Ask an Expert: Boosting Cosmeceutical Product Sales in the Office

An analysis of the merits of private labeling, the marketability of brands, and the best types of products to offer.

By Joel Schlessinger, MD
 

If you are bringing a product line into your office, do you private label or use a national brand?
Private label products are a wonderful idea for some offices depending on the amount of products they sell. Interestingly, it can now be done fairly inexpensively and in small quantities. Two companies that offer this option are Young Pharmaceuticals and A&D Pharma. Typically, the profit margin is slightly higher on these private-labeled products, as the competition is less acute. Many times this will outweigh the fact that some people prefer to purchase a brand that they recognize or know already.

On the other hand, the benefits of a recognized brand include the “name” of the brand itself, but this is at the cost of having more competition in general. If your practice is just starting to sell products, the advice you can get from representatives from a national company can be invaluable, and this helpful information is generally given free of charge.

Whatever the case, starting out with a product line in a small manner and progressing to add new options can be a great idea for any practice. For more advice on products for dispensing, check out the March 2010 feature article on cosmeceuticals in Practical Dermatology (available online at practicaldermatology.com).

What products are some of the ones with which you have had the most sales success in your office?
We sell quite a few products, including make-up, sunscreens, and cleansing regimens, but the sunscreens and cleansers are the items that always sell the most.

It is important to sell what you believe in and make sure that the staff is behind your efforts. You can accomplish this by involving staff members in the selection and representation of the products. Most companies will offer free product for the physician’s staff, and that is a great way to familiarize them with the product. Some of the favorite products among our staff are those from Obagi, Neostrata, and Vanicream. However, we carry a large range of other products, and the staff is familiar with all of them.

Send your questions to tpigeon@bmctoday.com. Dr. Schlessinger will answer your query or find an expert who can.

 

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About Practical Dermatology

Practical Dermatology is the monthly publication that provides coverage of medical care, cosmetic advancements, and practice management for clinicians in the field. With straight-forward, how-to advice from experts in various fields, we strive to enhance quality of care and improve the daily operation of dermatology practices.