In aesthetic medicine, there is a conundrum that is not usually faced in other businesses. Providers use FDA-approved and cleared pharmaceuticals and devices in a safe medical setting. Patients pay cash to achieve self-requested outcomes. Yet providers must follow rules and guidelines set for pharmaceuticals while educating patients about products that are often quite expensive – and that is before you calculate the time and expertise for the aesthetic provider.

Recently Fast Company published an article on how serendipitous happenings can enhance happiness and satisfaction with a product or an experience (https://www.fastcompany.com/90640310/this-simple-psychological-trick-makes-customers-love-your-product) and reading this reminded me of working with Kellie Lao on a marketing team. She would often talk about the power of “surprise and delight” offerings for patients and wonder how to achieve that with our products.

So how does an aesthetic business “surprise and delight” customers while staying within the often restrictive guidelines of how resources can be used?

Supporting Aesthetic Practice Growth

Aesthetic Growth Drivers are Attracting new patients, enhancing treatments available to existing patients and having existing patients refer new patients to a practice

Many aesthetic practices tend to focus on bringing new patients to a practice, but if you have a strong practice with great providers, it may be easier to achieve growth by focusing on introducing patients to new services or encouraging them to refer friends to your practice. And samples can help support those goals.

If you receive neurotoxin samples in your practice, think about using these samples to introduce an existing patient to a new treatment area or to increase the number of units used to achieve a goal. For example, the 3 FDA indications for the 3 areas of use for onabotulinumtoxinA (BOTOX® Cosmetic, Allergan/Abbvie) equal 64 units. Yet the average number of united used is much lower per patient. So surprise you patient by offering to provide a complimentary treatment using sample product. This may show them the superior outcomes of a higher dose or may encourage them to be treated in multiple areas in future visits. Or ask patients to bring a friend to their appointments and offer a complimentary facial to the friend to introduce them to your practice’s services.

Remember, the joy is greater when it is an unexpected surprise and must also be a treatment for which there is a need and education has been provided. There is also value in using the word “complimentary” rather than “free”. Free often implies no value and there is ALWAYS value in a provider’s injection skills!

So look to surprise and delight your patients while educating them on new products. It can increase loyalty and revenue!

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