo, obviously your identity, the what people are going to know you as in your community and then copywriting something people don't often think about, but the actual words you need on your page for your website in the past, people used to just provide it to me. And then sometimes people were like I don't know what to write.
I don't know what I'm putting. Sometimes it was very technical, especially working with more analytical minds like doctors. Sometimes you don't know how to sell what you're trying to do to your audience. So that's something we ended up incorporating over the last few years was the copywriting aspect and taking care of that for the doctor or just for the person that's branding.
And then obviously your website, because you want them to be able to know what you offer, whether services, prices, who are you. So they can start building some kind of trust because let's be honest, everyone's on their phone these days, whether it's on social media, then they go to your website to learn about you.
You want to make it enough information where someone can read, but also. Bullet points for those that don't like reading to really quickly go through and find what they're looking for. So we do a balance of both which sometimes people don't think about. And again, we can get more into details of each area later.
And then the last thing would be your business cards. Obviously you need something to hand out. So those are like our four core things that we start with. Of course, there's flyers and mailing and all these other things you can do for marketing. But as far as getting your online presence and to have something to hand out or leave with someone, those are the four core things that we normally would start with.
Wonderful. And I want to ask when Alex is talking about copyright in particular with you being in your community, having worked at an urgent care physician before opening your DPC, what were some of the unique things about your community that you wanted to highlight in the copy that went onto your website?
So that's an interesting question. Um, So I was an English major in college, so words and writing are something I'm particularly picky about. So when it came time to write copy, it was, there was a lot of thought that Alex and I put into it. And I worked with her copywriter and I, went through everything with a fine tooth comb because at the end of the day, it's, for me, at least it's representing me.
And so I wanted to make sure the tone was right. And the one of the things Alex taught me was the education level of what your you put in your website is important because I may think I need it to sound like a research paper level, but really the average patient or customer maybe closer to a high school level or somewhere around there.
So you want to target your client base in your copy. So that's one factor. And then I had a unique situation because. I opened in a town that's adjacent to where I live and it is a pretty wealthy town for the area. And I really wasn't sure where my patients were going to come from.
I knew that DPC, your patient base is pretty much best sought from small businesses, right? Because there you have the combination of high deductible insurance or no insurance, but a patient base that can pay. So I wanted my copy to appeal to people within my town, but I also wanted it to appeal to the real patient base.
And that's actually what ended up happening. I have a few people from my town, but almost everybody is a small business owner from my surrounding area. So Alex was really great about just helping to get the coffee to be in that sweet spot. That's great. That's absolutely great. And the, for the people who have joined us today, I want to open up the floor to questions
I, Andrea Lynn, I'm in Washington state on the Eastern side, not near Seattle. I'm currently employed by a value-based care system.
Um, I was in private practice for four and a half years prior and was just kind of getting burned out with a hamster wheel that it felt like in my practice, wasn't very innovative. Um, and I actually like my employer, but I think that we probably are on the brink of being taken over by a large insurance, non HMO company, which I'm not on board with.
So I'm kind of in this limbo where I'm not exactly sure what my timeline is, but I think I will eventually end up in DPC. And I have a couple of questions, but my very first question is whether or not you feel like a market analysis, not a formal market analysis, but just more better understanding your market
how important that is. It seems and this is my perception. A lot of DPC doctors just jump in with both feet and that is definitely not how I operate. But at the same time I'm coming from, mostly a blue collar town that we live in. It's actually about half a million people with two fairly big universities in town, but there's also two DPC practices that have failed.
And so it's like kind of an unknown concept. I just discovered there was another one, but there's only four practices, two of which are in the city proper. And I really, honestly, I think my niche interests personally are more in line with like specific demographics. And I'm trying to figure out how I both market to the general population as well as try to attract.
These specific demographics with a price point that I think is a little bit higher than the typical, $70 a month sort of adults clinic. So in terms of branding and the four kind of pillars that Alex expressed, I think you can easily create that in a way that will appeal to a two tiered system.
Because with the exception of the writing in your copy, almost everything else is visual, right? Your website has lots of pictures. Your business card is visual, so's your logo. And once. You make sure that that is understandable to all of your patients. The bulk of marketing is going to come down to you because people may see some of that on the website, but they, if they inevitably want to call you, they want to hear about it.
They want to meet you in person or have a explanation over the phone. And my whole first year, that was all I did. And that's all I did door to door is explained DPC and explain me. And it wasn't until this year, which is my third year that now everybody is word of mouth. So by the time they come to me, they are a friend of a friend or a family member of a current patient.
So in that first year, I think you will naturally end up explaining everything and you'll be able to change your pitch based on who your patient is, because the way you pitch to somebody wealthier or an executive is different than how you pitch to somebody who is uninsured. And so you'll quickly learn what their pain points are and what you want to sell to each person.
Some of that just happens in the process. So I have a few ideas, but this is just how my brain works. So I started thinking like, who can we reach out to? So when I hear the two main demographics that you mentioned is students is what I hear. And I, and not just do this like college students.
And I hear the wealthy executives like Dr. Aliyah just said, my mind goes to thinking when I was in college, right. they offered insurance for. For people, but maybe what you could do is make relationships with these universities and see, Hey, I want to offer something to your students and the parents can pay for it.
And now you're offering better care than just insurance. If their kid gets sick, they sick, they can come to you. So maybe thinking outside the box and not thinking I need to just charge. The parent, maybe target the students as well. That would be a way to maybe make you successful in this community that maybe other people didn't think of is making relationships asking to maybe do you know if they have an event or something, being able to go to maybe whatever events the university may have and whatnot.
The other thing I was thinking as well, our businesses, I always tell my clients all the time, obviously, small businesses that might be the Cudi. I'm sure there's restaurants or like real estate agents. A lot of times people don't even think of realtors being uninsured and or people that are in small businesses small creatives, like going to make relationships with some of these local businesses and be like, I dunno if you're insured or not, but this is something we offer a few.
If I could take a few minutes of your time, the one thing sometimes people don't think of is you're going to have to go out there and you're going to have to make relationships with your community. But even if that person doesn't need your service, they might know someone else that isn't insured and they'll be like, Hey, you should check this out.
This sounded really interesting. And then that's, when they'll go to your website, maybe they call you. So thinking outside of the box. And typically when my clients come to me, they already know what their demographics is. So they tell me so together we think of ideas. Like I had one, someone called me recently for discovery call this week, who has they're in like Pennsylvania somewhere.
And there's like an Amish farmers. So obviously they probably don't get on the internet much. So then we had a conversation. What are ways maybe direct mail in that sense, maybe your community is older and maybe the internet is they're going to still go to the website eventually, but they're not going to originally find you on Google.
So you have to think, yes, what is your demographics, but how can you market for that specific target audience? And that's why figuring out your target audience is so important from the beginning before you can even bring. I think that you guys highlight excellent facts are excellent points. One of the things that I wanted to throw in there, when you mentioned market research I think that the idea of doing the discovery called meet and greet, whatever people call it is doing the lifetime market research.
Just like Alex is talking about just like how Leah did when she was going door to door. And that is I, when I talk to people about how they educate their community that. Probably the most effective in terms of what a person is starting out. Even if there are other DPCs in the town, like you are just like Aaliyah said, you are you and there's nobody else like you.
And so if you are starting to sell your brands doing those meet and greets can really open up people's eyes. As I just opened up my clinic at the end of September. And even though most of my patients already knew me from my previous practice, the meet and greets that I'm doing with random people who have never taken care of before their knowledge, their opinion and their outlook on what the clinic could provide them in the future as members just totally shifts when.
I'm answering questions, lifetime. And the other thing I was going to mention because of the college challenge, it's something to think about is, going outside of Washington, but reach out to other DPCs that have colleges in their towns like chicken, Christina, mature by William and Mary Janine Rodin's is by Santa Cruz UC Santa Cruz.
And see what type of, things work for those communities. Just like how Alex is talking about personalizing the branding to the community. That's one way that I would throw in as a, as an as an idea to increase your branding, reach by talking to other communities who've been through similar similar situations.
And you said you had a second question.
I think my only other question is I've listened to like the StoryBrand podcast series and they talk a lot about, I forget the name of it, but it's like a thing that you offer people in exchange for an email address, like a document,
I'm just wondering how that fits into the whole idea of marketing within direct primary care. Since it's a physical, it's a service and not a product. So that funnel world word scares me. And so when I started hearing that whole train of thought, get a little overwhelmed because I barely understood what branding and all of that was.
So the funnel thing is beyond me. I never did it. I think for me, I just intuitively figured out things that I felt comfortable doing. But as they always say, you've seen one deacon, see, you've seen one DBC. So everybody I'm sure there are people who have used that. And Alex probably has a lot of experience with it that I don't, but I'm also proof that you may not need that.
So I'll pick up from there. So I haven't had any doctors do the funnel's not with me. Now that works for other business strategies. Again, you need to do a strategy that works specifically for you, your target audience, your community. Sometimes that works for people that may want to sell books on some type of topics.
So they give you some kind of freebie Hey, this is some information, but it kind of ties in with BPCI. I find a little harder to figure out how you would do some kind of like free download. It's just different. Like they actually have to come to get your service, it's not like you're selling some kind of book to them.
So that's just like one thing that I would think of one thing that is really good is blogs. So you writing about certain things going on in the community and not just that the blogs on your website will actually eventually someone's Googling something, it might pull your blog up and it'll drive people to your site, even if it's not in your community, that's another way to drive more people.
So I would say a blog is way more effective because you, as an expert are sharing things that maybe I'm going to Google, not being an expert, trying to find information on. So those are places where I definitely would say might be a little bit better as far as just like blogging, but that takes a while there's other ways to market.
That again, we can go into if you have any other questions, but I would just say personally, none of my doctors that I've worked with have done the funneling and I do also think. Depending what your budget is when you start out and your finances. And do you know, are you the primary earner? How could we do, how much time do you have to build when you consider all that factors?
Another really common theme into BC is you have to keep your overhead low. And so sometimes these other marketing endeavors can get quite expensive. I joined our chamber, which was fairly expensive. And then I did one magazine spread and it was so much money to be in this magazine with these pictures one time.
And I got maybe a few patients out of it, but it wasn't worth the expense. And I figured out that in my community printed media and like flyers and postcards don't really get you as far as in person marketing. So like the farmer's market chamber events that are free, or maybe you pay $25 for a table and you talk to every businessman that goes by and you go around and talk to everybody there.
Some of it is trial and error, but I will say just to be mindful of how quickly the price can ramp up. If it's not going to be a good return on your investment, whereas obviously your branding and your website is something that's going to stay for a long time. And it's going to just go with you through your practice if that makes sense and something I want to add in there I had no idea about the visitor's guide in my county.
I had no idea that they were including medical clinics. And for publication submissions for next year that you can get discounts if you're going into your first year of business.
So definitely if you are approaching any publication or any any chamber or any organization where you might have to pay, you can say like I'm just opening. Is there any new business discount or something like that because to run it, to run. An ad. It was like hundreds of dollars, different, a difference in my county visitor's guide.
So that's something to think about in terms of the free things out. Like I'm always walking around with my business card in my pocket. And so that's just like on the ground Hey, I'm not selling anything, but here's my business card. If you want to learn more, here's the QR code and how to check things out.
And then also with regards to the blogging that Alex. Even if you're not started, if you have a blog that you can build up SEO with one of the things that Google definitely values is age of blogs. So that's something to consider because if you start now like Emily Scott at Halcyon health, she was blogging way before she opened her doors.
And so you can build up SEO to help boost, you're opening once you do open. And then with the idea of being at a farmer's market I did help one of my dear friends. Who's a DPC position. She is very focused on lifestyle medicine and holistic health. And so what she did was she had a QR code that led to a free, she didn't collect emails or anything, but it was just a free PDF of recipes.
And so it was her flushing out of her brand to say these are, representations of lifestyle medicine that I do every day as a physician who has time with their patients. So that was one way to use that funnel, but in a gentler way than we think about typical marketing funnels.
So want to put that there. .
Our next question is from a physician in Pennsylvania.
She's looking to open her practice next spring. Her question is how important is it to have an active website before you start marketing yourself to local moms and groups?
I'm trying to soft survey the local families about needs and their experiences within their current care models. Although they're interested, I feel I might lose the interest since I don't have a running website. I'll let Leah go first.
I really think the website is important. It was the first I'm trying to think back now. I can't remember Alex, if you, if I opened it, it was ready. We typically launched before they even opened. And some even launched like two to three months in advance, just to start marketing, handing out cards trying to build even a wait list or a pre enrollment that way.
By the time they opened, they have some people have interests. Maybe not three months might be a little much, but like at least a month or two to start getting in those pre enrollments. Yeah. Yeah. So we must have, you must have launched in may. Cause then I opened June 1st. And the process of building the website, I think is something you, I really enjoyed it.
I enjoyed the process of investing in it as well, because it really was there were lots of different facets to how we built the website. But one of them was, I had a vision of how I wanted my office and my space to appear, and I wanted the website to be very connected to the physical space. So I actually hadn't even found the space yet, but I had an idea of color and I'm interested in interior design, although I have not studied it like Alex.
And I sent her Pinterest pictures and I knew I wanted this gray space with white accents and I wanted the lilac and we went and I used a friend's house. She had a very clean, modern house and she had the same chair that I ended up buying from my office the same shape. So when you go to my website and then you come into the office, It all suddenly seems familiar.
And for me, that was just something I really wanted. And I, it took a little while to create it. So I would definitely say that if you can have your website up and running before you open, and then also with the way the websites are with your, at least with Atlas, which is my EMR there's the tab to enroll now.
So patients would click in and then that would take them to the link to enroll through my EMR. You can do that outside of the website, but it's just really nice and streamlined if patients are in there and they're like, Hey, this looks great. Click go in, done, no calling back. How do I start? And then I'll forget about it until next month.
And it just makes it move faster. So a few things I actually want to, since we're on this topic that I do want to mention, obviously working with all types of clients, everyone's different, but Aaliyah was very different in the fact that she already knew what she liked and what she wanted. And she already came with me actually with the color palettes which she was probably a little further along, but I do want to let people know that even when you have no idea, I had one client that literally was like, you pick everything, I'll just approve it.
Send me options, send me colors and you can design it. However you want. These are a couple of websites I lied. Cause I always asked for examples, but just to get an idea, like everyone's different. Sometimes you may not have a clue. And that's where you have to trust who you hire in general.
And that's why you want to interview several designers. And do you want to see their portfolio? Because if you look at mine specifically, you'll see every single person I brand has their own brand, their own pallet, their own design. It's not that I copied the same design, like a template and change the colors.
No, every client it's up, it's customized on my customized to what they want. And so I said, that's really important because when you're out there interviewing different people and that's one of the things. That I want to like share later on in the handout that over eventually going to give out. Eventually I want to go to a list of questions to ask a designer when you're going through the process, because I think sometimes people just hire someone they don't shop around.
And I always tell people like, you don't have to use me. If you can find someone to give you better quality at a better rate, please use them. Because at the end of the day, at least make sure that they're giving you what you need. So one thing Aliyah knew her colors. She actually did her own stock images, which blew my mind.
The only doctor that did her own stock, it would just till this day, I still have to get stock images for other clients. But with that being said, something to be mindful of, if you haven't started your brand yet, or you want to rebrand, because I know that was something we might touch on later. Maybe hire a photographer.
Okay. Do what they, it's something called brain dead interiors. Like you make your interior of your clinic or wherever your office match the colors of your brand. So like she said, the it's familiar, like I was on this space online, but now I'm in the physical space and it feels similar to the online space.
So those are like really good things that she brought up that I'm glad she did, because I think sometimes we don't think about that when sometimes you just think, okay, online. And then we don't think about carrying that all throughout. So I think those are some good points and some things to think about if you haven't branded yet or are thinking of rebranding later.
And I, if I can add to that when I was looking at websites, I really looked at so many different types and Alex's work really is. Incredible. Because when I look at my website and sometimes I'll pull up I don't know, big hospital groups, or I'm Googling a specialist who's independent, or maybe affiliated with a hospital.
And even their websites, don't always reflect the same level of quality because she, which, and what I did with her is I looked at how she had done Casey's website. And I said, if we can you do those pages like that? They were three images of kissing moving. Can I have it like that? And it wasn't there in the first and then the open it, and then she slides.
Yeah, it's interesting. And it really just comes across as a very quality space. It's the. Like the first impression somebody may have of you and of your brand. And then when it came to the stock images what she's talking about is obviously there were pictures of they're pictures of me on my website, but typically you need all these other photographs and they'll pull them from a bank of photos that have like medical models right.
In scrubs and stuff like that. And I was like, I don't want to look at my website and see strangers, everybody on this website has to be somebody I know. So I got my housekeeper, I got my kids, I got my, at the time I was doing some Spanish, classes, my Spanish teachers in there. And I also love that because every time I open it, I know everybody who's on the website.
So it just continues to be something that's very personal. And it didn't cost as much money. And those pictures are, that was part of the whole bundle. I did have the photographer for like headshots, cause you eventually need all that stuff as well. So I've used those pictures till kingdom. It was money well spent.
That's awesome. And I just, I, it makes me so happy hearing that, you know, because that first, you mentioned this idea of being familiar with having a patients have that familiar experience when they go from your website to your physical space. I love that. But then I did not know that about your website in terms of the photos that were on there, so that's amazing.
I want to ask a question, Alex and Elliot in terms of. Details like this is I think about in wedding photography, they call those shots, the detail shots, like the the shots of the bouquet, the shots of the cake, et cetera, et cetera, when it comes to clinical spaces when a person is thinking about, okay, great, I'll start my website, before I open what is your take on those details?
Like a stethoscope or point of care, ultrasound, butterfly what are some things that you guys can throw out to the audience to say these are some things that you might think of, even if you don't have a clinical space like a brick and mortar to think about if you're adding, details to fill some of those spots, when you might not have a physical space to take pictures of, or other people that you could put on your own.
So I'll let Leah go first, if you want to talk about why you picked the shots that you did, because she did, I will say she did a good job, not just doing pictures of herself, but of her interacting as if she was interacting with a patient. So I'll let you go from there. So it was a bit of a bit of an experiment because I think I had asked, I think you were in on it a little bit.
I remember doing the pictures maybe around spring break, maybe March. So maybe we hadn't even started working together that closely yet, but I was trying to think of what sort of represents what you do. So we had pictures at a table where two people are consulting it's me and the Spanish teacher consulting with the computer.
I'm checking the housekeeper's blood pressure, pasta table. My son's knee is blown up. Cause I'm doing something with his knee. And then there's one with my daughter and the Teddy bear. We just tried different things. And then we had some random ones of just computers and just the blood pressure cuff.
And then Alex decided after that, what she wanted to blow up and shrink and going forward. Now, if someone was working with you, I think, you would be able to give them lots of options what you want the photographer to do. Yeah. I actually do tell people, but I always send people that are her website.
Like she did her own stock images, if you want some ideas, I do think retox, I probably told you, I'm sure you looked at enough, but I know we talked about like the colors and do some with your coat some without I had, I think from there too, we also did Some other things that you would want to think of?
Yes, we do. I never stay as straight. Don't kill me. That's the scope. I blame it on the fact that I speak Spanish. But yeah, so we'll do like different trials sometimes. Depending on the other thing we want to think of to again, the audience. So what kind of pictures? Sometimes if I don't have that, obviously only get headshots typically for most of the doctors.
So I have to go through and I pick pictures that match the color palette, which sometimes you don't think of, this is why it's nice when the doctor was just telling me to pick everything and then in the end they approve. And if they don't like a picture, they'll tell me. And I'll, we'll either re-select or at that point, I'll tell them, Hey, pick some pictures, but please notice how all this FedEx looks the same.
Like the color palettes. Keep that in mind with your colors of your branding. So like at that point I educate them if they, but very rare. Do the doctors pick different pictures? I think most of the time they're okay. Cause I see the whole entire site, but things like if it's a family, like there's some DPC doctors, I don't want to target families as much, but they'll offer it.
And then there's some doctors I really want to target the family specifically. So in that case, I might pick more pictures of a family versus single people or a couple. And so it really just depends on who their target audience again, that's my saying, everything's customized for that specific doctor.
Maybe I had one doctor that wanted to do specifically more geared towards women and fourth trimester. And so we picked more women to be shown on her website versus men. And not that she doesn't help, cater to everyone. It's just, sometimes there's certain audience you want to reach out to, which again is huge and branding.
You want to think of that person. That's going to be who you're marketing to. Who are you trying to market to? Actually when I created the brand for care identity, I did pink and blue. I have a lot of female doctors that reached out to me, but then I didn't want to steer off the men that might want me to bring them.
So I try to do an equal balance of pink and blue, mainly because. I wanted pink. So I was like, but I wanted to think also who's my audience, just because I may like something doesn't mean that's going to work well with my target audience. Also color schemes. There's a color psychology behind things. I have some doctors that pick blue.
I recently had a doctor that had a travel concept. And so we did like green. I had never done a website with green before, but my point is, again, all those little things come into play. When you're thinking of your brand, you want to think first, you want to decide who is that person?
Who am I wanting to help? Who is my focus? And then you want to build that brand, come into that focus, but it doesn't mean you're not going to help others. You'll still get those other people funneled through, but you really want to hone in on. That specific space, so that would be like one of my tips when you're thinking of pictures and thinking of the whole brand in totality.
And there was one other little thing I wanted to mention that Alex did that was special. I speak Spanish. I'm not fluent, but I can completely manage without an interpreter. And I love taking care of Spanish speaking patients. So I wanted my website to be convertible in terms of language. And so Alex went through with her auntie I believe from, because my mother is her mom.
I always think of the senior Amador. Your mom and we follow each other on social media. I'm always saying, liking the photos, but she translated the entire copy and made sure that it was prestige. Spanish. And then Alex added a button where you can click Espanol and the whole copy switches over to Spanish.
And it does it on every page as they go through. I really liked that cause I didn't want patients to come to the website and not be able to who speaks Spanish and not be able to understand what's going on. And I, it came up. And just for people who might not be on the chat, I put in both Dr.
Gupta's website and I'll say the website, just so if people are just listening and not watching family first to direct primary care.com and then Alex's website is care id.us. So you guys can click on those links or find them later. But you can see in real time, what they're talking about when Alex is talking about the pink and blue, it's very 50, 50, but definitely with a pink with a pink warm feel to it.
And then. One of the things that is on Ali's website is the spaniel is in the top. So I was wondering if you guys could just talk about like the top third of the website, like what people what people should think about when if they're doing a draft of their website before reaching out to somebody who to help with branding or marketing, or if they're trying to do deal DIY on Weebly or Wix or Squarespace what would you guys say about the top third?
Because that is something that I see when I look at people's websites, sometimes the call to action is where you have to scroll down a bit to see it. So I was wondering if you could talk about that, I'll let you take that. Okay. So typically when we do the menu, we typically have, and then the menu space where you have your tabs, and then sometimes we have the call to actions.
One thing is normally you have your homepage, your about page, your pricing, page, your services, page contact, and a blog. Some doctors hide it until they're ready to start writing. And then I typically will do a call to action. Her says that's when y'all and it also says sign up, but most of the doctors is just a sign up.
And the reason we do. So a little background on me. This is why I think I worked great with doctors is because I am the complete opposite. I do not think analytically, I think, as a creative and I'm a visual person, I hate reading, which is why we have copywriters to write your copy and not me. So I just started making it look pretty, but I'll just say the reason I bring that up is because me, I get very frustrated reading, especially if it's long scrolling, I will get out of your page right away.
And I think of you need a balance. You need some information for your analytical mind that might come across your page, but you also need your images and your icons with the quick bullet points for someone like me, that doesn't want to sit there, reading everything about you, because I'm not going to, I just want to know how much are you going to charge me?
What can you do for me? So you sometimes need to think in both those spaces because. What happens is sometimes people just want to make these long paragraphs. And so you can never get to the call to action because no, one's going to scroll through the whole website to get there. One thing that I always incorporate on the websites, art, so like several call to actions, even if they seem repetitive because you want that person to stay on your website, or you want them to pay you as soon as possible, you don't want them to have to go to the menu every single time to get where they want to go.
You're going to lose them. So something that we do is we constantly put in call to action throughout the website, whether it's the signup page, whether it's the meet and greet, whether it's an icon of the button to the services or the pricing. And so there's buttons all throughout the website, outside of.
The menu and on the menu, like I said normally do a sign up. Cause maybe someone already went to your website, but they didn't sign up yet, but they want to go back and they quickly want to get to where they want to go. They don't want to scroll all over again, trying to find where to click. So we make it as easy as possible to try and convert somebody, to get to, a sign up page and start putting in all their information.
So just things to think about when you're creating your own website.
Excellent information, especially if someone is wanting to try doing their own website, for whatever reason, low overhead, if they liked design, whatever, but those are excellent points.
When it comes to going beyond the website and having a presence in your community on social media, can you guys touch on how you view social media for yourselves and your practices or your business in your case, Alex? First. So before we did this chat Aliyah and I talked and I was very impressed how she leveraged social media to actually get patients, which I have not heard any other doctor really do that successfully.
So I do want you to talk about, that's why I'm bringing it up. I'm sure you were, but just in case you forgot. And then as far as me, for me, it's a little different, I have more of a portfolio. So for me, Instagram is more like showcasing our projects. What we have done. Sometimes several logos. When we start a new project, we typically give five logos, every single project for you to select from.
So we'll share that also. That's how I've used it, making reels, giving tips to other people in the, my target audience here are doctors specifically DPC. And so in this type of case, what I do is I'll make like tips on branding and being consistent, things that tie into what I offer, right?
Because I can do all types of designs. It's not that I only do branding, but I do branding again as my focus and my niche. Now, maybe I do some other things there, but that's how I view social media is like really trying to give content to help others or educate them. And then on top of that showcasing our work.
That's how I've used it. So in in my case as I said, I was building the practice from ground zero. So I tried every thing I could think of to connect with patients. And it took me a little while to figure out how to use social media. When you open as a small business, that's the first thing everybody says, use Facebook, use Instagram, Almost all small businesses are on one platform or the other, but the age range of most small business owners could be anywhere from 30 to 60.
So for us, those of us who were older it's a new animal and it's hard to figure out how to put yourself out there in a way that brings patients or clients in. And so what I found is that using social media as a way to engage and connect with potential patients is what worked for me. And it there's a very specific way that I went about it.
Most of the content that I put out there is about family medicine, being a doctor DPC, you cannot talk about patients and patient histories and stories because of HIPAA. So that kind of cuts out a whole area of what we can talk about. So you have to talk around it and interesting. But what I found is that I would seek out small businesses that were in my community, that I was driving distance or walking distance to.
Cafes, salons, restaurants anything in the little towns right around me and I would follow them and I would comment on their posts and I would engage with them. And then I would eventually say, Hey, I'm going to be walking through town this Saturday. Can I keep in mind if I pop in and say, hi, and again, all small business owners are looking for attention and other clients.
So they would say, absolutely, I'll be here at 12 on Saturday. So then when I walked into their store, I with my little flyer and business card, I already had a foot in the door, as opposed to me just walking in on another random day and saying, hi, I'm the new doctor in town. We have this new business model.
You've got to sit on five, six. But if I had already connected with the owner before I would walk right in and say, oh, and they would say, oh yes, you are the woman from Instagram. What is it? You do? And then, you buy a candle and they remember you. And I eventually it builds a connection. And I will tell you, I have gotten people from salons.
I've gotten people from restaurants and I've gotten other local businesses to notice what I do, even if they aren't coming to me. But they would recommend me to other people because we had connected through social media. And you don't need to have big numbers. It's more about finding who could actually join me and using social media to bridge that gap before you make any physical steps.
If that makes sense, I want to add one more thing that came to mind while you were saying that about the whole building relationship and social media, something people don't realize is you need to show your face. People want to try. They are first off to build trust. They need to see who you are. And sometimes it's easy to want to hide behind.
Other images are not showing our authentic self, but that's what makes people like you, they hear how you talk, they see how you act. They get a feel for your personality. And then that will also draw the people that will want to work with you because they'll be like, oh, she's really sweet. Or she seems so nice.
I'd love her to be my doctor. Like I want to work with her. And so that's something to think of too, when you're on social media, it's not just let me post tips and what I'm doing. It's also like people hearing you making videos, not just stand still images, but so they can get a feel for your personality.
Are you dry? Are you sweet? Are you fun? Are you bubbly? What are you like? And so I think that's another big thing to keep in mind when you're putting yourself out there and not just giving tips, but allowing people to see who you are outside of. Just a picture. Absolutely. I want to ask when you were opening your clinically out how much time did you invest in socials versus the actual practice and when you just, when you were opening, like in those first six months.
So in the first six months all of, pretty much all of my time was just setting everything up. There were so many things I just didn't even know I needed supplies. What supplies do you need? You have to get clear. You have to get a lab, you have to get your dispensary going. So all of these systems figure out how to use your EMR.
So that was the bulk of what I did plus trying to get patients to come in. And I started with social media, but I started with Facebook. And then the other thing I realized. Perhaps isn't obvious from the beginning is that Facebook is more of a closed loop because it's harder to reach people that aren't in your friend group.
Because if someone has to ask to be your friend and you have to say yes, and that already decreases people who maybe are just passing your content versus on Instagram, it's more of an open platform. So if you put something on the hashtag for your towns, hashtag Hinsdale, hashtag Oprah, those are all of my neighboring towns.
Then people who were following what's going on in those towns will see me on the people who was this doctor? What is she talking about? Direct primary care right next to her is the boutique, the next post is like the athletic company. And they're like, what is this doctor talking about?
But it's you're on a billboard that people are driving by. It took me a while to figure that out. So I would say probably it was at least six months in, before I moved away from Facebook and started doing more marketing on Instagram because you can just jump right into people and reach them much more easily.
Awesome. And I want to ask, because Lee, I know you that you've done hashtag campaigns, especially supporting the DBC ecosystem, but for both of you how do you view how often you plan campaigns out and what do you do to prepare for campaigns? Like, October was breast cancer awareness month, whether it be like pride month or whatever it is that you might be celebrating in your community or that your community is known for in your supporting in your clinic, how do you guys view campaigns and how to plan for them?
When I managed the social media for clients, obviously it's a little different I normally plan a month in advance mainly because I'll try to do all the designs and then schedule them out. There's a platform called later for that. Actually they have a free version, but they also have a paid version.
Cause I think you can post on more platforms or several platforms that way. So if you haven't heard of later, you should look into that to help you because sometimes you think, Hey, I can post this later and then you get. Doing something else always something else comes up and you don't get it posted in time.
So that's a good tool to use and it doesn't have to be later. It can be anyone. That's just one of the more cost-effective ones that I have personally found. And then as far as I like posting stories because they go in 24 hours. But also because I'm really picky on the aesthetics of my page and my branding.
And I don't like putting just anything on my page. I normally archive stuff when it goes away. I don't like leaving it on there because I see it as, like she said my billboards. So when people come on, I don't want just like a bunch of random stuff on there. I want it to be very clean, easy to follow because the prettier it is so to speak or the easier it is to follow.
The more likely people are to keep scrolling and scrolling. And if they can quickly read your tips and stuff, they're going to stay longer on your page. And again, you're building that trust again, whether it's a tip page, I always recommend doing like a highlight page and then a slider. So the easier it is for people to read, don't try to shove all the small text on a tiny phone and one little square, like the better you can make your aesthetics so people can see what you're offering or what you're doing, or your tips.
The more likely they're going to keep clicking and watching more of your information. Also, that's why videos are great because the more videos they can watch, the more they learn about you, the more likely they're going to follow you and remember you and maybe keep watching things in the future because they like your content.
Yeah. Social media is very powerful and it's just really good to keep that in mind when you're planning. What are you putting out there? How often are you putting it out again, using a scheduling system to help you? Because we do get busy. I know some doctors that plan out an hour or two a week that tends to maybe work for them.
I do manage a lot of projects so for me a month works so it just depends what works for you and your time. Yeah, I completely agree. I've gone through phases where I have just posted on the fly and now I'm a little bit more batch doing two or three at a time, and then posting them as they go on.
In terms of the hashtag campaigns. It's very interesting because I think those helped you grow a following more, but they, if the goal of social media is to build your patients. Then you don't need to do that many hashtag campaigns because you, if you have limited time and attention really want to pour that into food is within driving distance of your practice.
So if you're doing hashtag breast cancer, it's great, but that's all over the country, right? And if you're posting content that is going to be seen in your towns, those are the patients that are coming to you. So the more you post on those hashtags, let's pick a town, Chicago, the Mo more you post on Chicago, the more you're going to be on there.
And everybody following hashtags, Chicago is going to eventually see you. So they really care what's happening to diabetes and all of that, but they are looking at Chicago, right? So it just depends how much time you have and whether you want to grow your following. And what happened to me is that. Again, this is the third year in.
Now my practice is almost full. And so most of my patients are now friends and family of current patients. So I'm not putting as much attention at the moment into using social media, to market family. First, I'm more interested in educating about DBC. So my skin, my emphasis has shifted. So now hashtag campaigns are more about reaching the med students and reaching the residents and reaching doctors who are in corporate jobs and hating it and are scared to go into independent practice.
And so showing that it's possible and it's doable and yes, take the leap. You will be so glad. That's more of my focus now. I know we're talking about hashtags, but one great thing she brought up was local.
So obviously you want to reach your local. So some ways to do that is to follow people that follow local restaurants, not just not chain restaurants, but like local restaurants, because a lot of people I follow local restaurants are typically other locals. And if you're trying to build your following, you might want to look at some profiles, follow some that you may like.
And then what happens is I'm more interactive. That's how I grow my following. I don't do so much rely on campaigns. I actually go and follow a few people and I'll go on my feet and I'll be watching what they post and I'll leave comments and I'll light stuff. And then that also helps me get to know them, but they notice oh, this person's always liking my stuff.
And then it opens up a door for them to start asking you questions too. Or sometimes when someone follows me, I might send a little note thank you so much for following. Let me know if you have any questions or anything I can help you with. Even if they never answer me, it's just like a courtesy, cause it might be one person that will, and that might convert into something because they now trust you.
So I honestly, I'm not, I've run other businesses. And honestly there's some, depending on the type of business that you have 90% of my business is social media. Now with this space because I branded over 10 years, like she's saying eventually it changes, I'm pure referral. Like I'm going back to now reaching out and doing more things.
And that's why now I'm more interactive. Like I follow several doctors and I comment and I heart stuff and I pay attention. And so it really, again, is going to change and shift. But if you want to grow your local and you are new. That is some ways following local salons, following local business owners using hashtag like I'm in Houston, I'll use like hashtag Houston, small business, or Houston businesses, Houston creatives, Houston realtors.
Like I'll go and look at those. And I'll follow people that might read like my fit for a specific area. If it was me as a doctor, that's where I would start trying to find people and also tag that because they tagged themselves in those. And you guys have definitely gone above and beyond with regards to building your brand, as well as nurturing your brand.
I want to ask about what do you guys do to protect your brand? If there are things like negative reviews or people are saying bad things about personal testimonials on like next door or on a Google review, how do you protect your brand? Oh, I haven't had to do. Much of that. To this point, I don't have a lot of reviews to tell you the truth.
I probably have item even know less than 15 or 10 on Google. I don't solicit them. I don't send something saying, please review me. I guess maybe it's just the bashfulness in me. It always felt, and I know a lot of businesses do it. They'll as soon as you've interacted with them or had an experience, they'll send something to you.
I never did. I guess I just always focused on making my patients happy because I felt that if my patients are happy, they're going to be my best source of recommendations. And that's proven to be true because as I said, everybody comes in pretty much now who knows somebody else. And then I think it may also have to do with the size of the practice.
I'm a, my micro-practice model. And I really have two hours of admin help a week. I do everything else, myself. I pretty much have no staff, so I can only be a certain size and I'm almost there. But if you were trying to grow a 600 and bringing in other doctors, I think it would be something that would have to address more carefully.
So that is a good question. in my years of creating brands, I've only had maybe three unhappy clients in 12 years.
And in those cases I went above and beyond just to try to make them happy. If there's ever like a case where someone's. Happy about something. I try my best within reason to work with them. I know sometimes people are not reasonable. I don't, I do ask for reviews, but normally after a few months after the project was done, they've already been operating.
They've been working their content sometimes I'll ask would you like to leave me a review? But it's very rare when I ask, I don't really do. Sometimes they do. Sometimes they don't, I don't really care to be honest, more than anything. I feel like I know my personality and I know that. I think, you know, like it's a business, so you always want to keep people happy within reason, but you also have to set your boundaries as a business owner.
And I think that was one of the hardest things I learned, especially since I started at the age of 21 branding. So I think that was one of the hardest thing I learned as I was growing up was I wanted to people please, everyone. And I was driving myself crazy. So I think my best tip is know your boundaries from the beginning and know not to work with certain people, the best advice my dad ever gave me when I was younger was he said you can't help everyone.
So you're just gonna have to forget that money sometimes and just help those that do appreciate what you have to offer and how you can help them. And so I always carried that with me because I used to, out of being desperate in the beginning, wanting to grow my brand, I take everybody. And I could see that also happening with patients, maybe, a patient's difficult and you want to help them because you desperately want to grow your practice and you want money.
But sometimes I realized those bad seeds sometimes can ruin all the good effort. And sometimes it's not worth taking the bad seed because you've invested already so much of your time to let it get ruined ruin your reputation by one bad seed. So I would say don't don't be like led by that feeling of, oh my gosh.
Like I just need to grow. And I want to take as many people as possible. Be honest with yourself and kind to yourself to be like, okay, let me grow. But these are going to be good, solid patients that there's a mutual respect for one another. And you hit such an important point in terms of you can't please, everyone like that's so important.
And one of the things to think about as physicians in the social media space is habit and just, sharing protected information and being cautious to not do that. So that you can't identify who you're talking about, unless they've given you specific permission to share, their story.
Dr. talked about this in his podcast in terms of, if there is a negative review, publicly putting, like we'd be more than happy to discuss what happened. Please contact our staff is a very benign. Not releasing any Phi, but something to show that you are responding, but that you're not making any inflammatory statements, accusatory statements, et cetera.
And then the other thing is that this idea that is constantly floating around in DPC is especially when it comes to branding is under promise over deliver, because we there's so much fire in all of us who jump into DPC or who are involved in the DPC ecosystem. And when people see who we are as doctors, that is amazing.
But when we when we have. Things like 24 7 care access all the time, blah, blah, blah. And you and a patient perceives that in one way. And then we don't deliver on that. That definitely can set us up for failure or for for uncomfortable situations when it comes to, post reviews, et cetera.
So just so important though, that you cannot please everybody. Yeah. I think that's a good point. Actually, something I've noticed on the websites I've built more recently, a lot of the doctors are now removing 24 7. So that is something I've noticed and they also are more careful, like what exactly they're offering.
So along the lines of what you're saying under promise and over deliver it's an exercise that I definitely would say you can go through. Progressively as you open your doors and then, six months later, two years later, whatever it is especially as times change and as your offerings change.
But I want to ask w Alexa, when you mentioned you usually give your clients five things like logos and logo versions, and then you have your clients look at them and give you feedback. Even on your Instagram, you've posted publicly. Like these are the five options, like vote for your favorite to get interaction.
There are engagement there from just people who are, maybe DVC doctors who are looking for somebody to, to collaborate with for branding. But I'm wondering for both of you Aliyah and Alex, when you think about if you are going to produce something that is for public consumption, what is your opinion when it comes to.
Asking other people for their opinions on what you've created. I, whether it be social media or a website page or a blog or whatnot, do you guys do you guys ask other people about their opinions on your products and to what extent? Yeah, so I definitely do the vote mainly because it's fun and everyone has an opinion and they like to give their thoughts.
I haven't really had any negative feedback. And even if I did, I don't think it would hurt my feelings. Every opinions are subjective. That's not going to change. And at the end of the day, I'm not designing for that person's opinion. I designed for my client. And as long as my client is happy with what I picked and I know.
Put like eventually I put the one they chose, but that is their brand now. But when I asked for the opinions on all five, so they'll just put it out there. And the truth is the doctors typically will ask their friends and family for their opinion too. So they might want a peek on there and see what the audience says and just get an idea for fun.
But in the end of the day, something as a designers, I don't design for myself and I don't design for people. I designed for the person that is creating their brand. And at the end of the day, I want to make sure that their vision is what is casting, not anything else. Yeah. And then to that point, it's a little different than, Alex use of social media, but in my case, when it comes to educating and trying to again, spread the message of DPC, the content that I'm putting out there it's right there for anybody to snapshot and, screenshot and then retire somewhere else.
I think. I think that I think the majority of people using social media are not doing that, but there are a couple of people who just don't understand that if you're going to repost someone's content, you have to acknowledge them. There's an etiquette to social media as well. And then when it comes to reviewing content, I actually use my kids a fair amount because they are both teenagers.
And of course they're in the social media space. And, we all know now that, it's not that great for young girls. And there are higher rates of depression and anxiety. So if you have kids that are on there, one way that I've found is to pull them in a little bit, to give me opinions.
And so they are very techie and sometimes they'll read my posts and they'll say, mom is too long. Mom cut it down. I'm like, that's so much to say, Nope, mom, two paragraphs only. And then the reels tricky, right? Because their video, their visual, there are all these little tricks and there'll be like, mom, Come in or do move around a little bit.
But this is the space we live in now. And so I think the more feedback you get about what you've put out there, the better, because we are perfectionist right in this field and we want everything to be our best work. It is hard for me like you Alex, to just toss something out there.
I do find that stories are very casual. So that's where you can show a little bit more behind the scenes your day to day, but posts are a little bit more professional and I always have to be mindful of who is looking at this. Facebook is scary because my parents are on there. My aunts, my uncles, everybody.
I know. So I have to be so proper in Facebook, but in Instagram, I, but still it's my patients who've come to me are seeing their doctor on Instagram. And I don't want to be that person who is on there so much that my patients are like what is she doing? When is she working? He's always on Instagram.
So you have to be mindful of that as well. And when you put your content out and how much are you showing of your life and of your office? So I think as long as you're mindful of who's looking, you're going to naturally curate what you're producing. Awesome. And In terms of Alex, you mentioned this before, but in terms of rebranding or the idea of evolving a brand, I want to ask in the space of say a person is, and I'm thinking in this thriving DPC ecosystem, if somebody breaks off and opens their own clinic, or if somebody moves and they want to take a, a portion of their identity from one area to the other, but really are rebranding themselves or evolving the brand that they had.
How would you guys advise people to think about the rebranding process? So I did rebrand a doctor. Not just one, but one specifically in the DPC in the last couple of years. And she had hired two designers before us and they hadn't gotten her vision and she actually hired me to add pages. She didn't even hire me for a rebrand, but when I saw her site, I was so disappointed because her logo was beautiful and the website did not reflect how beautiful her office looks.
And I went to go look and I went to look at the other designers work and literally had copied the same exact look for every client. Or she had, and from there I said, Hey, let me do a little demo for you at, as a courtesy. And if you like it, then you can go ahead and hire me to do the work. And what we did there at that point is she already had all the texts.
So she didn't need copywriting necessarily. It was pretty well laid out already. So it wasn't like super lengthy. If not, I would recommend having the copywriter redo all the copy. But in this case, all we did was take what she had and re do the design and layout. So everything floated a lot cleaner and better.
She was extremely happy. That I did it. We still have a very ongoing relationship. Still has me do more work, but all to say, you want to think of does your, is what you're putting out there matching again, what we said earlier, your beautiful office that you spent so much money building out or your space, even if it's a small office that you put time and thought into so that your patients feel comfortable coming in.
Are you, what does your brand say? Do you even have a lower, did you just put something on there, but it's not memorable. Like people don't look at it and remember who is this? If you have copywriting, that's great. I probably would still recommend having a professional look into it because one thing.
And that people don't think about with copywriting as copywriters typically know how to work in the SEO keywords that you want to try and know, Greg for of course it doesn't mean you're going to be number one on Google by doing this, but it's those little elements, it's all those little things that you do that add up to get your website ranking higher.
And so with that being said, when I have someone come to me, sometimes you're like can you just edit my current site? My answer is no, I'm not going to do your current website. I'm doing a brand new website from the ground up because you're. It's a new we're rebranding. Like we're not going to use your old brand.
Now I might take some of your old information. If you like your logo, we can use your logo, but we're going to clean up your pallet and the whole entire feel for the whole entire brand. It doesn't mean that we have to get rid of your logo. Now, if you don't even have a logo or an identity, we need to do the identity of your brand, because I know there's a lot of doctors, like we said earlier that want to, you know, they're trying to keep costs low in the beginning.
They're trying to do everything by themselves. They're trying to design everything. But one of the things I always tell people when they have a free discovery call with me is when you've visited a dated site. Do you stay there very long? Probably not. Or if it's super red, like that gives anxiety. Red is like an anxiety color.
I've seen people have red backgrounds on their website. So things that people don't think of sometimes. You want people to stay on your site? You want them to read it? And if they don't like the way your site looks, let's be honest. Like they're gonna bounce out and go to somebody else. And now you lost that opportunity even though you're might be an incredible doctor and the nicest person on earth and so intelligent.
And thoughtful, that person is never going to know because they sadly judged you based on your website. And that's something people never think of. How easy is it for me to find what I'm looking for? If I have people I get super frustrated when they go to websites, even I, that I'm like, okay, I can't find I'm looking for, I'm going to go find another company.
It's easier to follow, even if they're not better, maybe that person was a better person or a better doctor, but I'm never going to know because unfortunately, people judge you on appearance, and that's sometimes people forget about that. And so I definitely would recommend when you're rebranding, think of it as a new brand, unless you're keeping your logo, that's fine, but you want everything fresh and new.
Like you don't want to bait build off of the old foundation. You want a clean, clear foundation to build your new brand fantastic information. Now for both of you, in terms of other things that might not have been covered yet, I want to ask are there any other thoughts about building a person's brand or nurturing that brand or growing the brand evolving the brand that we haven't touched on that you want to mention before we close?
So I have a question for Dr. Gupta real quick. So one question I often get is EMR. So I want to know her process of why she picked the EMR. She picked because I often have doctors that come and ask me and I normally give them the general one that everyone has picked. I know there's other ones out there, but what are some of the things like business line?
How did you know about your practice? Did you already know, when did you find your space? Because those are things doctors will ask me, even though I only do branding, they still ask me what other doctors have done. So I give them as much information that I have, but I'd like you to share since those are questions, I get asked EMR and physical space.
Yeah. Okay. And phone numbers and your phone number, like how did you go about picking that and what, was it a specific, an extra line? Was it like an online number? What did you do to really put everything together so you could run your business? So in my mind, I was trying to keep everything as ultra simple as possible, because as again, that line keep your overhead low was the best advice I'd ever gotten.
So I wanted everything to be streamlined and the fewer vendors, a fewer things I had to pay and spread out just logically seem to me to be in line with staying financially, really stringent in the beginning. So I use Atlas. I absolutely love it. I didn't look a lot at the other EMR because three years ago there weren't as many.
It is a little bit more old-school in the sense that I grew up. 30 years ago, hand writing H and PS pan writing every prescription handwriting, every single thing. So I don't really like the land of different bubbles for HPI in different bubbles. I like one big page and I can use macros and type the whole thing up.
So that lined up very well with me. Plus the billing is integrated faxing, not faxing, texting prescribing ordering labs. Everything is very easy. It's all one unit. So it worked well for me. One of the few drawbacks is it doesn't really have a good faxing a segment, but I combined that with Doximity, which is free.
And then I got my phone number is a free Google voice that drops directly to my. So that's all I have is the Google voice line is the patients call and it shows up in my phone. I label all the patients by first name, FF DPC. So if one of them's calling, I know it's Alex, FDPC, it's a patient calling.
It's not a telemarketer with a number I don't recognize. So that, that's how I set things up. I have internet only, I don't even have a phone line here TV line, nothing. So I kept it super, super lean. And that worked for me. And then when it came to the office space itself, that I knew that was going to be the biggest expense.
And I, if we have time I really want everybody in DPC to know this because it's important. I looked at several spaces, within driving distance from my house. And we actually had a sort of friend of a realtor who offered me a space in his building. And it was gonna be. 1200 square feet with a build-out and it kept saying, I only need eight or 900.
No, no, no, no. This is the smallest we have. We're going to love it. Blah, blah, blah. Come to find out that if I had, decided to lease there, I wouldn't, I would have been committing to a five-year lease. And if I defaulted or the practice failed, I would be on the hook, not only for five years worth of rent, but if I couldn't pay they would have been able to come after our personal finances.
I had no idea about this as a non-business person. Thankfully, we have a friend who's an MB MD MBA, and he was like a Mia get out of that, do not do it. He said, find the smallest space with the lowest over lowest rent and the shortest lease you can find. And I did. So this office is two years. It's a teeny bit bigger than what I need.
But the room I'm sitting in is actually the lounge, which is. My kids can come. If they are sick, if one of them can't go to school, they can be in this room the entire day and I'll be seeing patients out there. But it's a two year lease that I didn't know, build out. And I wanted to tell you one quick thing about that, but it's basically just the rent for the space.
So I really think that's one, one thing all DPC doctors have to don't do a build out, unless you share, you can afford it, get a small space, bringing all your furniture, you can buy everything. And then if you grow and you're happy, move on, then do the bigger thing. But this way, you're just not going to get, in a bad situation financially.
So the second caveat to that is I think all of us think that to make a place really visually appealing, you have to spend a lot of money. And you actually don't. And I learned this when I was in my first job, I worked in LA and I worked in a clinic in LA, which can be a rougher neighborhood.
And this clinic was mission style, brand new cream walls, red terracotta roof. When I walked into the lounge, there was pottery barn furniture. And so I said to the manager, why are you making this clinic so nice when you're going to be having homeless patients coming here? There are people who have TB and she said it doesn't cost any more to do it this way.
Why does it have to be ugly and functional? If you can spend the same money and make it visually appealing. And I always remembered that. And that is, I think what I strive for in my office, which is as Alex and I have talked about bringing the whole aesthetic and from your website, you don't have to spend a ton of money.
I got everything off of. Everything was discount. If a kid comes through and throws up or marks it all up, it's not an arm and a leg to buy it over again. And I think that as DPC doctors, you, we have this chance to make it your dream and just go for it, at whatever price point you can afford.
The other thing I wanted to show you real quick, I don't know if this will be taped, but or if this will be video or not, but I wanted to show you what Alex did. So this is, you can see my logo here. Sorry. It's backwards. So she gave me two versions. There's my son's knee. There's my daughter with a Teddy bear.
And then she gave me the other version, which is this logo, which is the colors flipped. And that is one of her strengths is she really gets it with color because every time like you can see there's a light purple and a dark. And so I've been able to take that to social media anywhere. And I'm like, what do I do?
What I put is borders. Oh yes. Alex gave me light purple, dark purple pick one of the purples. I still look at this, which is three years old. Every time I see my logo, I am happy every single time. I'm excited all over again. And it's been there for three years, so I can't thank her enough for everything he's done to complete my brand, but also the journey with her has been incredibly fun.
I consider Alex a friend and, I just know that we're going to be in each other's lives going forward.
Thank you so much for answering that one thing I wanted to touch on because just on, I want to pick up on the commercial aspect. I actually do a bunch of commercial leasing. I am a real estate agent in Houston, but I normally don't. I run two businesses if y'all want to know. But I do a lot of commercial leasing because it works really well with branding, honestly, because a lot of my clients, sometimes if they're local need space, but I've helped clients that I had to find in Florida where I pretty much told her how to negotiate her deal.
Of course, I don't even do it for money. I just do it because I'm like, I can't anyways on Florida. But my point is, if you guys have any questions about commercial space spaces and how to negotiate the deals, and one thing the reason they typically want you to do to three to five-year leases is because a, the landlord normally, or the owner's typically paying you the commission through that if I'm representing the tenant.
And they obviously want to make as much commission as possible, but I have landlords that here in Houston do one year leases too. So they're definitely out there. You just have to ask. And so if you do guys have, if you do have any questions about negotiating space, I will do that for my clients. I will help them out if they're looking for space while we're going through everything.
And I just give them some tips and I definitely always recommend finding a local agent to help you because most of the time will be free to you and they'll know how to negotiate on your behalf. Sometimes people don't know that so just use your resources there. And then one thing I wanted to mention was timeline on the website.
I kept wanting to mention, I kept forgetting. So just, if you're wanting to make a website, I've had people call me two months before the practice. And I'm like I don't know if I'm gonna be able to open get your site launched before, because it also depends how quickly the doctors get back to me and they get busy.
Cause sometimes they're transitioning between the clinic or maybe they're still working. And they're trying to now also open they're trying to everything in between on their free time. So sometimes they're tired and they don't have time to get back to me right away. So I would say, give yourself three.
To the west end. It really takes me eight to 10 weeks or 10 weeks. I say, to be comfortable depending how quickly cause I've noticed some of the doctors have taken 12 weeks for us to get their site launch. So think about that. When you're thinking about wanting to open this or be kind to your designer that you do decide to hire because we can't just throw it up overnight.
I mean, There is a process, the way we work, we typically do your logo. It takes about seven to 10 business days or about seven to 10 days, some 10 business days. From there we do the copywriting, which can take a month, believe it or not because the copy is one of the most important things. Plus the doctors read it, you guys make your edits.
We use this thing called edit space so you can actually make the edits and the copywriter gets it directly and can go in through the space now. So all to say. Keep those things in mind, because sometimes the copy is what takes the most time. I've noticed the logo. Typically we get through pretty quickly within the first two weeks.
Business cards don't take that long. Either. Most of the time doctors have waited till the end to do the business cards. Cause they don't have a location sometimes, and they don't want me to design it until they have the location. And then from there I can't design the website without the copy. And I designed different than other designers.
Some designers decide where they're gonna put texts, but I designed backwards. So I want to see all the content you decided you wanted on your website and then I make the site fit your content. I do always tell people this up front when we have the discovery call, but even then just to keep that in mind, that's my personal process.
Other designers can be different, but do note that the copywriting could take awhile and we included in our branding package. It just makes it easier for everyone. It makes it easier for us because we're not waiting for you to give it to us. And it makes it easier for the doctor. A lot of the doctors that I've worked with recently have not left their third jobs yet they're still in transition or they've put their 90 day notice in.
And so while they're still working during the day or night or whatever their schedule is, they're also trying to work with me. So keep that in mind, give yourself the flexibility as well. Not to stress yourself out, trying to get this all together and launched for the brand. This has been so educational guys, and I know that there are a bunch of people who are going to be watching the recording for those who couldn't make it today, I'm in lifetime, but I definitely would say for websites again Dr.
Gupta email@example.com and Alex's at care id.us. So if you have any questions, absolutely feel free to contact them as well. And then Alex is putting together a handout that is going to be accessible with the recording. The things that she had mentioned already are four core things to get started.
When you're thinking about branding, as well as what questions should you be aware of or think about when you're interviewing a person who you're wanting to work with on your design or your brand, so that will be available with the recording. It's been great. Thank you guys so much for joining us today. And again, you know where to contact Alex and Dr. Gupta afterwards. Have a great day.
*Transcript generated by AI so please forgive errors.