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Episode 2:
Location, Location, Location

On this edition of Just Checking In, industry experts Dr. David Stern and Alan Ayers discuss the importance of location and its effects on your urgent care practice.

Just Checking In - Episode 2 - Location, Location, Location

David Stern: Hello, and welcome to Just Checking In, a video blog discussion of anything and everything urgent care. I’m David Stern and this is my colleague Alan Ayers. Now and then we will be checking in with you discussing all sorts of items related to urgent care, from marketing, to billing, to startup. And we will be talking about anything you’re interested in as well. Send in your questions and we’ll be happy to discuss them here on Just Checking In. So Alan, you have something up for us here this morning.

Alan Ayers: Yes, definitely. In Illinois, we have these places called the Travel Oasis. And it’s sort of a food court and gas station that sits over the tollway.  And so recently traveling I stopping at the travel oasis.

David Stern:  So just let’s make clear what this is because most states don’t have these. All the way across the Illinois toll way there is essentially a bridge.  But the bride is basically a mini mall. And in that mini mall there will be a Starbucks, a McDonalds, a Subway store, a place to buy your I-Pass for the toll way and so on. As an Illinois native and you just moved here. I just wanted to share what that about. But I have no idea where this is going, so go ahead Alan.

Alan Ayers: Oh Okay, but you would say that the oasis is busy 24/7 right? All the time there are people in there?

Dr. Stern. Yes.

Alan Ayers: So I recently stopped at the oasis and noticed some girls selling Girl Scout cookies.  And I was so proud of their entrepreneurial spirt. That they hit the number one trigger in retail which is the location, location, location. They somehow got into the oasi,s which is busy with foot traffic 24 hours a day.  So…

Dr. Stern: They had their own table out there in the middle of the oasis. I can’t say that I have ever seen anything like this.

Alan Ayers: Yeah, and they are a sign of marketing. So the question is how important is location to urgent care?

Dr. Stern: OK, so I think we already hit on that a little bit. Location is critical but it’s a little different because foot traffic is not what you are after.  You want to be in a place where people live.  When talking about what sort of things you are looking for in a location. So number one, folks will say well there are a lot of people working in the area so this must be a good location. While it might be a good location for an occupational medicine clinic if it’s industrial and there are lots of injuries in the area. But chances are if you are not in a residential area you are probably not going to be really successful because people tend to go out to eat and go see the doctor and go see the urgent care in the communities they live in.  So that would be… First thing is you need to be in the right area or the right part of the community.  Someone once said to me, “picking an urgent care was a matter of picking the right state.” Bill Lewis, our friend, actually said that.  Picking the right state, then picking the right city, and then picking the right street corner. I think probably the most important thing is that street corner.  Where are you in that town? Because virtually every urgent care is going to need or every town I should say is going to need an urgent care. The question is where in town will people see it, and then where will they respond. And I think in general folks have a tendency to drive in one direction for most of their services.  They tend go to the direction of the mall and the Walmart, and the Target, and so on.  They are used to going in that direction.  Actually I saw some research from a church growth organization where they actually said, “People will drive twice as far the way that they are used to driving to go to church; as they will the opposite direction.”  So I think it is very true for urgent care too.  People actually orient their minds to the South East or West depending on their community and once they are oriented that way that’s the direction you want to be.  You want to be the direction they think of; where they go for all their services and retail.

David Stern: That’s all we have for today, is that right Alan? This is great!

Alan Ayers: Yes, thank you very much.

David Stern: For more information, visit our website,, subscribe to our YouTube channel and you can also find us on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. As always, this Dave Stern, Alan Ayers, we’re checking out, see you next time.

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