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7 Critical Actions to Maximize Success in Your Hearing Care Business

Owning a hearing health clinic can be extremely rewarding. This post will spotlight seven critical actions you can take to maximize success.  

Owning and running a hearing health clinic can be extremely rewarding, as you help improve an essential aspect of people’s health – their hearing. When you own the clinic, you call the shots – including the hours you’ll be open, the employees you hire, what kind of equipment to use, etc. This post will spotlight seven critical actions you can take to maximize success.     

  
Owning a hearing clinic is similar to owning any other type of business. You’ll need to hire the best staff, maximize your resources, invest in the right equipment, and market your business wisely. Suppose you plan well, adapt to changing environments, make smart decisions, offer the best products, and deliver extraordinary care. In that case, you’re more likely to be successful over the long term and stay competitive in an overly competitive market.  

1. Choose The Proper Technology

Do you have to switch between systems or different screens while you work? Are you manually inputting data multiple times into multiple systems, a time-consuming and often error-prone chore? It can be challenging to use several different systems that are not well integrated, and clinics that do this experience consequences, like poor data quality, wasted time, and bad customer experiences that lead to lost revenue.

In recent years, there have been tremendous advancements in technology for audiology clinics, that integrate clinical and commercial information. Notably, Auditdata’s integrated solutions make daily tasks much faster, easier, and more accurate. In hearing care retail, there is often a discussion about increasing conversion rates. Many audiologists are measured on clinic performance, conversion rates, and sales – and are rewarded according to these KPIs. Now, practice management software, like Auditdata’s Manage, help audiology clinics improve their KPIs.

For instance, a double-digit percentage of clients don’t show up for their appointments, which wastes your valuable resources. Use the features in Manage to set automatic appointment reminders via email and text to boost your show-up rates, make your clinic more efficient and profitable, and get the most out of your appoinment scheduler. 

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2. Invest In An iPad-Based Hearing Screener For Pre-Screening

Also, HCPs are often measured on their ability to convert these leads into sales. But what if there is no hearing loss? Then it is not the HCP’s fault that they cannot convert the lead, and they should not be measured on this KPI.

It is, therefore, very important that the lead is pre-qualified before they book a longer appointment so the HCP can be more accurately measured on the conversion rate of clients with hearing loss detected.

Set up a hearing pre-screening iPad device like Auditdata Engage in your reception to pre-screen clients before the appointment. It will help determine which customers have hearing loss and need a longer appointment with your clinicians. This will save the HCP’s time and use these test results to guide the deeper hearing evaluation.

From proven use cases, the Auditdata hearing screener performs after the 50-50-50 rule. 50% of people screened have a hearing loss. Of those, 50% book an appointment and, finally, 50% purchase a hearing aid.  

3. Adjust Your Business To Your Customers’ Needs

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Like any business, your hearing clinic will likely experience ebbs and flows in customer traffic that can impact your revenue. For example, you will probably have fewer customers visiting your clinics around the December holidays and will need to make up for that slow time with more appointments earlier in the year.

You also have a fantastic opportunity to make decisions that will increase your revenue. For instance, if you extend your clinic’s hours past the typical 9:00-5:00 workday, you’ll attract more working professionals who don’t want to take time off from their jobs for a hearing screening or hearing aid fitting.

Offer occasional weekend and evening appointments to make it more convenient for customers to see you.  By doing so, you’ll be able to schedule more clients and increase revenue accordingly. 

4. Invest Wisely In Marketing

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Remember the old adage “it takes money to make money?” While it can seem somewhat counterintuitive to spend money when trying to make money in your clinics, marketing is a wise and essential expense. Marketing efforts help you generate awareness about your clinic and inspire specific actions (e.g., visit, get screened, buy hearing aids).

The best way to build your brand and establish a presence within your community is through marketing. Your efforts could include online marketing (such as social media ads), newspaper ads, flyers, postcard mailers, etc. You should also have a professional website, social media platforms, business cards, letterhead, and other marketing collateral materials (e.g., brochures.)

Use data to determine which channels are the best investment. And don’t forget to target your existing customers with compelling marketing messages. Investing in marketing will help you grow your business and drive more traffic to your clinic.

To help owners, managers, and marketers in hearing care, we have created this marketing guide. A complete end-to-end customer journey starts with your customer insight and data. Our guide is about increasing your in-store traffic, converting more prospects into clients, and retaining those for life.

Free Guide

Marketing Guide for Hearing Care Professionals 

A complete end-to-end customer journey starts with your customer insight and data. Our guide is about increasing your in-store traffic, converting more prospects into clients, and retaining those for life.

5. Overcome Objections And Optimize Products

Don’t have too much money bound up in materials. Optimize stock and loans of hearing aids by keeping an overview and minimizing the number of instruments to choose from. Also, cut down on too long trial times and high return rates by standardizing a trial period.

Keep in mind that there’s a stigma around hearing aids, as some people fear that wearing them makes them seem old, sick, or weak. Others may avoid getting hearing devices because of the cost. Up to 50% of clients return their hearing aids after trial, which is a waste of your staff's time and effort.

To maximize sales and usage – and minimize returns – be proactive with your communication efforts during the hearing aid trial period to ensure that your customers are comfortable with their hearing aids. When the customers are happy, they’re more likely to buy, which boosts your bottom line. 

6. Anticipate unexpected costs

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While we can’t predict what’s coming, preparing for financial disruption is wise. Be ready for things like broken equipment that must be replaced, a burst water pipe damaging your clinic, or changes like a clinician quitting, a competitor opening a clinic nearby, etc.

When times are good, put money into a savings account and let it grow over time. Consider setting up automatic transfers from your business checking account to your savings account, so you don’t even need to think about it each month. Have a financial cushion in place so a temporary disruption – or unplanned expense – doesn’t derail your business.

Be sure to have other retention measures in place, like marketing investments, events, etc. And use tech solutions to improve your inventory management. Also, when you centralize data sources and reporting, you’ll get more accurate, real-time quality assessments of your clinic’s performance to make more informed financial decisions.   

7. Build A Winning Team

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Build your team carefully and thoughtfully. Even if audiologists or other potential staff members “look good on paper” with impressive degrees and extensive experience, make sure they’re aligned with your clinic’s culture. They could have exceptional credentials but have an unpleasant personality, potentially alienating customers, prospects, and even other team members. Keep in mind that you’ll need to invest time (and money) in onboarding and training new employees, so hire for the long-term. Work diligently to retain great employees – and invest in their success – so you won’t have to onboard their replacement anytime soon. Keep in mind that everyone can achieve clinical excellence with Measure, making the clinic less reliant on each audiologist's experience and qualifications and more on the software/hardware.

Another thought: customers will trust – and feel comfortable around – professional, friendly, outgoing clinicians and staff. Hire the right employees, and it will help boost critical metrics, including client retention and loyalty, sales, and referrals. Most audiologists are good at handling customers, but they also need to see themselves as sales reps. So, part of the onboarding process should also include cross/upsell techniques. 

 

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