The hearing healthcare industry has two barriers that prevent people from acquiring better hearing:
- The inability to recognize hearing loss in the first place (due to its slow onset), and
- The temptation to find a quick, easy, and inexpensive fix.
Regretfully, countless people who have overcome the first barrier have been lured into the allegedly “cheaper and easier” techniques of correcting their hearing loss, whether it be through the purchase of hearing aids on the web, the purchase of personal sound amplifiers, or by visiting the big box stores that are much more concerned with profits than with patient care.
In spite of the allure of these simple fixes, the fact is that local hearing care providers are your best option for better hearing, and here are the reasons why.
Local hearing care providers choose to use a customer-centric business model
National chain stores are profitable for one primary reason: they sell a high volume of inexpensive goods and services at low prices in the name of higher revenue. National chains are focused on efficiency, which is a courteous way of saying “get as many people in and out the door as rapidly as possible.”
Admittedly, this profit-centric model works great with most purchases, because you probably don’t require professional, personalized care to help pick out your undershirts and bath soap. Customer service simply doesn’t factor in.
However, problems develop when this business model is extended to services that do necessitate expert, customized care—such as the correction of hearing loss. National chains are not focused on patient outcomes because they can’t be; it’s too time consuming and flies in the face of the high volume “see as many patients as possible” business model.
Local hearing care providers are completely different. They’re not obsessed with short-term profits because they don’t have a board of directors to answer to. The success of a local practice is influenced by on patient outcomes and high quality of care, which brings about satisfied patients who remain loyal to the practice and disperse the positive word-of-mouth advertising that leads to more referrals.
Local practices, for that reason, thrive on delivering quality care, which rewards both the patient and the practice. By comparison, what happens if a national chain can’t deliver quality care and happy patients? Simple, they use national advertising to get a steady flow of new patients, promising the same “quick and cheap fix” that lured in the original customers.
Local hearing care providers have more experience
Hearing is complex, and like our fingerprints, is unique to everybody, so the frequencies I may have difficulty hearing are distinct from the frequencies you have trouble hearing. In other words, you can’t just take surrounding sound, make it all louder, and pump it into your ears and count on good results. But this is in essence what personal sound amplifiers, along with the cheaper hearing aid models, accomplish.
The truth is, the sounds your hearing aids amplify—AND the sounds they don’t—HAVE to complement the way you, and only you, hear. That’s only going to take place by:
- Having your hearing professionally tested so you know the EXACT characteristics of your hearing loss, and…
- Having your hearing aids professionally programmed to intensify the sounds you have difficulty hearing while distinguishing and suppressing the sounds you don’t want to hear (such as low-frequency background sound).
For the hearing care provider, this is no easy task. It takes a considerable amount of education and patient care experience to have the ability to carry out a hearing test, help patients pick the right hearing aid, professionally program the hearing aids, and furnish the patient coaching and aftercare necessary for optimal hearing. There are no cutting corners to delivering comprehensive hearing care—but the results are worth the time and effort.
Make your choice
So, who do you want to leave your hearing to? To somebody who views you as a transaction, as a consumer, and as a means to achieving sales goals? Or to an experienced local professional that cares about the same thing you do—helping you obtain the best hearing possible, which, by the way, is the lifeblood of the local practice.
As a basic rule, we advise that you avoid purchasing your hearing aids anywhere you see a sign that reads “10 items or less.” As local, experienced hearing professionals, we provide comprehensive hearing healthcare and the best hearing technology to suit your specific needs, lifestyle, and budget.
Still have questions? Give us a call today.