Pregnancy Centers are in business for one reason: To erase a woman’s perceived need for abortion. As executives we all want to reach and serve more women who are seriously considering abortion. Most of us have the capacity to serve more women that we are serving now. The question we have to ask ourselves even before “How many can we serve?” should be “How many need to be served?” What I mean is that we are tempted to look inside our organizations and make decisions about what services we should provide and how much based on who walked through the door yesterday, or last week, or last year. However, one of the first things we should do as executives is look outside the organization to see who should be walking through our doors tomorrow in order to more effectively accomplish our mission to reverse the scourge of abortion on our communities.
So, how do you determine just how many abortions are happening in your community so you can adequately prepare your marketing and consequently your center’s services to meet the demand? For many it is as simple as going to your State’s Health Department website and looking under ‘Vital Statistics.’ You can also use this handy tool from the Guttmacher Institute. From there you can review your community’s stats by county or maybe even by city. That will tell you who are getting abortions by age, ethnicity, procedure used, and even how they paid. This is great information for determining your marketing message, the media outlets you use to advertise, and even how to better tailor your services when they start to call you for help.
But what if you are in one of those States that refuses to track or provide these Vital Stats on abortion? Well, there are two kinds of communities in America relative to abortion: Abortion hub communities and Non-abortion hub communities. If you are in a non-abortion hub simply take the average abortion rate which is 20% of all pregnancies. Now all you have to do figure you how many pregnancies there were for your community or county and multiply that by .2 and ‘voila!’ you now have an accurate average abortion occurrence for your area and are better equipped to understand how big your market is.
If you serve an abortion-hub community you will need to calculate your averages differently. Conservative estimates will likely show the White population will lean more toward the national average at around 20%. But higher rates for the Black and Hispanic populations of somewhere between 35% and 25% respectively, will drive up your local abortion rate beyond the average.
NOTE: Because of the nature of increased competition in abortion-hubs, marketing costs more and is less effective. So don’t get discouraged. It is important to note that your patients are all online. So if you have a limited marketing budget, spend it on compiling a good online marketing team.