Kelly Kerksick, OD, remembers talking with a friend who mentioned that she had begun to sell some beauty products in her optometric practice. “It made sense to me. We’re a female-oriented practice anyway, and I love makeup. I put some effort into trying to look my best,” she says. In fact, she believes it’s a motivational thing for people to look their best.
When she found the Zoria® product line from OCuSOFT, it seemed like a great fit. She was already using OCuSOFT® Lid Scrub Foaming Eyelid Cleanser for patients who have blepharitis. “It’s a great product—easy to use and cost-effective. We prescribe a lot of that,” she says.
So she decided to open the door to selling beauty products in the office. “This was our first break into the beauty line,” she says. “It’s a natural addition.” She has found that talking about beauty products, and equally important, having them in the office to purchase, provide patients with a service they want. “Patients come to us not just because they want to see well. They count on us to tell them what they need,” she says.
Like many ODs, Dr. Kerksick has seen patients whose contact lenses have mascara on them, for example. Those kinds of situations should lead to a discussion on products for removing makeup and even on makeup itself.
The biggest difference that Dr. Kerksick sees is that beauty products are appealing because they’re optional. Patients come in, sometimes steeled to the idea that they’re going to have to spend money in the practice for new eyewear. But they want to spend money on beauty products. “The Zoria® Boost Lash Intensifying Serum has been very successful in our office. When we can offer products that are more beauty-oriented, people come in more with the intention of spending money. It’s refreshing because it’s a product line that we don’t have to ‘sell.’”
She uses the products herself, and she particularly loves the Zoria® Boost Mascara, so her testimonial carries weight. “With women in the exam room, I can testify that my eyelashes are longer and fuller. Plus, we guarantee it—and we’ve never had anyone return it. It’s an additional peace of mind.”
The practice also sells a lot of the Zoria® Recovery Bruise and Scar Cream. “I’ve used it, and I use it on my kids. It really does work, and it’s a great product for anyone who bruises easily.”
Dr. Kerksick says there’s a high volume of contact lens wearers in the practice. “That creates an opportunity because they struggle with finding a good eye makeup remover and mascara. They like the endorsement from a doctor who can say that a product has been formulated with particular attention to ensure it won’t be irritating to the eyes.”
Dr. Kerksick once heard her dermatologist say that the face creams she offers for sale in her office are only available to her patients. That badge of exclusivity added to the products’ appeal. “I use a similar approach with our patients because this product isn’t available in stores. But patients appreciate that they don’t need a prescription from me and that they can stop by any time to purchase more. They like that.”
However, it’s her recommendation and personal testimonial that carry the day. “When I tell patients, ‘I think you’ll love it, and if you
don’t, bring it back,’ it makes it very easy for them to say yes,” she says.