Saying that “times have changed” would be a massive understatement when referring to growing a cosmetic practice in today’s marketplace.
To make sense of it, it helps to understand the structure and stages of an industry so you can then adapt to it.
The Life Cycle of the Cosmetic Surgery Industry
Every industry goes through stages of introduction, growth, maturity, and decline.
Why? For lots of reasons, but the biggest one is because society and its consumers accept products and
services at different rates. As society begins to adapt and accept an innovation, the demand for new services grows and eventually reaches maturity.
But a lot happens between these stages.
The Introduction Stage
Just one generation ago growing a cosmetic practice was straight forward. At that time, cosmetic surgery was still a taboo topic and only for celebrities and consumers of high-worth value. Because demand for cosmetic surgery was limited, so were the number of service providers, most of whom were plastic surgeons who did a lot of reconstructive surgery and wanted to spread their wings to the cash side of medicine.
Advertising was minimal and consisted of a few surgeons investing in mass advertising via TV, radio, and print ads that centered on the surgeon’s status.
Prospective patients looked up to surgeons and, most often, went with the surgeons’ recommendations since they were regarded as the experts.
When prospective patients called the office, it was to book a consultation with the surgeon. More often than not, patients showed up for their appointments and conversions were fairly straight forward.
This old cosmetic practice growth funnel worked well. There were few plastic surgeons to choose from and they enjoyed regal status.