The biggest problem many optical practices face is getting new customers through the doors. Because, with so many internal tasks to be done, it’s often hard to sit down and think up new ideas and tactics to attract quality customers to your practice. However, this is a key part of the business because, in this highly competitive market, standing out from the pack is a huge step towards improving your growth rates.
The easiest way to do so is applying optical shop marketing ideas for your optical shop that don’t break the bank, and yet are key to ensuring customers walk away satisfied. And therefore, building a larger, better portfolio of customers for your practice.
If you’ve ever looked into this topic, you’ll know that marketing is often a science of carefully crafted experiments. So you have to start with marketing actions that are a pretty sure thing in terms of successful results.
This time, here at CECOP, we have three key ideas that any eye care professional should use to help run their business. Take note because they’ll surely inspire you and help you grow your practice.
Three optical shop marketing ideas that will help your business grow
At an optical practice, the specialists have various functions, from eye exams to scheduling appointments, selling frames, etc. So, putting a marketing plan into practice is essential if you want to grow your patient list. How? With these three optical shop marketing ideas we give you.
1. Digital marketing ideas
This marketing option can be broken down into three steps:
Design a website
This is undoubtedly one of the most important marketing actions these days. A website will make sure you’re always online and help current and future patients find you on the Internet. For your website to work, it should:
- Be designed in line with your practice’s needs.
- Include CTAs (calls to action) on each page of the site. But keep them short and make sure they convey your message accurately. Two sample CTAs that would be great for your site: Call now to make an appointment! Make an appointment online, just click here!
- Be smartphone compatible: This is essential, as half of all Internet traffic is on phones.
- Be fast: So potential customers don’t leave the site. Loading time should be about three seconds to keep visitors on the site.
Or in other words: “search engine optimization”. SEO isn’t a short-term strategy, but there are some simple things you can focus on to get your site up in the top positions:
- Have a contact page with your phone number and address.
- Cover everything you do. Google rewards sites that explain things.
- Track it. Google Analytics is free and fairly easy to set up.
- Register with Google Business: You’ll get reviews of your practice. The more five-star reviews with positive feedback, the higher up you’ll be.
These means “pay per click”. If you want to be the top result for a search like “eye doctor in [your area]”, you could turn to PPC while you continue working on SEO.
List of local companies
Make sure your practice is on the top search engines (Google, Yahoo, Bing). Also make sure the information they have is 100% accurate and as precise as possible.
Social media presence
Sign up and stay active on social media networks like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. These platforms are totally free and you can post and administer content about your practice whenever you want. It is important to keep them up to date, however, as it’s a way to stay in touch with current and future patients, as well as being an excellent way to show some brand personality and have a bit of fun with customers.
Selfie contests, promoting new products/services or just starting a conversation are part of promoting your practice.
Not everyone is willing to be a customer at your practice. Sometimes they just want to learn more about your business or interesting content on your site (for example, in your posts).
As you collect email addresses from people who visit your site, you can start a newsletter to stay in touch with potential customers. This way, they’re sure to choose your practice when they do need one of the services you offer.
2. Traditional marketing ideas
Nowadays, we’re living in a digital world and that means online strategies. However, you shouldn’t forget traditional methods that have worked for so many years. Here are some of them.
Why not put out an ad on a local billboard? The ones on local highways could get quite a few views and help people discover your brand and business.
Sponsoring local events
Generally, the town or city where your practice is located will organize different types of events. Have your brand sponsor a community event, show or seminar to get your name out there.
Volunteer with local charities
Look for some local charities in need of volunteers. Hold information sessions at centers for the elderly or other local events.
Try to work with schools to help a kid that needs glasses but can’t afford them. You may be pleasantly surprised by how much word of mouth and goodwill your practice can get from helping out in the community.
Teach people the importance of eye care
Another option is to do eye check-up campaigns in neighborhoods, schools and universities, offering a small discount on their first visit for an eye test.
3. 100% on site marketing ideas for your business
Last but not least is applying tried and true marketing concepts on your premises. Here are some of the most important ones.
Keep your shop clean and organized
It also needs to run smoothly and have all the latest in equipment and lenses for doing eye tests. So, put your top products on the front shelves and improve the lighting and interior design of your optical shop.
To make a good impression on anyone who walks by, put signs at the entrance with sale items. You’ll get their attention and draw them in!
Hand out brochures in the shop
On your counter, have some custom-made brochures. They are a convenient way to get people’s attention and get your practice’s message across. Include images of glasses and sunglasses to improve the overall look of the brochures.
Give out free t-shirts with a first purchase or some other gift
Whatever the gift, make sure it has your practice’s information (address, location, email, phone number and website). T-shirts are an excellent way to take your marketing onto the streets and into shops and workplaces. And we all know people love free gifts!
In short, these three optical shop marketing ideas will help you improve your practice’s marketing strategy notably. With them, you’ll anticipate your patients’ eye care needs and surpass their expectations. That will have a lasting impression, fueling loyalty, customer satisfaction and positive recommendations, attracting new patients.