If you’re a doctor that offers medically necessary services paid out of pocket before a deductible is met or because they’re considered cosmetic, I bet someone has asked you how much a procedure costs. Doctors field questions about pricing everyday. Whether it’s by phone, website or social media. Especially social media like YouTube, Instagram, Facebook Live or Snapchat! As soon as you post your before and after results, one of your followers asks, “how much does this cost?” Does this scenario sound familiar?
The right way to answer “how much a procedure costs”
Sure you could simply answer the follower’s question and give them a dollar figure. But what if the price is more than they were expecting? They’ll just dismiss the idea of coming to see you. And since you don’t have their contact info, you can’t follow up to answer more specific concerns about their needs. You certainly can’t have an open conversation on social media for obvious reasons. One is the HIPAA risk but also, you don’t want to start providing consults to everyone on your Instagram or Facebook feed.
You could take note of their social media handle and follow them to their page but that’s stalking! Also, they didn’t really give you permission to follow up with them on their page.
The right way to answer a consumer’s question about pricing is to get their contact information first. Then follow up with them offline (or off social media) for a more personal and patient-specific conversation. But how do you get their contact info for follow up? You can see how this plays out in the video below.
Video tutorial on the right way to answer questions about pricing
Here’s another example from Dr. Rich Castellano who is a frequent user of Facebook Live. Dr. Rich Castellano is a facial plastic surgeon in the Tampa Bay Area and he’s known as Dr. Smile or @realsmiledr on Instagram or ImageLift on Facebook.
In the video, he’s performing filler injections via Facebook Live. And not just once, but three times during the injection session, he was asked how much the procedure cost. Again, he could’ve just listed the price three times in response to the question. Instead, he directed them to his Price Estimator on his website so the follower could check for themselves. However, for the follower to see the cost, they have to first enter their contact information. Armed with the consumer’s contact info, the office staff can follow up and answer their questions and address their concerns. Can’t do that with a vague social media handle!
In the same video, you’ll see where a patient asks via Instagram how much a Brazilian Butt Lift (BBL) and Breast Augmentation combo procedure costs. If we simply answered her question, the most we would have is her Instagram handle. But to go to her Instagram page and start asking follow up questions is a bit stalker-ish. She’s probably ok with us answering her questions on our page but probably not ok with us pestering her on her Instagram page.
Since we recommended she go to the Price Estimator on our site, we instead received her name, email address and phone number after she provided her contact info in exchange for real-time pricing information. And since she contacted us, provided her contact information, opted in to receiving emails from us, she’s given us permission to follow up.
That’s the secret to the internet. Minimize the number of clicks for the consumer to get from “I know what I want” to “here’s how I get it.”
One more small detail to make the consumer’s life easier. Instead of giving them a link to go to a Price Estimator and then forcing them to scroll through all of the procedures to find the procedure they’re looking for, give them a deep link. A deep link brings them to the specific procedure they want to know pricing for without all of the searching. In this example, the deep link takes the patient directly to the BBL/breast aug procedure listing. That’s the secret to the internet. Minimize the number of clicks for the consumer to get from “I know what I want” to “here’s how I get it.”
What if someone calls the office with questions about pricing?
If someone calls your office asking about pricing, don’t just tell them to check pricing on your website. That’s terrible customer service. Give them the pricing they want while they’re on the phone and get contact info at the same time. Since this is the internet age, there’s a more elegant way of doing this than just saying, “give me your contact info and I’ll tell you the price!”
As you’ll see in the video below, there’s an accompanying app to the BuildMyBod Health platform. Whenever someone calls the office asking about price, open the BuildMyBod iPhone app and find out what procedure the patient wants. Then let them know they’ll get an email instantly with the estimated cost, which leads to capturing their name, email and phone number to be entered into the app. Once the office staff pushes “submit” the price appears on the screen.
Along with telling the consumer the price over the phone, you now also have email documentation of the estimate given. It’s great documentation for the office and the patient to minimize a misquotation of the estimate or any miscommunication.
So doctors, don’t give the milk away for free. Embrace price transparency. Provide pricing on your terms (with a price estimator), and get something in return (a lead)! Click here to request a BuildMyBod provider account. Consumers, click here to check pricing from a doctor near you.