As a local business, we put community at the heart of everything we do. Our reputation depends on it.
Both Graham and I have lived in Bingley for over 25 years and we certainly feel part of the community. So when Covid 19 struck we felt a strong desire to serve our community. Locking the doors, when NHS England advised us to, was one of the easiest decisions we have had to make. We knew it would have a serious impact on our business but the health of our staff and patients comes first. Immediate plans were put in place to deal with the implications.
The same cannot always be said for high street brands.
At the start of Coronavirus, right at the beginning of Lockdown, a major brand with an optician store locally closed their practice. Rightly so. But what followed was massively detrimental to their brand. They left 3000 pairs of specs waiting to be collected. And didn’t follow up with their customers. They left children without glasses and people working from home without the means to see properly. For up to 13 weeks! Needless to say this abject customer care turned into a massive PR disaster. People left them, never to return. Many came to us.
Why? Because they’d been told Kenyon’s was providing a local delivery service; in person and socially distanced. Our phone was permanently manned and professional advice constantly available. Our customers know we are always there for them, the restrictions that lockdown threw at us challenged us but we found a way.
The difference between corporate and community eye care is wider than it has ever been.
NHS assistance through troubled times
As a healthcare business we got a small amount of assistance to keep our service available for as many people as we could. A small concession toward a massive problem, but we wanted to help BUT not take advantage of the government.
Unlike another high street brand which is now being investigated by the General Optical Council after being caught on video putting profits before safety by ignoring professional bodies and the NHS. Flippant disregard for its reputation.
Anyway, we decided to use the time afforded by lockdown to learn more. About us. About our clientele. To introduce new measures and positive advances, rather than enforced changes. Develop our brand.
One to one, one hour appointment slots.
We have moved to a dedicated one to one, one hour appointment slot per patient.
We have the time (and now less pressure) to deliver a specs consultation that matches the consultation the patient receives in the testing room. It’s the perfect opportunity to really find out what a patient needs from a lens point of view (and lifestyle etc) or try frames that they hadn’t considered. As one piece of research we found put it … you might wake up a dormant diva with a striking new frame!
New ‘try on’ functionality in our online shop
We’ve introduce a try on feature to some products available in our shop. Yep, you can now try on a pair of specs or sunnies from the comfort of home.
This is something we are very excited about and pretty cutting edge. Check out the try out shop and see for yourself!
We are a local business with the local community at heart. We hope our brand really does resonate with you, we are very proud it. It helps drive everything we do.
See you soon.