MAY-JUN 2017

MedEsthetics—business education for medical practitioners—provides the latest noninvasive cosmetic procedures, treatment trends, product and equipment reviews, legal issues and medical aesthetics industry news.

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BUSINESS CONSULT | By Cheryl Whitman Networking—a process by which one develops contacts and exchanges information with other people solely for the purposes of developing one's business—is effective because it creates personal bonds based on trust and admiration. Conferences and professional associations provide valuable networking opportunities for physicians because they allow you to develop relationships that increase referrals, but this is only the tip of the iceberg. Your local community also offers a plethora of networking opportunities through which you can grow your practice. The key to success lies in identifying your goals and taking the time to measure the results, so you can target your efforts most effectively. IDENTIFY YOUR GOALS The goal of community networking, in general, is to build name recognition and enhance one's professional reputa- tion. You can connect with other medical professionals in your area to increase referrals; make contact with local busi- ness owners who share a similar demographic of patrons to cross-promote services; or reach out to prospective patients directly in order to increase bookings. The fi rst step in successful community networking is to identify the group you wish to target and identify activities in which they are likely to take part. Physician-to-physician referrals are extremely valuable. Patients who are referred to your practice by their primary care physicians, for example, trust you before they even enter the door. You can increase these types of referrals by expanding your referral network to include a variety of providers, such as chiropractors, dentists and OB-GYNs. Reach out to local specialists' societies and ask about op- portunities to attend or speak at an upcoming gathering. You can also personally invite local physicians to coffee or one of your own events. If you are seeking opportunities to connect directly with prospective patients, look for nearby health fairs and other community events, such as PTA meetings, gallery open- ings, wine tastings and charity fundraisers. If you identify a charitable organization that speaks to your own personal concerns or those of your target patient base, attend and support their events or offer to host one at your facility. 14 MAY/JUNE 2017 | Med Esthetics Community Networking Maximize your local networking efforts by setting goals and tracking outcomes. © GETTY IMAGES

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