What does it take to get a return on your investment in RealSelf? In this series, we’ll walk you through the approaches your peers have taken in order to get peak performance from their profiles.
Dr. Melanie Malone’s business strategy is nearly indistinguishable from her surgical approach. “I want every single patient to feel like, ‘Wow, that was amazing,’” she says. “That’s how I keep building a foundation for my practice, month after month.”
To get patients into her practice so that she and her team can deliver a 5-star experience, Dr. Malone uses RealSelf, a marketing channel she calls “non-negotiable” for any aesthetic surgeon in practice right now.
“You have a website, you have a phone number, you have Instagram—and you have to have a RealSelf profile,” she says. “I think what sets RealSelf apart is that it’s really viewed in patients’ eyes as an authority.”
Here’s how Dr. Malone is using RealSelf to help grow her three-year-old facial plastic surgical practice.
RealSelf Profile By the Numbers
Specialty: Board Certified Facial Plastic Surgeon
Years in practice: 6
Location: La Jolla, CA
Patient reviews: 51
Star rating: 5.0
B&A photos: 398
She uses consumers’ trust in RealSelf to help position herself as the right choice
|RealSelf is seen as the most trusted source for cosmetic procedures 2X more often than doctors’ websites and 10X more often than Google reviews.|
Fifteen percent of surveyed aesthetics shoppers say a doctor’s years of experience create trust.
More than four times as many say the same about reviews.
It’s something Dr. Malone has repeatedly experienced in her practice, and she uses RealSelf to reveal the exact information potential patients need to see as they narrow and validate their choice: her top procedures and evidence of the exceptional results she has achieved for previous patients.
“Nearly every single person I operate on goes online to authenticate me,” she says. “So many women want to get a facelift but are nervous at first. Then they go home, find my RealSelf profile, and come back and say, ‘You have to do it.’”
Over time, Dr. Malone has built her profile up to more than 50 descriptive, glowing reviews and 100-plus before-and-after photos in the procedures she most wants to be known for: facelifts, neck lifts, and rhinoplasty.
Along with her 5-star rating, they constitute rock-solid proof of her credibility that has helped move consultations from “I’ll think about it” to “yes”. Dr. Malone also prioritized getting Realself Verified, ensuring her profile clearly states that she is a board-certified facial plastic surgeon. “No one’s going to want you to do their facelift otherwise,” she says.
She recognizes RealSelf as ‘non-negotiable’—even when other channels take the credit
|To get reviews, Dr. Malone has a staff member personally email a request to patients and includes her custom review link in the email. Watch our video to learn more about getting reviews on RealSelf.|
Dr. Malone reports that most of her patient leads come from sources other than her RealSelf profile. Yet she also says RealSelf is an absolute necessity for a surgical aesthetics business. “If you’re going to be in practice right now,” she says, “being on RealSelf is non-negotiable.”
That’s not a contradiction. Dr. Malone notes that RealSelf exerts influence on potential patients, even when RealSelf users who scour her profile decide to call, email, or DM her instead of contacting her through RealSelf. So how can Dr. Malone pick a RealSelf patient out of a lineup?
- Reading between the lines. “When we ask people to tell us how they heard about us, they often don’t write ‘RealSelf’ even when they’ve used it in their research,” she revealed. According to Dr. Malone, “researching online reviews” and even “Google” are the types of responses to “how did you find out about us?” that might mask a RealSelf-influenced patient.
- Knowing the source. When patients repeat the great things previous clientele have said about her, she feels confident they researched her on RealSelf. “RealSelf is where I’m targeting my surgical reviews,” says Dr. Malone. “They’re not finding that other places, so when they quote my reviews, I know they’re on RealSelf.”
- Seeing the quality. RealSelf patients ask Dr. Malone insanely detailed questions. “Things like, ‘Are you going to do a submuscular, deep buried stitch?’ They do their research, they know a lot, and they often know the lingo,” she says.
She leverages the power of presence to seal the deal with patients
Leads are where the rubber hits the road for growing your practice, but Dr. Malone understands that a strong brand presence is key for building consumer trust and confidence that leads to more consults—and getting bookings after consults are finished.
It’s why she invests in raising her profile, literally, to make sure she is practically unavoidable for consumers searching for facial plastic surgeons in her area.
“If one of my patients searches for ‘facelift’ inside RealSelf, they’re going to see me on that very front page,” she noted. “You need those touchpoints. You want them to say, ‘There she goes again.’”
Dr. Malone discovered the value of branding through trial. “My advice? Try anything once” with RealSelf, she said. “If something is very clearly and reproducibly turning up a good patient cohort, that’s something I keep doing.”
One Crisp Takeaway
Think like a consumer. Dr. Malone often talks about her approach to RealSelf from their point of view: what they see when they search, what they’ll find on her profile, how they move through their aesthetics journey and interact with her RealSelf presence along the way.
Consider the type of information consumers, who already trust RealSelf, need to see on your profile to choose you with confidence. Your dashboard is the perfect place to start. The content needed to become RealSelf Verified doubles as a roadmap for building the foundation of a strong RealSelf profile.
Want to learn more about how RealSelf can drive growth to your practice? Visit here to request time with a RealSelf Advisor.