A Guide To Starting A Natural Therapy Practice

This guide helps students and new practitioners to establish a natural therapy practice. It covers the entirety of the process—from discovering a natural therapy career, to running a successful business.


1. Choose a natural therapy for your career

If you haven’t decided which natural therapy to study, you’ll need to thoroughly research the modalities, and make a decision about which to embark on. Take care to choose a modality that best suits your skills, personality, financial goals, and demand in your local area. If possible, talk to qualified natural therapists who are already working in their field, to find out more information about the day-to-day of the job.

Many natural therapists study multiple modalities, to broaden their scope of practice and offer a greater number of services to customers. If this is the case, you will need to research each of the modalities to make an informed decision.

These are the natural therapy modalities that ANTA accredits:

10. Understand what will make your business successful, and complete key processes

There are many factors within your control that can determine your success:

  • Deliver high quality professional health services—a large percentage of the public use natural therapists for their primary healthcare, and will continue to consult with their natural therapist provided they obtain quality care.
  • Build a reputation based on good service and results—one of the best ways to get new customers is by building a solid reputation, and providing an excellent service is the only way to do so. Many of your referrals will come from word of mouth recommendations.
  • Make your practice visible and accessible to the local market—make your practice visible to your local market with advertisements across a range of mediums.
  • Join ANTA—there are a huge number of benefits in joining a reputable association such as ANTA, including health fund recognition, free advertising, and access to leading scientific resources to help with your professional development.
  • Maintain up-to-date client records—maintaining accurate, complete, and up-to-date client records is vital for delivering quality healthcare to your patients.
  • Maintain up-to-date financial records—maintaining up-to-date financial records is a legal requirement, and vital for monitoring the performance and success of your practice.
  • Manage your cash flow—cash flow is the life blood of your business. Without sufficient cash flow to run your business your chances of success are diminished. It is important to monitor your income and outgoings and ensure you have sufficient funds to keep your business going.
  • Consider start up costs, and create a budget—develop a realistic budget for all the costs and expenditure involved in setting up your practice. Under budgeting can lead to problems and stifle your cash flow.
  • Identify your goals and objectives—set yourself goals and objectives that you want to achieve in the short term (1 year) and the long term (2 to 5 years). Review your goals and objectives regularly to monitor your progress, and to make any changes.
  • Develop a marketing plan—a marketing plan is critical to your success. Consider all marketing avenues available—Google, social media, through ANTA, local papers, radio, brochures, flyers, signage etc). Take the time to understand your market and how best to target them. Talk to other businesses in the area and ask patients for their opinions. Identify and make contact with other health services or businesses in the area that might compliment your practice. Develop a marketing plan that includes strategies, market segment/profile, advertising programs, costs, target audience, results, and more.
  • Know your competitors—identify any competitors in the area where you are setting up your practice. How do they market their services? Are they successful? What are their strengths and weaknesses? What health services do they provide, and what rates do they charge?
  • Develop a financial plan and budget—a financial plan and budget will help you to monitor your income, costs, and expenditure during the year. Establish a realistic budget for the income you expect to earn during the year and identify all the costs and expenditures associated in running your practice. On a regular basis, monitor your actual income and expenditure and compare how you are performing against your budgeted income and expenditure. This will identify any areas where you are under or over budget and help you to make the necessary changes to your business.
  • Continuing Professional Education (CPE)—ANTA requires members to undertake 20 hours of CPE each year and CPE is also a condition of health fund recognition. CPE is important in keeping abreast of developments, new techniques and treatment available with the profession and your area of training/expertise.

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