Making Patients Feel Special with Specialty Care

With a head for business and a heart for patients, Dr. Chris Smiley has grown Vision Professionals from humble beginnings into a four-location specialty eye care powerhouse in the Columbus, Ohio area. Join EyeCarePro as we go behind the scenes to discover his secret to successfully promoting specialty services.


Vision Professionals:
The Patient-First Model

“There’s just something special about a patient who hugs you, or is crying because you’ve done something for them no one else can do.”
– Dr. Chris Smiley

Dr. Smiley

Recently, we’ve been discussing how advertising your specialty eye care offerings can help set you apart from the general practices in your area. Not only do optometric specialties make you stand out from the competition, they quite literally change patients' lives. Vision Professionals has one of the better strategies when it comes to marketing specialty eye care.

For Dr. Smiley, growing his practice is a big deal. But it isn’t just about expanding his business. Instead, he looks for opportunities to do more for the patients in his community. Over the years, he’s added scleral lenses, myopia control, dry eye, vision therapy and neuro-optometric rehab to his service offerings. Now patients can get all of their eye care needs taken care of in one place with the cheerful atmosphere and personal touch they’ve come to expect from Vision Professionals.

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scleral lens page on dr. smiley's site

Highlighting Your Services

According to Dr. Smiley, one of the most essential components of Vision Professionals’ marketing plan is a stand-out website.

A full page dedicated to each specialty is a great way to boost awareness of service offerings while providing useful content. Take a look at how Vision Professionals structures their scleral lens page. Notice how they explain the uses and benefits of scleral lenses, and then offer many resources patients will find useful. The page header is divided into specific subcategories within scleral lenses to help patients with more nuanced problems. 

For each service Vision Professionals offers, you’ll find a page just like this one, built with the patient’s needs in mind and optimized for search engines to boost its ranking as well. Google loves content like this, and it goes a long way towards setting you apart from your competitors. But more importantly, this information helps patients find the information they need.

With over two thousand site visits a month and top search engine rankings for most of their core URLs, it’s clear Vision Professionals is doing something right.

Building Awareness Through Trust

Shiny websites alone don’t make a successful practice. People need to have a reason to choose you over the competition. That’s where Google reviews come in, and Vision Professionals has one heck of a strategy for getting them. 

People, Not Patients

Take a look at how many reviews Vision Professionals has on their Google My Business pages – and more importantly, how overwhelmingly positive they are.

 According to Dr. Smiley, it’s all in the personal touches along the patient journey. At Vision Professionals, patients aren’t treated like customers, they’re treated like family. “It’s like they’re coming over to our house, and they just happen to be getting an eye exam,” Smiley said. This builds personal relationships with patients and keeps them happy – and a happy patient is ripe for a positive Google review!

Why Google Reviews?

First, a quick refresher on why this is so important. Google reviews are your general measure of trustworthiness. Reviews are especially important for specialty services because they cover more specific and complicated needs patients might not be as well informed about. If a patient is in the market for a specialist, they want to know that they’ll be well taken care of. 

Knowing How to Ask

By the time your patients have left your practice, most have already forgotten you even asked for a review. That’s why Vision Professionals uses a two pronged approach. First, they make giving a review super simple. The easier it is for patients to leave a review, the more likely patients will take time to do it. Second, they try to obtain reviews before patients walk out the door. They do this through a clever bit of software EyeCarePro offers called GetSetPro. 

Here’s how it works. First, the staff identify a patient who seems to have had a positive experience throughout their visit. Next, they ask them for a review during checkout. If the patient agrees, the staff uses the GetSetPro app to send a review link directly to the patient’s cellphone with a message that asks them if they wouldn’t mind taking a couple moments to fill out a review form. Patients open up the link on their phone while still at the practice, fill out the review form and award stars. That’s it. The patient isn’t inconvenienced, and Vision Professionals just scored a glowing new review. The process couldn’t be any more efficient.

The Results

The impact of positive Google reviews on Vision Professionals’ website has been staggering. In just a short time, the number of patients they serve has almost doubled. Dr. Smiley reports that he frequently gets patients who tell him they decided to go to Vision Professionals because they saw his positive reviews. As he gains more patients, the number of positive reviews continues to increase, and Google ranks Vision Professionals and all of its specialty pages higher on search engines. The higher search rankings generate more awareness of their specialty services and the cycle of growth continues. 

Specialty Practices Are Our Specialty

Need a little help boosting your practice’s specialty services? EyeCarePro is an expert at taming the Google algorithm. Our ODSpecialty service has helped countless practices like yours increase their digital presence, rank higher on search engines and pull in new patients.

What’s our secret? For starters, we match you up with a veteran marketing manager trained in providing exceptional strategies to meet your unique needs. We also create, manage and host mobile-first, SEO-built web pages that showcase your specialty offerings with style. Social media campaigns, marketing content, email blasts – we do it all. We can even help you score positive Google reviews. Best of all, you’ll never sign a contract. Ever! We’re that confident you’ll see growth if you partner with us. So if you’re ready to take your specialty practice – and your marketing – to the next level, give us a call at 201.591.4350.


Want the most advanced marketing for Optometry out there?

Whether you’re a single doctor generalist or a multi-location specialist, digital marketing is the single most effective means to grow your practice, with the biggest ROI bar none. And regardless of where you are on your growth journey or aspirations, we have the right marketing plan and strategy for you. We use the latest technologies, strategies, and techniques to make your practice front and center on the patient searches that matter to you.