With 10 years in the industry, specialising in aesthetic medicine for the face and body, Dr. Ravi Jain leads an esteemed medical team at Riverbanks Wellness. The Harley Street Journal’s Laura Casewell met with the established cosmetic expert to find out how he built his successful private practice, and why investing in PR as well as advanced devices is the key to growing any aesthetic clinic.

What do you think is the key to a successful private cosmetic clinic?

It’s important to look at things from the client’s perspective. You have to understand what it’s like to be a patient by putting yourself in their shoes and envisioning what elements would deliver the best service you’ve ever experienced in your life! Your offering should be based on exactly the concepts that come to mind. It goes without saying that you should deliver a high level of customer care and service, success really boils down to a positive patient journey. Listen to customer feedback and use it as a tool for fine tuning and continually improving the content of your portfolio and standards of your clinic.

There are so many cosmetic clinics in London; how do you make yours stand apart?

We stick to our core beliefs and I’m fiercely committed to my professional principles which I have trademarked as Invisible Aesthetics®. At the core, this approach recognises the fact that the majority of my patients want ethical care and are seeking results that are subtle, almost invisible, and gradual. There’s no point in solely saying “Botox Dr” anymore, patients want to know more about your standards – and Invisible Aesthetics defines what is unique to us. Some of our treatments are completely exclusive, such as the R-Lift® facial procedure that I developed. And we’ve incorporated a wellness division to provide a holistic approach.  We’ve spent time and care to create strong branding and our core beliefs and approach are amplified through our PR initiatives.

What makes a stand-out cosmetic doctor?

Accessibility – patients don’t want to wait an age to see a practitioner. A great doctor has strong communication skills, patients want to feel understood, and equally should have medical information explained to them in a clear and effective way so there is no confusion or surprises. I am the Global Ambassador for Galderma and have been working with the company to develop and promote the Harmony Programme which sets standards of communication and input between the doctor and their client. Results where this has been implemented show an increase in patient retention and referrals. Additionally, a refined skill-set, an artistic eye and commitment to delivering outstanding results. And of course the status of stand-out doctor would not be possible without a great team to support them.

How do you build your business and ensure repeat patients?

I’d repeat much of what I’ve already said, plus you should communicate regularly with your patients. Social media has made keeping in contact easy and immediate, so make sure that your clients are aware of the practice’s Twitter and Facebook profiles. We distribute a regular e-newsletter which is an easy, unobtrusive way to keep patients abreast on new treatments that are available or of any events or launches. Build a great team who set a positive tone with clients.

How did you develop your brand?

With blood, sweat and tears! Lots of hard work. In essence my brand is based on my core professional values and I worked with a brand consultant who literally extracted them from my head so we could apply them to every aspect of my business and how the various facets of it manifest.

Is there value in outside marketing and PR?

PR should be a key part of your business and marketing strategy and factored in. It is important to understand the concept of PR from the outset, it’s a marathon, not a sprint that will pay off in time. You do need to allow a few years to build momentum as it’s a long-term strategic process.

Do you think successful cosmetic clinics should offer advanced treatment with devices as well as injectables?

Clinics tend to because patients start to request a variation of solutions, they expect both options to be available. As you grow in Aesthetic Medicine, so does your skill-set and you realise what can be achieved with devices in contrast to injectables. My advice is to grow organically, and don’t buy too many devices at one time, this will haemorrhage a lot of money and shut you down quickly. Don’t be led by the manufacturers, speak to colleagues and peers who can offer advice and experience along with any recommendations.

BTL Exilis

BTL Exilis

You offer several energy-assisted treatments; what value do you believe they bring?

Exilis is an addition to our portfolio because it offers a versatile range of solutions, and outstanding results, which makes it cost effective. Especially in non-surgical facial tightening, where the treatment is more affordable for patients. It’s extremely effective for treating cellulite and for fat reduction – in fact the system works hand in hand with other body contouring treatments we offer, like freezing technologies. An emerging interest we’re seeing from patients is for labia remodelling and Exilis has this capability. Our approach with the device has been to launch treatments gradually, on a monthly basis. That way our patients can really understand the benefits as they build trust and get to know the system’s capabilities.

Are there any aesthetic conferences or events you recommend for doctors looking to grow their practices?

Yes. I recommend going to FACE, the ACE conference, IMCAS in Paris and AMWC in Monaco. I also run courses to advise and discuss building and sustaining a successful practice – please contact me to find out more. Also I shall be hosting a talk about Vanquish at the FACE conference this year.

What advice would you offer struggling practitioners or new cosmetic clinics?

First and foremost, you must pinpoint the exact area of where you are struggling. Be specific and do not generalise your issues! Is it lack of patients, that you’re not getting repeat visits, treatment results aren’t up to scratch, for example? Once you know precisely where the issue lies, you can target that directly and take the effective steps to remedy. There are so many experts who specialise in areas of business and as a doctor it’s important to appreciate that you’re not trained in business, seek out those who are expert in your area of need, and consult help. For instance, if it’s miss-management of your books – get a bookkeeper to handle that. Delegate, do not attempt to do everything yourself.

With thanks to Dr. Ravi Jain of Riverbanks Wellness®. For further information visit www.riverbanksclinic.co.uk