Concept by IOWA Hearing Aid Centers is a company on the cutting edge of change. They pride themselves in being the first in the marketplace; always a few steps ahead of their local competitors. “To be really successful, you can’t simply adapt to change, you need to be creating change,” says Taylor Parker, Owner.
When ReSound first came out with Air, Concept grasped it and aggressively marketed the product before their competitors did. “Our competitors didn’t understand the new instant fit technology,” says Parker, “they didn’t embrace it like we did.”
Concept introduced a 7 day trial of ReSound Air to take full advantage of what “instant fit” could offer them from a business development standpoint. “Instant fit was huge for us,” says Parker. “We could fit patients there and then and let them walk out of the door with the hearing aid on. Instant fit essentially eliminated the risk of buyer’s remorse – the patient that goes home and decides to cancel their order. ReSound Air changed how people were being fit with hearing aids. We could grasp the patient right away before they could talk themselves out of it.”
Concept also takes a different approach to marketing than many of their competitors. “We believe in getting out there in front of potential customers,” says Parker. “If you wait for people to come to you, you’ll be waiting a long time. Our job is to change the way people view hearing aids.”
Part of Concept’s marketing plan is to attend as many lawn, garden and home shows as possible. They also have a presence at the Iowa State Fair every year. “People think doing the State Fair is crazy,” says Parker, “but what’s crazy about reaching 40,000 people in an 11 day period?” Concept gives away a pair of hearing aids every day of the State Fair and in the process collects hundreds of names of people that have a hearing loss. These are names that they take away with them and market to later.
“We’re changing the perception of where you can find out about hearing aids,” says Parker. “We just opened a kiosk in a local grocery store. This allows us to talk to people all the time and provide them with information. It’s a non-threatening environment where they can find out about hearing loss. If you’re in front of the right people every day, you’re more likely to make a sale than sitting in your clinic waiting for people to come to you.”
The kiosk at the grocery store has pre-programmed hearing aids for people to try out, as well as a TV and TV streamer wireless accessory. “We make sure that the kiosk is manned when the buses from the local retirement homes arrive,” says Parker.
In the last week, Concept has booked 5 appointments. “Our goal with the grocery store is to simply book appointments. These people don’t want to pick up the phone and take the first step. So, we come to them. The more people we can touch, the more chance we have of getting people in the door.”
“By changing the way that we go to the consumer, our hope is that over time, we’ll eventually change the way the consumer looks at hearing aids.”