I started my Beauty and the Biz podcast 2 years ago because it’s no longer enough to be a great cosmetic surgeon. So, to celebrate, I recorded a special 100th episode entitled, ” 10 Take-a-Ways From Successful Plastic Surgeons.”
Good marketers often beat out excellent surgeons – at least in the short run so this podcast is to keep you on track and remind you of what’s important.
The cosmetic rejuvenation industry has evolved with different rules and strategies so it’s time to up your own game.
Because if you really want to be successful, you have to Adapt to Change.
Top 10 Take-a-Ways of Successful Plastic Surgeons and How to Use Them in Your Practice
It’s about staying nibble in your thinking because:
The marketplace has changed
Attitudes about cosmetic rejuvenation have changed
The marketing channels have changed
The patient preferences have changed and how they choose a service provider have changed.
So, you need to change with them, or you’ll get left in the dust.
For my 100th special edition, I compiled the Top 10 Take-a-ways I learned from the many plastic surgeons I interviewed.
These surgeons have been in practice ranging from 4 months to 46 years.
A majority are in solo practice, some are in practice with a partner, and some have multiple partners.
So I reviewed the interviews I’ve done with 28 plastic and cosmetic surgeons around the nation, and in Lebanon, to give you my top 10 take-a-ways of what they are doing to succeed:
Let’s get started:
Take-a-way #1. They have a Growth Mindset
I noticed the plastic surgeons I interviewed were big thinkers. They had a growth and abundant mindset and
they focused on the bigger picture. For example, they:
Believe their abilities can be developed.
Are open to growing as a person, surgeon and business person.
Were passionate about growing their practice and always striving to be better.
Pushed the envelope, learn, evolve and change.
Stay open to life and opps that comes their way
Think positive and are optimistic about their future
Have resilience and see change as an opportunity to grow
Believe their efforts determine their abilities and growth.
Stayed open to new technologies, marketing trends and surgical techniques.
Take-a-way #2: They learn new skills
Many surgeons have decided they are good at surgery but not good at managing people or business or marketing. So their minds are shut down to learning . Maybe because they spent so much time as a student, they are done. Or business wasn’t taught in medical school so they are closed to learning new skills.
The successful surgeons open their minds and learn the business of plastic surgery by reading books, joining masterminds
They study and believe the sayings:
Earners are Learners and Leaders are readers
They believe they can learn to do anything and like to try new things vs. sticking to what they already know.”
Take-a-way #3:They know their numbers and do the following
Manage their money.
Watch their expenses and know their ROI on their SX and non-SX procedures as well as their marketing efforts.
Have goals they are trying to hit, and the staff knows them as well.
Rather than abdicate their responsibility, they take full responsibility for knowing what’s happening in their practice.
They have a bookkeeper and accountant to do the work, but they review the work and numbers regularly so there are no surprises.
Review the bank statements and ask questions, so staff knows they are watching the numbers.
Take-a-way #4: They treat their team like an asset rather than a liability and
Plastic Surgeons know that their staff is not an overhead expense and they:
Know they can’t do this alone and need a team supporting them
Meet with their team regularly and get their feedback from the front lines
Have a trusted right-hand helping them keep the business side running smoothly
Respect the staff to be professionals but still….they Trust AND Verify
Build a culture of a team with a purpose
Philanthropic efforts to give back are a key part of their culture
They meet with staff regularly to lead them and keep them in the loop.
They set up a culture of excellence and offer good pay, team bonuses, free additional training to better the staff so they grow as well as incentives and appreciation including team parties, food trucks, and in-house masseuse to keep it fun. And, they hire slow and fire fast if someone does not fit with their culture.
Take-a-way #5:They have a “patients for life” mindset and they
See their patients as friends and family and treat them with respect.
Understand that these happy patients can be patients for decades and refer their friends and family and return for more.
Know it’s far easier to KEEP these patients coming back so they offer comprehensive services to include all stages in life.
Actually, Dr. Grant Stevens reported on average cosmetic patients have 3 SX over 22 years for a value of $80K-$120K.
Attract more sophisticated patients who know you get what you pay for vs. catering to the price-sensitive who don’t value skill and experience as much as saving money.
They go above and beyond to take care of their patients by offering their cell phone and one surgeon even did house calls.
Rather than discount their surgery they added value instead. For example, facelifts came with skin rejuvenation laser treatments and lymphatic massage came with liposuction.
Take-a-way #6:They fail and learn from it and they
See failure as an opportunity to grow rather than a limit on their abilities.
Know failure is just feedback and they try again.
See challenges as a good thing vs. I don’t like to be challenged.
Stay curious and ask lots of questions
Take responsibility for everything that happens in their practice and they deal with it professionally.
They React Quickly to Issues that come up and think solutions.
Here is an key example of success tips from plastic surgeons, a practice was losing 30% of patients who couldn’t afford big surgical cases, so one surgeon started his own internal financing service. And, During the COVID shutdown, many used that time as an opportunity to keep staff busy with training, improving their systems, and fine-tuning their processes.
Take-a-way #7:They Don’t Care What Others Think About Them and
Stay focused on what they are doing more than what their competitors are doing
Don’t care as much what their critics say about them as they do what their patients say about them then since they are the ones paying the surgeon’s bills.
Do care what their patients think about them and they learn from their bad reviews
Meet with their staff to ask, “Is there any truth to this criticism?” and How can we do better?
Take-a-way #8: They Spend Money to Make Money and they
Know money buys them time
See marketing as an investment
Rather than focus on saving money – they focus on making money
Think abundance vs. scarcity
Know you can’t shrink your way to success – you can cut some expenses, but the real way to wealth is to focus on assets and income.
They are frugal with their time, not their money
Understand the opp costs of doing things that should be outsourced such as learning SEO and writing your own web copy.
They have win-win relationships with their vendors who help them succeed during COVID, several surgeons doubled down on their marketing and cut deals with advertisers when everyone else pulled back. That allowed them to gain attention and market share.
Give money away. They donate to worthy causes because it gives their staff the “why” they do what they do and a common purpose for the whole team and it makes everyone feel good.
Take-a-way #9: They Keep Their Ego in Check & control their emotions and
Are even-tempered and treat everyone with respect.
Are opened to being wrong if it helps the practice grow
See feedback as constructive vs. taking feedback and criticism personally.
Take responsibility and don’t blame staff, the competition, or the government.
Get outside help to discover what they don’t know that is holding them back.
They ask Questions vs. being a Know-it-All.
Stay open to ideas and suggestions from their staff and advisors.
They are able to let go of control and micro-managing because they trust the people around them
Are competitive by nature and use that for motivation to grow
Stay curious by visiting other practices, attending conferences, and talking with their colleagues to learn what others are doing that’s working.
They are always honing their kraft to make them the best at what they do
When a challenge comes up, they focus on solutions, rather than running from it and hoping it goes away.
Eliminate practice drags such as draining staff and difficult patients.
They also delegate tasks they dislike doing to people they trust, but they also follow up to be sure it’s getting done.
And take-a-way #10:They think big
Grow uncomfortable being the only revenue-generator in the practice.
Figure out how to scale by working ON their practice rather than IN it.
See they could do more than just surgery.
Look at other streams of income rather than work harder and longer which leads to burnout and ineffectiveness.
Spend more time finding, managing and mentoring key players in their practice who become major revenue generators so the surgeon can focus more on the business side such as adding more surgeons, injectors, aestheticians and locations.
And there you have it!
The 10 take-a-ways Success Tips from Plastic Surgeons from those I have interviewed.
You may want to listen to that again since it contains lots of pearls to consider when creating your own roadmap to success.
And, of course, please contact me if you could use some guidance rating your own practice.
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A Complete Guide to Understanding Your Aesthetic Patient and Growing Your Aesthetic Practice. Catherine Maley, MBA went straight to the aesthetic patient to get the answers you need to succeed with your patients.
"Catherine outlined a plan that put key metrics in place, gave us a clear plan to follow throughout the year and trained our staff to increase their conversions by at least 10%. Since engaging with Catherine, I’m happy to report that revenues are up 15% over the last three months - 22% in the last month alone! I highly recommend Catherine’s consulting services to any practice looking for “best practice” additions to their operation."
Robert Sigal, MD
"I have finally tapped into the most efficient way to grow my cosmetic practice and that is to “fish in the pond of my own patients”. When patients return to my practice, over 85% will purchase another service, product, or procedure. Not only was it worth over $200,000 in revenues this past year, it also reminds my patients I’m still around so they don’t wander off to my competitors. Catherine’s group has far exceeded our expectations and goals we had set up for them to achieve."
Victor Ferrari, MD
"Our consult conversions were running at 40-50%. Then we attended Catherine’s online training and implemented her strategies. They immediately increased conversion rates to 75-80%."
Anthony Corrado, MD
"I know how to run a profitable practice; however, it was not without major staff issues, inefficiencies and unproductive drama. With Catherine's guidance, I reorganized staff, set up processes for them to carry more of the workload and hold them accountable so I have more time to focus on patient care. The changes we put in place and the staff training to convert more callers and consultations will easily increase my revenues by 15% as well as save us time, money and costly mistakes. "
Evan Sorokin, MD
"Working with Catherine and her team has been very profitable. We’re only half way through the year and I’m up $200K and I’m booked out for the next 2 months even though we typically go into our slow summer months now. Her recent promotion brought in an extra $63,782 with more surgeries scheduled. I never realized how much money was sitting in my patient list but I’m a believer now!"
Robert Langdon, MD
"Catherine Maley has one of the best Marketing Minds in the aesthetic industry, bar none. She understands the aesthetic patient and she also understands the challenges and frustrations we face as aesthetic surgeons. You will benefit from Catherine's tools whether you are new in practice or a seasoned professional.Turn to Catherine for guidance - she knows what she's talking about."
Edwin Williams, MD
“Catherine’s Cosmetic Patient Marketing Service has been a great addition to our practice-building overall plan. While we still invest in our online presence, we also found immense value in the internal marketing efforts. We especially like that all results are tracked so we know we are getting a great return ... last year it was 1,148% and no staff time was used. That’s a much easier way to grow my cosmetic practice.”
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"Catherine Maley turned our practice around. We converted more consultations in one week than we did in an entire month. Our practice went from a painful 50% no show rate to a remarkable 85% show rate. Even more impressive was our close ratio - from 35% to 80% and still increasing. We would recommend her to any practice that’s looking to not only increase their profits today, but sustain a healthy flow of income for many years to come. Thanks Catherine!"
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Andrew Lofman, MD
"Since we’ve been working with Catherine and her team for the past 5 months, we’ve brought in $79K in surgeries and have booked an additional 17 surgical procedures and 20 non-invasive body procedures since then. This does not include the additional new patient referrals and revenues we are seeing from the on-going nurturing of my current patient database."
Verne Weisberg, MD
"I had given my staff the goal to convert at least $35K per week in surgeries AND I gave them the tools to help which was Catherine’s Online Learning Center at More Patients Academy. They watched Catherine’s modules and implemented her strategies and converted $80K! That equaled a 2,550% ROI. Nice!"
Catherine is a business/marketing consultant to plastic surgeons. She speaks at medical conferences all over the world on practice building, marketing and the business side of plastic surgery. Get a Free Copy of her popular book, Your Aesthetic Practice: What Your Patients Are Saying View Author Profile.