Sept. 9, 2015
Effectively presenting to parents why children should wear sunglasses is a challenge for many ECPs, findings from Jobson Optical Research’s 2015 Selling Eyewear to Children report suggest. Some 56.2 percent of respondents say selling sunwear for children is a “major challenge.”
Other major challenges: Getting parents and children to agree on what eyewear to purchase, which 25.9 percent of respondents said was a major challenge; making the eye exam/eyewear purchasing process feel fun, which 10.8 percent said was a major challenge; and making children feel like they are participating in the decision-making process, which 7.7 percent cited as a major challenge.
Click HERE to purchase Jobson Optical Research’s 2015 Selling Eyewear to Children report.
Getting patients of any age to purchase sunwear in your practice requires a coordinated effort on many fronts such as: the practice social media, the appointment confirmation phone call script, the merchandising effectiveness in the optical sunglass displays, the doctor case presentation, the optician eyewear presentation order, demonstrating product to patients, incentivizing staff, setting sales goals, tracking progress toward sales goals and having the right product mix–just to name a few.
Let’s focus this week on the doctor case presentation. Is your case presentation complete? Could it be better? The doctor case presentation to any patient should consist of three major parts: the health presentation, the optical presentation and the recall presentation.
The health case presentation includes ocular health, as well as total body health. The eyecare professional is often the first health care professional the patient sees. As part of the entire health care team, the eyecare provider should educate patients about how the body affects the eyes and how the eyes give insight into what is going on in the body. Repeat this message at every visit. Obviously, be creative and present it in different ways, but the core message is the same.
The recall presentation should also occur at every office visit. Explain clearly when you want the patient to return and why. The why may be more important than the when. Patients need to understand why it is in their best interests to return for next visit. Always phrase this in a way that the reason to return is for the patient, not for the doctor. “I need to see you in …” is positioning this as the doctor needs to see the patient. “You need to see me in …” frames the recall presentation properly, as it really is all about the patient.
The optical case presentation should happen at every patient visit. The optical case presentation is often forgotten on medical visits. That is, please pardon the pun, very shortsighted. Prescribing optical solutions for medical conditions is a key component of managing medical conditions. The easy examples are rigid contact lenses for keratoconus, or a plus add for an accommodative esotrope.
But what about the following? We know that 80 percent of all retinal damage from the sun occurs before the child’s 18th birthday, yet how many kids do we see wearing outdoor protection from the sun’s damaging light?
We know that 10 percent of all skin cancer occurs on, or around, the eyes. How many of our patients with a history of skin cancer are wearing protective eyewear? How many of our patients, who don’t think twice about putting sun protective creams and sprays on their skin, don’t have protective eyewear from the sun’s damaging rays?
We know that people wearing sun lenses with polarization react more quickly to driving situations than people who are just wearing lenses that darken. Driving with polarized lenses during daytime is safer than either wearing lenses that just darken, or no sun lenses at all. How many of our patients wear their seat belts, but not their sunwear, during daytime driving?
You’ve probably heard it said that because we are living longer, healthier lives, 60 is the new 40. Look at the emphasis in our society on youthful appearance. The risk of the dreaded crow’s feet goes up dramatically due to squinting repeatedly in the sun without the benefit of sunwear.
Think of other ways we can use optical devices to assist in medical case management. Here are just a few to start your thinking process: glare-free lenses for patients with medical conditions that cause an increase in glare, such as cataracts or dry eye syndrome; adaptive lenses for patients talking medications that interfere with pupillary function; and protective lenses for patients–and all blood-related family members–with macular degeneration.
Here’s an insight that will help put the three-part case presentation into practice: habits have three parts: a trigger, a response and a reward.
Here’s another insight: you can never get rid of old habits. You can only either change the response to old habit triggers, or create a new habit. Hopefully everyone is taking the time to make a case presentation to every patient every time, so there is no need to create a new habit. Instead, use this week to change your response to the habit trigger of the case presentation. Change your response to the habit trigger by using the three-part case presentation with every patient: medical, optical and recall. Do this every time. Make this your new habit response. Your reward is knowing your case presentation is more complete and, therefore, better when you use the three-part case presentation.
Use this week to make your case presentation to your patients more complete and, therefore, more effective.