Medical Website Design & Plastic Surgery Search Engine Optimization

Plastic surgery is one of my favorite industries on Earth.
Being a surgeon requires both artistic skill and logic, strategy, and compassion. Plastic surgeons are some of the most technically skilled artists modern-day.

Prior to opening Darling, I was contracted by a plastic surgeon in Miami to improve conversion & sales for his plastic surgery center.
The surgeon wanted patients to feel beautiful no matter their ethnicity or how much money they made. For his patients, plastic surgery was no longer something exclusive to the rich & famous, and everybody (literally EVERY BODY type) could achieve “perfection.”

So during my interview, I sold the surgeon on his own vision – a plastic surgery center known for being affordable & accessible. Rather than focusing on myself, and my own experience & skills, I focused on the doctor. I reassured him on the potential of his vision, and got the contract on the spot.

How I Sold $1M in Brazilian Butt Lifts in Miami

Taking the contract was a stretch on my part. At the time, I risked my reputation to sell something I knew nothing about, to a demographic I couldn’t relate to…
With no medical background, I was completely out of my comfort zone.

I couldn’t discuss technicalities, HIPAA requirements, or medical devices. During emergency situations at the center either, I was no help. I couldn’t even perform CPR.

I quickly discovered that patients knew more than I did. And I wasn’t making any sales for the first few weeks. It was frustrating, to say the least.

But I had one thing working to my advantage, a background in large scale commercial marketing. These patients did their homework and could teach a lot, if I just listened. From how long the procedure lasted, to the most common side effects, to post-op care, they’d done their homework.

In the beginning, each day felt like a beating and I could celebrate if I made just one sale. Usually, those sales would be leftovers from previous sales calls, and all I had to do was collect the deposit from the patient. This lasted for about 2 weeks.

Then my marketer’s brain turned on.

I watched another contractor close a sale without discussing the procedure AT ALL.

How could this be possible?

The patient was nervous because she’d never had surgery, and the contractor simply avoiding using medical lingo. Instead, they talked about how curvy the girl was going to look, how confident she was going to feel, and how her husband would buy her more jewelry (because he would want to show her off & take her on more dates). That was the key – focus on value.

Focusing on the benefits of these procedures rather than the technicalities or features of the packages shifted the patient’s focus entirely from what they would lose, to what they might gain.

This is a classical approach in commercial marketing called the Lollapalooza effect.

Put simply, if you can trigger several subconscious biases at once, the subject will begin to rationalize the purchase and justify the benefit of going through with the purchase.

A Shift in Focus

I began directing the conversations with patients by asking probing questions & keeping them distracted from the payment/potential risks of losing money, the surgery going wrong, etc.

I’d ask why patients wanted the surgery? and what they hoped to feel like afterward?

Then, I’d turn around and sell them their vision, rather than semantics or the physician’s credentials.

Almost every patient asked if I myself “had work done.” I found that most patients already knew so much info about the doctor and the procedure that they were just reaching for rapport and reassurance.

They wanted to be told they’d look better than ever, that they’d feel more confident after having the procedure. Essentially, they wanted a taste of the treatment they might recieve with cosmetic enhancements.

In the beginning, patients seemed like they wanted a hard sell – but they already had answers to most of their questions, what more could I offer?

Mental clarity.

In short, the greatest fear in medicine (for patients) is malpractice or miscommunication with the doctor.

This applies to dentistry, dermatology, podiatry, etc. To overcome this, the patient needs to feel like they are making the right decision.

In just a few weeks, I was selling 5 – 10 surgeries per day. I was teaching the rest of the team how to sell more and spend less time on the phone. In 72 days, I booked $806,000 in surgeries and closed 142 new patients for the practice. I shared this strategy, and improved conversion rates for the center by 15%.

The Seductive Process

It’s better to put yourself in the prospect’s shoes and to speak from their perspective in your marketing.

In other words, people care most about themselves.

The patients cared most about how they might feel after surgery. Not the cost, not the surgeon, not the procedural details, or recovery.

Think of every sale like this:

The prospect is already sold when they contact you. They have a subconscious checklist that they’re looking to check off before they commit to the purchase. The faster you can check off this list with little friction, the better the overall experience will be.

They’ll pay on time, show up for scheduled appointments, refer you to others, and they may even leave a positive review or return for another procedure.

Every interaction moves us toward a specific goal, or further away from it. If a prospect contacts you, assume they’re already sold on what they think you can offer. Remember, they care more about the benefits of the offer than its features. Features are nice, but the benefits are what creates a sense of urgency to make the purchase. Once a patient has contacted you, it’s time to seduce them with a fantasy…


Plastic surgery patients expect to see an immediate shift in their confidence & treatment and are usually anxious to have surgery again.

Unlike orthopedics or neurosurgery, cosmetic surgery involves selling a dream or vision rather than an end result. In orthopedics, you’re selling an end result. It’s pretty straight-forward, “body part X doesn’t work, and the surgeon is going to get it working again.”

In cosmetic surgery, you’re in the business of improving what’s working rather than fixing what’s broken.

You’re selling a dream.

A plastic surgery website sells a hypothetical feeling the patient should experience once they’ve had surgery.

These women (and men) want to feel a certain way, and believe you have the key. They are already sold, and it’s your job to remind them why they were drawn to you more than the countless options available.


Almost every patient I spoke with had an instagram album or Pinterest board for their “fantasy body.”

Until the patient actually has surgery, they can only speculate about how they’ll look & feel afterward. These boards allow them to imagine what that might feel like. Similar to a dream or vision board, the person’s focus isn’t on how they’re going to get from point A to point B, but how being at point B might feel.

In other surgical professions, there may be an injury to a certain body part that requires restoration to its original functionality. This can be more challenging from a marketing standpoint because we have to focus on the negative consequences of avoiding surgery, rather than the benefits of having surgery. Using fear to achieve an emotional response, comes along with additional fears we also have to overcome, doubling the work. Classic examples can be seen in negative campaigning, and political smear campaigns. Its effective, but not ideal.

In cosmetic surgery, candidates usually have functional body parts that only lack aesthetic appeal.

Most prospects reach out when they’re already desperate.

Because most plastic surgery patients have suffered from low self-esteem for years, they’re in a state of desperation when they finally seek a consultation.

Unlike trauma injuries or joint replacements, many plastic surgery candidates have been dealing with the issue they want to treat for a long time.

Whether they need a mommy-makeover, breast implants, or liposuction – they are at their wits end by the time they finally reach out for a consultation.

A plastic surgery website should rely on rapport. With visual triggers and great copywriting – its a matter of showing  patients their ‘fantasy’ body is possible.

Medical websites should be practical, functional, professional, AND aesthetically seductive.

Patients are only going to spend their time and money in pursuit of a specific outcome. That outcome has more to do with how they will feel than anything else. If you want to sell more, take a lesson from the cosmetic industry. Stop selling problems, and start selling a vision.