Patient surveys for plastic surgery practices provides excellent feedback about how they are doing from the patient’s point of view.
That’s important since the patient has a choice and can easily move onto your competitors if they are not happy with you.
Surveys also indicate your value to your current patients. When they take the time to think about you and complete the survey, they are actually reconfirming their loyalty to you and that grow your word-of-mouth referrals.
But the survey’s purpose is to discover the good, the bad and the ugly about your practice. You can’t fix what you don’t know, and you don’t know unless you ask.
Here are strategies to help you glean feedback that grows your practice and makes it immune to your competitors:
Who to Survey?
Practices have a tendency to survey their existing current patient list. That’s fine but that’s not enough.
You are looking for candid feedback from those who love you, as well as those who don’t, so here’s a list of who to survey:
- Current patient list
- Patients from years ago
- Patients who have not been in for the past year
- Came in for a consultation but didn’t book
- Had surgery but haven’t returned since
How to Survey Cosmetic Patients
Keep it simple and digital since this will be an impulsive decision to reply or not.
Since the average survey response is 10%, send out as many as possible to get back enough surveys to give you enough data to be useful.
Tip: Do NOT ask all yes or no questions by themselves. You are looking for well thought-out feedback so add a comment box after each question so they can explain WHY they answered the way they did in greater detail.
Add Patient Survey Incentive
Your patients are busy so taking time out to complete your survey can be challenging.
To increase your survey response, add an incentive. A “$75 Gift Card Towards a Non-Surgical Treatment of Your Choice” works well.
Add a tight expiration date as well such as they must complete the treatment within 30 days. Some patients will complain they need more time and that’s ok. Give it to them since they are returning for more of your services.
Mention the $75 Gift Card immediately and tell them they receive it upon completion of the survey and then show them the link to the gift card at the end.
If you don’t want to offer a gift card, you can be creative and use a rewards system where they get points or kisses instead that go towards free services.
Either way, give them a reason to complete the survey so you get enough response back to do something with the data.
What Survey Questions to Ask
The biggest mistake with surveys is you ask too many questions. If this feels like a homework assignment, your patients will bail.
I suggest asking 10 questions max, add the comments/explain box after each and leave it at that.
Sample questions can include:
- Were the telephones answered professionally?
- Was it easy to get an appointment?
- Were you treated courteously by my staff?
- Did we see you on time?
- How genuinely interested did we seem in you as a person and giving you a great experience?
- During your office visit, did we adequately address your concerns and explain expectations properly?
- What’s 1 thing we could have done to improve your experience with us?
- Were you satisfied with your results?
- If you had a surgical consultation, why did you choose NOT to have surgery with us?
- Would you refer your friends and family to us?
You may be asking yourself if the survey should be anonymous. If it’s anonymous, you wouldn’t be able to offer the gift card. Frankly, the gift card is needed to get a response, so I suggest offering it.
Surge of Survey Revenues
The beauty of the gift card is two-fold…. You are collecting excellent intel from your patients to improve your practice. And you get a surge of business from a good number of patients who redeem their gift card.
The survey is a great strategy to re-engage with patients who haven’t been in lately, find lost patients who left and would love a reason to return, as well as your regular patients who are ready for more cosmetic rejuvenation.
This is a win-win for patients and for you!
Data Collected from Surveys
This is where the real work begins. You now want to address the feedback you receive.
If only one patient comments on something, note it but don’t act on it in a big way.
You are looking for trends. My rule of thumb is if 3 or more patients comment on a particular staff person or process, you need to address it immediately.
Fixing just one aspect of your practice can change everything and get your revenues moving in the right direction.
For example, a practice received negative comments about their long-term aesthetician. She was burnt-out and it showed in her service (or lack there of) so it was time to make a change. Their skin care revenues increased by 25% when they replaced her.
The patient survey is an important tool to help you identify and fix the problem areas costing you patients and revenues so plan on doing a survey at least annually.