Aesthetic Patients Need Doctors to Develop Rapport
Developing Rapport with the Aesthetic Patient
Most practices would like to increase their closing ratio. They have spent the time, money and effort in getting prospective patients through their door, yet too many of the patients didn’t book for some reason. They blame it on the competition, on the staff or even the marketing; however, in reality, it’s the physician who is most responsible.
The solution can be fairly simple. You can increase your closing ratio by improving your rapport-building skills with your prospective patients.
What does your aesthetic patient really want?
First, consider what an aesthetic patient is really buying. Some are buying time, recognition, prestige, happiness and love. Some will tell you they want to stay competitive in the marketplace, look better now that they are newly-single, are going to a class reunion and want to make an old boyfriend jealous.
The bottom line is that your patient wants to feel better – period! They believe looking better will make them feel better about themselves. Now, they just need to find the right surgeon to help them.
Knowing this, you must address their wants, needs, fears and disappointments. The aesthetic patient is buying hope – that you will give them a good result, with minimal pain and discomfort and that their lives will improve.
You are in the business of feelings. The aesthetic patient wants to feel special, understood, important, comfortable, significant and respected. They want to know you care about them as a person and you will give them what they want. They expect to be treated nicely and respectfully and, frankly, if they don’t get those warm feelings from you, they will go to your competitor who will treat them nicely and they’ll tell their friends.
What is Rapport?
Rapport is that bond you build with your prospective patient. It’s building trust quickly, gaining commitment and managing objections up front. It’s the single most important personality skill a plastic surgeon needs to be successful. You do it through words, tone and gestures as well as commonalities since:
- 7% of what is communicated is through words
- 38% through tone of voice
- 55% body language – facial expressions, gestures, quality and type of movements
How do you get others to identify with you?
You act like a reasonable, confident and professional person to gain their cooperation, loyalty and respect. Arrogance does not sell so you don’t pull rank or overplay your authority. You speak to them with empathy and understanding. You speak to their needs, hopes, dreams and aspirations. You talk with them on a human level and let them know you can help them with their problem or concerns. In this scenario, logic does not prevail and reasoning can fail because this is all about emotions. Logic, by itself, will rarely influence people. To persuade people, you must understand what they are saying, use analogies and metaphors that patients can relate to, and show them proof such as diagrams, patient photos and testimonials.
To learn more about developing rapport with the aesthetic patient, visit www.CosmeticImageMarketing.com or call (877) 339-8833. Catherine Maley is author of Your Aesthetic Practice and President of Cosmetic Image Marketing. Her team specializes in growing aesthetic practices.
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She is a business/marketing consultant to plastic surgeons. She speaks at medical conferences all over the world on cash practice building and trains staff to be converting rock stars.