Creating the Ultimate Physical Therapy Experience: Step 1, Drive Value

“How do I convince my patients that the service I deliver is worth the price?” This is a question we often hear from physical therapists who want to rely less on insurance and more on the cash value of their time.

The first step in answering this question is to fully understand the difference between value and price. They aren’t necessarily one and the same.

Warren Buffett once said, “Price is what you pay. Value is what you get.”

The definition of price is simple. It’s the dollar amount you pay for a product or service.

Value, on the other hand, is a far more complex concept. It's one of those words we use in many different contexts, from ethics and economics, to human relationships.

In this 5-step blog series, I will explain how each step of the physical therapy process can build value and lead your clients to become brand champions, ultimately driving new business into your clinic.

PERCEPTION SHAPES VALUE defines marketing value as “the extent to which a good or service is perceived by its customer to meet his or her needs or wants, measured by the customer’s willingness to pay for it.”

The key takeaway from this definition is that a primary driver of value is the customer’s perception.

But how do you shape perception in a service industry like physical therapy? After all, your clients don’t walk away with a television, a computer, or some other product that proves they received something tangible for their money. Instead, they get a clinical outcome.


Successful businesses create value throughout the entire customer journey. The total value calculated in a client’s mind (i.e., perceived value) is actually the result of a series of smaller experiences that occurs before, during, and after the physical therapy treatment. This perception is shaped from the time they first discover your clinic (online, word-of-mouth, etc.) to the time they are discharged into a post-rehab wellness program.

Every single experience, no matter how small, must achieve two goals: it must be positive, and it must be impressive. Each encounter reinforces and builds upon the one that preceded it. This sequential process continues to gain momentum until the client receives the final desired result. Value then becomes the sum of all experiences and outcomes.

Pay attention to every single detail. If just one experience misses the mark (a dated website, rude front desk staff, etc.), the perceived value of your clinic suffers. You could possibly even lose the customer forever and/or receive negative online reviews that never truly go away. In fact, according to a poll conducted by NewVoiceMedia, more than half of all people switch to a different business as a result of poor customer service.

If you consistently deliver positive experiences with superior outcomes, the customer will perceive the value of your services to be equal to, if not greater than, the price you actually charge.

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When the customers' perception of your value is higher than the price they paid, you have successfully exceeded their expectations. Happy customers tend to share these positive experiences with others. They essentially become your brand ambassadors, creating a powerful, cascading effect that can dramatically accelerate the growth of your business.

Here's what happens when your value exceeds your price:

1. Enthusiastic customers tell others about their experience

2. More customers translates into more revenue

3. More revenue provides more capital to reinvest into your business (staff, education, etc.)

4. More investment can lead to higher quality care and better outcomes for your customers

5, More results can lead to greater perceived value of your services

… And the cycle goes around again.

Now let’s go back to the original question at hand. If you want to convince people that your physical therapy is worth the price, you must establish a series of experiences that meets or exceeds their expectations at every touch point. The perceived value has to exceed your price. 

Creating value should become your daily obsession.

Check out my next blog post explaining how to build value virtually.

Disclaimer:  The views expressed in this article are based on the opinion of the author, unless otherwise noted, and should not be taken as personal medical advice. The information provided is intended to help readers make their own informed health and wellness decisions.

Ian Kornbluth, Co-Founder

CEO | President
Ian's entrepreneurial spirit stems from growing up in Arizona around the family business — a small chain of "New York Style" pizzerias. Early on in life, Ian learned how to treat the customer like a person, rather than a number. He observed how the community came together to support an establishment that offered both quality food and an exceptional customer service experience. He also learned to appreciate how much sacrifice, perseverance and integrity that it took to make a positive change in the world around him.
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