What are you saying about your eyecare practice when you advertise? Years ago sitting in a classroom at Harvard Business School, one of the professors in a marketing class talked about mother-in-law research. Here we were, sitting at one of the most prestigious colleges in the world, where some of the most progressive theories in business have sprung from, discussing how to ask your friends and neighbors their opinions, instead of those with access to the corner office.
This morning as I was driving to work, I was stopped behind a van whose photo you see. I have Photoshopped out one of the numbers from the phone and the license plate, but other than that, this is what you would see if you were following that van somewhere in Denver. “We Deliver”.
We Deliver what? Pizzas? Flowers? This being Colorado, Marijuana? Whomever designed the paint job for the van certainly had good intentions. He or she knew who the van was being painted for, and what the company was in business for. My guess is they passed the design around the table of others involved with the business to get their two cents worth and approvals. However, they apparently couldn’t see the preverbal forest for the trees. They failed to communicate what they do and why they do it. They should have asked one of their mothers-in-laws.
When eye care practices say they provide the best eye care (as an example) what are they trying to say and what is the consumer hearing? Doesn’t Visine promote the finest eye care too? You are far more than eye drops. However, are you providing the finest eye exams? The finest eyeglasses? The finest sunglasses? The finest contact lenses? The finest eye makeup?
Take a moment or two to ask the UPS guy or gal, the waiter or waitress at the next restaurant you go to, your dry cleaner, and yes, even your mother-in-law to look at what you are saying, and chances are, if those close to you don’t get it, neither will your prospective patients and customers.
Daniel Feldman, is CEO of dba designs & communications a marketing firm and a co-founder to the Visionaries Group, an optical consulting firm specializing in helping eye care practices achieve success.