By Mark Wright, OD, FCOVD,
and Carole Burns, OD, FCOVD
April 18, 2018
A brand is a promise you make to your patients. What kind of promise do you want to make to yours, and are you prepared to fulfill it?
Is the Nike Swoosh, or McDonald’s Golden Arches, the company’s brand? No, those are just the company logos. The brand of any practice is the promise it makes to its patients – it’s far more than just a logo.
Two optometry practices can deliver the same services in the same town to the same people, but the two practices may provide completely different patient experiences based on their brand promise. The question we should all consider: Is your brand promise intentional or accidental? Making your brand promise intentional will have a positive impact on every area of your practice.
Let’s explore this further. Consider the brand promises from three successful, well-known companies.
The NFL: “To be the premier sports and entertainment brand that brings people together, connecting them socially and emotionally like no other.”
Coca-Cola: “To inspire moments of optimism and uplift.”
Virgin: “To be genuine, fun, contemporary and different in everything we do at a reasonable price.”
Good brand promises talk about what the company promises to be to the consumer. Notice that the NFL brand promise does not mention football, the Coca-Cola brand promise does not mention food or drink and the Virgin brand promise is not talking about its airline schedule. The brand promise is bigger. When you have a brand promise that is inspiring, it should drive every decision made in the practice. It even helps lift the doctors and staff when they are in the middle of a frustrating day.
How do we deliver the services and products that always reach toward our brand promise? The best way is to make every decision in the practice in the light of the brand promise. The brand promise can also lead us away from bad decisions. If we are considering taking on a third party, or a frame line, that does not bring us closer to our brand promise, then don’t do it. We are only going to do things that take us closer to our brand promise.
The brand promise also affects hiring. We do not want to hire people who just want a paycheck. We want to hire people who share our passion for delivering our brand promise. The person who just wants a paycheck shows up for work. The person who shares our passion for delivering our brand promise goes the extra mile. Patients can see the difference.
The brand promise for our practice, Professional VisionCare, began as “We change lives through innovative vision care.” It was recently changed into “We change lives one person at a time.” What is your brand promise? Take this week to clarify your brand promise. This is an activity that will impact every area of your practice. Make your brand promise intentional instead of accidental.