Business strategy is one of the most commonly used words by many in the business world yet its meaning hasn’t been properly stated or understood.
Business strategy is the concept of business which is concerned with the planning for the further success of the organization. Optometry businesses fail to distinguish growth as an objective, and confuse it with being a strategy. When people say they wish to grow their business, they certainly mean that they want to increase income. A saturated industry, that has well established players, will require a different business strategy than a relatively new one. Your research of the industry will play a key role as it helps you uncover what is missing and what you can offer to obtain the desired market share and gain a competitive edge over others. If you look at history of businesses you will learn a tremendous amount of information about data trends, social response, business failures adaptation and innovation. An optometric business can thrive with the right motivation, mindset and perseverance even with increased competition with other retail opticals and online retailers. Be the game changer in your market. You don’t need to follow the others, create your own path of success. Why compete with an all ready highly competitive low margin marketplace? Develop your own unique strategy that innovates the industry.
The objectives that work towards the success of the optometry businesses are:
The growth of the business is a growth mindset
This refers to the possibility of the optometry business to market well and the optometrists to gain more patients due to their growing reputation. Figure out a strategy to increase growth and continue to grow. An average practice should grow 2-3% a year. Evaluate your key performance indicators to scale your practice. Understanding how your practice compares to others would be a good benchmark for evaluating the business metrics of your practice. Having a growth mindset will see opportunities that others won’t and using failure as a motivation to learn and continue to work hard to push forward. Your growth mindset will create innovative ways to approach the challenges in the industry and identify what is lacking and pain points for your customers.
The competitive upper hand of the business –Be the Game Changer
This relates to the idea that despite there being other optometry firms in the industry, the business that is being worked on at the moment, flourishes much more than its competitors. Always respect your competitors. When your office has the competitive edge and you don’t respect your competitors or smaller businesses that is when you can be left behind. Blockbuster was number 1 at one point and didn’t see Netflix as a competitor. They even had a chance to buy them at the beginning but ignored it. Your competition will have more income or resources but having the drive, motivation, and perseverance to continue to pursue what you want is the ultimate competitive upper hand. Many optometry offices can have a competitive edge with 3d printing eyewear, technology, value based services, personal brand and a unique localized social media strategy. Social Media is very powerful it brings influence to your target audience with reviews, blogs, videos and postings. Small businesses now have the ability to change a local market by creating fans instead of customers. You determine what is your specific niche that you want your office to be known for and continue to relentlessly pursue it even when you are at the top!
Gaining higher profits
This is also linked to getting more customers; the more patients an optometry business has the higher its profits will be. You will get more customers by creating “fans” and providing niche value.
Be unique instead of being the best! A lot of the companies try to be the best when it comes to selling their product. They wish to have the best product, the best marketing campaign, and the best production line. They tend to believe that this is what’s needed to help them gain the largest customer market share. However, it is the exact opposite. In an industry where there are several companies that provide the same product, customers will find it difficult to choose between products of various available brands.
In such a scenario, there is a high chance that they choose the product with the lowest price. One way to overtake the competition is by investing to make your product unique. Either offer a feature that the other products do not have, or offer them in a more efficient manner, to distinguish your products from the rest.
This is called having a competitive advantage. A feature that sets you apart from your competitors. In the case of optometry, a business will have to design personalized service and quality that cannot be rivaled and sets a firm leaps and bounds above its competition. Increasing net profits can be achieved by vendor discounts, group pricing, cross trained staff, medical model technology and seeing more patients per hour.
Working with Competitors
Reputation in optical industry is the key to success with working with competitors. The business owner that has integrity can easily work with others and will be successful. Take for example you are an OD with your own practice corporate or private can you work with the optician business owner see those patients and send them back for glasses? Building an alliance can increase your net profit. Providing that the optician could cut lenses cheaper than the lab, help out on vacation, use both businesses as leverage for equipment or other supplies , send patients that you can see medically and gain a great reputation in the area that opens doors for other opportunities. Working with competitors in your local area can be a good way to use resources together that one office might not have and providing more added value to patients to with increase medical services and your office benefiting from the evaluation component of the procedure. Working together to promote and progress optometry in general in your own state. This is not to be confused to be matching every move of your competitor but carving out areas that they are not focusing on.
Blue Ocean strategy is about creating new untested waters, which has been a new way to think, compared to red oceans where the competition is fierce and can get bloody. Companies are making and shaping the industry with creative thinking. Warby Parker had leveraged the industry to create its own competitive strategy. They broke out of the traditional eyeglasses and created their own market space that has become a billion dollar industry. They create a value innovation system with online services and products that were unique and low cost to the industry. They got out of the shark infested waters and into a clear blue ocean where they innovated to differentiate themselves on value, price and image , where in these clear waters there were less competitors. Consider to take a different path to social media where everyone is battling for Facebook/Instagram Ad space, you might be on LinkedIn or Snapchat. Create an innovative approach where its easier to be profitable with less competitors. Some other companies that have done it are Netflix, Amazon, Starbucks and Uber. Start a new process of thinking today!