3 Reasons To Embrace the Digital Paradigm Shift in Aesthetics

Patient behavior and expectations has evolved dramatically over the past decade. Learn how to stay at the forefront for the next 10 years.

The world of plastic surgery and aesthetics is evolving. The industry is growing. Revenue from plastic surgery is on track to reach 17.9 billion this year, with a 3.1% annualized growth rate projected through 2024. Last year, close to five million surgical and non-surgical aesthetic procedures were performed in the United States. These attractive prospects are contributing to an increasing amount of competition in the aesthetics space. From physicians frustrated with the administrative burden of the traditional patient care model to businessmen and women hiring physician extenders to open med spas and other aesthetic ventures, new entrants and established practices alike are aggressively competing for market share. Rising disposable income, an aging population, changes in public perception regarding plastic surgery, and technological advancements are all driving an unprecedented number of patients to pursue elective aesthetic procedures.

At the same time, the digital transformation has empowered healthcare consumers and changed expectations in the way patients seek, access, and obtain their care. These drivers will keep the well-run aesthetics practice very busy over the coming years – provided they embrace the changing way savvy practitioners are engaging patients and managing their practice.

Here are three ways to stay at the forefront of the movement in the market:


Not long ago, successful practices depended almost entirely on referrals from other physicians. Advertising, marketing and other “non-traditional” ways patient traffic was directed or influenced was minimal. The industry has changed.

The influence of modern mobile technology and social media to stay relevant has become paramount. Direct to consumer marketing is now a primary driver of business for most aesthetic practices. Consumers expect an online presence, but it’s no longer enough to have a webpage and active social media channels. Of the global 4.33 billion people on the internet, 3.93 billion are unique mobile users. Mobile media consumption is up 504% since 2011. It’s essential to optimize the patient experience for consumption on mobile platforms.

In addition to mobile optimization, consumers are increasingly seeking personalized, authentic content and near real-time online engagement from the providers they will consider. A recent survey found 66% of consumers would not complete a purchase if digital content was not personalized, was poorly designed, or was not optimized for mobile consumption. To be successful in today’s aesthetics market, plastic surgeons need to have robust digital capabilities and a responsive, integrated mobile presence to capture the interest and maintain loyalty of customers.


An alarming 81% of patients are unsatisfied with their healthcare experience. Consumers across generational lines are frustrated with the current state of healthcare, and more are embracing “non-traditional” services, such as virtual health and other digitally-enabled services. Many patients are now counting digital capabilities among their primary reasons for selecting and staying with a provider. New technology allows the forward-thinking plastic surgeon to complete the entire patient journey within a mobile ecosystem. Scheduling appointments, pre-visit consultations, onboarding, and intake completed digitally provides immediacy and convenience.

HIPAA compliant video capabilities create unprecedented opportunities for on-demand consultations, documentation, and post procedure follow-up visits convenient for both patient and provider. Digital advancements are changing the way healthcare practitioners engage and care for patients. As consumers continue to seek better healthcare experiences, successful aesthetic practices must have the capability to meet the rising demand for simple, intuitive digital patient engagement.


In addition to new forms of patient engagement, the digital revolution is changing the way the modern aesthetics practice is managed. Integrated digital systems are automating, streamlining, and transforming operations, saving physicians and their staff time. Mobile capabilities are freeing providers from the constraints of stationary work stations, creating opportunities to focus more exclusively on patient experience.

From scheduling and appointment reminders to billing, marketing, and robust reporting capabilities, the digital transformation is improving operating efficiencies and providing end to end solutions from both the clinical and business perspective. Unsurprisingly, businesses embracing digital strategies are not only improving customer experience and operations, they are also increasing revenue.


Mobile technology has given rise to a new age of consumerism. From grocery shopping to ride sharing, banking, dating, and nearly everything between, mobile technology has contributed to societal change at a frenetic pace. The digital revolution has finally reached healthcare. Unbound by the bureaucracies, insurance companies, non-sensical administrative tasks that currently plague the traditional medical model, the aesthetics space is uniquely positioned to capitalize on the digital paradigm shift.

Success in this new world means reaching beyond surgical ability and embracing the technological change patients now expect. Mobile technology is empowering practitioners to reach more people, provide an amazing patient experience, and enhance the efficiency of the modern workplace. This type of paradigm shift is accelerating. Those who welcome these changes will improve value and outcomes for patients while positioning their practice to stand out in an increasingly competitive space.

How are you embracing the digital shift?

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