In this blog, WebHealer – a supplier of websites to members of therapy associations – share their tips on using the web to attract more clients using their unique approach, AIDAN.
Understanding the weakest link
AIDAN is a method of achieving great results from a therapy website, developed and refined by WebHealer over the last 15 years. It is based on the classic sales and marketing system AIDA. Our five stage version has been tailored for the web and for therapy websites in particular. It is not a single quick fix solution as no such formula exists. In fact an important first level of understanding with any approach like this is that to achieve success you can’t be blinkered looking just in one area alone. For example, many customers understandably become very focused on Google position.
Whilst this is important, on closer inspection it may be that Google ranking or visitor numbers are not major weaknesses for them. Their website may be attracting a lot of visits but first impressions are off-putting and so focusing on a better first impression will do the most good. We all have limited time, and so an understanding of the linked stages which lead to enquirers is critical. It allows you to focus on the weak link that will produce the most benefit for you.
What is AIDAN?
It starts with gaining attention, but not just of anyone. You need to attract the right people to visit your website. Only then do you have a chance to communicate a relevant message to them. Google is an ideal channel to attract people interested in what you offer, but just as important now is social media as well as good old word of mouth.
As a therapist your website’s first impression must be of integrity, and this starts with the basics, like checking for typos and poor quality images. Resist the temptation to include that funny animated frog you found online! A membership logo of your professional association will make a better impression. You may be a dedicated professional who doesn’t take themselves too seriously, but you only get one chance at a first impression. You also need to be mobile friendly – you will not convey integrity if your website looks broken on a mobile phone.
A positive first impression gives you the chance to engage your visitor’s attention, and a good indicator of this is dwell time. It answers the question “do my visitors like what they are reading?” The reason we use the more technical term dwell time is that it can be measured in terms of the minutes and seconds a visitor spends on your website. More is better! Increase this time by writing engaging content, genuine testimonials or perhaps a blog.
Ultimately you hope your visitor will take some form of action. Pre-internet this meant picking up the phone and making an appointment but there are now many more ways you can connect with a potential client. Remember, they may not be quite ready to see you but you can still establish a relationship for the future. They may follow you on Twitter or sign up to a newsletter for example. Think about how you can increase these options to connect.
Unlike a printed flyer your website is always work in progress, and by regularly reviewing performance across the prior four steps of AIDAN, you can nurture and improve your internet presence. Another perspective on nurture is that you can nurture your relationships with clients and potential clients. If you have a good Twitter following or several email newsletter subscribers you can invest time in those communications.
How well are you doing?
At WebHealer we build AIDAN into our customer service training and processes and into our customer’s website functionality, but you can use AIDAN by yourself. If you are looking to improve your website, why not take stock of how well you think you are doing in each area, and use it as a basis for your plans?
This article is based on the WebHealer eBook “Using the Web to Attract More Clients”, which has just had a major revision. If you would like to download the full eBook, visit http://www.webhealer.net