TOP 10     MARKETING MISTAKES     BY REFRACTIVE SURGEONS1. Surgeon-centric vs. Patient-centric                         7. ...
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Top 10 marketing mistakes by refractive surgeons


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Top 10 marketing mistakes by refractive surgeons

  1. 1. TOP 10 MARKETING MISTAKES BY REFRACTIVE SURGEONS1. Surgeon-centric vs. Patient-centric 7. Reliance on advertising to build the Most medical practices are designed for the business convenience of the doctor rather than the There has been an over reliance on advertising to customer. In refractive surgery, a major symptom build call volume, followed by very little investment of this problem has been the attempt to on what needs to happen once the telephone differentiate based on technology (important to the rings. The lack of internal systems and protocols surgeon) rather than on the benefits of the has prevented many surgeons from building their procedure (important to the customer). business organically.2. Poor leadership 8. Believing that price promotion can Many surgeons who suffer from staffing problems increase overall demand place the blame on bad employees. In reality, this The only correlation between price and demand for is often a function of poor leadership. LASIK on a national basis has been an inverse one. As prices declined, so did total procedures.3. Failure to properly handle incoming As prices rose, so did total procedures. Many phone inquiries surgeons confuse price with affordability, which is The telephone is the single most important tool to much more important to consumers than actual convert interest into active consideration among price and is best handled with a well-administered refractive candidates. Most surgeons fail to invest No-interest Financing program. in proper telephone systems, skills, and training for staff. 9. Blaming environmental factors for declines in business performance4. Inadequate care and feeding of staff When LASIK volumes fell in 2001-2003, many Staff members often convey (non-verbally) to the surgeons blamed the economy, terrorism and other patient how they are treated by the surgeon. In factors beyond their control. During the same time order to achieve a world-class refractive staff, period, breast augmentation – with a similar price surgeons need to do much better in compensation, point to LASIK – continued to grow in both surgeon training and development. fees and total procedures performed in the U.S.5. Promotion which is too cluttered, too 10. Focusing on the outcome rather than broad, and too expensive the overall experience for the patient Advertising to reach refractive surgery candidates, In refractive surgery, quality should be defined by which totals $100 million annually among the customer rather than the provider. The surgeons, continues to be in violation of traditional surgeon’s definition of “quality” focuses on the as well as leading-edge advertising concepts. It outcome; the customer’s definition is much wider tends to “cheapen” the category rather than and encompasses all aspects of the process reinforce the value provided by surgeons. beginning with the advertising and ending with how Broadcast advertising is expensive and “interrupts” the provider said “thank you” following the consumers, who now have the ability to tune-out procedure. mass marketing (e.g, TIVO, Sirius Radio). And one more “bonus” mistake… 11. Believing that other local providers are6. Lack of follow-up protocols for leads the competition and alumni Surgeons focused on what “the other guy is doing” Surgeons are willing to spend millions on tend to view refractive surgery as a zero-sum advertising but then fail to invest in tools and game and seek to maximize their own market techniques to cultivate leads over time and help share. In reality, penetration of refractive surgery early prospects move forward in their decision is so low (<10%) that surgeons should recognize process. Same holds true for leveraging that the real competition includes kitchen remodels previously treated LASIK patients into generating and vacations. All efforts should be focused on new business (other patients and/or additional working collaboratively to maximize market size by procedures for presbyopia). leading more and more consumers to actively consider having refractive surgery. © Copyright 2006, SM2 Consulting. All Rights Reserved Rev42606A