How to Build a Social Media
Presence as a Plastic Surgeon

When I first started my Instagram, at the time I was looking into opening my first practice and had just graduated from college. I knew I had to start an Instagram account to build the robust clientele I wanted and to reach my goal of eventually opening two other practices in Miami and New Jersey, which did all happen because of my audience online! Coming from Colombia, I had to start by pinpointing where I knew an audience and eventual clientele would be, and that was New York – home to many immigrants like myself. I knew my journey to open a successful practice would begin with an online following that would soon become physical clientele.

Letting Your Work Speak for Itself

Attracting followers and building a successful Instagram following starts with letting your work speak for itself. If people are viewing before and after photos that don’t quite show the best results, no one will trust your work. Building trust with your audience is extremely important. Now, the work to be better and get better results must start with your skill set, but there are ways to make your work look appealing online.

I start with a blank background so that the silhouette of my patient is clear and the lines of my work are distinct. I also write the name of the procedure along with my logo below the before and after images so that people know what they’re viewing. And then I add a video effect. By sliding in the images, it grabs people’s visual attention.

Find Your Voice

Finding your voice starts with knowing your brand so that you can execute the tone of the brand within your captions, photos, stories and more. Once you find your tone, stay authentic to it. Have it breathe air into everything you post.

To find the tone of my brand, I thought of what would be authentic to myself. I remembered why I started my Instagram: to attract like-minded people like myself who came to New York for a successful life, so I decided to talk to people via Instagram like I was with them in real life. Scattered within my before and after photos, I stand in front of the camera walking through a latest surgery. This displays honesty and creates a virtual, personable relationship with my followers.

Find Your Style

Finding your online style takes a lot of experimentation and seeing what your audience likes. Is it you talking to the camera? Is it a static post of clients showing off their procedure? Whatever it is, it must be entertaining to your audience, so keep it fun.

I decided before and after images and videos of myself explaining my procedures would be raw. Raw is my style. I like to show my work unedited and without filters because this is the truest form of being honest about my capabilities. If people see edits to your work, that loses a level of trust that shows people you’re trying to cover up that you don’t know what you’re doing. Videos, too, show my audience that I’m serious about what I do, I’m credible in what I’m saying, and am qualified to do the job.

In all, building a social media presence as a plastic surgeon must start with prioritizing trust. In your style, in your voice, and by showing your rawest work – trust must be at the core of your presence because people will want to follow and visit you if they know you can execute the procedure. Honesty will lend a hand to credibility, even if your skill set as a plastic surgeon is not where you would like it to be because people will follow your journey and watch your improvement.


Dr. Mesa is a Harvard-trained, triple fellowship-trained board-certified Plastic Surgeon with offices in NYC, New Jersey, and Miami. You can follow Dr Mesa on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.