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!

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#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.

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#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

Acupuncture Website Design Elements to Boost Your Online Marketing

May 23, 2009 by  
Filed under Acupuncture Websites

Acupuncture Website Design Elements Can Make or BREAK Your Online Marketing

Acupuncture Website Design Elements Can Make or BREAK Your Online Marketing

The first live web class on Acupuncture Design Elements to Boost Your Online Marketing is now available for viewing by anyone who purchased (or purchases) the Complementary and Alternative Marketing Ebook.

I also created a 30+ page document of type written notes along with the slides (and a few additional ones not in the webinar) to go along with the recording. This should make your learning curve much easier than mine ever was! My goal is to get you and your business online as soon as possible.

If you are a student and think it is too early to start a website, think again! (If a 14 year old can build an online business just by writing about what she loves, then you certainly can too!)

The reason I recommend Site Build It so highly is because it provides you with an education in business and marketing at the same time that it teaches you how to build your website. Also, it solves all your techie and design questions, like “where should I host my website?”, “how do I choose and buy a domain name?”, and “how do I have access to free acupuncture website templates?”. Site Build It is an all-in-one software package that fits the needs of service-based, self-employed business owners who are trying to figure out the online marketing puzzle.

Those of you who know me, know that I am VERY biased about Site Build It (because it works!), but I DO realize that it is not for everyone. So I have researched other software companies and people who offer value-based website services, especially to acupuncturists. Below is a list of my top picks. Be sure to do your own research and evaluate a website package based on your needs, time commitment, budget, and goals.

Regardless of which website software package to decide to utilize, be sure to include the acupuncture website design elements I share in this web class. The common mistakes that I see in most acupuncturists make with their website can be easily remedied.  And if the mistakes are NOT fixed, it can cause your business website to be a useless money pit (especially if you hire a pricey web designer.)

In the web class, I highlight three actual acupuncture websites plus one that I added to the ebook that is not in the video (provided by courageous volunteers), and I give tips and steps for them to improve their website’s function as a marketing tool.  These improvements will lay the groundwork for the next two web classes on “The Secret to Online Income”.

If you would like to have access to this webinar recording and the type-written notes, as well as all future webinars, all you have to do is purchase my ebook, which lays the foundation for how to maximize the marketing potential of your acupuncture website.  To learn more and purchase “Complementary and Alternative Marketing”, CLICK HERE and read my letter where I detail everything about the ebook.

** UPDATE: Be sure to read my article, How to Attract More Patients With Your Acupuncture Website where I provide you with specific design elements to boost your site’s traffic and improve the usability for your web visitors.