When your customers want help and can’t articulate what they need, that’s an opportunity! Three years ago, we bootstrapped Sightpath Creative as an ophthalmology-only agency to serve Sightpath Medical’s customers. Starting anything from scratch is hard.
What we wondered is, “Can we build an agency, using existing organizational talent and resources, to help our customers grow their businesses?” After all, we had more than three-quarters of a century of marketing and practice development experience on our team. In fact, we thought, “Why can’t we help our customers when they share their stories of struggle with local agencies? We have knowledge right here!”
So, we did it. Intrapreneur style. Our customers are winning and we are, too.
Sightpath Creative – An Extension of Sightpath Medical With the Same Culture of Service
From the start, Sightpath Creative drew on the culture of service present in the Sightpath Medical business and used that to fuel growth. Our belief that we’re in it together with our customers helped make this new offering immediately successful. Also, we used our history of successfully operationalizing ideas with processes, follow-up and cost efficiency.
Unlock Creative Horsepower Already Contained in the Marketing Department
Sightpath Medical has a small and effective marketing department. As a service-based player in the ophthalmology market, everyone on our team drew on their experiences to immediately contribute and begin serving customers in a new way.
Everyone got excited by the opportunity to help our customers find solutions to issues they faced. It wasn’t always easy, sometimes we fell down, got back up, adjusted course and now look back and think, “What was it like around here before we had an Agency?”
Unique Opportunity to Focus Only on Ophthalmology
At Sightpath, all we do it eyes. This focus afforded us the unique opportunity to use our expertise and better serve our customers. They told us stories of local agencies that charged them large fees, expected them to write copy and had to teach them the lingo we already knew.
An interesting aspect of our challenge in bootstrapping Sightpath Creative was offering a new service to our clients without a reputation for excellence in the practice marketing arena. Again, we met the challenge and succeeded with our plans for service.
Installed Customer Base
Sightpath Medical serves more than 800 facilities and 1200 surgeons throughout the United States. Most of these are ophthalmologists and facilities in small to mid-markets.
We offer creative services to the practices where we partner with them for laser cataract surgery and LASIK surgery. Many of these do not have dedicated marketing personnel, a marketing plan or metrics in place to measure success.
Consequently, our plan was to keep things simple, be of service and offer creative ideas in a campaign format.
Fee-For-Service Model Encourages, Fosters and Thrives with Engagement
With a campaign based, fee-for-service agency in place, Sightpath Creative is now an important part of the Sightpath Medical relationship with many of our customers. It’s exciting for them to see the results of campaigns focused on strategies such as social media, foundational practice promotional elements, OD outreach, and event marketing just to name a few.
The most important learning from all of our work is that engagement is what drives results. Many practices want to write a check and see results. Unfortunately, it just doesn’t work that way. The groups that produce amazing results have engaged the personnel in the practice at every level.
What are you doing in your business to help your customers grow? Please leave a comment below and share your ideas.