The Access Strategy: Attracting Patients Using Sports Medicine and Performance

The health care market has never been more competitive.

Health systems vie for clients and market share on a daily basis. This is a market where you have to either play smarter or prepare to spend millions in the quest for success. A few systems have discovered a competitive advantage that leverages demographic trends rather than large marketing budgets. This advantage is known as the “Access Strategy”.

 It starts with a simple premise. It is easier to capture new clients looking for you than searching for new consumers who are not.

Today, over half of internet users look for information about exercise and fitness online. These active adults and young athletes want to improve their state of health and level of human performance. Typically, consumers don’t look for a health system when they’re healthy. However, select health systems have responded to these trends by creating an attractive access point for active consumers to find them.

In response to these eager clients of sports and fitness services, systems have expanded orthopedic-centric sports medicine practices to include service offerings in performance medicine, performance rehabilitation, performance training, nutrition and sports psychology. Systems that provide these services now offer exactly what active adults and athletes are looking for: a way to be as healthy and successful as they can be.

Sports clients often end up using a system’s imaging, rehabilitation, neurology and wellness programs. They even become primary care clients. Once clients have accessed a health system through the attractive portal of sports, they can be converted into clients of every service offered by a health system.

Thirty years ago, sports medicine and sports performance may have been considered niches inside larger health systems. However, today, leveraging the power of the Access Strategy, sports practices can become strong drivers of patient traffic across entire health systems. In times of constrained marketing budgets, health systems cannot afford to overlook this potent strategy.