A WordPress Blog for Your Acupuncture Business Website?

November 28, 2009 by  
Filed under Acupuncture Websites

WordPress Post

Acupuncture Business Blog??

One of the most frequently asked questions I receive is, Can I use a WordPress blog for my business website?

It’s an understandable question given that I write about how acupuncturists, or any self-employed business owner, can benefit from Site Build It’s affordable website building software.  (Especially since they announced their new “Recession Buster” special of $29.99 per month.)

But WordPress is FREE blogging software, so why have I not specifically recommended it to acupuncturists to use as their business website?  It’s a fair question!   I mean, if you are on a budget (and you should be!) who wouldn’t want a free Internet marketing platform for their business?

Unless… there’s a catch.

Is there a catch?

Okay, so what’s the catch?!

All right, hang on.  I promise to answer your questions and put you at ease so that you can make a very informed decision.  I really want you to understand what’s at stake here and why you definitely do NOT want to jump into a blog without understanding one very crucial piece of the “free” WordPress blog puzzle.

Let me explain a little bit about how I know so much about WordPress.

Ever since I wrote the book, “Complementary and Alternative Marketing: How to Attract New Patients, Market Your Practice, and Generate Passive Income With Your Acupuncture Website”, acupuncturists have been asking me if the easy marketing methods I describe can be applied to a WordPress blog.

I use and promote web building software by Site Build It, mostly because you get incredible training in marketing at the same time that you learn how to create a website.  And since most acupuncturists never receive any training in marketing from their acupuncture college, this education can be a practice saving benefit.  (It was for me!)

But I also understand that Site Build It’s step-by-step website building program is not for everyone. Let’s face it, it’s a lot of work to develop a business plan and learn marketing at the same time that you are creating a website. I know that you want to be an acupuncturist, not a web designer. I get it!

Which is why I personally investigated other methods of acupuncture business website creation, including the free WordPress blogs that are so attractive. (Hey, in case you haven’t noticed, you are reading this article on my WordPress blog!  But it is also connect to my Site Build It website, Insights-For-Acupuncturists.com for a very good reason.  But that’s another story.)

So What’s the Deal With WordPress?

Here’s the deal with WordPress. (Drumroll!)

YES! you can absolutely apply my marketing strategies and passive income generation to a WordPress blog, BUT here’s the catch:  BE SURE TO PAY FOR YOUR OWN HOSTING.

Do NOT use the free WordPress blog available through wordpress.COM where they give you a domain name.

Instead use the free WordPress blog available through wordpress.ORG and purchase your own domain name.

The reason is because since WordPress is hosting the site and absorbing those (minimal) costs, they actually own your domain name and the ‘real estate’ on which your material resides. They can pull down your business blog any time they want for any reason they want. This is true of any free blogging sites, such as those by GoDaddy, Google, Yahoo, and the thousands of other companies offering free blogs and websites.

If WordPress decides they do not like your content or subject matter they can simply delete your entire blog. POOF! It’s gone!  Although WordPress has not censored any acupuncturists to my knowledge, they have removed other blogs from other businesses without any warning or explanation. And they have every right to do it because they are paying for the hosting!

This is the equivalent of you renting an apartment and the landlord changing the terms of your lease. Landlords hold all the cards and you have to comply or move out. Sure, you can take your furniture, but where are you going to put it? You need your own web “real estate” and domain name to ensure that you are in control of your business.

Instead of using wordpress.com, go ahead and get a wordpress blog through wordpress.org (which is still free) and pay for the hosting yourself.

I use and recommend the “Baby Plan” through Hostgator, which you can look at here:

Just click on ‘Web Hosting’ and select the ‘Baby’. You can also start with the ‘Hatchling’ and upgrade to Baby when you are doing more income generation and need some of the features that will facilitate that.

The Baby plan costs $7.95 a month and it is well worth it to own your blog, which means you own your business. Plus Hostgator gives you unlimited hosting so you can get a bunch of other WordPress blogs (through wordpress.org for free) and host them through Hostgator without any additional costs. That’s what I do! Here are some of the other WordPress blogs I have hosted through Hostgator:

You may notice that they all look similar, but that’s just because I like this particular ‘theme’ (design).  There are lots of affordable designs to choose from or you can use the free themes provided by WordPress. (Check out a large selection of functional WordPress themes by Brian Gardner.)

3 Awesome WordPress Resources to Help You Set Up Your Acupuncture Business Blog

Here are 3 awesome WordPress Resources to help you get started.

You may need a little help with the initial set up of your acupuncture business blog (which is why I recommend the easy to follow video tutorials, below). If you have a geeky friend who can help you, this is the time to ask for it. (I LOVE my geeky friends!) Just be sure that you learn how to create your own posts so you can add content. In other words, do not turn everything over to your geeky friends unless they are going to teach you how to use the blog yourself.

#1 WordPress Resource: Burton Kent’s Acupuncture Clinic Websites. Burton Kent, author of, Never Market Again, has a company that builds acupuncture websites for practitioners using WordPress. He sets them up using all the practical applications that are important for a functional business website. Plus he has added some incredible features that are specific to acupuncturists and solo-based providers.

However, Burton makes it very clear that he is not a fan of generating passive income through your acupuncture site. It’s not that he is against it, but he’s not sure it is worth your time. I, on the other hand, believe that passive income generation through your blog is so easy that it is a no brainer! So setting up your income generation is something you need to do on your own (which I recommend anyway and it’s why I have #2 WordPress Resource below).

Burton Ken’ts set-up fees are very reasonable and you will not find better support for acupuncturists.

You can learn more about his website packages here:

http://www.insights-for-acupuncturists.com/burtons-webspecial

Please let Burton know that I referred you!

================================

#2 WordPress Resource: Step-by-step WordPress Tutorials. I HIGHLY recommend these WordPress training tutorials because they are:

  1. Easy to understand
  2. Affordable
  3. Focus on how to maximize your income generation through your website

If you are using Burton Kent’s website package these are the perfect tutorials to help you set up your methods of passive income generation with easy-to-use ‘plugins’ and instructions.

Learn more about Step-by-step WordPress training here:

http://www.empoweredbusinessentrepreneurs.com/wordpress-step-by-step

This guy really knows his stuff and he over-delivers with helpful tips. The video instructions are clear. If you plan on incorporating a way to generate income through your blog, then these training tutorials are a must.

================================

#3 WordPress Resource: Educational marketing with your blog. Another option is a service provided by Charles Heflin, who is a WordPress guru and traffic generation genius. If you like the look of moving graphics and are willing to pay extra for the set up, then check him out.

His personal philosophy is geared towards supporting businesses that create quality content and his services are especially appropriate if you are a practitioner who really wants to advance your practice through educational marketing using article writing, video posts, and social media connections like Facebook and Twitter, and bookmarking sites like Digg, StumbleUpon, Reddit etc. This is a great way to elicit interaction and develop a strong socially driven following. You can get started from the gitgo with a powerful WordPress site for your clinical practice that is perfect for monetization and attracting the right patients, customers, and visitors to you.

Learn more about Charles Heflin’s WordPress set up services here:

http://www.empoweredbusinessentrepreneurs.com/wordpress-services

This WordPress package comes with many extra bells and whistles to help you with traffic generation and instructions on how to continue to develop your site. I am currently using his Content Syndication services and I can tell you firsthand that they are POWERFUL!

Learn more about Content Syndication here:

http://www.empoweredbusinessentrepreneurs.com/synnd

All three of these WordPress resources can be used individually or combined, so do not limit yourself to just one.

If you have any questions feel free to Speak Your Mind in the box below and I will be happy to provide answers.

Your success matters to me!

Lisa Hanfileti, LAc
Insights-For-Acupuncturists.com

How List Building and Database Management Can Grow Your Acupuncture Business

September 20, 2009 by  
Filed under Acupuncture Websites

List Building and Database Management Ebook

List Building and Database Management Ebook

What does list building and database management have to do with using your business website to generate new patients, clients, and customers? The answer in a word is, EVERYTHING!

Years ago, when I was just starting my acupuncturist career I was only focused on providing quality care to my patients and nothing else.  I can tell you firsthand that the last thing on my mind was something as boring and seemingly unrelated to patient care as “website lists” and “databases”.  Yuk!

What I did not realize back then that I know now is that learning a few simple things about building a list through my business website is the key to providing quality care to my current patients, as well as to potential new patients, clients and customers.

And — get this — even providing care to (and earning money from) people who never even walk through my acupuncture clinic doors!

Building a list through your website can change your entire acupuncture practice and generate significant passive income.

But how?  In order to understand how important building a list is and how it can be utilized to bring additional revenue into your business, let’s start with the basics.

What is a “List”?

If you read my last blog post on Website Design Elements For Acupuncturists then you learned the importance of having specific places on your website that entice interaction with your website visitor.   These can be as simple as a place to subscribe to your newsletter or opt-in to receive a free report about Chinese herbs, acupuncture, or any healing method you have special knowledge about.

You create your list by exchanging something of value (e.g. your newsletter or special report) for your web visitors name and email address.  Once you receive their name and email address, they become a member of your “List”.  There, that’s not so hard!

Here is the significance of your List.  By subscribing to YOUR information they are telling you that they are interested in:

  • YOU – as an expert and a practitioner
  • CHINESE MEDICINE – and all the other topics in your newsletter or report
  • HEALING – for themselves and perhaps even others
  • PARTICIPATING IN THEIR HEALTH CARE – they are actively searching for solutions.

When someone joins your list through your website they are telling you that they want more information from you and may even want to become your new patient!  In business terms, they are very qualified “leads” or “prospects” for you to follow up with and offer more information about the services you provide.

List Building is Easy... and Essential.

List Building is Easy... and Essential.

Your list is the equivalent of having patients lined up at your acupuncture clinic door.  Honestly, the people on your list are even more qualified (and by ‘more qualified’, I mean more likely to become your patient or purchase your products) than someone who found you in the Yellow Pages.

Why?  Because people do not give up their email addresses easily.  To give you their contact information, they must have likely scrutinized the information on your website and educated themselves about you before making the decision to trade their email address for your expert information.

What is List (or Database) Management?

Your list of interested subscribers and potential patients is only as good as your management of  — or relationship with — those people.  You must follow up on a consistent basis to continue to develop your relationship with them.

There are many easy, effective, safe, and legal methods of maintaining contact with the people on your list.  I go over the best methods for acupuncturists and include the best time-saving tools in my video and ebook bonus series included with my ebook,

“Complementary and Alternative Marketing:  How to Attract New Patients, Market Your Practice, and Earn Passive Income With Your Acupuncture Website” – CLICK HERE

I can only sit and wonder how much income I lost by not starting to build my list earlier!  I was in practice for over 7 years before I started learning how to build relationships with my website.  Now it is one of the easiest and most economical ways to attract new patients and even earn significant income from people who never walk through my doors.  (I will cover more on that in my next post on Affiliate income.)

Please do not make the same mistakes I did. By learning some very simple steps and using affordable tools you can use your acupuncture website to create a virtual line of patients standing outside your clinic doors!

Click Here to read more about my book and the bonus video recordings here.

Your success matters to me.

Peace,

Lisa Hanfileti, LAc

Insights-for-Acupuncturists.com

P.S. Look for my next post on, “Affiliate Marketing With Your Acupuncture Website”.  Once you understand the power of affiliate marketing your whole life will change!  I show you exactly how you can begin earning money TODAY (even without a website) using affiliate marketing techniques.  What you learn in this webinar is your key to earning passive income through your acupuncture website for the rest of your acupuncture career and beyond.