In my travels, the same limiting beliefs keep coming up again and again. These are beliefs aesthetic physicians "know to be true" because they have seen them with their own eyes.
Replace those beliefs with ones that are more empowering and profitable.
Do you really need more patients, or do you need more aesthetic profits?
A practice can go broke attempting to attract total strangers to their practice using all sorts of expensive trial-and-error marketing strategies. In the postrecession economy, patients will have been conditioned to be more cautious and conservative. They are more skeptical and more difficult to obtain.
Think back to what it’s like when you explain a procedure in response to an established patient’s questioning. How does that compare to explaining a procedure to a total stranger who is a prospective patient sizing you up?
It is all-around easier, smoother, more relaxed, and effective to have a conversation with that current patient who trusts you implicitly than the stranger who is questioning everything you are telling her.
Retention is the new acquisition. Embracing rather than ignoring the gold mine right in front of you is the strategic way to grow your practice. Your current patients who return and refer will fund your ongoing acquisition costs.
Think about it: How does a total stranger become a good friend of yours? Typically, you feel a connection with them, and you feel safe, comfortable, and interested in what they have to say. You talk and find things you have in common. You make time for them, make them a priority, take their telephone calls, respond to their e-mails, talk fondly about them to others, invite them to events, and make plans to get together.
I agree that you need new patients, but only if the majority of them come from your endless chain of referrals. If you get one patient and she gives you at least one referral—and that referred patient gives you at least one referral, and you keep that going—then you will never run out of new patients.