The hearing healthcare industry has two barriers that prevent people from achieving healthier hearing:
- The inability to detect hearing loss in the first place (owing to its gradual onset), and
- The temptation to find a quick, easy, and inexpensive solution.
Unfortunately, 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 over the internet, the purchase of personal sound amplifiers, or by heading to the big box stores that are much more concerned with profitability than with patient care.
Despite the lure of these simple remedies, 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 reason: they sell a high volume of low-priced goods and services at low prices in the name of larger revenue. National chains are all about efficiency, which is a nice way of saying “get as many people in and out the door as rapidly as possible.”
Undoubtedly, this profit-centric model works great with most purchases, because you most likely don’t need professional, individualized care to help select your undershirts and bath soap. Customer service simply doesn’t factor in.
However, problems result when this business model is expanded to services that do demand 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 very different. They’re not preoccupied with short-term profits because they don’t have a board of directors to answer to. The success of a local practice is reliant on patient outcomes and high quality of care, which results in satisfied patients who continue to be faithful 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 will benefit both the patient and the practice. In contrast, what happens if a national chain can’t deliver quality care and happy patients? Simple, they use nationwide advertising to get a endless flow of new patients, vowing the same “quick and cheap fix” that enticed in the original customers.
Local hearing care providers have more experience
Hearing is complex, and like our fingerprints, is unique to everyone, so the frequencies I may have difficulty hearing are distinct from the frequencies you have difficulty 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 essentially 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 occur by:
- Having your hearing professionally tested so you know the EXACT features of your hearing loss, and…
- Having your hearing aids professionally programmed to amplify 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 straight forward task. It requires a considerable amount of training and patient care experience to be able to conduct a hearing test, help patients select the right hearing aid, skillfully program the hearing aids, and supply the patient training and aftercare necessary for optimal hearing. There are no shortcuts to supplying 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 someone who views you as a transaction, as a consumer, and as a means to attaining sales targets? Or to an experienced local professional that cares about the same thing you do—helping you acquire the best hearing possible, which, by the way, is the lifeblood of the local practice.
As a general 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 match your specific needs, lifestyle, and budget.
Still have questions? Give us a call today.