If you’re a psychologist, internist, family medicine doctor, or neurologist, you have many tools for creating a dementia prevention program.
In this article, I’ll outline a feasible online business for a dementia prevention program. The goal of this is to use the current knowledge and science in dementia prevention to create a helpful and lucrative program.
This is something you can transpose on any other clinical topic. It could be acne prevention or an ovarian cancer prevention program.
First, How to Not be a Quak
When creating a dementia prevention program, focus on the value you’ll bring to people and what aspects you’ll enjoy as a physician.
Approach any subject like this from a caring sibling perspective. Imagine you know your sister is at high risk for dementia, and you’re good at researching stuff and a good communicator.
What could you help her do to decrease the risk of dementia?
If you see the money first, it’s easy to get caught up with how to make the most Benjamins. You might go down the hole of selling “sourced” herbal supplements or promising that dementia is 100% preventable with your dementia prevention program.
The Science of Preventing Dementia
This might seem the easiest, but it takes more research than you think. Your program should be based on solid science. As a physician, it’s what your clients are looking for.
Fortunately, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel for your online dementia prevention program. There are plenty of scientists and physicians who lecture on strategies to prevent dementia.
I recommend searching the following sources for exerts:
The goal is to find a handful of experts who eat, breathe, and sleep this topic. Those should be your mentors. Bonus points if you can reach out to them to have them critique what you are building.
When creating a dementia prevention program, you don’t have to go at it alone. There are many other passionate individuals who will help you either for free or for their paid time.
The Anatomy of an Online Dementia Prevention Program
I love simplicity. You can add the fluff later.
1. The Landing Page
The main page should have a risk assessment calculator. More on that later.
There should be a small blurb about you and why you are qualified to do this. The link should go to your bio page.
2. Paid Consult
There should be a place where someone can book a consult with you directly. Your calendar should be readily connected for them to book a paid session with you.
Or, if you like, add a question button. They pay $50 and ask a single question. You send them back a reply. Be creative.
3. The Prevention Program
This is the meat of your site. You want people enrolling in this program.
This should be a 4-week or 12-week course – whatever you feel is necessary. It should have each week dedicated to some branch of your prevention strategy.
Ideally, you’d have people do a post-course risk assessment and a post-program risk assessment.
4. Group Strategy Sessions
People love interacting with others who are going through the same issues. It’s an incredible resource you can provide.
Create groups of 5-10 individuals – smaller is better – and open enrollment 6 times per year.
They should have access to resources on dementia – often labeled as the resource page.
Creating a Dementia Prevention Course
Online courses are easy to build these days. It’s a mix of audio, text, and video that you need to organize into a course.
If you don’t want to build the course yourself, you can hire someone to do that for you. In my physician coaching, we develop the raw content and hand it to an online course creator.
What I like about an online course is that it’s self-paced. People enroll when they like, and you can interact with them when they post comments.
Alternatively, you can assign a paid or free moderator who can interact with your online students.
Group Sessions for Actionable Steps to Prevent Dementia
The hardest thing for people isn’t getting access to the information. They are likely going to pay for your online program readily. What’s difficult is sticking with the necessary behavioral or lifestyle changes.
What About the Competition?
This is the first objection I have heard from my physician coaching clients, “but others are already doing this better!”
Like Whole Foods, Aldi, and Trader Joe’s stores, there are small mom & pop shops offering the same value and making a profit.
I wouldn’t worry about the competition and focus instead on the value you will bring to the individuals who enter your online dementia program.
What you can offer in your program and the way you do it is what will
Helping People Assess Their Individual Risk of Dementia
The best method of selling your services is to provide an online dementia risk assessment tool.
The existing ones are either behind a paywall or gauge your current cognitive level; not at all what a risk assessment tool should do.
You are looking for a way to predict the chance of developing dementia in the future. The factors you choose based on your research and the weight you assign them will help you build your online risk calculator.
Building an online risk calculator is not difficult. Once again, you can turn to Upwork and have someone build the tool for you based on the information you provide them.
Bonus 1: Addressing Mild Cognitive Impairment
Many individuals will seek out dementia prevention once they are already diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment.
MCI is often overlooked with dementia but is reported in various settings. Those who know about it likely will do an online search to find out about a dementia prevention program.
Bonus 2: Supporting Caregivers of Those with Dementia
Someone out there is already taking care of a parent with dementia. They just don’t want the other parent to suffer the same.
Gearing your marketing material, online courses, or coaching to help that caregiver prevent dementia in an elderly parent is invaluable.
Bonus 3: Upsells
If someone already has dementia, what could they or their loved ones do to decrease the severity of their symptoms?
Once your basic program is outlined and running, you can dive into these things and offer upsells or extras.
Putting it All Together
Don’t aim for perfection. To sell your program, you don’t need all the pieces up and running.
I like to create things as I sell my online products. The content you create with each cohort of enrollees can be used to automate the online program.
If you want help designing your course and brainstorming with you, I hope you decide to work with me.