While most practices regularly offer some type of discount, many do not stop to think about why they do this—it has simply become a standard business tactic. Typical discounting methods, such as subtracting a straight percentage or dollar amount from the cost of a treatment, service, or product, have become the status quo. As a result, many practices offer discounts without considering what they are ultimately trying to achieve.

Rather than continuing to extend arbitrary markdowns, take a thoughtful, strategic approach to the promotions you offer. Your practice relies on patients for its success, so cater your efforts—including deals—to them. By tailoring your discounts to products and services that enhance patient satisfaction, you will ultimately help your business grow.

Enhance Patient Retention

To drive new business, many practices focus on attracting new patients when they should be concentrating on their existing clients. Keep your clients coming back by ensuring they’re happy with their results, offering promotions that target patient loyalty, and introducing supplemental products and treatments that will enhance patient outcomes.

Regimen discount. One way you can enhance patient results is by enticing clients to address skin concerns with a comprehensive regimen, rather than a single product. Most patients have multiple skincare concerns, including pigmentation, fine lines, wrinkles, pore size, texture, or dullness. Address these issues by offering a discounted service or gifting a travel item to clients who purchase a full regimen. This offer will help patients address multiple skincare concerns and enhance their overall outcome.

Dual-user treatment discount. Since dual-user clients purchase more treatments and products, having a promotion focused on increasing patient conversion is beneficial to your business. Increase your patient conversion rate by offering a discount on a treatment that pairs well with another treatment. For instance, extend a discount on a filler treatment when a patient purchases his or her initial neurotoxin treatment. This type of discount serves the dual purpose of enhancing client results and incentivizing them to expand their treatments.

Practical Pearl

Tap into the desires of new aesthetic patients by offering a discounted service with the purchase of any treatment series. For instance, knowing that many people are insecure about excess body fat, offer new aesthetic patients a discounted service with the purchase of a series of non-invasive body contouring treatments. This type of markdown will encourage patients to book their initial treatment and return until the series is complete, ensuring they get the best results.

Advanced payment discount. Offering a special package rate will not only get existing patients to increase their frequency of treatments; it will also help them to see steadfast results. For instance, extend a discounted price (per unit) when neurotoxin patients pre-pay for three treatments annually. This bundling tactic serves to make patients feel as though they are saving money while increasing their number of treatments and, ultimately, improves your patient retention rate.

Gift with purchase. If your aim is to introduce patients to a new product, gift them one that will enhance their results. Do this at no cost to the practice by giving away a skincare product equal in value to the traditional discount amount you’ve taken off past services. For example, if you have previously given a $50 discount on a service, instead gift patients with a complimentary skincare product worth $50 wholesale/$100 retail when they make a purchase. Ideally, patients will love the product and become loyal to the business that introduced it to them.

Reward paying event-goers. If your practice holds events, keep attendees happy by holding a raffle for those who purchase something during the event. This tactic rewards paying patients who are genuinely interested in your services—not the attendees who simply came for the free food and drinks. Prizes should include a skin consultation and an in-practice service. Similar to providing a gift with purchase, this promotional effort exposes patients to effective new products and services, and hopefully, secures their future business.

Attract New Clientele

Now that you’ve maximized the business potential of your existing clients by making them happy, the next step is to look outside your client base to generate new business. Entice new patients to walk through your door by offering discounts that build on your commitment of securing ideal patient outcomes. The promotions listed below are specifically targeted to attract new clientele with the hope of them becoming loyal customers.

First-timer discount. When potential patients call your practice to inquire about a treatment, rather than offering a free treatment to them, entice callers to make an appointment with you by offering a discounted skincare regimen. This promotion will help your practice to weed out those who are only interested in getting a free treatment with no intention of returning. In addition, the marked-down skincare products will ideally complement the treatment they are booking, thereby enhancing their results and solidifying your practice as their first choice for future aesthetic needs.

Refer-a-friend incentive. People are more likely to choose your business if they are referred to you by a trusted friend or family member. Use this knowledge to your advantage by offering loyal—and most likely satisfied—patients a discount on services, treatments, or products for every successful referral.

Leveraging your existing clients in this manner will generate new leads while simultaneously encouraging existing patients to continue their business with you.

New aesthetic patient discount. Tap into the desires of new aesthetic patients by offering them a discounted service with the purchase of a treatment series. For instance, knowing that many people are insecure about excess body fat, offer new aesthetic patients a discounted service with the purchase of a series of non-invasive body contouring treatments. This type of markdown will encourage patients to book their initial treatment and return until the series is complete, ensuring they get the best results.

Surgical patient post-care regimen. Your patients are walking billboards—24-hour living advertisements showcasing your practice’s work. Utilize them to attract new clients by ensuring they achieve optimal results through a post-treatment regimen. For example, a plastic surgeon may choose to provide breast augmentation clients with a gel to reduce post-surgery scarring. Consider offering fractional resurfacing patients growth factors to address fine lines and wrinkles. By ensuring your clients have the best outcome, you solidify patient retention for your cosmetic surgery procedures while simultaneously attracting new patients.

Good for Business

Creating thoughtful, clear goals and taking a disciplined approach to discounts can benefit your patients and practice. The tactics outlined above are only a glimpse into how promotions can be effectively framed to secure patients and their satisfaction; use them as a jumping-off point when you strategize your next patient promotion. Ultimately, these positive outcomes will result in happy patients, encouraging patient loyalty and a wealth of referrals for your practice—a win-win.