If you plan marketing for your practice, it is important to consider who you are targeting. Untargeted marketing is a waste of resources. In this article we consider marketing to one specific group, but the ideas can be applied to any group.
- Think about exactly who you want to target. In this example, we’re thinking about mums: do you want to reach out to all mums, mums of pre-schoolers, mums of kids in primary or secondary school? Be specific about the niche you want to reach and it will allow you to use your resources.
- Where will you find your target audience? Start noticing where mums meet in your town. Look at the ways you could interact in that space, such as a noticeboard in a coffee shop.
- Get to know your target audience. If you want to reach parents of pre-schoolers you could offer to do a talk at a playgroup, but this is a chance to listen as well as talk. Find out what questions they have, ask what puts them off going to an eye test with the kids, and what might make them feel welcome.
- Make a list of local media and check which ones will reach your target audience. Are there specific parenting magazines – there is usually one or more in most areas. Is there a local radio show at a time of day when mums are likely to be listening, or shows specifically aimed at women in the right age group? Make a short list and think what approach would appeal to each different medium.
- Start a conversation, and encourage your staff to do so too. If a mum with kids comes in for a browse, ask if the children have had their eyes examined. Many parents are unsure what age children need examining from so this can be a conversation opener: “Did you know your child doesn’t need to be able to read to have an eye exam?” You can also raise the issue of inherited eye problems with people when they come for their own eye exam.