The hearing healthcare marketplace has two barriers that prevent individuals from acquiring better 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 remedy.
Regrettably, countless people who have overcome the first barrier have been lured into the supposedly “cheaper and easier” methods of addressing their hearing loss, whether it be through the purchase of hearing aids on the web, 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.
In spite of the allure of these quick remedies, the fact is that local hearing care providers are your best bet for better hearing, and here are the reasons why.
Local hearing care providers use a customer-centric business model
National chain stores are successful for one primary reason: they sell a high volume of low-priced goods and services at low prices in the name of higher profit. National chains are all about efficiency, which is a nice way of saying “get as many people in and out the door as quickly as possible.”
Undoubtedly, this profit-centric model works great with most purchases, because you probably don’t require professional, personalized care to help choose your undershirts and bath soap. Consumer support simply doesn’t factor in.
However, problems emerge when this business model is extended to services that do demand professional, individualized care—such as the correction of hearing loss. National chains are not interested in 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 preoccupied with short-term profits because they don’t have a board of directors to report to. The level of success of a local practice is influenced by on patient outcomes and high quality of care, which results in satisfied patients who remain faithful to the practice and spread the positive word-of-mouth advertising that creates more referrals.
Local practices, for that reason, thrive on delivering quality care, which is beneficial both the patient and the practice. By comparison, what will happen if a national chain can’t deliver quality care and satisfied patients? Simple, they use nationwide advertising to get a continual flow of new patients, promising 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 everybody, so the frequencies I may have trouble 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 expect good results. But this is in essence what personal sound amplifiers, along with the cheaper hearing aid models, accomplish.
The reality is, the sounds your hearing aids amplify—AND the sounds they don’t—HAVE to match 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 differentiating and repressing the sounds you don’t want to hear (such as low-frequency background noise).
For the hearing care provider, this is no easy task. It takes a great deal of training and patient care experience to have the ability to carry out a hearing test, help patients choose the right hearing aid, skillfully program the hearing aids, and offer 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 trust with your hearing? To somebody who views you as a transaction, as a consumer, and as a means to attaining sales goals? Or to an experienced local professional that cares about the same thing you do—helping you achieve the best hearing possible, which, by the way, is the lifeblood of the local practice.
As a basic rule, we recommend 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.