In recent years, subscription and referral models within business have grown exponentially.
Done correctly, they can lead to higher revenue, better retention, and stronger customer relationships.
Here, David Standing, CEO of Revolution Health explores why subscription models are a powerful tool for growth and acquisition within the wellness industry, and why it might work for your clinic.
To understand the opportunity presented to clinics, we must first understand the technological advancements, and consumer behaviours that have led to an undeniable growth in subscription services.
20 years ago, the thought of having your weekly groceries delivered to your door at the touch of a button was absurd, let alone your repeat prescriptions. Nowadays, thanks to the introduction of smartphone apps these services have become embedded into daily life.
Now subscription models mean you can subscribe to just about any service at the touch of a button, and have your product delivered right to your door at your convenience.
For the customer, subscription-based models allow for complete flexibility. In business, it encourages customer loyalty and provides a predictable and steady stream of revenue, which is particularly helpful in slower months like January.
How it works in Wellness
For any clinician, the main limiting factor you face is time. Despite endless hours of planning and trying to achieve your goals, most of your week is spent with patients which naturally leaves very little time and resources to dedicate to growing the business and increasing profitability.
As clinics were forced to close during the pandemic, clinicians began to realise just how much revenue is pinned upon patients. To generate some additional income, clinicians had to offer online consultations, and rely heavily on selling tangible products like skincare lines.
A subscription model focuses on customer retention. Rather than selling a singular product or service, your patients will have ongoing access to the products and services they want by paying a set amount each month, quarter, or year, depending on preference. For you, the clinician, you are guaranteed a more consistent, and predictable cash flow and commission.
Another key benefit is stock keeping. Selling singular products relies heavily on having stock readily available to hand to your patient. With subscription models, the product is shipped directly from the manufacturer to your patient, so you don’t need to keep stock in the clinic, besides sample products that can be used to introduce your patients to the product.
The Starting Point – Referrals
First, identify your product. Your product should be something you are passionate about that aligns with your overall product and service, and something that your patients are likely to respond to.
There are plenty of wellness subscription partners available whose products will suit your offering and patients perfectly. Once you have selected one, it’s time to look closely at your patient and start thinking of referrals.
When you see a patient presenting certain symptoms or concerns you can refer them to that subscription partner who will be able to identify the exact products or service to help that patient.
Now, because you likely already know your patient and their individual concerns, they will trust your opinion, and you will be best placed to explain exactly why and how the product will help and be there for your patient throughout their journey.
For the patient, they have access to a product plan that is tailored specifically around their individual needs. For you, that customer is retained and for you have a secured source of revenue for as long as that customer remains subscribed.
In recent years I have noticed that supplement-based subscriptions work very well amongst consumers. Everybody takes a supplement to some degree whether it is a multivitamin or a specific mineral to target a concern, but it is rarely identified if the patient really needs that supplement, and how long they should be taking it for.
With subscription-based supplement models, such as Zinzino and BioID Health, the patients’ individual needs and deficiencies are identified through a simple blood test before a prescription is supplied by a trained medical professional. This ensures the product the patient receives is tailored to suit their needs, in the correct dosage with clear instructions.
The Road Ahead
When we think wellness and healthcare, we think curative care. However, a big part of that also includes preventative care such as routine check-ups, blood tests, scans, and nutrition – all of which lend themselves perfectly to subscription billing.
Ownership is a thing of the past, and if the pandemic has taught us anything it’s that steady predictable income and customer retention is key to a thriving business.
it is time for the wellness industry to take a plunge and make subscriptions the default model to boost revenue and build better long-lasting relationships with your patients.
For more information on subscription models and how to incorporate them effectively into your business, contact David Standing at DavidStanding@accordantpartners.co.uk.
Pull Out Box
Over 15 years ago, Dr Martin Kinsella, a hormone and aesthetics Doctor opened his first clinic in Cheshire. Through implementing a subscription service and investing in products he was passionate about, Martin has managed to successfully grow his business and now has four dedicated sites, including Knightsbridge and Mallorca that specialise in a range of services from dental services to aesthetic and cosmetic treatments.
Over the years, Martin noticed that time was a limiting factor in his business progression. He said: “I was looking for residual income to help grow the clinic and investment opportunities that I was passionate about, and that would benefit my patients.
To start off with, it is a low capital investment, and the rewards speak for themselves. I was able to recuperate my initial investment back from subscription fees in just 4 weeks, and there is thousands of pounds worth of additional income each month just from patient subscriptions. I don’t need to worry about stock on the shelves, and there is no direct cost of sale, just commission.
I whole-heartedly agree that subscription-based models are the future to growing a sustainable business, particularly within the wellness industry and I encourage businesses to look into it if they want to succeed long-term.”