Technology today has a significant impact on how the public views your practice, especially if you fall too far behind the times. Owning your brand isn’t just about planting your flag and understanding the marketing definition for the word; it’s about owning your place in the eyes of your patients through the experience you create and the technology you use within your eye care practice.
This doesn’t mean that you need to release an app for your practice (in fact, we don’t recommend it unless you have a great idea or are a national chain). What it does mean is that you should always be looking out for amazing new ways to improve your patient experience and examination process through technology.
Currently, the market is putting more pressure on independently owned and operated eye care professionals to add more technology to their practices. It’s about the technology your patients see, experience and understand. It’s essential that you are known as the expert technological practice they can turn to.
Dealing with Market Pressure
Many big optical chains are setting the expectation that patients should see new technology when they get their eyes examined. Some chains are driving this shift in-store and others through their advertising.
This is putting pressure onto the independent practices to add similar levels of technology so they aren’t perceived as out of date or that they don’t provide the same value. The truth is independent practices often offer the best value and amazing lens technology.
By keeping an eye on affordable technology that your patients can see, helps your practice add to the value for the patients. Sometimes this means leaving analog techniques behind. After all, if you were looking for new audio equipment and they were demoing state of the art speakers using an 8-track tape, wouldn’t that feel it’s a little out of place?
Tech They Can See
It’s ironic that lenses help your patients see, but they can’t see the technology inside it. It’s vital that your patients can see, experience or at least understand the technology you bring to the table. If they can’t see it, and certainly if they don’t understand it, they won’t know all that you are doing for them.
Lenses Versus the Experience
While there have been many advances in lens technology, and your practice may be dedicated to always offering the most state of the art eyewear technology, your patients may not know it. They often can’t tell the vast amount of technological difference between their lenses today and ones they had a decade ago.
That’s why the old dot and ruler method of taking measurements can make people feel they aren’t getting great technology. The experience clashes with the product and can hurt their ease-of-mind. New technology like Spectangle PRO that takes position of wear measurements in a single photo, and even educates about feature differences, can help change your eye care practice’s technology brand. Going back to our previous metaphor, it solves the 8-track issue by replacing it with the highest quality digital music collection.
Adding technology that patients can readily see is important in our rapidly changing world. Lens technology is rapidly changing too. The problem is that at the optician to patient level they are discussing a clear piece of plastic. Dispensing technology and position of wear measurement give that conversation context and the opportunity to drive home the advancements in lens technology.
Part of owning your brand is leveraging your expertise. As an independent practice, you can be agile and are expected to know more than big-chain locations. You should use this to your advantage to keep your patient education up-to-date with the newest trends and adjusting your education plans as needed while the big chains are lagging behind.
For any technology, your patients can’t see or understand, help them by taking the time to educate them. Make sure you show them the benefits of your technology. Many patients will be wowed and love the technical aspect.
Think about it this way, what’s the difference between an iPhone announcement and any other new phone? A big spectacular presentation that outlines each feature coming in the newest technology and software. Without it would most of us know about the little features that are a bit behind the scenes? Probably not. Yet now that we know about them, we can appreciate them.
Without these deliberate performances Apple probably wouldn’t be valued where it is today, nor would their technology. It’s the showmanship and education that helped propel them to where they are today. You don’t need to be a showman in a black turtleneck; however, you need to make sure you spell out the improvements in features your patients are getting.
Taking time to educate helps you own the technology brand and perception of your practice.
Proof In Action
Proving that you are a technological brand with the expertise and value your patients want requires action. Spectangle PRO is a new way to bring tech into your patient experiences and builds a whole new realm of tech action for your practice.
Spectangle PRO facilitates the eyewear selection process by taking measurements in one photo, showing the impact of different lenses, frame selectors to compare how they look on each patient, and an augmented reality module.
Learn more about adding some new technology and get a demo of Spectangle PRO.