A few years ago, I was the patient of a pretty amazing chiropractor (let’s call him Gus).
Gus was a deeply caring sort who taught me exercises to help myself and incorporated a machine I’ve never seen (before or since) that worked wonders on my aching back.
As we got to know each other, he gradually explained the challenges in growing his business—some were related to the abysmal insurance reimbursement rates, but most had to do with keeping a steady stream of high paying clients.
He was frustrated with last minute cancellations and no-shows, not to mention continued pressure on his per-treatment fees.
Then one day while waiting in his office, I was shocked to recognize someone I’d seen in the news—a world class sprinter who had just won a major event.
Turns out, my modest chiropractor had a specialty in treating runners. And not just any runners, but Olympic contenders.
Gus had a small but pivotal sub-practice of professional athletes.
It had come out of work he’d done on injury recovery for body-builders (he was one himself) who wanted less pain and more mobility without drugs.
He not only was studying everything he could find, he was experimenting with new ideas and treatments. His book was almost done and he had a small fan club clamoring for it.
Yet here he was, being nickel and dimed by people who just wanted any old chiropractor, not a master of athletic performance.
The solution seemed obvious—why not double down on the Olympic experience?
Gus already had a high-visibility profile in a small niche—his athletes referred their peers to him when they were in town.
But at that point, it wasn’t enough to allow him to shift his focus entirely and still pay the bills.
So after some soul searching and research, he decided to focus on weekend warriors, of whom there are many in his local service area. Think highly motivated, mostly runners or triathletes with deep pockets from their day job.
Of course they’d be thrilled to be treated by an Olympic-level pro.
Of course they understand that costs a lot more than garden-variety chiropractic treatment.
And of course they want more than just chiropractic work.
So after building some momentum with his new niche
, he decided to expand his revenue model. He found himself an equity partner and built out a specialized gym and performance studio.
He brought in specialists who are hyper-qualified and buy into his worldview. He makes money (leverage) when they work and his clients get to rub elbows with others as focused as they are.
And he no longer accepts insurance.
“But I don’t have Olympic clients”, you say.
Ah, but you do.
Somewhere in the clients and audience you love to serve is your version of his Olympians: the people who you help transform into winners.
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