Paul Gough

Free Marketing Plan Road Map for Physical Therapy Clinic Owners
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Addressing the Missed Opportunities That are Costing You Leads

Today, the focus is on Google Ad call extensions and addressing ‘wrong number’ callers and how important it is for your company and your services to be getting calls from Google Ads, as well as the importance of changing your mindset regarding calls coming into the business. 

Call Extension Ads 

You can add phone numbers to your Google Ads through Call Extension Ads, which can significantly increase calls to the business, promote customer engagement and secure an increase in leads.  

When your call extensions appear, when people are searching for your products, people can tap or click a button to call your business directly. That means more customer engagement with your ads and more chances for you to get and then track conversions. 

The calls from Google Ads can come from several different channels: the call extension will appear directly on your ad so the customer can click the call button, the customer can click through to your website / landing page and press the call button or on your Google My Business page. The customer can also write your number down from the ad and call manually. All options will be tracked and recorded as long as the call tracking is set up to register these as a call conversion. 

Wrong Number Callers 

As part of the Google team, I am heavily involved in the mechanics behind the ads, servicing and optimizing the ad campaigns to generate more calls and leads for client campaigns. As a result, I am in a great position to see the bigger picture. 

As an account manager, one of the main topics of conversation with clients is the fact that they are getting ‘wrong calls’ from their Google Ad call extensions, calls for other clinics or competitors in the area, and are frustrated.  

I hear “we are paying for advertising for someone else”, and “my Google Ads are not working properly”. Then there’s the most recent recurring of “I’ve had 32 calls this month and 50% were wrong callers!” or “I’ve had 3 customers that have converted off phone call leads, but I’ve had 9 wrong callers or customers I couldn’t convert.”  

So let that sink in for a moment: 32 calls with 50% ‘negative’ – so 50% were positive! And 3 calls converted into paying customers with X amount of lifetime value, but there were a lot of wrong callers too… 

The recurring theme that the clients in question focused on, and can continue to do so, were the negative aspects. This is incredibly easy to do because the general default human brain reaction is to focus on the negative. If I said “I can get you 32 phone calls in a month to your clinic for just $38”, I’m pretty sure you would snap my hand off! 

Mindset Change 

Speaking to the clients I first broke down the numbers and we found that 32-click calls to the clinic had cost $38. That’s $38 to send 32 potential clients to call you and, of those, 50% were really good calls with conversions. Also 3 converted customers with lifetime value for a similar amount. 

Yes, the client ad budget spend is greater over the month, but clients were getting a significant ROI on the ad append with the converted customers.  

Looking from a positive angle changes your mindset and thinking. It isn’t about focusing on what’s not working well, it’s about shifting that focus to what’s working well. 

Imagine your clinic and website as a retail shop, effectively you are selling a service to a customer. Google Ads and call extensions put your services in front of customers.  

Not every customer who visits your shop is going to buy something, they may be just browsing, they may come back and buy at a later date – or they may be tempted by another shop down the road. The point is you won’t win them all and with the customers that are showing an interest in buying or have bought from you, focus on those wins and the positive results. 

Why Do I Get Wrong Calls? 

There are a few reasons, but the main one is that we get your ads in a prominent position at the top of Google searches, so when people search for ‘Physiotherapy near me’ your ad is right in front of them. Most wrong callers have been speaking to a PT competitor recently and used Google to search for them.  

As the customers come back and search again for the clinic they have been dealing with initially, they see your ad at the top of the search results and think because they have spoken to a particular clinic before, that Google will remember this and put that clinic at the top of the organic results again.  

As they are using a phone, the text and font are smaller and they click on the first ad they see which says physiotherapy, assuming it to be the right clinic. Listening to the call recordings and feedback from clients, it is mainly the older generation who are mixed up with the process and treating Google search like ‘redial last caller’ on a phone menu. 

How Can We Stop It? 

Ultimately we can’t account for human error or technological user inferiority.  

We add competitor company names as negative search terms to stop your ads from appearing as much when competitor names are searched for, but when people search for ‘physiotherapy near me’, and its multiple search term combinations, those are the searches we want your company to appear for. It’s a constant process of updating and optimizing accounts to maximize opportunities. 

As a clinic owner, you must do the same. Remember it’s our job to use Google data to optimize your Google Ads account to get you in front of these potential clients, but even Google can’t tell if it’s a wrong caller, it uses the targeting demographics we put in and serves them up. 

How Can I Help as a Clinic Owner? 

Often as I am listening to the phone leads there are many missed calls and calls to answering machines. 

I understand the limitations in answering the call on its first ring (no front desk, front desk busy, PT busy), it is hard to convert a potential client who has done their research and phoned for advice or an appointment, only for the phone to ring for ages and or an extremely long answering message at the end. 

They normally have gone and rang a different clinic to get what they need. These calls are like gold dust and should be treated as such. Answer a call on the first ring if possible but, if not, have a short but sweet answering machine message that resonates with them. Those potential leads must be rung back as quickly as possible. 

The answer message needs to be 15 seconds maximum, as by the time that has finished the customer has been on the phone including the ring for 30-45 seconds and is getting fed up.

Remember the retail shop analogy: if you have gone to a shop to potentially buy something and the assistant is busy with someone else, is unable to answer your query, is unable to tell you if a product is in stock or its availability, that customer will go to another shop. If the customer experience isn’t great they won’t buy or ever come back. 

Having a good front desk who asks the right questions to potential clients as they ring is essential. If the customer is in the first stage of the journey and hasn’t signed up with anyone yet, you may be able to turn them to your clinic with some world-class customer service. This may be the 3rd call this week asking for a different clinic but always treat each call as an opportunity. 

You will always get the wrong callers, it’s how you handle them that counts. Do you prefer a steady stream of targeted potential customers ringing up and getting some wrong numbers in that mix, or that the phone just doesn’t ring at all? 


If you’re not getting results from your online campaigns or don’t know if your campaigns are truly successful, click the link below for a free appraisal at link to google ads audit.

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