San Diego County Optometric Society
The San Diego View
Inside this Issue:
- President’s Message
- Retina Corner
- Eye See
- Evaluating and Building Your Practice Brand With EyeCarePro
- CE Corner
- Volunteer Corner
- SDCOS Announcements
By Alexandra Scovill
A few weeks ago, the California Optometric Association held the first session of the annual House of Delegates. For those of you who don’t know, the House of Delegates is an annual meeting where all the societies in California get together to vote on policy changes and new board members. This year was a little different as we were unable to vote virtually. Despite being unable to vote, the meeting was still very productive and I would like to share a few things with you that were discussed.
We began with an opening statement from our President, our very own Dr. Jason Tu. He discussed his plans at the beginning of the year to make the COA more nimble and quick to respond to optometrists. Little did he know, that would be exactly what the COA needed in 2020. He accomplished this by re-organizing COA personnel, cutting dues for members during the COVID pandemic, and adding new member benefits. In eliminating dues for April and May, COA was able to gain and keep 30 new members. Free online CE was created, with over 600 members participating in each event! Dr. Tu also discussed the need for optometrists to be ready to answer the call to volunteer as a leader so that one day young doctors will be ready to take the lead and make the changes needed for COA to thrive with the new wave of optometrists. Dr. Tu challenged the status quo this past year and helped make COA a leader in the COVID pandemic.
Next, Kristine Schultz gave us an update on advocacy in 2020. There were more advocacy wins in 2020 than in any other year previous! Dr. David Redman and Dr. Mark Nakano were able to elaborate on these wins. They include the ability to administer COVID vaccines, getting live online CE approved for California optometrists, include optometrists in phase 1A for COVID immunizations, adult eyeglass coverage for Medi-Cal patients, telehealth payment parity, and stopping legislation requiring optometrists to maintain a stockpile of specific kinds of PPE for employees, among many others. Kristine highlighted the success of the first virtual Legislative Day, announced the new website that will go live next month, and the change of President’s council from meeting just once a year to meeting quarterly in order to be more effective. At the last President’s Council meeting, presidents were able to meet with two AOA trustees to come up with changes that need to be made to overcome barriers to membership and make the most of our dues as California optometrists. All of these changes are helping to advance the COA into the future.
Next, the current Secretary-Treasurer, Dr. Amanda Dexter, gave us her report. Highlights of her report include, decreased total revenue in 2020 by $800,000, but also a decrease in expenses for 2020 resulting in a positive balance of $600,000. Decreased revenue was attributed to the two months of free dues for members during the pandemic and reduced event registration. Reduced expenses were attributed to lower cost of events (as all events were virtual) and reduced cost of personnel. The COA did not need to touch the reserve fund or endowment trust fund to stay afloat during the pandemic. Dr. Dexter pointed out that although event revenue was down, event registration went up which means that more members are using the benefits that COA offers. At the end of the day, this is important because when members utilize more benefits, they are more likely to remain members! She also informed us that COA is planning on an in-person Monterey Symposium and OptoWest! We will keep you posted!
All in all, it was a great meeting! We hope to see you there, in-person, next year!
Stay tuned for next month…
written by Dr. Byron Y. Newman
MOST OF WHAT I KNOW I LEARNED IN KINDERGARTEN
NOTE: One of the advantages of reading lots of publications on every subject is running across items like this one. We’ve all seen this type of thing before written in different ways, but this one I picked from an old item from “The Georgia Kiwanian” in a column by Donna L. Hunt, the wife of the then Governor of the Georgia District of Kiwanis International. I thought about it, and couldn’t add anything else to it, but we all know things that we never thought about when or where we learned it. See if you can add an item or two to what you knew at age 5 and still use.
Here is what Donna wrote:
These are the things I learned:
- Share everything
- Play fair
- Be polite
- Don’t hit people
- Put things back where you found them
- Clean up your mess
- Don’t take things that aren’t yours
- Say you’re sorry when you hurt someone
- Wash you hands before you eat or return to work or play
- Live a balanced life
- Learn some, think some
- Draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day
- Take a nap every day
- Watch for traffic by looking both ways
- Be aware of wonder
Check out Dr. Newman’s website, www.thehumorfactory.com!!!
Evaluating and Building Your Practice Brand With EyeCarePro
Using marketing to build and maintain a strong brand is crucial to retaining existing patients and attracting new ones. Let’s take a look at what a practice brand is, and some of the essential elements for building and maintaining that brand.
What is Branding?
Put simply, your brand is how your practice is perceived. A lot of this depends on whether you’re a general eye care practice, offer medical specialties or have a strong focus on your optical. It also depends on who your ideal patient is. No matter your target demographic, all of the content you post on your website and social media needs to represent your brand. Below are some examples of areas to concentrate on.
Branding Website Content and SEO
All of your website content should be used to promote your brand, positioning you as an expert in what you do. Be sure your homepage has images that reflect your branding, and articles and blogs that mention your expertise. Emphasize subjects that target your ideal audience. You’ll both build authority and increase awareness of your brand.
Your onsite SEO is also an important part of promoting your brand. Your homepage, blog content and top-tier pages should be rich in keywords aimed at your ideal patients and the services you offer.
Onsite SEO encourages Google to see your site as a helpful destination for patients searching for optometry practices with your branding and expertise. The better your brand is presented onsite, the higher Google should rank you, further reinforcing your branding.
Branding the Patient Experience
Branding efforts should continue throughout the whole patient experience, from practice signage to office layout and staff interactions. Optometric practices that base their brand on a wide selection of designer eyewear should have an attractive optical section, eyewear ads displayed around the office, and staff wearing their favorite frames from among your selection.
You should also have branding guidelines that clearly outline things like how to speak with patients, how to post to social media, etc. Once the staff commits to these, the entire in-office experience will promote your brand.
The branded patient experience continues on through post-visit follow-up.
Optical practices should return prescription and frame orders as quickly as possible. Once eyeglasses come in, a well branded email can be sent, or a staff member well versed in the branding guidelines can call, to ask them to come pick them up.
Similarly, specialty practices should proactively check up on patients after treatment, to see if they have any questions or concerns. This is an excellent opportunity to show that your practice is both professional and caring.
EyeCarePro has more than 15 years of experience helping practices retain existing patients and expand their patient base. From professional websites and SEO, to social media and Google reviews, a well crafted practice brand is an essential part of the services they provide. Find out more with SDCOS!
We are committed to helping you fulfill your CE requirements through our local virtual meetings with the support of our sponsors!
Speakers: Dr. Nikolas London, MD and Dr. Arash Mozayan, MD
Topic: Retina Symposium
Date: April 1st, 2021
Webinar ID: 864 1090 0559
Free for SDCOS members
Free for COA/AOA Members
$50 for Non-members
Free for Students
Free for Sponsors
To Join the Webinar
Join from a PC, Mac, iPad, iPhone, or Android device:
Participants must be signed into the virtual meeting for the full presentation time to receive a certificate. If this is your first time using Zoom and you are having difficulty with log-in, please feel to contact our administrative director, Nancy-Jo, at email@example.com for assistance.
Other upcoming COA event dates:
- March 15th
- May 17th
- July 19th
- September 20th
- October 18th
Check out the COA website for more info: www.coavision.org
Looking for Opticians for Fashion Valley + UTC Locations: Warby Parker is searching for skilled and enthusiastic Opticians to join our growing team of in-house optical all-stars and play an integral part in what we’re all about—helping people see! In this role, you’ll become an expert in our brand and our glasses. Whether you’re helping longtime Warby Parker fans or first-time wearers, you’ll deliver extraordinary customer service to leave them excited and confident about our glasses. Along the way, you’ll partner with motivated, collaborative individuals who take their work (but not themselves) seriously. You’ll expand your current skill set with career-advancing resources and benefits. Our ideal candidate is a lifelong learner who’s eager to help Warby Parker grow. If interested, please see https://www.warbyparker.com/jobs/retail OR email: firstname.lastname@example.org (03/21)
Equipment for sale Zeiss NM pro (fundus camera) with or without table $6500 or best offer. Nidek Handy NM-200D (portable fundus camera) $1000 or best offer. Vision screener $500 or best offer. Manual Keratometer $1000 or best offer. MPS II (Macular density measuring device) $7000 or best offer. Contact (704) 777-1986 or email email@example.com (03/21)
PRACTICE FOR SALE One of the longest continuous running practices in Coastal North County. Serving Solana Beach since 1977. The practice has always been noted for quality care and high technology. Featuring a beautiful optical boutique with a full finishing lab. Practiced as solo, but could accommodate multiple doctors with up to three exam lanes. Co-management of Lasik, cataracts, and medical in place for years. Strong community referrals from local schools and businesses. Contact Michael Foyle at 858-481-7262 or email firstname.lastname@example.org (03/21)
Practice for Sale: North County “Carlsbad” upscale high-end practice. Owner at the same location over 30 years, boasts a strong net with easy hours. Great visibility location within high traffic Vons Center, theatres, library, great restaurants, great tenant mix. Office current remodeled with glass showcases, LED lighting, granite countertops, designer wallpaper, light wood floors. Updated equipment in the exam and pretest room with blue tooth transfer. Great opportunity to own a modern practice and be independent with much room for continued practice growth. Call Howard Levy, OD 760-310-8492 or email email@example.com PRICED TO SELL! (03/21)
Monarch School Screening
Lion’s Optometric Vision Clinic
VOLUNTEER DOCTORS needed for flexible shifts throughout the year. 9-1:00 pm. Monday -Friday 1805 Upas St San Diego, CA 92103. Can’t volunteer at the clinic? See patients in your office. Call 619-298-5273.
The LOVC has Reopened!!
Please call or email the clinic if you are interested in volunteering:
Alterations to the schedule to accommodate social distancing are in place and PPE will be provided for all volunteers/staff/patients.
New flooring was installed with the donation from the SDCOS 2019 golf tournament and a special thanks to Dr. Phil Smith!
Please think of the LOVC for your end of year charitable giving, visit our website: lionsvisionclinic.org
Please contact the society office at 619-663-8439 for arrangements to pick up.
SDCOS keeps a list of all doctors willing to speak in front of groups about various topics, do home visits for patients, and assist in student mentoring. ODs interested in the Speakers Bureau, Home Visits, Student mentoring, and Low Vision OD’s, please contact the society office at 619-663-8439 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Click here for most recent SDCOS Board Meeting Minutes
- Click here for the 2021 CE schedule!
- Click here for COA membership benefits!
Welcome, new members!!
- Loan Huynh
Please update your information on www.eyehelp.org
Phone: 619 663 8439
Fax: 800 643 8301