Cross-Promote CLs and Glasses
Follow these three steps to increase sales in both areas of your practice.
JASON R. MILLER, O.D., M.B.A., F.A.A.O.
Effective cross-marketing can be a powerful tool to complement multiple areas of your practice. For example, you can increase daily disposable contact lens (CL) sales, as well as optical revenue by cross-promoting them.
Here are the ways you can accomplish this:
1 Have staff talk eyewear options with daily wearers.
Daily disposable wearers are the most compliant of CL patients.1 This means they attend their appointments more than other CL wearers, allowing for greater opportunities for your optical staff to recommend optical products, such as back-up eyewear, protective eyewear, occupational eyewear and non-prescription sunwear to them.
Explain to your staff how to discuss these options with your patients. For example, they should know to talk about the importance of back-up glasses to prevent CL overwear and sunglasses for UV protection. A group effort of promoting and selling these products increases optical revenue, while providing clear and comfortable vision for daily disposable wearers in all circumstances.
To reinforce the habits of promoting eyewear to these patients, track the percentage of daily disposable CL wearers who purchase eyewear or sunwear. Set specific goals to increase this percentage, and make it a fun competition among your staff that challenges them to reach these goals.
To promote daily disposables to spectacle wearers, provide diagnostic pairs while these patients try frames in your optical.
2 Utilize diagnostic pairs.
Patients give a variety of reasons they feel they “can’t wear contact lenses,” but many either believe they will be uncomfortable wearing CLs or that CLs aren’t easy to wear. Therefore, you need to convince them of the value of CLs through demonstrations.
To accomplish this, consider utilizing a diagnostic pair of daily disposable CLs for patients who have a significantly high prescription and are trying new frames. This allows patients to experience the freedom of CLs. Their confidence in their potential purchases increases, while creating full-time and part-time daily disposable CL wearers.
3 Target part-time wearers.
Though single-use CLs are especially useful for spectacle lens wearers who use CLs part-time, many patients don’t consider them. As a result, you must mention daily disposable CLs as an option for these patients.
For example, patients who are avid outdoors people (e.g. campers, hikers, bikers, etc.) and typically wear progressive lenses can benefit. Explain to these “weekend warriors” that daily disposables can be a convenient and functional distance solution.
Explore other possibilities.
The three examples illustrated above reveal how daily disposable CLs can lead to increased optical sales and vice versa. That said, more potential promotional opportunities exist. So, look into unique ways of promoting both daily disposables and your optical to a wide variety of patients. Doing so will pay off for your patients and your practice. OM
1. Dumbleton K, Richter D, Bergenske P, Jones LW. Compliance with lens replacement and the interval between eye examinations. Optom Vis Sci. 2013 Apr;90(4):351-8.
DR. MILLER IS A PARTNER IN A PRIVATE PRACTICE IN POWELL, OHIO, AND IS AN ADJUNCT FACULTY MEMBER FOR THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY COLLEGE OF OPTOMETRY. SEND COMMENTS TO OPTOMETRICMANAGEMENT@GMAIL.COM.