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The Success Profile—A Guide to Telling, Not Selling

By: Tracy L. Drumm
Posted: September 1, 2010, from the September 2010 issue of
Plastic surgery practice postcard

When put together correctly, the combination of patients' before-and-after images and interview quotes in a profile can be a bold, incisive marketing effort for a medical aesthetic practice that is useful in a variety of formats.

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A secondary value to educating potential and current clientele through past patients is that you are creating peer-to-peer communication. By showcasing the voices of those who have used your services, you are taking an active approach to engaging in the new era of patient education. In the past, marketing traditionally embodied a one-way communication model. Present-day marketing consists of creating an open dialogue between you and your target audience. By showcasing your patients, you are taking the first steps to engaging in this bilateral communication model that modern consumers are craving.

Web and social media strategist Ashley Ludgood explains why it is critical to embrace your patients’ voices. “We are in an age where celebrities are everyday people. Through the plethora of viral mediums available on the Web, consumers are empowered to become their own reality stars and use these channels to spread their own messages and opinions. They recognize how influential they are, and by embracing something as simple as profiling your patients, you are encouraging potential patients to join your practice’s community,” she says.

The difference between selling and educating can be as simple as telling a story, and the story you need to tell is the journey your patients embark upon with you. The idea of incorporating profiles into your practice represents a global approach and shift in your marketing efforts. Successful practices are speaking with patients, not just to them. To keep your practice thriving as methods of sending and receiving messages continue to evolve, differentiate yourself by telling stories of past patients that inspire action from your prospective market.