Skip links

The Top 10 Plastic Surgery Marketing Strategies to Attract New Patients in 2024

How to Get More Plastic Surgery Leads

Let’s face it: our digital world moves fast. If you want your plastic surgery practice to grow, you need your marketing strategies to be as effective as possible.

Many marketing strategies exist, but they typically fall into one of three buckets: building brand awareness, utilizing digital marketing channels, and engaging with patients.

In this guide, we’ll explore marketing strategies and techniques to help you grow your plastic surgery practice. We’ll delve into topics like creating an effective website, the power of social proof, and essential elements of successful plastic surgery marketing strategies. So let’s dive in and discover the top 10 plastic surgery marketing strategies that will take your practice to new heights. But first, a word about funnels…

First Things First: Understand the Patient Journey

In marketing, a funnel is a way to describe the journey potential customers go through as they get closer to buying. The funnel starts very wide at the top, with lots of people interested in a product or service. As people decide not to buy, the funnel gets more narrow, leaving only those who end up purchasing (or those who are close) at the bottom. Marketers use funnels as a heuristic to help them understand how they attract and keep customers.

In healthcare, we often call this the “patient journey,” and for good reason. Nobody wakes up in the morning, decides to have a plastic surgery procedure, picks up the phone and calls the first practice that comes to mind. It’s usually a more nuanced and lengthy process – one that involves in-depth research, consideration, and evaluation of all their options.

Marketing funnel
A marketing funnel. The names of stages may vary, but all patients move through more or less this same journey

A marketing funnel (or the patient journey, in this case) consists of four stages: awareness, consideration, interest, and action. Each stage comprises patients who look and act differently from those in other stages. Because of this, you need different strategies to reach them. For any marketing strategy to be effective, it must align with one of these stages and help move patients further through the funnel.

In the awareness stage, the goal is to make potential customers aware of your brand and your offerings. This is where brand awareness lives: if patients aren’t aware your practice exists, they can’t choose you. Strategies like paid search and SEO can help increase your visibility here (more on those later).

In the consideration stage, the goal is to provide valuable information and build trust. This is where strategies that leverage social proof come into play. Examples include patient reviews, testimonials, and before/after photos. The goal is to help patients see that you are a good option among many.

Once patients show interest, you need to nurture that interest and keep them engaged. The goal in this stage is to stay “top of mind” and build a relationship with prospects – one that makes your practice the obvious choice. Strategies like email marketing can be powerful here, because they establish you as an authority and build trust.

Finally, the action stage is where patients choose you for their procedure. Nobody moves straight from awareness to action – they have to build a relationship first. Some patients will move to action on your website, while others will click an ad. Some patients move to the action stage quickly, while others may take weeks or months to get there. For patients who are familiar with your practice but haven’t converted, remarketing can hep here.

Now that we’ve discussed the stages of the patient journey, let’s take a look at the top plastic surgery marketing strategies to help you grow your practice.

Plastic Surgery Marketing Strategies to Build Your Practice Brand

1. Understand Your Target Demographics

The first step in getting more patients is reaching them. And the first step in reaching them is understanding who they are. Understanding the demographic makeup of your target prospects is essential to effective marketing.

The goal with understanding your target demographics is to get inside their heads. What do they want? What do they want to avoid? Who are they? What offers, messages, and experiences will resonate with them?

Far too many practices waste marketing dollars by not understanding their demographics well from the beginning. Let’s say you know your typical patient is not a college-age male the next town over. Instead, most of your patients are middle-aged females living within a 5-mile radius of your practice. Why would you waste ad spend targeting anyone else?

Income can be an important factor in demographic targeting. Because most plastic surgery procedures are elective, you may want to target people with disposable income. Fortunately, there are tools for this. Both Google Ads and Facebook Ads let you target users based on geography, age, gender, and household income.

Understanding your demographics also helps you create personalized and relevant marketing messages. Relevant messages resonate much better with your prospects, increasing the chances they will take the next step and become a patient.

2. Use the Language Your Patients Use

Of course you want to rank well for surgical terms on Google. But if patients don’t know those terms, you may not show up. That’s why it’s crucial to use the exact same language that your patients use when you create content for your website and your marketing.

Instead of searching for “augmentation mammoplasty,” most patients will search for terms like “breast augmentation near me.” When you use language your patients are familiar with, you are far more likely to attract their attention.

Using the language your patients use helps bridge the gap between medical terminology and patient understanding. Not only can it improve your website’s visibility online, but it also enhances user experience because patients can find the information they’re looking for.

3. Build an Effective Plastic Surgery Website

Notice we didn’t recommend to build a pretty plastic surgery website. You might have the most beautiful website in the world, but if it doesn’t give your patients the information they’re looking for, you won’t grow. Unfortunately, too many surgeons miss this.

Pretty websites are nice, but if you want more patients, your practice website has to be an effective lead generation tool.

A few things are required for an effective plastic surgery website. First, social proof in the form of patient testimonials is crucial. Social proof is a proxy for trust: when we aren’t sure how to proceed, we look to others for guidance. Potential patients want to see that others had positive experiences with your practice and trust your expertise. Including testimonials from satisfied patients can help build credibility and trust.

Pretty websites are nice, but if you want more patients, your practice website has to be an effective lead generation tool.
Pretty websites are nice, but if you want more patients, your practice website has to be an effective lead generation tool.

Before and after photos are also essential. These are especially important in a field like plastic surgery, where the outcomes are inherently visual. Patients don’t just want a list of services; they want to see the actual results you’ve achieved for others. Including a gallery of before and after photos on your website can help showcase your skills and attract new patients.

Be careful to not use too much stock photography. Many plastic surgery websites are full of inauthentic stock photos, and patients can see that from a mile away. When possible, try to include real photos of your office space and your staff.

Of course, none of this matters if your website is not easy to navigate. It’s crucial to provide comprehensive information about the procedures you offer, including the process, potential risks, and expected outcomes. Include detailed descriptions of each procedure, FAQs, pricing information, and photos where appropriate. This helps educate and inform your website visitors and can help you rank higher on Google.

Finally, each page should have a clear call to action. A patient should never be more than one click away from being able to contact you. A best practice is to provide several contact options, such as phone, email, or a contact form. Giving patients options caters to different preferences and increases the likelihood of conversion.

Utilizing Digital Marketing to Get More Patients for your Plastic Surgery Practice

Now that we’ve discussed how to build awareness of your brand, let’s turn to digital marketing strategies to drive patients to your door.

4. Use Paid Search on Google Ads

Now that you have an effective website that appeals to your target demographic, it’s time to get some eyeballs on it, right? Enter Google Ads for plastic surgeons.

When done correctly, paid search on Google Ads can be the most lucrative marketing strategy for plastic surgeons. Paid Search Ads allows surgeons to reach highly-targeted and engaged audiences. When prospects are searching for valuable terms like “plastic surgeon near me,” you can ensure that your practice appears at the top of the search results. The higher the placement, the more clicks (and patients) you’ll get.

A good healthcare marketing agency can help you write targeted ad copy that matches the patient’s search query. When your ads match what patients are searching for, they are far more likely to click. In fact, Precision Plastic Surgery experienced a 17% increase in clicks when their ads account was restructured to match ads with user queries. 17% may not sound like much, but when revenue per procedure can run into the multiple thousands of dollars and you’re acquiring leads at under $50 like Precision Plastic Surgery did, your practice can start to grow quickly.

It is important to note that Google considers plastic surgery a sensitive category. This can lead to extra scrutiny and potential limitations on the types of ads that you can run. Most times Google won’t disable your ads outright, but reach and visibility can be limited.

This is why many surgeons choose to use a two-pronged approach by combining paid search with Search Engine Optimization, or SEO.

5. Use Search Engine Optimization for Plastic Surgeons

Search Engine Optimization, often called SEO, is the practice of improving a website’s content with the goal of better rankings on Google and improved visibility. When a practice choose to engage in plastic surgery SEO, it can rank much higher for valuable searches, leading to more patients and more revenue.

SEO does not face the same sensitive category restrictions that paid search does. Plastic surgeons can leverage the power of SEO to target a wider range of keywords and topics related to their services. As a practice creates valuable content about those topics, it will rank better for high-value keywords and increase visibility. In this way, SEO is the flywheel that makes all marketing channels easier.

To do SEO well, you have to write valuable content. Creating valuable and informative content that answers patients’ questions is the best way to build authority and trust in the minds of both patients and search engines.

By answering common questions and providing valuable information, you position yourself as an expert in your field and build credibility. This helps patients feel more confident in choosing you as their plastic surgeon and shows Google your website is a reliable source of information. These signals build upon one another and make all your marketing easier.

For instance, Fort Worth Plastic Surgery & MedSpa saw a 127% increase in Google rankings after optimizing their website to focus on SEO best practices. Taking steps to improve their website and writing authoritative content led to a 68% growth in website traffic in a few short months.

“Our website, SEO, and web presence was terrible and the team running it all for us was never available to help. After the first phone call with Crawford at Messenger I could tell we found the right group. He understood my pain, talked through some quick solutions that would get us pointed in the right direction, and showed genuine care for me and my business. Seven months later we are in a great place and I can still say that the team at Messenger are always there to help with any issue, big or small. So glad I have Messenger on my team!”

– Lauren Duke, Business Manager, Fort Worth Plastic Surgery & MedSpa

6. Offer Free Photoshop Consults

A unique marketing strategy that few plastic surgeons offer is a free Photoshop consultation for a procedure. In an age where first impressions are increasingly digital, offering free Photoshop consultations can serve as a powerful lead generation tool for plastic surgeons.

These consults provide a personalized experience that before/after photos cannot match. Photoshop consultations allow prospects to see the potential results on their own bodies before any actual surgery takes place.

These personalized mock-ups can be a compelling motivator because they shift discussion from abstract possibilities to a tangible future. This can elicit a stronger emotional response and a deeper investment in the possibility of surgery.

The goal here is not to sell a procedure, but a desired state. By showing patients what could be, you get them to envision the future. You transition from selling a feature or a product to selling a benefit, which is much more effective.

These individualized consults also build trust between the surgeon and the patient. By taking the time to create a customized visual, the surgeon can show they understand the patient’s unique goals and desires for their procedure. This level of personal attention is far more memorable than simple before/after photos. It’s the perfect tool to set the stage for a positive and trusting relationship.

7. Use Remarketing & Display Ads to Recapture Missed Opportunities

It’s inevitable that there will always be leads who “got away.” You will always have prospects who clicked on an ad or visited your website but didn’t schedule an appointment. Fortunately, there are cost-effective ways of reaching these patients.

Remarketing campaigns allow you to show targeted ads to people who have visited your website or engaged with your brand in some way. These ads show up on other websites across the Internet that are part of the ad network.

Remarketing campaigns allow you to show targeted ads to people who have visited your website or engaged with your brand in some way.
Remarketing campaigns allow you to show targeted ads to people who have visited your website or engaged with your brand in some way.

Plastic surgeons can use remarketing display ads to build brand awareness and to reach out to prospects who didn’t convert. Research shows that it takes 7-10 touchpoints before someone is comfortable with a brand. By showing relevant ads to interested patients, you can stay “top of mind” and encourage them to schedule an appointment. Repeated exposure continues to build trust and increases the likelihood that a prospect will schedule an appointment.

Display ads are also far more cost-effective than Search ads. A $5-$10 daily budget can get thousands of impressions and clicks, leading to more chances to book appointments.

Engaging with Prospective Patients Directly to Get More Plastic Surgery Leads

Ok, so your practice has good brand awareness and is getting leads from digital marketing. What else can you do to foster practice growth? Let’s take a look at some more personal plastic surgery marketing strategies that will help your practice grow.

8. Consider Hosting an Open House

Digital marketing is a good way to start a conversation and build brand awareness. But at the end of the day, patients have to actually come in to your practice for an appointment or procedure. That’s why holding in-person open houses can be a great strategy to engage with prospective patients and grow your practice.

An open house can be a terrific source of patient leads. When you invite potential patients to visit, they get the opportunity to see the facilities, meet the surgeons and staff in person, and get a sense of the atmosphere and expertise of the practice. These personal interactions continue to build trust and establish a connection with potential patients, making them more likely to choose your practice for their procedure.

Open houses also provide an opportunity to give away low-cost treatments such as botox or fillers as an “introduction” to more substantial procedures. These can be an effective way to garner interest and attract potential patients. By offering these treatments as a raffle or giveaway, the practice can generate excitement, collect patients’ information, and create a sense of exclusivity. Giveaways can also encourage attendees to spread the word about the practice and refer friends or family members who are interested in plastic surgery.

But the most important piece of an open house is the in-person element. There’s no alternative to meeting surgeons and staff in real life. While digital marketing is the best way to reach a wider audience, nothing can replace the personal connection and trust formed through face-to-face interactions. Patients can ask questions, voice concerns, and get a better sense of the expertise and professionalism of the practice. This is essential to building a strong rapport and increasing the likelihood of converting leads into actual patients.

9. Don’t Forget About Email Marketing

Email marketing and newsletters can be very effective for plastic surgery practices. Email allows you to reach both existing and new patients with personalized and targeted information.

One of the key benefits of email marketing is its high ROI. According to a study by the Direct Marketing Association, email marketing has an average ROI of 3800%. For every dollar spent on email marketing, the average return is $38. This makes email one of the most cost-effective marketing strategies available.

Email allows you to share a wide range of content with your audience that may not be appropriate on other platforms. You can use email to provide practice news, highlight case studies of successful procedures, announce new procedures you offer, or promote special offers and discounts.

Email’s versatility allows you to engage with your patients and earn “repeat” patients by keeping them informed about the latest developments in your practice.

Not to mention the fact that an email address is a far more persistent “identity” than a social media profile. Google and Facebook are always changing ad targeting options, and companies like Apple regularly thwart ad tracking by offering consumers more privacy-focused options. Email is immune from this, which makes it the perfect tool for reaching patients.

10. Get More Reviews for Your Plastic Surgery Practice

Reviews are important in many industries, but are most important in fields like healthcare where trust is paramount. If you want more plastic surgery patients, you need to get more reviews.

One psychological principle that explains the significance of reviews is social proof. Social proof is the tendency for individuals to look to others’ actions and opinions to guide their own behavior. Potential patients are far more likely to trust a surgeon who has positive reviews and testimonials from previous patients. These reviews serve as evidence that others have had a positive experience and achieved satisfactory results.

There are several ways to get more reviews. The first is simply asking patients to leave a review. Sending patients a link or QR code to write a review on Google makes the process easier. You can also use post-surgery email campaigns or even offer discounts on future procedures in exchange. Surgeons can also leverage social media platforms and online directories to showcase their work and encourage patients to leave reviews.

Not only do reviews help prospects decide whether or not your practice is right for them, but they can work wonders for your local SEO, too. Google My Business accounts with healthier review profiles (lots of recent reviews with a high average rating) tend to show up much higher in local results than practices with fewer reviews. As you get more reviews for your practice, your local presence increases, which builds brand awareness and makes all of your marketing easier.


Marketing is always changing. Marketing for plastic surgeons is no exception.

If you want to increase plastic surgery patient volume and grow your practice, you need to make sure your marketing is firing on all cylinders. As we said before, if patients don’t know you exist, they cannot choose you for their plastic surgery procedure.

These top tips provide the best ways to grow your plastic surgery practice in 2024 and beyond. By utilizing these strategies to market your plastic surgery practice, you can build brand awareness, attract more patients through marketing, and engage with prospects in a way that turns them into raving fans of your practice.

Wondering how your marketing efforts stack up? Book a free discovery call with us. Our plastic surgery marketing experts will assess your practice’s needs and see if we’re a good fit to work together.

Leave a comment