to Multi-Taskers: Turn Up the Volume
GARY GERBER, OD
It's a rare event in contact lens marketing
when you can have your message read continuously and uninterrupted by your prospect.
In a world that runs on hyperdrive, it's unreasonable to think that the
four-color brochure you spent so much time working on will be read, digested
and remembered in one cohesive viewing. Indeed, while you're trying to read this
article, there's a good chance your phone will ring or your e-mail program will
alert you to a new message.
Nowadays, everyone multitasks to one degree or another. Sending
your message to a current or prospective contact lens wearer should attempt to take
this frenzied reality into account. You should acknowledge that a patient giving
his undivided attention to your message is unlikely.
My own experiences with my iPod have me recommending its functionality
to our clients as a great marketing tool. The iPod and similar electronic audio
players, as well as having audio files on your Web sites, are great ways to get
your message heard. Utilizing this marketing tool will set your practice apart from
Start with Meaningful Content
Think of all those newsletters you've been meaning to mail or
e-mail but never had time to send. Now, you can record them electronically by speaking
into your computer and then putting them on your Web site to be listened to there
or downloaded as a Podcast for patients to listen to later. All you need for a Podcast
is a microphone and a Web site to upload the file to. From there, patients can download
the content onto their iPod or other audio player. Think of a Podcast as an electronic,
downloadable recording of your message.
Any content suitable for a newsletter would probably work in an
audio format. For example, discussing new contact lens technology or lens care products
would work well with this medium. Of course, you should take the opportunity to
close every audio program with a chance to have patients circle back to your virtual
office by mentioning your Web site address.
Store and archive each audio message in an easy-to-find directory
on your Web site. That allows patients to revisit or refer family and friends to
the site. For example, our clients who have done live seminars on corneal reshaping
uploaded the content and had seminar attendees refer their friends to the clients'
Web sites to hear the audio portion. Of course, you could do the same thing with
video but let's get back to the multi-tasking component of an audio program.
More than background music, prospective contact lens wearers can
listen to your message while doing other things. Also, the way the message is delivered
via the Internet may give a sense of "it's current and important" to your content.
This encourages more patients to actually listen to it soon after downloading and
if they're busy, listen when it's convenient. This flexibility is difficult to achieve
with conventional marketing such as newspaper and Yellow Page advertising.
With a small bit of work and perhaps a bit more talent, you can
even consider producing your own Internet radio show by adding some intro/outro
music. Doing these electronic "eye radio shows" on a consistent, perhaps monthly
basis and e-mailing the show or a link to the show to your patients is a great way
to keep your message in front of your patients at a very low cost.
It's not rock and roll, but go ahead and start recording. From
here, as your patients "crank it up," expect to see your bottom line get cranked
Dr. Gerber is the president
of the Power Practice – a company offering consulting, seminars and software
solutions for optometrists. You can reach him at (800) 867-9303 or
Contact Lens Spectrum, Issue: May 2006