By Michael Dorausch, D.C.

The mail keeps coming. I often wonder if other chiropractic offices receive as much mail as I do. I have to assume that they do. For such a small industry, it’s amazing how much marketing material and product advertising letters and postcards chiropractic offices receive each day. Today alone, I received no less than four pieces of mail related to products someone is trying to sell to chiropractors. Products included mattresses, probiotics, massage chairs, and software.

First piece of mail was for a mattress company called isleep and it was a postcard offering free educational materials to help educate my patients. They were also offering an educational sleep seminar on a PowerPoint presentation that is reportedly a $199 value (of course I’d be getting it for free). Pieces of marketing material like this typically end up in the trash and I’m not even sure why they are sent out. Am I supposed to be marketing mattresses for some company that is sending me postcards?

Next up was a probiotic company called BioGaia. I’d never heard of them and this was the first piece of mail I can recall receiving from this company. The front of the card says that their product calms and protects against digestive distress. On the other side is a photo of a blonde girl in a short red top and it looks like she’s not wearing a bra. Text above the image says that this product strength and natural immune defenses. Again, I’ve never heard of this product, but it is apparently one of the most clinically validated probiotics in the world. Checking the back page I see this product comes in three convenient dosage forms. There are probiotic drops for babies, probiotic straws, and probiotic chewable tablets. Of course I can get free samples and recommendation pads so that I can push this product on my clients.

I also received a mini brochure from a company selling massage chairs. I’m reminded that massage chairs help reduce back pain, relieve sore muscles, and promote relaxation. Don’t people know that you can get massage chairs at places like Costco? I have a feeling the company pushing this massage chair on me wants me to become a distributor, let’s take a look inside the brochure. Yes indeed, there is a Healthcare Professional Program which allows me to get massage products at 50% off the manufacturer’s suggested retail price. Promotions like this are good examples of how some chiropractic organizations have become nothing more than a front for things such as multi-level marketing, as this company has endorsed by two chiropractic groups. There’s no intention or desire to provide chiropractic care, just jam more product down the throats of consumers, and make some money while you’re at it.

Lastly I received a letter for a free demonstration of electronic billing software (I think). It’s a two-page letter, and I’m not even sure what the company is trying to sell. It looks like chiropractic software that creates notes, updates billing, and integrates EMR, scheduling, and practice management. I am asked to try a free demonstration right now and they’ll prove it. Prove what? Someone needs to work on the ad copy for this company. I really am looking for some great electronic billing software, but pretty much everything I’ve come across in the chiropractic industry, sucks eggs. I’d love to see something that runs on Linux but I’m not holding my breath. If someone thinks they’ve got a product that will enable a chiropractic office to go completely paperless, and runs on operating systems other than Windows, I’d like to know about it.

That should be enough mail bashing for the day, I may actually get a worthwhile piece of mail someday soon.