If what you’re doing to grow your cosmetic practice is not working anymore or working as well as it used to, this plastic surgery marketing trends for 2023 guide is for you.
The world of consumer demand, technology, and marketing continues to change so it behooves you to change with it to keep up.
There’s a new term called “Smarketing” which sums it up beautifully. You educate yourself and invest in smart marketing efforts that give you better results for less cost. That means more profits for you to do what you like.
Plastic surgery marketing trends for 2023
The following are the plastic surgery marketing trends for 2023 to build your presence and brand while attracting more quality plastic surgery patients to your practice.
Trend: SEO is Popular Again
For a while we were hearing SEO is dead because google has an EAT scoring system that stands for (Expertise, Authority, Trustworthiness).
That means they have your practice competing with the huge authority websites such as The Aesthetic Society, ASPS, WebMD, etc.
And Google now answers popular questions on the first page of search rankings which makes it less likely for consumers to click to your website.
The bottom line is Google will continue to make it more difficult for you to be found organically (aka – Free).
And, since google rules the world for the foreseeable future, you have to get more creative to be found online.
Google is geared towards local search listings so be sure your Google My Business profile is complete and updated, And good consistent content still works so keep reading….
Trend: Content Marketing
Content marketing is one of the plastic surgery marketing strategies that’s working now. You create and distribute valuable, relevant, and consistent content that attracts the right audience who is interested in cosmetic rejuvenation.
Because in a world of relentless information coming at the consumer, they can only hear what they are interested in at that moment. They seek out that information and come to you instead when you have the answers they need.
Examples of Good Content Creation
The beauty (pun intended) is that plastic surgeons have built-in content just by being a plastic surgeon.
Think about it…. You have limitless patient content:
- Prospective patients visiting you for consultations
- Pre-surgical patients excited and nervous about their upcoming surgery
- Surgical patients recuperating
- Post-op surgical patients returning for their follow-up appointments
- Ecstatic patients fully recovered and loving their results
Each patient has a different story at each phase of their journey. That’s a lot of content!
But there’s so much more … You also have limitless practice content:
- FAQs for each procedure
- Added new treatments and procedures
- Interesting things happening in your practice
- Staff stories, birthdays, anniversaries
- Personal stories: your hobbies, travel, etc.
TIP: Your next hire should be adept at videotaping you, video editing, and social media so they are capturing the “Day in the Life of a Plastic Surgeon”.
Trend: Privacy Rules Will Increase Advertising Costs by 30-80%
Privacy issues are killing your plans for attracting new patients to your practice.
So much is happening behind the scenes with Apple, Google and FB trying to dominate consumer data capture, so they are no longer sharing data with advertisers like before.
But to be fair, they have also been sued billions of dollars by the government for sharing data so
the new game is who can collect and hide the most data from the others.
Actually, Apple is positioning themselves to get into advertising since they are putting a moat around their data by not letting their competitors collect data.
This is going to make it difficult for you to attract new PREFERRED patients when you can no longer target specifically to certain audiences. And that means Ad results will become incomplete and inaccurate because you now have only 10% of the data that used to be 100% available.
So that will force you to increase your advertising budget substantially and HOPE the broader, less targeted audience is interested in cosmetic rejuvenation.
It’s very similar to old-school mass advertising like TV. You spend a fortune to talk to everyone, rather than a targeted audience most likely to want your services.
So not only do your ad costs increase dramatically, so do poor quality leads and conversions. Since your ads are not as targeted to your preferred patients, you get a mixed bag of the public contacting you.
Now your staff wastes a lot of time triaging these leads to determine who is really serious and who is flaky.
So, I recommend you have trained staff and processes to qualify leads and, if you aren’t already, charge a consult fee so at least, your time is better protected from wasted consults who have no intention of moving forward.
Regardless of their motives, these few Internet companies affect you big time if you are using paid advertising to attract new cosmetic patients.
Trend: Social Media Platforms are Strangling Your Audience
Social Media has become the most influential virtual space available today to help you grow your practice.
It’s here to stay so you might as well embrace it.
However, please keep in mind, you are only renting those followers. Instagram and Facebook own your followers, so they are, in essence, your landlord.
That means they can raise the rent and/or kick you out so you lose your data you’ve spent years collecting.
I’m sure you’re aware that social media and plastic surgery don’t get along. You are showing graphic material that can be offensive or hurt the self-esteem of the public so they can close down your account without notice.
They also decide who sees your organic content. FB & IG continually strangle your list to force you to “pay to play” by buying more advertising.
The latest stats show only 5.2% of your followers actually see your organic content so you have this false sense of security thinking you’re marketing your practice when, in fact, it’s drying up right before your eyes. (Source: Scalable.co)
Trend: Acquire Your Own Data!
Take back your power by owning your audience data! You can no longer trust that audiences you have built on social media platforms will be or stay available to you.
You want to build up your own list of anyone who is or could be interested in cosmetic rejuvenation.
TIP: Use landing pages to capture your followers’ name, email, and cell so you can stay in touch with these would-be patients no matter what happens with these huge internet platforms.
Trend: PPC will Get More Expensive for Lesser Results
Costs will continue to increase due to the lack of advertising space to monetize on the first page of a google search ranking listing.
This increases the search cost per click and growing competition will increase the costs even more.
By the way, search query growth has stagnated in recent years so that tells you that prospective patients are going elsewhere for their search inquiries to places like Social Media which is turning into the new google search.
Google will continue to put PPC Adwords on automation since they look at PPC as a math problem that can be automated.
That means your PPC manager will not waste hours tweaking bids since automation will do it for them but while Google continues to improve their artificial intelligence to take control away from advertisers in the name of ‘better targeting & intent’, the downside is you will need to monitor what google is doing.
TIP: Since your PPC person is now the gatekeeper on whether these automated options are best for you or for Google, have them report their findings to you regularly so you understand what’s working.
Trend: User Generated Content (UGC)
This is the holy grail of social media marketing in 2023.
Users commenting and sharing your posts not only provide credible social proof for your services, but it is also a great way to boost your SEO.
Your greatest asset is enthusiastic patients willing to rave about you online and share your content with their own followers.
For 2023, determine what inspires your audience to share your content with their followers and how can you engage then to create user-generated content.
Building relationships in the digital world is paramount to grow your audience of prospective patients.
TIP: Questions, surveys and contests are great ways to go back and forth with your audience.
Trend: Influencer Marketing
This will continue to be popular in 2023. Why? Because it’s human nature to do what we see others do.
That means when prospective cosmetic patients are uncertain about what to do, they look to other people around them they trust (or want to be like) such as experts, celebrities, friends, etc.
People also make judgments based on their overall impression of someone. For example:
- We think anything that experts use is great because they are probably more knowledgeable than us in their area of specialization.
- So often we buy products and services endorsed by celebrities because we want to look like them.
- We trust user reviews because they have experienced the product or service already.
Since you probably can’t get a Kardashian to be your celebrity social proof, here’s the next best thing.
Your influencers are also your patients. They may not be a celebrity, but they are happy patients who can authentically relay their experience to other prospective cosmetic patients.
Start with your patients with a strong social media following.
Have your staff ask your patients about their social followers in a conversational way or check out their stats on Instagram and Facebook and ask them how they got so many followers.
Videotape a Q&A with them so they are more comfortable. Ask them simple questions such as:
- Why did you come to me?
- How do you feel about your result?
- Any advice for others considering this procedure?
TIP: If you want to work with big influencers, there are plenty of influencer marketing platforms (just google it). However, be very clear what they will do for you to market your practice and what they expect in return. And be sure they and their followers match your brand and values.
Plastic Surgery Marketing Trends for 2023: Video is Uber Popular
Videos do a great job at building awareness and are extremely engaging
since a majority of your audience would prefer watching videos about you over reading long copy on your website.
Videos educate, entertain and captivate so use them to position you as the expert.
In today’s world of authenticity and transparency, your prospective patients want to know you as a skilled surgeon AND as a real person. That’s what builds your brand.
They want to see you in action and hear what you have to say! These would be patients are looking for someone they can connect with and video helps with that.
So, you can start your own YouTube channel and designate an outside videographer or a tech-savvy staff person to capture and post content in video to then be shared throughout your social platforms.
For example, do a tour of your office, interview a patient to describe her own journey, and do educational videos going over FAQs of popular procedures.
TIP: It would behoove you to have a videographer on staff who can shoot and edit videos to be cut up and repurposed for the various social media platforms.
Trend: Personality Marketing is Hot
You can no longer hide behind a surgical mask and only be the surgeon and your headshot on your website doesn’t cut it anymore.
That’s a great start but you also need to be seen as a human being and a great boss, a devoted family man, a fitness buff, dog lover, philanthropist, weekend pastry chef, or anything else your patients would be interested in knowing about you.
They need to see you in action so to keep it simple, select someone in your office to be the “Roving Reporter”. Their job is to follow you around with an iPad or iPhone to capture moments of “A Day in the Life of a Plastic Surgeon” and even on weekends.
You are the content. It’s you preparing for surgery, doing surgery, your post-op visits, consulting with new patients, interacting with staff and so on.
It’s endless content for you since no day is the same and you have an endless stream of patient stories, their journey and their results.
Trends for plastic surgery marketing: Texting and Messaging
The reality is you have to be where your cosmetic patients are to engage with them and that is on their cell phones.
Texting is the highest engagement rate of any marketing medium by far at 82% open rates and 90% of messages are read within three minutes of receipt.
This is exciting because you can reach out to your patients with a push of a button. The response is almost immediate and can be a nice boost to filling up your schedule and bumping up your revenues.
BUT, you must put a plan in place so you don’t end up in hot water since there are rules about texting your patients so use these tips to get started:
- Get permission from your patients to text them
- Use a texting platform that automates the process and tracks everything
- Use super compelling messages that include really special offers
- Allow them to optout easily
TIP: The Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association requires SMS marketers to include “msg & data rates apply” in auto-reply messages. Most text marketing services will add this disclaimer automatically, but it’s on you to ensure its included.
Trend: Retention is the New Patient Attraction Strategy
It has become more important than ever to use cosmetic patient loyalty and retention strategies to grow a cosmetic practice.
The barrage of marketing messages pummeling consumer prospective cosmetic patients today leaves them confused, overwhelmed and indecisive.
These factors make attracting new cosmetic patients to your practice expensive, complicated and frustrating.
It costs 7-12X more to acquire a new cosmetic patient than to retain an old one and one of the biggest mistakes established cosmetic practices make is putting all of their resources into new patient leads and ignoring the existing patients who have grown their practice for them.
An easy solution is to set up an automatic system to nurture your current patients who can help you grow your practice by returning, referring, and reviewing.
This prevents your competitors from luring away your patients.
So, here’s the bottom line…
Maintaining relationships with your current cosmetic patients is the only reliable and predictable strategy that gives you a competitive advantage.
Your current patients grow your cosmetic revenues for you which brings you cost savings you may have not considered. For example:
1. Reduced advertising costs
2. Less of your valuable time wasted on price-shoppers who are not likely to book
3. Staff time used more productively working with good quality patient leads that convert
3. Reduced patient turnover expenses and fewer lost patients to replace)
4. Increased lifetime value of patients via cross-selling
5. Less patients lost to competitors
5. More positive word of mouth referrals
If a patient loyalty program makes sense to you, check out my www.KiSSLoyaltyClub.com for a done-for-you proven solution.
Trend: Email Marketing Makes a Come Back
While the challenges continue with privacy laws and google changing their rules regularly, email makes a comeback.
Nowhere else can you have the 1-on-1 attention of cosmetic patients as you can with email.
Think of your email list as a practice money-making asset because it is.
This is the highest quality list of prospective cosmetic patients you have because they already know, like and trust you and are more open to what you have to say.
Email gives you the time and space to get your messages across that you can’t in social media….it’s too fast-paced.
And email allows you to segment and personalize. That’s how you convert more of your audience to take action.
There are so many ways to “slice and dice” your message to your patient list who are most likely interested in what you have to say.
- Introduce a new filler to your patients who have had filler before.
- For your more mature patients, talk about your advances in aging face techniques.
- For those in their 30’s and 40’s, show off non-surgical treatments that give them a lift.
TIP: Plan an email calendar with monthly themes and smaller targeted mailings to keep in touch with your patients so you stay top of mind. Use killer subject lines to get your email opened and personalize with your patients’ names.
And here is the last Plastic Surgery Trend for 2023: There are no more silver bullets, you must optimize for marginal gains to win
You used to be able to build your practice using only one marketing channel but not anymore.
Insane competition and technology make it harder to stand out, so marketing is now about “marginal gains” from many different marketing channels.
The shift is from focusing on one channel that is your “Holy Grail of marketing” to working on slightly improving each area of your marketing AND your new patient lead process.
It’s about improving your marketing results by making incremental improvements in your processes that add up to big wins overall.
So, rather than focus on new leads only, you also focus on:
- Lead response time
- Callers converting to appointments
- Consultations converting to paid procedures
- Following up on leads that don’t book and
- More Patients returning, referring, and reviewing
This shift in mindset and focus is how you will win in 2023 and beyond.
If you want to learn more about best plastic surgery marketing trends for 2023. I invite you to reach out to me if you want to grow your revenues with “Smarketing” to attract more patients without discounting. So you have more income without working harder, more free time and you never again have to worry about attracting a steady stream of cash-paying patients.