Laser Gynecology: 6 Tips to Find Your Patient

Aesthetics
May 6, 2020
Demand for non-invasive gynecological treatments is on the rise. First, the world’s population is aging and the risk for gynecological indications connected to pelvic floor disorders increase with age and the postmenopausal period. Second, the laser gynecological market is growing because it suits the patient’s needs. It offers less invasive procedures, little or no-pain and more effective results. What’s more, laser treatments suit the patient’s busy lifestyle. They are faster, there is less downtime, results are longer-lasting, fewer follow-up treatments are needed, etc. And third, more and more people are taking steps to improve their health and well-being. Thus, the gynecological laser industry not only provides clinical gynecological treatments, but also cosmetic gynecological procedures. You already possess the technology and knowledge needed to run a successful practice. Now you need to share this with your patients in order to boost your clinical reputation and increase revenues. Here are 6 marketing tips that you can use and apply to suit your personal business needs, the particular market situation and competitive position of your practice.

#1 Talk to your patient
It is a fact that most women avoid discussing certain vaginal or urinary problems with their gynecologist. The most common reasons for avoiding a discussion with their doctor are beliefs that the symptoms are a natural component of the aging process, or for some women, that the symptoms are not bothersome enough to be considered problematic.

Many gynecologists also don’t ask their patients about problems that they may be experiencing. A recent European REVIVE survey revealed that only 10% of women indicated that their doctor usually asked about their sexual activity during the routine physical examination. By contrast, 65% of participants acknowledged that they expect their doctor to initiate a conversation to inquire about menopause-related symptoms. Remarkably, depending on the specific symptom, between 36% (vaginal/vulvar irritation) and 50% (pain associated with sexual intercourse) of participants suffered GSM (Genitourinary Syndrome of Menopause) for more than 6 months before they initiated a discussion with a doctor. This confirms that GSM is an under-recognized, under-diagnosed and undertreated condition among postmenopausal patients who, although experiencing bothersome symptomatology, quite often do not seek medical help. Similarly, a study among Australian patients revealed that 70% of those with urinary leakage do not seek advice and treatment for their problem.

Direct doctor–patient communication must be actively promoted from the professional point of view in order to convey to the patient the diagnosis, its progressive nature and the benefits of undertaking a minimally invasive laser therapeutic approach. The majority of patients are unaware that many gynecological indications can be treated. The other problem is that patients are not aware that these indications can be treated with a laser in a minimally-invasive manner, with a simple walkin-walk-out procedure. Because of the invasive nature of some surgical treatment options, the inconvenience of lubricants or moisturizers and the fear of cancerous side effects of estrogens, many patients that are aware of their diagnosis and have received conventional treatment, lapse from their conventional treatment schedule or prefer not to undertake it at all.

MARKETING TIP: Talk to your patient. Inform her of the menopausal problems she may soon start to observe and the treatment options available at your practice. Stress the benefits of laser treatment: less or no-pain procedures, long-lasting results, speedy treatments and little-to-no downtime. Patients often choose their doctor on referrals and trust. If your patient is not suffering from these common indications, perhaps her friend or mother is.

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#2 Initiate word of mouth advertising
Word-of-mouth advertising is still the most powerful form of marketing. In an article entitled “Why Word Of Mouth Marketing Is The Most Important Social Media” published in Forbes magazine, the author states that 92% of consumers believe recommendations from friends and family over all forms of advertising.

MARKETING TIP: A complete list of the services you offer should be clearly visible to patients in the waiting room so that you are able to get the most out of your laser system, your practice and personal career growth as well. You could also give your patient an incentive to talk about your practice to others. Incentives are best given with special offers and discount prices. For example, hand out business cards with a discount for certain procedures.

#3 Advertising in your office
Educating your patient about available laser procedures is crucial in order to increase revenues and build one’s reputation.

MARKETING TIP:
No. 1: Create print materials – Patient Leaflets, Posters, Postcards
Print promotional materials in the office are primarily intended for educating the patient and stimulating interest. They should be placed in your waiting room or lounge area. Postcards are primarily intended for stimulating interest among new potential patients. The patient fills in the address of her acquaintance and leaves it in a “mailbox” positioned in your office. Postcards can also be placed in bars, restaurants, hotels, central bus and train stations, fitness centers, health spas, retirement homes and any other public places your potential customers are likely to visit. Postcards should give the patient an incentive to invite others to come to your practice (i.e. discounts, special offers).

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No. 2: Gather patient testimonials

Patient testimonials are a great tool for gaining trust among potential new patients. You can gather testimonials by asking your patient to give you feedback on how she is healing, feeling, and how satisfied she is with the procedure.

#4 Get noticed with social media
In establishing and maintaining a successful practice, social media can play a big role. Here your creative input is unlimited as this modern consumer-generated media lets you follow popular trends in your field of practice, build business relationships, and go to where the patient is. With social media you do not advertise directly, you engage people and they, unknowingly, advertise for you.

MARKETING TIP:
Create a profile on different social media networks and remember to provide new content regularly:

Blog
Having a blog for business purposes is a great way of showing you understand your patient’s needs and concerns. By adding a blog to your website, you are able to add news on a particular subject, event, activity, promotional offer or treatment outcome. Additionally, a blog is a great marketing, branding and public relations tool, giving your practice additional credibility and creating trust by letting them share their experiences with laser treatment.

Facebook
Facebook can significantly help you promote your website. Your practice’s Facebook profile should include photos of the office, contact information, a description of the services you offer and other relevant information. The main feature of Facebook is that it offers the opportunity to constantly update and add new information.

Twitter
Twitter is a microblogging service that enables its users to send and read other users' short messages. It differs from SMS texting in that what is posted is generally public for all to view. This is a simple and effective way of informing your potential patients of what is new in your clinic as users subscribe to your business profile.

LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a business-oriented professional social networking website. In contrast to a social networking service, this site promotes business interactions. LinkedIn allows you to get hundreds of visits to your website. Additionally, you can expand your business opportunities by creating a list of contact details. Find the contact that suits your business needs and invite them to join your network.

#5 Use traditional media for attracting new patients
Another method of communication that will expand your practice and increase revenues is advertising and promotion using other channels targeting primarily potential new patients.

MARKETING TIP:
Target new patients through the following media:

Website
It is crucial your practice has a well-designed website for easier communication and to have a professional level of operation. If you have patient testimonials, a website is a great place to promote specific treatment options through patient testimonials.

Radio
Contact the radio station(s) and make a schedule for the running of your commercial. The commercial should run continuously, on the same radio station(s), at the same time of day. Make sure to add your practice name and website address at the end.

Television
Despite the Internet's steady rise in popularity, television remains a powerful advertising medium. Advertising on television, though expensive, also allows you to show your practice and services so your potential clients will know exactly what to expect. To create an effective television commercial you must have a good script (story) and a good production team behind it. Thus, it is advised that you have the help of an advertising agency, which can help you create a strong television campaign.

Magazines, Newspapers (print or online)
Use print and online advertising to promote recognition and maintain awareness and let your potential patients know which treatments you offer. Request a Marketing Kit to get the rates, an editorial calendar and the required sizes of ads. You can also write editorials introducing the treatments your practice offers or clinical cases you have performed on your patients. You can send editorials to magazines (editor contact details and prices should be stated in the magazine’s Marketing Kit or online) or contact a news reporter about possibly writing a story on your business practices.

#6 Be proactive and raise awareness
Get noticed by going to where your patients are. There are many creative and original outside-the-box marketing tools you can choose to help build your practice’s reputation and increase your client base.

MARKETING TIP:
Here are some examples of great direct doctor-patient communication opportunities:

Talk shows
Think outside the box and get invited to talk shows as an expert clinician, which will give you additional free exposure and allow you to build awareness and visibility by spreading the word on gynecological laser treatments and the benefits laser technology offers. In return, you can offer the TV station your office for filming purposes free of charge (filming crews often have problems finding locations for shooting hospital scenes).

Local events
Participate in local events related in some way to your business (e.g. health and fitness, retirement
homes, local hospitals, and other similar locations and events).

Free patient education seminars
Offer free patient education seminars which will again raise awareness and increase the number of your referrals. Seminars can take place in your office, at public clinics, universities, retirement homes, spas, fitness centers, hotels and numerous other local venues your potential clients visit. Be sure to promote your educational seminar online, as well as with leaflets and/or advertisements in your local newspaper. Give out your business cards and postcards at the end of the event.

By: Fotona LA&HA Magazine 2018
 

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