The weight loss surgery industry is highly competitive. Effectively following up with patients interested in weight loss surgery and showcasing why your practice is their ideal choice for attaining the transformation they desire is critical to your success.
If you are reading this, then you likely know how competitive the market is for weight loss surgery practices. Traditional marketing strategies are not as effective and patients have many options to choose from for both medical and surgical weight loss. It is time to embrace this as a good thing and learn how to outshine your competitors, feel good about your engagement efforts, and create better outcomes for those you serve.
In order to make this happen, building trust, showcasing your expertise, and providing exceptional patient care and support are essential. When you effectively do this, you are better able to attract new patients and allow them to see why you are the best option for their weight loss surgery journey. Below are nine building blocks to making this a reality in your weight loss surgery practice:
Engage with Empathy
From the moment a lead reaches out to your practice, prioritize empathy and understanding. You will also want to respond promptly to their inquiries, addressing any concerns or questions with care. Create a welcoming and supportive environment during initial phone calls, e-mail exchanges and/or text communication. This helps to establish a positive first impression that should continue throughout their journey.
Educate and Inform
Nurturing leads involves providing valuable and educational content about the questions they ask most, in addition to information they should be asking about. Offer resources like informative blog posts, videos with your providers, ongoing e-mails, and helpful downloadable guides, recipes and tips for success. Educating your potential new patients helps to foster trust and positions you as an expert in the field. Much of this can be automated.
Personalize Your Communication
While there are similarities, every potential new patient has unique needs and expectations. Therefore, it is important to personalize your communication to address their specific circumstances. During your interactions and initial consultation, take the time to listen to their weight loss struggles, address their concerns and questions, and develop a plan that aligns with their desired goals while also keeping expectations realistic. Of course, you and your team likely already do this, so this is simply a reminder.
Share Success Stories
Social proof is something that prospective new patients can and will search for online. It is critical that you share your success stories and testimonials from previous patients who have achieved outstanding (yet likely typical) weight loss results with your practice. This should be shared in the form of graphics, blogs and short videos for maximum leverage and impact. Seeing this – as well as positive online reviews – instills additional confidence that you and your team are the right weight loss surgery choice.
Offer Convenient Complimentary Webinars & Seminars
It has never been as easy as it is today to share information with your current and prospective patients. While in person seminars may be great for conversion purposes, you can be just as effective with online methods. Hosting free educational webinars and seminars can be an excellent way to not only share information but what makes you and your practice unique. You can also address common misconceptions, answer questions in real-time, and create a trusting bond so that whenever they meet you in person, they feel as if they know you already. Coincidentally, when done well, they are also farther along in their decision process and often ready to get started.
Provide Ongoing Support
Nurturing leads goes well beyond your initial discussions and consultation. Support must be offered throughout their decision-making process in the communication form they prefer. This could be email, telephone, texts or one private HIPAA compliant portal that can accommodate them all. In such an option, you can also keep track of their entire journey in one place so anyone on your team can see it at a glance. Once they are an established weight loss surgery patient, continued communication as well as access to ongoing support groups and resources is important.
Address Concerns & Objections
Understand that potential patients may have concerns or objections regarding weight loss surgery. It is important to address these openly and honestly. Provide them with the information they need so they can make an educated decision. Such transparency builds credibility and trust.
Offer Flexible Payment Options
No doubt, financial considerations can be a significant factor in the decision-making process for your prospective new weight loss surgery patients. Flexible payment options, including financial payment plans or insurance coverage information can help overcome this potential barrier and create greater accessibility to the services, programs and products you offer.
Showcase Your Expertise
Your patients are searching for convenient, educational information and answers to their questions so make sure you show up in their search. You can do this economically by sharing organic (non-paid) content that showcases you and your practice’s expertise, as well as what sets you apart from your competitors. You can do this through expert articles, videos, blogs, podcast interviews, local media, among others. Demonstrating your knowledge and experience can reinforce your position as the top choice for weight loss surgery in and around your geographical area.
Every new lead that comes into your practice is an opportunity to develop a lasting relationship. One filled with trust and positive outcomes which commonly leads to additional referrals to your practice. By implementing the building blocks above, you can set yourself apart from your competitors and increase the number of patients choosing you and your practice for weight loss surgery.
If you are looking for an all-in-one platform for implementing these building blocks, there is a solution. You can learn more at https://www.pronexinc.com/
About the Author: Karol Clark, MSN, RN, is a best-selling author who has a passion for helping physicians integrate effective, profitable weight loss services and retail sales into their practice while improving patient outcomes and enjoying the journey along the way. Her use of non-traditional (easy to implement) medical marketing strategies, along with her dedication to a positive ROI makes her a uniquely different and sought-after weight loss business consultant. Karol is the CEO of Weight Loss Practice Builder and the exclusive membership program for weight loss practitioners, www.BariatricBusinessAccelerator.com. She has more than 20 years of experience working with surgical and medical weight loss physicians and their teams helping them simplify creation of a profitable and enjoyable bariatric practice.