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Know-How Exchange

Topic: Branding

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This question has been answered, and points have been awarded.

Practice Name And Tag Line

Posted by andrea.willey on 250 Points
I am opening a new dermatology practice and need to distinguish myself from my competitors. I specialize in skin cancer surgery and aesthetic dermatology, but will be open to all. Need a name and tag line. Something like:
sacramento skin something
Tag line indicating artistry and excellence.
Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks for your ideas!

  • Posted by Jay Hamilton-Roth on Accepted
    To start with, if someone were to ask you how you are different from your competitors, how would you answer?
    Who will your clients likely be? Women? Age range? Income level?
    When would someone specifically contact you?
  • Posted by andrea.willey on Author
    I used to be with my biggest competitor- but I am set apart in that I have recognized expertise in skin. Cancer surgery and aesthetic dermatology- ie Botox fillers minimally invasive techniques that help men and women to preserve youth gracefully. I also do lasers, but that is my main competitors brand so I want to emphasize my surgical and artistic skills. My patients are anyone concerned with skin cancer or preserving a youthful appearance or anyone who just needs a caring conscientious dermatologist (not pa or nurse). Will have a solo practice emphasizing high quality of care and service. So if Simone needs skin cancer surgery and wants an elegant surgical result or cosmetic services without major facelift, or body sculpting... That's my specialty.
  • Posted by Jay Hamilton-Roth on Accepted
    Thanks for the detailed answer, Andrea. Given what you wrote, here are some ideas to get you started:

    Skin Artistry (of Sacramento)
    Elegant Skin (of Sacramento)
    Revitalize (Dermatology)
  • Posted by Moriarty on Accepted
    As a professional dermatologist, you should have some mention of that in your practice name or your tagline (or in the blurb on whatever page it's found). I like Jay's ideas, only they aren't professional - hence this supplementary comment. If you use one, you need to back it up. After all, you are a professionally qualified (doctor?) dermatologist and you should be justly proud of that. You still need customers, and a nice name is as good a start as any. They do need the reassurance of knowing you are truly competent.

    I'm going for the boring route since the other way is travelled.

    Sacramento Dermatology Specialist. Gentle professional skin care.
    Sacramento Dermatology. Professional skin treatments with a flair
    Cosmetic Dermatology* Reviving your skin with professional gentleness.

    *I don't know if you would like to describe yourself like this!

    What do you think?



  • Posted by andrea.willey on Author
    thanks so much for you input- yes I will hav eall of my qualifications on the website with all the credentials.
    what do you think of :
    Sacramento Skin Institute
    Artistry and Expertise in Surgical and Aestheic Dermatology
  • Posted by SteveTheMarketer on Accepted
    In my experience, when somebody asks a friend for a professional services recommendation, the response is usually the actual name of the practitioner, e.g., Dr. Ron Smith on K Street. You will never change your name, you will always own your name, it's your best personal practice branding solution.

    As a test, simply cut and paste: "dermatology near Sacramento, CA" into a google MAPS search. You will see the names of your competitors and the majority are using their own names. There is a reason why.

    Then, to differentiate your services from the competition, I suggest you develop a tagline. Maybe something like ...

    1) Skin Cancer Surgery & Aesthetic Dermatology
    2) Preserving Your Natural Appearance, Artistically
    3) Elegant Artistry In Solving All Skin Problems
    4) Artistic, Caring, Joyful Results
  • Posted by mgoodman on Accepted
    I'm fine with Sacramento Skin Institute, but the tagline is definitely too long -- 8 words, 20 syllables. Very hard to read/digest.
  • Posted by andrea.willey on Author
    okay. thanks for responses. Apearantly there is a legal reason to have a name- somehow it separates liability issues when one incorporates and uses a ficticious business name on the business lease etc. I agree my name is the brand so will talk with my legal guys about how to work this out.
    Thanks again.
  • Posted by mgoodman on Accepted
    Question: What's your long-term plan for the business? Do you want this as a company that provides your personal service, so that when you retire the company has served its purpose and can retire with you? Or do you think you might take in partners someday and want a company that survives you?

    The answer will drive whether you use your own name as part of the practice identification or not.
  • Posted by andrea.willey on Author
    Great question. I see it as a solo practice, but one never knows what the future brings. Perhaps a formal name is good, but subdued so that my name remains the brand. I have worked in the area and making contributions to my specialty for 6 years so I have been actively forming my branded name for awhile.
  • Posted by SteveTheMarketer on Accepted
    Brands that already exist in your area include ... "California Skin Institute" and "Advanced Skin Institute".

    How are you going to ensure that patients will not get your brand mixed up with these already branded names?

    Your option is using your own name, e.g. "Ron Smith Skin Institute (of Sacramento)". Although, I don't think connecting your practice to the Sacramento geographical area will be a huge problem, use "sacramento" as a keyword, list in Sacramento directories, include Sacramento in all your marketing materials etc.

    Ron Smith Skin Institute will not get confused by anyone. And if you ever open a practice in SF, no problem.

    Lastly, to mgoodman's point about the benefits selling a professional practice with a non-personal brand, yes it's both logical and can be a successful strategy. There are also hundreds of examples of professional services firm that use the founder(s) name(s) as a brand that will live for decades, even centuries including nearly all of the leading law firms, accounting firms, architectural firms and the like. Granted they are big firms, but they didn't start out as big firms. It's a judgement call, either way can work well.
  • Posted by SteveTheMarketer on Accepted
    sorry, I meant to write Andrea Willey Skin Institute.
  • Posted by andrea.willey on Author
    Your input is great- I see how I need to think about this now.
    I am more and more likening the idea of using my name as long as liability issues do not arise.
    Thanks so much!
  • Posted by SteveTheMarketer on Accepted
    The majority of California medical practitioners use their own names (in some form), are incorporated as an LLC or the like, have medical liability insurance (which typically includes attorney fee coverage) and are probably using excellent lawyers and tax accountants for advice. What does that tell you?

    Good Luck.
  • Posted by Moriarty on Accepted
    What about

    Andrea Willey Skin Centre
    Andrea Willey Dermatology Academy
    Andrea Willey Dermatology Practitioner

    Whatever the other guys are doing - re lawyers and the rest, the guys around here are pretty hot too. It's as good a start as you'll get almost anywhere. Once you know the way, then is the time to hire a professional. You can always check back here for a second opinion (or twenty?)

    It's gone midnight, g'night all.


  • Posted by andrea.willey on Author
    How about this:

    Andrea Willey, MD
    Sacramento Skin Centre
    Artistry and excellence in skin surgery and aesthetic dermatology
  • Posted by mgoodman on Accepted
    The tagline is still too long. It's a mouthful: 9 words and 21 syllables. And it repeats the word "skin" from the second-line name. Even though it says what you want to say, nobody is going to read all those words, let alone recall what they mean. What if you lose the tagline altogether and let the two-part name communicate the brand and the category?
  • Posted by andrea.willey on Author
    ok will knock it around a bit more
  • Posted by Moriarty on Accepted
    Now Mr Goodman is correct - however there is one point here: what do your customers think? All your choices should be guided by what your customers think (so just ask them). I don't think the one you suggested will come out top, only - well, you never know!

    In the mean time instead of criticizing it I am going to try and come up with something simpler.

    Andrea Willey MD
    Sacramento Dermatology Centre*
    Surgical excellence in skin repair

    (*Skin centre was a little "raw" for me - only do ask your customers)

    Andrea Willey MD
    Sacramento Dermatology Centre
    Artistry in every aspect of skin surgery

    Andrea Willey MD
    Sacramento Skin Centre
    Excellence in aesthetic Dermatology
  • Posted by andrea.willey on Author
    Thanks so much. I appreciate your boughs and ideas. This is much better!
    Will test these out on some folks.

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