Before-and-after images are a powerful and essential tool in any aesthetic treatment provider’s toolbox. Having quality images that show real results can convey meaningful messages to nervous or indecisive patients, but not just any image will do. Here, we explore some of the best practices to take, distribute, and strategically utilize quality before-and-after galleries to attract more prospective patients and boost your conversion rate.
Consumers are becoming more adept at spotting edited and enhanced images or techniques that may be used to boost perceptions of results, such as using paper undergarments in a before photo and lacy undergarments in an after photo to suggest a more dramatic transformation. Prospective patients may also be more in tune with the use of angles, lighting, or filters to diminish the appearance of fine lines or enhance presumed body shaping results, particularly due to the popularity of selfies and how to get that perfect photo. Unfortunately, this leaves many patients believing that the images they see in clincs are highly suspect when in reality, it could simply be that your clinic isn’t investing enough time and effort into producing high-quality before-and-after galleries.
Patient acquisition and conversion largely circles around your proven ability to attain results for your clients, so ensuring optimal and consistent angles, lighting, and resolutions, among other image quality aspects, is an essential first step to unlocking the full potential of your before-and-after photos. When taking before-and-after photos, be attuned to elements that may detract from the patient’s transformation, such as unflattering or busy backdrops, inconsistent positioning, dim lighting or shadows, and even what the patient may be wearing, including clothing, jewelry, makeup, or fake tans. These factors can be quickly perceived as unprofessional or worse, deceiving, leaving prospective patients doubting your clinic’s ability to achieve optimal patient outcomes and losing their trust before you even meet them. While you might be wary to invest space and a decently sized budget into photography equipment, not having the proper resources to capture your impressive results could mean a greater loss for your clinic.
Most aesthetics patients begin their search for an effective treatment provider online. As Modern Aesthetics reports, this essentially means that your website becomes a calling card. In fact, websites or physician profiles on sites like RealSelf are considered “suboptimal” if they include fewer than 10 photos, while for each eight additional photos, it is estimated to draw in at least one more new lead in the same period. In fact, according to a recent RealSelf survey, 83% of patients researching aesthetic treatment providers reported they would not consider a clinic that doesn’t have before-and-after photos online. Further still, one in every four RealSelf users identified before-and-after photos as the most influential factor in selecting a treatment provider. (Only patient reviews came in higher with just 57% citing them as their key determining factor.)
To many prospective patients, your online presence directly reflects the professionalism and quality of your clinic and its services, so ensure you take the time to offer high-quality digital before-and-after galleries to draw them in. Consider creating a dedicated page on your website for your best before-and-after photos while including treatment-specific sets on your respective services pages to ensure each prospective patient has all the information they need in one spot, improving your website’s conversion rate and booking more consultations.
Inundating prospective patients with a heavy binder of seemingly endless before-and-after photos is one surefire way to undermine the effectiveness of these images in converting skeptics. While you might include a diverse selection of photos on your website, narrow in on select photos that will best resonate with the patient during their initial consultation to create a sort of personalized gallery based on that patient’s unique aesthetic goals. By pointing out specifics that relate to that particular patient and sharing additional background information on the patients in the selected photos, you can paint a clearer picture of the outcome that patient may expect from your services.
Recalling details of the stories of the patients in the images, such as their motivation for opting into a treatment plan and how their results may have impacted other areas of their life, can also help to create an emotional connection with new patients. This shows them that you, as a provider, are invested in both their physical and emotional outcomes and are dedicated to helping them make positive changes in their own narrative. Finally, utilize photos to help you draw attention to physical details and ensure you verbally explain any aspects that may not be as strongly conveyed by a photo, such as improvements in touch or texture, to help manage expectations while encouraging a deeper understanding of the treatment process in a way the patient can easily understand.
Even after you convert a patient, it’s important to still consider the impact this patient may have on your future conversion rate, considering online reviews, positive word of mouth, and long-term patient retention. While not every patient may be comfortable giving their consent for the public and commercial use of their before-and-after images, ensuring you take photos for private use in every patient’s file is essential, as these photos can serve as a useful tool for gauging outcomes and better demonstrating subtle or gradual changes.
In particular, patients who require a longer treatment period may find it difficult to remember where they started. Having photos on hand can better help you visually demonstrate the outcomes achieved and limit the impact of a potentially negative review if they were otherwise unable to see the benefits of their treatment plan. Recall that online reviews are the one other resource patients weigh as more important than photos. Being able to manage and prevent potentially negative reviews will assist in improving your future conversion rate, letting your online before-and-after images shine, and potentially converting a skeptical patient into a loyal patient, which can positively influence your referral rate, as well.
Need a little help getting started with your before-and-after photos? While there is no true replacement for showing prospective patients the results you have personally obtained with your own patients, Venus Concept offers their partners resources to help bring in patients, such as real before-and-after photos you can use to get started with for improved conversion, or at least until you’re able to build out your own compelling collection of before-and-after images. Discover the benefits of a Venus Concept partnership today by contacting an expert using the button below.