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Study Shows More Plastic Surgeons Using Social Media

Jacky Gale | May 10, 2013 | Posted in Body

With the explosion in popularity of social media websites and applications, more businesses are taking advantage of new ways to market to their clientele. And now, according to a recent study, about half of plastic surgeons are also using social media venues to reach out to patients. If you’re considering having a cosmetic plastic surgery in NYC, there could very well be an app for that soon, if there isn’t one already.

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Social media survey results

The study was published in the May 2013 issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. This journal is published by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). The researchers sent surveys to over 5,000 plastic surgeon members of the ASPS and received about 500 responses.

The results of the survey indicated that about half of the plastic surgeons use social media on a regular basis for the purposes of connecting to clientele. The responding surgeons preferred Facebook as their primary social media tool. In order of their popularity, LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube are also used.

Most of the plastic surgeons who responded noted that social media use appeared to be inevitable from a professional standpoint, and that it is useful for marketing to new patients. People looking for a Manhattan plastic surgeon, for example, might visit his Facebook page before calling for an appointment. The survey participants also cited patient education about plastic surgery procedures, as well as patient referrals and feedback as reasons for using social media. One-third of those responding said that they felt social media had a positive influence on their practices.

Possible drawbacks to social media marketing

However, some plastic surgeons noted the potential for pitfalls with social media use. About 1.5 percent of the respondents said that social media had a negative effect on their practices. Primarily, this was due to negative patient feedback posted on social media venues. However, the majority of surgeons who reported negative patient commentary did not believe that it had a detrimental effect on their reputation or exposure.

Some of the plastic surgeons who responded to the survey reported that they did not engage in social media soley for their practices. Some of them were worried about becoming too accessible to patients. Presumably, this is because some patients might consider plastic surgery procedures for the wrong reasons (i.e. to please somebody else, rather than themselves). The other reasons given included a need to safeguard the confidentiality of their patients and to preserve their reputation for professionalism.

It’s also worth noting that one-quarter of the survey participants pointed out a need for oversight. They requested that the ASPS and other professional organizations develop a set of guidelines or protocols for monitoring social media use among plastic surgeons.

Considering cosmetic plastic surgery in NYC?

Although social media connections might be a good way for some people to explore the procedures available at various practices, this remote form of patient education is not comprehensive nor is it individually tailored to the patient. Ultimately, a personal consultation to discuss cosmetic plastic surgery in NYC is the best way to decide if a procedure is right for a particular patient. A top-notch plastic surgeon can discuss your goals for your appearance, determine your candidacy for a procedure, and customize a plan that suits your needs.

Dr. Thomas W. Loeb has been in practice for more than two decades in Manhattan and works one-on-one with patients to help ensure each has realistic expectations about their desired outcomes. He is renowned for his surgical expertise in liposuction, breast augmentation, body contouring and facial rejuvenation procedures in New York. To schedule your private consultation at Dr. Loeb’s Fifth Avenue office, please call 212-327-3700.

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