President’s Letter

RiekemanEighteen percent. Just 18 percent is what they tell us a product, service or idea needs in market penetration to create a shift in the culture. In short, this TIPPING POINT is the phenomenon needed to make the impossible the normal, to make the unbelievable the status quo, to make Chiropractic a household norm. Not likely, you say? I’ve seen it happen in my lifetime. Some of you remember when they allowed smoking on airplanes, regardless of the passionate objections/complaints of many of us. Airline execs attempted to placate us by offering a “No Smoking” section or row, but it’s laughable today to think you could contain cigarette smoke at some arbitrary row and protect the non-smokers from the smell and health risks. And then, as if some corporate executive had a stroke of conscience, one day I show up at the airport and they’ve outlawed smoking—and it wasn’t just one airline trying to grab some market share with a novel approach, they had all outlawed smoking. Did we hit a tipping point? Was the theoretical model actually real? The answer is yes.

Now comes a new and different approach to health care based on personal responsibility, regular neurological care and a vitalistic world view of life as a self-developing, self-adapting and self-healing process … CHIROPRACTIC. I’ve heard varying numbers of utilization of Chiropractic ranging from 7 percent to 15 percent. Some Canadian provinces tout a 23 percent market share. It’s hard to get any real legitimate social research on this. Regardless of the actual number, the fact that there are so many chiropractic interactions that vary in scope and intent means that the percentages to be applied to that magical 18 percent would be diminished. At least the non-smokers all had one message and a single intent … a far cry from our identity as a profession. So, what do we need to do to hit 18 percent?

A common goal and patient experience would be a big help, but let’s set that mammoth task aside for a minute. A film came out last March entitled “Kony 2012.” The purpose was to expose the world’s No. 1 war criminal and the horrendous acts of brutality he perpetuated on young African children. The expectation was to put public pressure on governments like the United States to use their vast resources to stop this guy. The film, which was posted on Facebook, was viewed by 105 million people within a 12-week time span. There’s a model for us to follow here, but don’t be misled; while the film was well done, the group responsible for it, Invisible Children, had spent 12 years building a network so that when the film was produced, it spread rapidly. WE NEED TO BULID THE NETWORK FOR CHIROPRACTIC. How?

Set a computer or iPad up at your front desk and open it to your Facebook page. When people come in, have them LIKE your page. You now have a network of interested patients. Next, go to LIFE’s Facebook page and LIKE our page (while you’re at it, go to Guy F. Riekeman, D.C., and LIKE my Fan Page). That means you will get all the cool stuff we produce daily and if you choose, with the press of a button you can send it to your network of patients … FREE. You do the math … say, 5,000 chiropractors with 1,000 patients each over the next 3−5 years equals 5 million people who will share some of what you send them with their networks (let’s say an average of just 10 friends) and we just jumped to 50 million people. Within the next few years, Life U will be producing our “KONY” … if we have the network built, we get ever closer to 18 percent and the world, our world, your world changes. Wanna play in that game?