A guide to marketing and advertising for medical spa practices

The best ideas for attracting and retaining more patients in today’s digital world

The medical spa industry is booming, which means more patient and consumer demand. As more medical spas open to meet the growing demand, setting your practice apart in your market impacts your long-term practice growth. An effective marketing and advertising plan can help you bring more patients to your medical spa practice.

From the creation of an impactful brand that resonates with patients to the  development of a powerful web presence and strong online reputation, your marketing and advertising strategy should help your medical spa attract, convert, and retain more patients than your competitors.

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Why digital online marketing and advertising matters most

Today’s consumers are immersed in the digital world. Research shows the average US adult spends nearly 4 hours a day1 on their mobile devices. Whether prospective patients engage in social media, watch videos, check their email, or surf the web, your medical spa practice has to connect with them in meaningful ways to increase your brand awareness and new patient volume.

If your medical spa is still heavily investing in traditional marketing, and you’re not convinced your practice is ready for the digital world, you don’t have to make the transition all at once. One of the benefits of digital marketing is that you can start small and shift your strategy over time. Ready to take the leap? Here are some of the benefits of digital marketing:

  • Scalability: If you don’t know how to implement your digital marketing strategy, start with a single tool and a modest budget, and then watch how it performs before increasing your marketing spend. You can add new campaigns wherever you see a good return on your investment, and build up to greater long-term performance and new patient conversions.
  • Enhanced targeting: Unlike traditional advertising channels, digital marketing can target a more specific audience. For instance, if you want to reach women aged 40-50 with a certain household income, you can accomplish this with the click of a button. You can even drill down to personal interests, or deliver digital ads based on a person’s search history, so you reach more of the patients you want..
  • Useful data: With digital marketing, every ad impression, click, and conversion is tracked online. This means you can quickly learn what works for your medical spa, and discontinue any campaigns that don’t deliver results. When you have this information at your fingertips, you can spend smarter and reach more prospective patients.

    How to build a digital brand for your medical spa

    With increased competition in the medspa industry, it’s critical to establish a brand that sets your practice apart from others in your geography and specialty. Start with a brand strategy to help prospective patients learn about your practice. Here are some basic tactics to use when you want your brand to stand out from the competition:

    • Your medical spa practice logo should convey the look and feel you want prospective patients to associate with your brand. Once developed, your logo should be used consistently across all digital and print materials.
    • Your marketing colors and fonts need to be defined, and tie in with your logo. Keep the colors limited to three or four at most, which will make your brand more recognizable and visually appealing.
    • Your value proposition sets you apart from other medical spa practices, and should include details about your unique services, facility, and staff. Include all of these details on your website, online profiles, and social media platforms.
    • Your identity is often derived from your value proposition as a small set of words that convey the unique characteristics of your practice or how you want patients to feel. Using this set of words throughout your digital and in-office marketing can reinforce the core values and care you bring to patients.

    Once your digital brand attributes are established, apply them consistently across all marketing channels, including your website, blog, social media platforms, and the physical materials and signs you use to make your brand stand out.

    The marketing and advertising essentials for your medical spa practice

    Medical spa practices have a complex business model, balancing medical and cosmetic procedures and services in a competitive landscape. As a result, your marketing and advertising strategies have to work even harder to drive awareness and interest in a crowded and multi-faceted market.

    The first step is to understand your local market and where your medical spa fits in. Know what services your competitors offer, where they’re located, and how they operate, to help you establish and reinforce what differentiates your medical spa.

    With this information in mind, establish your marketing and advertising strategy to help your medical spa attract new patients, and drive patient retention for continued growth.

    Below you’ll find proven tactics that can help you grow your practice over time. If you’re working with limited resources (as many practices are), start small and scale based on what drives new patient volume.

    • Start with your website. Develop a website design that wows prospective patients and delivers optimal online performance (easy-to-find, fast-loading, mobile-optimized).
    • Pay attention to your reputation. Use an online reputation management solution that improves the patient experience and helps you get online patient reviews. A wealth of positive reviews can help attract new patients.
    • Use content marketing to draw attention. Give prospective and current patients great content to read on your website, blog, and social media platforms. Informative and engaging content highlights your authority in the medspa market and keeps you top of mind with patients.
    • Optimize your SEO. Create and implement a search engine optimization (SEO) strategy to connect with prospective patients who search online for medical spa services.
    • Supplement with digital advertising. Digital advertising (pay-per-click/PPC or social media campaigns) can help you drive awareness for your medical spa.

    How to establish a strong web presence for your medical spa

    Even with a powerful brand established, growing your medical spa practice requires an impressive online presence. After all, if a prospective patient searches for a local Botox provider and your practice can’t be found in a Google search, chances are the patient will turn to another provider. Fortunately, there are tactics to help establish and strengthen your web presence. These strategies can help your medical spa digitally connect with prospective patients when they look for services in their community.

    • An optimized website. Your website is the foundation for your web presence, and gives you the opportunity to present your medical spa practice and brand. A great website features intuitive navigation, fast loading speeds and a mobile-friendly interface. Consider adding modern digital tools for patients such as electronic scheduling, digital registration and intake forms, and online bill pay. These tools make every interaction with your practice easier for patients, and increase the odds of attracting and retaining more patients online..
    • A solid search engine optimization (SEO) approach. If your practice can be seen in the top search engine results, more patients will go to your website. An effective SEO program is multifaceted and comprehensive. At a minimum, incorporate keywords that align with what your patients search for (i.e. Botox, SculpSure, etc.) on your website copy and content marketing campaigns. Links to and from other reputable medical organizations on your website help, too.
    • An active local search marketing campaign. When patients look for a medical spa provider, their search is usually local. Increased mobile device use has also increased geolocal search volumes, and consumers are now more likely to search ‘near me’ to find a quality medical spa that’s nearby. To increase your chances of showing up near the top of local search results, claim all online business profiles through popular directories, such as Google My Business, Yelp, Vitals, and others. Optimize your profiles with photos, a detailed overview of your medspa services, and links to your website and/or online scheduling system.
    • An online reputation management solution. A positive online reputation does more than impress prospective patients. It also signals to Google and other search engines that your medical spa is relevant in the community, popular, and worthy of appearing in local search results. Improving your online reputation is possible by staying in tune with your patients and responding promptly to positive and negative feedback. Implementing automated patient satisfaction surveys is a great way to keep a pulse on patient sentiment and encourage patients to submit a proactive online review.

    When to use content marketing to highlight your medspa services

    Life is busy for consumers, so your content marketing should be relevant and well-timed. As part of your marketing and advertising strategy, use email marketing and social media campaigns with infographics and videos, to attract attention to your medical spa practice.

    An effective content marketing strategy will support your search engine optimization (SEO) strategy, and help you connect and engage with patients as they search for information or answers to questions related to the services your medical spa offers. If you need some guidance to get started, here are some marketing ideas on how your medspa can deliver meaningful content to patients:

    • Create a blog that outlines treatment options for common skin problems, including acne or sun damage.
    • Feature a Q&A with an esthetician noting what to expect from a Kybella treatment.
    • Showcase a video that explains how platelet-rich plasma (PRP) works to prevent or slow hair loss.
    • Send an email to patients interested in anti-aging products to highlight your latest offerings and promotions.
    • Send an email to patients to remind them to schedule their next Botox injection.
    • Run a social media promotion that features discounted services to people who sign up for your email newsletter.
    • Feature a Facebook post with a positive online patient review.
    • Share your patient “before and after” photo results on Instagram (while abiding by HIPAA regulations).

    Need inspiration? Here’s a list of common medical spa topics to consider as you develop your content marketing plan.

    Common medical spa treatments & procedures

    • Acne treatment
    • Aesthetics
    • Weight loss
    • Body contouring
    • Body sculpting
    • Botox
    • Botox and fillers/botox & fillers
    • Body therapies
    • Brazilian butt lift
    • Chemical peels
    • CoolSculpting
    • Dermal fillers
    • Dermaplaning
    • Emsculpt
    • Facials/Facial treatments
    • Fillers
    • Hair restoration
    • Hands & feet
    • Hydrafacial
    • Hormone replacement therapy
    • HydraFacial MD
    • Injectables
    • IPL photofacial
    • IV therapy
    • Juvederm
    • Kybella
    • Laser hair removal
    • Laser tattoo removal
    • Laser treatments
    • Lip filler
    • Liposuction
    • Massages
    • Microblading
    • Microdermabrasion
    • Microneedling
    • Mommy makeover
    • Penile enhancement
    • P-Shot
    • PDO thread lift
    • PRP
    • SculpSure body contouring
    • Skin care
    • Skin rejuvenation
    • Skin tightening
    • Tattoo removal
    • TempSure
    • Ultherapy
    • Vaginal rejuvenation

    Tip: When writing for search engine optimization (SEO), think like a patient. Use the questions, keywords and phrases you hear most often from your medspa patients. .

    How to enhance your online reputation to convert more new patients

    Patients are savvy and want the best of the best. Online reviews are the source patients use to find the most trusted doctors and medical professionals. In fact, 71.9 percent of patients rely on reviews when looking online to choose a healthcare provider.

    Effective reputation management can help your medical spa make a great first impression with prospective patients, while improving your online authority and relevance with search engines. There are numerous tactics your medspa practice can use to impact your online reputation.

    • Enhance the patient experience. In the medspa business, experience is everything. From the moment they arrive on your website to the moment they leave your office, a streamlined experience will lead to happier patients and more return business. Minimize wait times and implement modern conveniences, such as online scheduling, digital registration and paperwork, telehealth consultations, text messaging, and online bill pay. These small steps signal to your patients that you value their time and want to ensure a positive experience.
    • Keep a pulse on patient sentiment. In many cases, you won’t know how patients feel about the care and services they receive unless you ask. One of the best ways to keep tabs on patient sentiment is to implement automated patient satisfaction surveys, which give patients the opportunity to share feedback after each office visit. Doing so will alert your office to any potential issues, so you can address them, and establish an important patient-provider feedback loop that’s likely to result in more proactive online reviews.
    • Focus on your star rating. Review sites, such as Google aggregate patient reviews into an easy-to-read star rating, with 5-star being the best of the best. When prospective patients research your practice, this rating holds great value. Research shows 69 percent of patients won’t consider a healthcare provider with less than a four-star rating. Also, when someone searches for the “best” medical spa nearby, Google will eliminate any practices with less than four stars from search results. Focus on enhancing convenience and respond to patient feedback to improve your star rating over time.
    • Monitor and respond regularly. Every patient review, social media comment and automated patient satisfaction survey response provides important feedback that can help your medical spa improve the patient experience. Keep an eye on all incoming feedback, and respond regularly — particularly if the sentiment is negative or neutral. Doing so can turn things around for that patient, and signals to onlookers that your practice is listening and responsive.

    Working together, these tactics will help your medical spa practice enhance and optimize your online reputation and attract more patients.

    Where to focus on customer convenience for long-term patient retention

    For medical spa practices, attracting new patients isn’t enough to sustain long-term growth. You’ll need to keep current patients happy to keep them coming back. Make every interaction seamless and convenient to enhance patient satisfaction.

    What does convenience look like? It starts online, where patients now want the ease and simplicity of digital transactions. Practices that deliver this modern experience are better positioned to delight patients.

    PatientPop research shows 72.2 percent of patients say they’ll switch doctors to find one who can meet their preferences. Many of these preferences relate to the use of digital conveniences.

    What patients really want, according to research.

    According to the PatientPop 2021 patient perspective survey, a few patient preferences that rise to the top of the list include:

    • A good listener: Automated patient satisfaction surveys provide medical spa professionals with a direct line to critical patient feedback that can help strengthen the patient-provider relationship, while providing a closer look at what patients really want.
    • A short wait: Online registration and digital intake forms can help streamline pre-appointment paperwork, resulting in a shorter wait prior to each visit.
    • A welcoming staff: Staff who are supported by digital practice management tools (automated appointment reminders, online scheduling, etc.) can focus on making patients feel like the top priority.
    • Prompt response to questions and concerns: Patients want the opportunity to message their providers with simple questions without having to schedule an appointment or play phone tag. Medical spas that use secure text messaging or an electronic patient portal can respond quickly to patient questions.
    • Available appointments: Practices that can’t get patients in quickly for an appointment are likely to lose business to a practice with better access. Medical spas that offer easy ways to book appointments do better than those that don’t.
    • Online access to health records: Patients want electronic access to their medical records and health history. Medical spa practices that offer an electronic patient portal meet consumer demand while empowering patients to take control of their health.
    • Flexible/late hours: Busy professionals often fail to make time for themselves, and fitting a medical spa appointment into a packed schedule can be challenging. Practices that offer evening and weekend hours can meet patient demand for flexible scheduling.
    • Option to book an appointment online: Sixty-eight percent of patients say they’re more likely to choose a provider that offers the ability to book, reschedule or cancel an appointment online. Digital scheduling can help convert more website visitors into new patients, while also keeping current patients satisfied.

    Medical spa practices that combine digital convenience with a meaningful patient connection are positioned for long-term growth and success.