There’s no doubt that the past few months have been incredibly hard on all industries across the board. And if you’re a medical aesthetics practice – a business that relies heavily on in-person meetings and personal touch – you’re most definitely feeling the negative results associated with the need for social distancing.
While many practices have been able to switch up how they operate, like offering virtual consults to book future business, many smaller organizations have had to close their doors and halt operations completely. However your company has fared, now is the crucial time to begin taking stock of your business and how you must pivot your future approach. Because when the moment comes to reopen your practice publicly, you want to be positioned to take full advantage of the demand.
Embrace Your Newfound Business Mindset
COVID-19 has dealt society, as a whole, a major blow. But, it has also taught us a lot about rapidly adapting to change. Take a moment to breathe and think through some of the changes you’ve made in your business (and your personal life) and some of the lessons you’ve learned. For example, you’ve probably beefed up your blog presence and email strategy to offer your clients at-home health and beauty tips during this time (if not, our blog post, Content & Email Strategy for Medical Aesthetics Companies: Part 1 – Content, is a great place to start). Chances are, you’re more nimble and open to trying new strategies than ever before, so take advantage of this new mentality moving forward. Once things start shifting back toward life as we previously knew it, maintaining this flexibility and openness will help you handle whatever challenges the future brings.
Acknowledge the New Normal
Realistically, things may not go back to the way they were for months or even years – recovery simply takes time. If you haven’t already, set up virtual consults with prospective clients and promote this service on your website and social media. Making connections with patients now will better prepare you to get them into the office once they’re comfortable doing so. Create in-office or in-spa materials that explicitly speak to the steps you’re taking to ensure cleanliness and safety for your clients. Also, be flexible when it comes to appointments, as the landscape will likely continue to be in flux for some time. Trust and support between practitioners and clients are going to be more important now than ever before.
Find Opportunity in the Beauty Issues this Crisis Has Brought to Light
For many, working and meeting virtually has brought a number of new aesthetic problems to the forefront – after all, due to webcams and virtual meeting software, people are seeing their faces reflected back at themselves during meetings like never before! The cameras and at-home lighting can be very unkind, highlighting problem areas people never knew they had. This can actually be an opportunity for you: Launch a targeted social media campaign (or turn to us as your social media marketing partners to create and manage one), or send an email out acknowledging this challenge and inject some humor where appropriate. You’ll find that clients will appreciate some levity and are excited to get back on track and feel in control again.
Be Flexible, Be Compassionate, Be Helpful, Be Human
Even for the most affluent, times are harder than they were before the economic downturn. While discounts and specials do little to help bolster your brand, setting up a payment plan structure will help you secure more business. If able, also support as many charitable organizations as you can, and encourage your clients to do the same. For example, consider donating masks, gloves, sanitation products, or other materials you would normally use in your practice to hospitals and eldercare facilities until you reopen. Even in the smallest way, your practice has the power to help this crisis – and by doing so, you also build brand trust and brand affinity among your clientele.
Digitally Spread the Word That You’re Open
When you’re really ready to ramp up operations, start with your existing customers by sending out an email announcing that you’re open for business. They’re likely going to be happy to hear from you as it’s another pleasant reminder that life is getting back to normal. Then, start putting the word out on your social media platforms that you’re back up and running and ready to consult – online or in-office, depending on their level of comfort.
Support Your Staff
You may find that some or all of your team members have been impacted by this global pandemic. If members of your staff have used their training to help combat and treat COVID-19, herald them internally and externally. Staff members may even be struggling to care for someone who has fallen ill, so it’s important to be understanding and flexible when it comes to schedules. As we discussed in How to Prepare Your Medical Aesthetics Staff for Consultative Selling, your team is one of your most valuable assets to build trust with your patients and keep them coming back. So, make sure they feel taken care of now and in the future.
Related Reading: Be sure to download this blog post’s companion 4-page PDF, The 10-Step Checklist Medical Aesthetic Practices Should Use When Preparing to Reopen.
From all of us at Hawthorn Creative, we wish you good health and a positive mindset throughout this challenging time. As always, we’re here to help with anything you or your team may need. If you have any questions about this article or want to talk about how we can help prepare you for success the moment your doors open again, please reach out to us online.