Mrs Happy and I went to a local home and garden show this weekend selling everything from landscape rocks to raised garden beds. The place was packed full of landscapers, home builders and windows, siding and roofing contractors peddling their goods. Oh yeah, guess who else decided to show up? The chiropractors. That's right. A whole slew of chiropractors could be seen hobnobbing with the underground pool contractors and the guy selling lawn furniture made of recycled milk jugs.
I'll tell you why. Chiropractic marketing has infiltrated the public psyche as the people's doctor. They do things the public can understand. They touch you. They man-ip-u-late you. The public doesn't understand nor care much about the science. They care about the presentation of the science, or pseudoscience. Chiropractors have learned the marketing skills to make you want you to pay them cash for their doctoring skills. They have gained the respect of a nation for their healing hands because their marketing techniques make you feel good about who you are.
Chiropractors are aggressive public marketeers. Not only are they at every trade show and State Fair, I also see their advertising strategies all over radio, television and newspaper platforms. That's just not something you will see your local primary care doctor engage in, unless they too are selling you good feelings or plastic surgery.
Chiropractic marketing is all about making you feel good. Just as sex sells, so does the image of chiropractic as a positive life force. It's all about positive thinking. It's about wellness. That's the new buzzword these days in. Everything is now about wellness. Doctors of chiropractic can charge hundreds of dollars in cash for their ability to make the public feel good about themselves. Because the public loves feeling good.
But what about the doctors of medicine? What happened to their marketing skills? They need to learn a tip or two from their colleagues in manipulation. Do they offer wellness? Do they offer feelings of success and satisfaction? Well, for the most part, doctors offer scientific reality. Physician marketing strategies aren't anything like this. They deal with illness. They deal with problems that can't be cured by magic zappers and expensive vitamins. When the public goes to their doctor of medicine, they expect to hear how badly they are doing with their weight or with their diabetes or with their smoking. They expect to be told they are doing things all wrong.
And that's where doctors of medicine have failed the marketing success of doctors of chiropractic care. There's a reason why doctors of medicine don't set up booths at home and garden shows that have been infiltrated by chiropractors. It's because the public doesn't want to hear the truth about their disease process. They would rather just feel good. And ultimately, that's what the public is willing to pay cash for. And that's the economic lesson that doctors of medicine can learn from their doctor of chiropractic colleagues.
Chiropractors promise you wellness. But here's a dirty little secret. You don't have to pay a chiropractor for wellness. Wellness is achieved by your actions. Wellness is achieved by the lifestyle you live. For the most part, it's free. Chiropractors can't practice medicine. So they practice wellness. I consider the chiropractic marketing techniques to be one of the greatest public marketing coup's of the last 100 years. A campaign that has been built around the positive aspects of our human existence rather than the negative aspects of disease management. And because chiropractic marketing sells positive excitement, the public is willing to pay an arm and a leg for the chance to feel good again.
Unfortunately, the electric zap gun won't cure your diabetes. It won't make your cholesterol any better. It won't keep you from getting pneumonia. But it will make you believe in yourself. It will make you feel like a million dollars and that's why it's worth a couple hundred. As for medical doctors? Often times, medical doctor's have little in the way of hope and excitement to offer their patients. Death and disease have a way of crashing the wellness parade.
Chiropractic marketing has cornered the public's limited attention span by laying claim to the wellness phenomenon sweeping this country. I consider it right up there with the push to limit global warming, the push for renewable energy sources, the push to recycle and the push to be natural in everything we do in our lives. It seems like every chiropractor's trade show banner presents their mission as one of wellness. They don't treat illness. They promote wellness. And they do that by zapping your back with magic electricity guns, massage chairs and thousands of dollars worth of expensive natural plant based vitamins to make you high on life.
For medical doctors, what was once considered a noble profession is now vilified in the press. What was once considered an honor to serve is now considered a right to be taken. For chiropractors, their ability to market themselves as the people's doctor using a positive platform of wellness and hope has been nothing less than genius. They have cornered the market on feeling good. And for those efforts I congratulate them. Now, if we could only find away to make death and disease glamorous, us medical doctors might be on to something big.
Consider this chiropractic ecard as a summary of the issues here.
This post is for entertainment purposes only and likely contains humor only understood by those in a healthcare profession. Read at your own risk.