All independent businesses face a marketplace that is geared around well-known brands with large marketing budgets. This is true for optometrists just as it with any other industry. The challenge that this creates is something that you need to overcome – and one of the best ways to do so is by harnessing the power of communities.
In a world where customers are increasingly looking for businesses that they can trust and that share their values, it is extremely valuable to connect, engage and build long-term relationships with your patients and clients. Rather than thinking about your business as something that sells to individuals, think about it as something that serves the community. This can be an extremely powerful marketing tool.
Grow a loyal customer base
One of the most important aspects of community is that it can build a sense of loyalty. This can be very important for independent businesses, who may not be able to offer things like heavily discounted rates or to pay for a huge amount of advertising. In this scenario, independent businesses need the loyalty of their community.
This works because humans love feeling understood and to avoid feeling left out. When a business speaks to its own local community it can instil this sense of loyalty, as people feel they can trust you over large brands.
Natural reinvention of your business
All modern businesses must be adept at changing with the times – for some optometrists it can feel more natural to simply focus on what you are already good at, and worry about changing later. But doing so can mean your business misses out on opportunities or even gets left behind by competitors.
This is where it can be so useful to have strong community links. When you are led by your community it allows a natural reinvention of your services and products to suit the people who use your optometrists.
When your business changes with the needs and requirements of your communities you retain that real authenticity, which is something that large businesses cannot match. This can be an important way to retain the trust of your customer base – coming across as authentic and having the best intentions is important.
Much of this comes down to investing in time listening to how your community thinks and paying attention to their opinions.
Support other independent businesses
It is always a great idea not only to be focussed on customers in your community, but also taking the time to work with other independent businesses in your area. This helps to further build a sense of community around your business.
If you are interested in learning more about what your independent eyecare business can do to improve sales, Optical Success Academy can help. Get in contact with us today for more details.