When I first got into the business I was so excited to be doing what I loved that I could’ve been convinced to do procedures for free. I truly love what I do! Over the last few years I’ve learned some hard lessons and have also gained a new perspective on what I feel are appropriate discounts and those that aren’t.
Ultimately I’m not the cheapest provider out there but I’m not the most expensive either. I price procedures based on the education, training and talent it takes to perform them. So if I feel anyone could easily be trained to perform a procedure I price it lower. If it’s something very technical that I’m particularly talented at it’s priced higher. It’s a balance.
Overall I have definitely lost clients based solely on price and I’m ok with that. I think that as providers we need to stop competing on price and customers need to stop shopping based on price. It’s detrimental and I’ll tell you why.
Ali Wagstaff, Nurse Practitioner (AG-ACNP/FNP)
Why competing on pricing is detrimental to the aesthetics industry
Why you shouldn’t price shop for aesthetic procedures.
These are medical procedures and your face is not where you try to save a buck. It may seem benign because it’s just as mainstream to get Botox as it is to get a pedicure these days but there are risks with every procedure. A simple microneedling procedure could transmit HIV or Hepatitis C if done without proper precautions. Botox can cause debilitating facial paralysis that you have to live with for 3-4 months. Fillers can cause blindness, stroke or even death if done incorrectly. Laser can cause permanent scarring and hypopigmentation.
It takes a lot of medical education and training to know all of these risks and the right person will let you know they exist but know how to prevent them or handle them if they do. If someone tells you there is no risk, be wary.
The lowest price doesn’t mean you’ll get a good result. Often prices are lowered because someone is in training, they don’t have a lot of education or experience or they don’t have enough confidence to feel they are worth the price they should be asking for.
If you get a botched job from a groupon deal from someone with no medical training that simply took a 6 week course to learn how to inject Botox I promise it will be much more costly to get it fixed (emotionally and financially) than to get it done right the first time.
Granted, this is not always the case. Sometimes people are offering a special or promotion for marketing and they happen to be great injectors. More on that below but ultimately do your research and trust your instincts.
Your favorite injector could go out of business. Price shopping and hopping around to whatever clinic to get the best price is a sure way to suck the life out of a great place. Often a provider or clinic will offer lower prices to get new customers, reward existing customers or as a promo for a new procedure they are offering. Frequently they will not make any money during these promotions with a hope to get a new loyal customer that will bring money in later.
If everyone gets in the habit of hopping around from business to business then the businesses won’t be running for long.
Now if you haven’t found your go to place then by all means shop around until you find the right place. Once you do remember that supporting a local business or individual and building a relationship will pay off more in the long run, and you’ll get better results the better someone knows you and your face.
Why you should stop lowering your prices as an injector
You’re worth it. How long did you go to school for, train for, research for, and practice for your position? If you’re a business owner and an injector I bet it’s a lot. You need to be paid for your time and that’s ok. If you lose customers then they aren’t the right customer for you. A loyal customer that you give great results to will stick with you. Customers that shop based on price alone will not stick with you no matter how great you are, it’s not personal so let them go.
They’re paying for you not the product you use. Most people aren’t coming in just for a procedure, they’re coming in because they trust you and want you to do their procedure. So don’t get hung up on advertising all of your prices for say Juvederm Ultra (JU), advertise yourself and the great results you give. Just because the clinic next door offers JU for $500 doesn’t mean you have to because you know how much better your results are.
It’s killing our industry. When we all compete on pricing it is enabling the “black Friday” type mentality where people are running over each other for the best price. It diminishes the education, skill, expertise and talent it takes to be an injector. We’re not selling a product that is the same no matter what, your talent matters! It also tells the consumer that price is the most important thing when that is how we are getting their attention. Then when they come back and don’t get a discount every time they may start shopping around if that is what we’ve trained them to do.
Now this article is opinion based, at this moment, I may feel different in certain situations and there are ALWAYS exceptions to everything I said above.
I also do offer discounts and promotions but only in special circumstances such as:
If I get new equipment or learn a new procedure. I’ll offer discounts or even free services when I am learning something new, with COMPLETE transparency that it is for training. Once I am confident and feel I am an expert I charge regular prices.
When multiple products or services are purchased together. I want to be respectful of people’s budgets while also ensuring they get the best result, but my time is also valuable. This is a compromise. If they need just a bit more to go from good to great then we talk about it and find a way that it can work for both of us.
Packages or a series of treatments. This is similar to above. The customer get’s a discount for doing a whole series with me and I ensure that business is consistent, it’s a win win.
Referral programs. If a patient refers a friend or brings in a friend for a procedure this is the biggest compliment I can receive and I absolutely want to reward this. It also gives me the opportunity to meet a new client that could turn into a life-long customer. So it’s worth taking a hit for long-term relationships and future procedures.
Again, there are always exceptions but the point is that we should value ourselves as injectors and most clients will hopefully understand that a medical procedure is not the same as buying a product, or at least the right clients will.