10 Reasons Why Patients Hesitate, and How to Counter Them

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Prospective patients often face mental or financial obstacles that may cause them to question whether they should commit to your proposed customized treatment plan. While you don’t want to apply undue pressure to commit, there are ways to ease prospective patients’ concerns. The following are some of the most common reasons patients are reluctant to say “yes” to treatments and how to address those concerns to boost your aesthetic consultation conversion rates.

1. Cost

For some prospective patients, a long-term treatment plan that addresses their concerns holistically may be ideal in terms of outcome, but cause them to balk at the price point. In situations where patients are unsure about the overall value, explain that pricing reflects the practitioner’s expertise and skill. Help your patients understand that they are paying for better, noticeable results. If available, make sure to outline financial payment plan options. 

2. Trust

Sometimes patients don’t feel a connection with the practitioner or patient care coordinator. During the aesthetic consultation, this may result from staff members doing all the talking, rushing through the appointment, neglecting them, or barraging the patient with policies and fees. To boost conversions, have clinic staff brush up on their rapport-building skills, ask open-ended questions, and employ active listening throughout the initial appointment. Keep an eye on the pacing and scheduling of appointments, so patients don’t perceive your clinic as unprofessional or unwilling to invest time in their patients.

3. Family Support

Although most non-surgical medical aesthetics treatments involve no downtime or post-op care, patients need to feel comfortable about their choice to have a procedure. Lack of support or even opposition from partners or family can make it difficult for an individual to pursue treatment. This can be hard to overcome, but try to explore alternatives with the patient. Consider suggesting that the patient bring a spouse or friend to a follow-up consultation to address any of their concerns if needed.

4. Dissatisfaction

The treatment plan should align with the patient’s expectations as discussed during the active listening portion of the consultation. If different or more treatments are suggested than were expected, this can overwhelm a prospective patient. Handle this situation with sensitivity. When outlining your treatment recommendations, explain tactfully how achieving their desired results requires additional steps beyond what they may have had in mind. Gentle education is key.

5. Safety

While you will have covered basic safety concerns in your explanation of the treatment plan, patients’ perceptions of aesthetic treatments might be impacted by reality television shows and tabloid articles about treatments gone wrong. To keep unwarranted fears at bay, provide concrete, factual information regarding your clinic’s treatment outcomes, and be honest about potential complications. Let patients know how your clinic handles and resolves complications to ensure positive outcomes with every case.

6. Discomfort

Concerns about pain often accompany fears about results. Show empathy to patients who stress over discomfort, and discuss all options available for alleviating discomfort during or after the procedure. Remind them that the practitioner will be checking in frequently during the treatment and will be responsive to their needs, ensuring their comfort as best as they can throughout. When possible, liken the sensation felt during or after treatment to a sensation they may be more familiar with to help them get a better understanding of what to expect.

7. Scheduling

With the hectic pace of the world these days, patients are looking to find appointment times that fit their lives. If patients will need to avoid the sun, the gym, or makeup post-treatment, that may impose a hurdle for their scheduling. There’s no easy solution to this concern, but be sure to ask the client when they make the consultation appointment if they are working around a special event, such as a wedding. If the timeline is impossible, honesty is the best policy to save your clinic and the patient frustration. Alternatively, if possible, offering extended evening or weekend hours to fit your patient’s schedules may help ease concerns for those with a busy calendar.

8. Results

Prospective patients often worry about whether they’ll see satisfactory results. Your best strategy is reassurance both about your clinic’s track record in achieving great outcomes and the use of before and after photos that relate to the patient’s particular treatment plan. You may also consider compiling a list of past patients who are willing to talk to newcomers, to offer a meeting and an opportunity to hear about another patient’s experiences first-hand.

9. Fears of Being Judged

Many people worry that others will see them as vain, superficial, or self-indulgent when seeking an elective aesthetic treatment. Meet these concerns by reminding your patients that no matter their age, they deserve a fresh appearance and a little TLC. Emphasize that your practice strives for natural results, so they won’t look overdone post-treatment. Let them know that, for the most part, their friends and family may not even be able to tell they had something done—just that they look great!

10. Anxiety

Patients can get overwhelmed with information, especially if presented with lots of different treatment options. They may worry about making a bad choice and become paralyzed, unable to make a decision. Address this by grouping procedures into clear treatment paths and stages, and limiting options to two treatment suggestions: a single treatment to address their most pressing concerns and a treatment plan to holistically address their concerns for better overall results. Keep information simple, highlighting the main points in person but offering brochures or information pamphlets for more details if desired.

To discover more tips on how to effectively boost conversions during the consultation process, download our invaluable eBook, “Mastering the Art of the Aesthetic Consult.”

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