HEARING AIDS-PEOPLE ARE FUNNY-COSTCO VERSUS PRIVATE PRACTICE & THE PERCEPTION OF PEOPLE-AMAZING-AMAZ
Today I made another House Call on a 90 something, Widow, living by herself in a very decent Mobile Home Park in Huntington Beach,Ca.
She has been a Client of mine for over 10 years.
She uses one hearing aid in her right ear.
I do not charge for making House Calls.
She says she is on a fixed income, and really can't afford to spend any money on her hearing aids.
Her residence is about 5 miles from my office.
She claims she is not hearing the way she should, or wants to, but she says she can't afford to spend any money.
I examined her ear canals, and her right ear canal, where she uses the hearing aid, is plugged with ear wax.
She has called my office at least 10 times, always concerned about her inability to understand the spoken word correctly.
Today, an examination revealed an ear canal with excessive ear wax.
She went into great detail about what she wanted.
Because of her stated economic situation, I recommended remaking her existing hearing aid and converting it to Digital Signal Processing, with a new shell, for a price of $695 with a 1 year repair warranty.
She grilled me about the warranty and the guarantee, and I provided her with all her options.
At some point in the interview, she informed me that her son-in-law just purchased new hearing aids from COSTCO in Fountain Valley, Ca., my primary Competitor.
She said he paid over $2,000 and I don't know whether that price included 1 or 2 hearing aids.
She stated he wasn't happy with the hearing aids.
I asked her, why she didn't refer him to me.
She had no responce.
I spent almost an hour with her, and told her that I would have to return to give her a hearing test, after she had the was removed from her ear.
She continued to dwell on the price I quoted her of $695 to remake her existing hearing aid and convert it to digitial signal processing.
Remaking a hearing aid, means making a new custom made shell, and then using all new components.
I had to tell her, that I have spent more time with her, involving a sale of $695 than COSTCO spent, or ever would, for a sale involving over $2,000 that her Son-in-law paid.
She didn't seem to get my message.
I told her that we would always do what is to her best interests, not mine.
She stated she could only pay half down, and needed payments for the balance of $100 per month.
I think she is really more concerned about paying for the hearing aid and then dying and thats why she wants time payments.
My gross profit would be about $400.
That involves about 6 house calls.
I told her to tell her son-in-law to return the hearing aids to COSTCO he wasn't happy with, and come to our office where he would spend either $1295 or $1495, instead of $2,000 and that we would spend whatever time it took to make him happy.
She didn't seem to get the point.
I couldn't see her tommorow because she has to go to the beauty parlor for her hair appointment.
Its interesting she can get a ride for that appointment, but not to visit my office.
Maybe I should tell her the facts of life.
Maybe I appreciate more than she does, the services we are providing her.
At what point do you say, enough is enough.
Am I ***?
We'll help her, because thats the way we are.
Always doing what is to the best interest of the Client.
Sometimes its hard to justify why we do it, but we do.
Obviously, I don't think so.
Come Judgement Day, we'll be ahead, I hope.