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Aesthetics Practice Today

Skin Care > Coffee

Published December 3, 2013 4:57 PM by Kimberly Cray
When attending a skin care seminar, learning about a company's product line and how you could potentially incorporate certain items into your practice is the intended purpose. However, one of the greatest things you can take from such an experience is far more than just information from a PowerPoint slide or an ingredients list. For me, it is the experiences discussed "between slides" from other providers and lecturers that is invaluable. Their lessons, if you will, can impact your practice in a very positive way.

I recently attended a national product seminar for a well-known cosmetics company. While at times "salesy," I left with knowledge about new products, backed by clinical data and lots of pretty before and after pictures. The lecturer also brought up a few points that had my mind thinking and wanting to share with you.   

I was taking notes on a product when someone asked about pricing. The lecturer said the price but didn't stop there. She also mentioned that many people enjoy a cup of coffee on their way to work in the morning. Now, a cup of coffee can run say $5 or so. Over the course of one month that is approximately $150. In a year, that coffee a day could total almost $2,000.  

How is this useful in clinical practice? Well, for starters it can open patients' eyes to their priorities. The price point for some physician dispensed products can be higher than OTCs, although in many cases the difference is not much. 

As a provider, think of all the money wasted on failed attempts to improve a skin condition with over-the-counter products. This skin care over coffee idea just helps to show patients that if skin care falls in the category of important to them then it is not a leap at all to purchase a high quality product. Especially patients who really want to see results and come to us for our expertise. Sometimes we need to break it down and give them that push to get them closer to better skin.    

I find this simple concept such an excellent example when it comes to patients questioning the price of products. Sometimes inexpensive OTCs are great options (see my previous post "When to Skimp, When to Splurge") but often the old saying is true: "You get what you pay for." Of course great skin care can come at a price and it must be one a patient is comfortable with.  

But when we look at the big picture, I feel this is a great way to help patients feel "ok" with making a skin care purchase outside their comfort zone when it comes to pricing. This doesn't mean pushing someone to purchase something they can't afford. This is just a means of comparison where money can go on a daily basis.    

The cost of products can certainly deter patients from purchasing them. We all want to be the provider that changes our patients' skin for the better. Having great products at our disposal that a patient can use and improve with is a must. Being able to have the patient leave with that product is essential in helping them. 

Lesson learned - sometimes a little education, story, comparison or just simply time can go a long way. In my eyes, the health of my skin is far more valuable than a Starbucks, not to mention a few less calories.

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    Occupation: Physician Assistant/Nurse Practitioner
    Setting: Miami & Upland, Calif.
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