Putting Laboratory Programs in Play at Your Practice Single Vision and Back to School Retailing Opportunities

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Background

HOYA’s Super Single Vision Program (formerly SuperKidz) is a tool designed for independent practices to use to their advantage. You are encouraged to use this pricing benefit as a way to differentiate your brand for your patients by offering the best lens materials, designs and treatments to your younger patients. For most practices the pricing through the Super Single Vision Program for single vision lenses with premium AR is a savings versus their typical cost.

Why Premium AR? Materials? Lens Designs? For Kids?

Vision is a complex process performed in tandem between our eyes that receive visual information and our brains that process that information. Our visual system can adapt and even develop preferences over time. We do know that the brain is very good at filling in the gaps from the visual stimuli taken in from the eyes. Amblyopia and optical illusions are great examples. When patients are in a premium lens design (iD and iQ), a superior lens material (Phoenix) and a great AR (Recharge), to then go backwards to an inferior product, e.g. conventional single vision in polycarbonate, the brain will have a hard time adapting to the lower quality vision. The point of the Super Single Vision program is to help you help your patients’ brains develop a preference for premium lenses.

All of your student patients – grammar school through college and beyond – are using their eyes in ways we didn’t plan for even 5 years ago. Changes in learning materials and the shift from books to screens are having a profound effect on the visual system. Eyewear is an increasingly important productivity tool for today’s students. Your ability to provide the best at a reasonable price will set your brand apart in your community and keep your patients coming back to you year after year. You will be the only one who “gives me those glasses that really work!”

Once a patient experiences vision through optically superior Phoenix material, in a HOYA free form design with AR treatment that protects the lenses from scratches and eyes from glare or blue light— that patient will not be able to go backwards in quality and wear $39 glasses from a big box, chain or the Internet.

Overcoming Objections

The most common objection is price. Parents are under financial stress and look for excuses to save in any area especially when they do not understand the value. This is your opportunity to educate.

Price in General- Those $39 glasses advertised by mass retailers on TV, two pair for $99 and even less expensive glasses on some web sites carry risks. Typically at a large retailer you will not end up with the $39 glasses. They will up sell you, especially on designer frames. Kids usually do not like the frames offered at that price point.

Premium AR- Kids tend to be careless with their glasses. No matter how many times you say “in the case or on your face” glasses still end up rattling around a lunch box or who knows where! HOYA’s EX3 and Recharge are the most scratch resistant lenses available. Scratches are one of the most annoying things for glasses wearers and can make your glasses look cheap and impair your vision.

Warranties & Service- There is no service on glasses offered by a web site. Offer a service plan for glasses purchased on the Internet, and note that you DO NOT warranty the materials. Tell patients about your materials warrantee and be sure to include that HOYA premium AR offers 2-years of unlimited replacements for scratches!

Kids and Glasses Compliance- A big issue, especially with younger kids and pre-teens who can be very self-conscious, is compliance with wearing their glasses. If your child is confident that they look great they are more likely to wear their glasses without a battle. Cheap glasses will quickly look cheap and compliance with wear will drop and so too will grades and confidence. Offer a wide selection of hip frame styles. There are many celebrities who have embraced wearing glasses in recent years. Kids will pick up on and mimic their styles, your optical should too.

Fashion and Function If you know any motorcycle riders they’ll say, “A ten dollar helmet for a ten dollar head,” prior to buying a $900 helmet. Probably the most important thing your child wears to school each day is their glasses. Those $39 glasses will run you 22 cents a day for a 180 day school year. Is how your child sees, and how your child looks worth a dollar a day? They will wear their new sneakers every day, until they don’t fit in 3 months. The designer jeans will get worn once a week. Sneakers and jeans have no impact on how your child learns. Ask parents to consider the value and importance of excellent vision.

The Case for Your Business

Loss Leader Why does McDonald’s sell Happy Meals? They take a very low profit margin on the kids’ food in order to draw in adults who will buy the higher margin menu items all while building up a lifetime habit of eating at their restaurants world-wide. You have an opportunity to gain a patient for life, as well as their entire family, when you provide the best materials at a reasonable price for kids.

Digital Eye Strain & Blue Light Protection- There are many studies about the potential effects of High Energy Visible (HEV) blue light on eye health and vision. The things we do know:

• The devices we, and especially our youth, are using hour after hour every day are on the rise.

• The chronic, annoying, symptoms associated with Digital Eye Strain such as blurred vision, headaches, and body fatigue, are cited by more and more patients every day.

• We have access to superior lens materials, designs and treatments to help patients be more comfortable even as their screen time increases.

This is a huge opportunity for you to educate your patients about the benefits of premium lenses. The equation looks like this:

• Lens designs such as Sync help relax eye muscles with an added bump of power.

• Materials such as BluTech attenuate blue light for higher risk patients.

• Treatments, especially the combination of Recharge and Sensity, reduce blue light indoors and outdoors and protect lenses from scratches.

Add it up and patients will understand the value you have to offer and they will appreciate the benefits they experience with the premium lens materials from your practice.

Not Just “Back to School” Seasonality for Kids- It is natural to look at the back to school season as the biggest opportunity to get kids into glasses. All of the discussion so far can also be applied to other times of the year.

Sports – Keep track of when the various youth sports seasons begin in your community. Be a sponsor for those teams or at least put out additional marketing messages that will grab the attention of parents. FACT: Did you know the sport with the most eye injuries is basketball?

Eye Safety Awareness – Eye safety affects kids too, especially when it comes to blue light and digital eye strain.

Year-end benefits – Often benefits can be applied to the entire family; especially “use ‘em or lose ‘em” plans.

Summer Sun – UV protection for children is critical. FACT: 80% of the damage done to our eyes by UV rays will occur before age 18. Parents may not invest in RX sunwear, you can offer them Sensity light reactive lenses and give them “two in one pair!”

Report cards – Keep track of your local school district’s grading periods. A dip in grades can be a sign of vision issues. Remind parents you can help get their kids back on track.

The Premium Single Vision Opportunity Students of All Ages- The focus for the opticals in many practices is the high margins associated with premium progressive lenses. There are two big problems with this approach:

1. These practices are missing out on an opportunity to offer their single vision patients the benefits of free form designs.

2. Sticker shock! You have an opportunity over time to slowly manage your patients’ expectations related to the the price of their eyewear when you offer premium single vision materials. When a patient buys cheap glasses for 20 years and is then hit with $500 for their first PAL it is a surprise! If you are moving them from $150 as a kid, to $225 as a young adult and $300 for computer glasses, the jump to $500 isn’t so traumatic.

Premium single vision lens materials will differentiate your brand and keep your patients coming back to you time and time again!

More information on all of the HOYA lens designs, materials and treatments mentioned in this article, including continuing education credit courses, are available for free on Empower U at learning.hoyavision.com.

 

 

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