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Understanding you Practice Archetype

Your street is full of potential patients who are deciding which optician to choose, this model will help you to ensure that more of them choose you.

When it comes to picking an optician, a patient’s options are many and confusing. Some practices offer very little direct evidence about who they are and what they do, some offer ambiguous messages, some say one thing but then deliver something else, and some clearly demonstrate exactly why that particular patient should choose them, and there are no prizes for guessing which practices are busiest!

The most common mistakes practices are making in this context…

Not actually understanding why people pick them

Trying to appeal to every demographic in the town 

Building a practice for a specific demographic that doesn’t exist in sufficient numbers around the practice’s location

Relying solely on “good customer service” as their only USP

Appearing to befar more expensive than they actually are

Failing to translate their unique offering into the language of the customer

Discussing the features of what they do and not the benefits

Failing to refine their business model to reflect the needs, wants, likes and comfortable budget of the people who visit their street

Falling for the old chestnut that “You can’t compete with … (insert name of the town’s favourite multiple here).”

Resorting to promoting special offers when they should be promoting value

Attempting to drive average order values higher than the locals can afford


We wanted a model whereby an independent practice could define and deliver an offering in such a way that the prospective patient would realise exactly why they must choose them and no other.

Always start with the customer

Every great business is built to fulfil the desires of a particular consumer and in this digital age it is easy to attract and build relationships with very specific customer types or Avatars.

Take good look at your town, see who lives there and if you can define similar people under a particular group name or Avatar.

Here’s a few with likely definitions to get you going -

Now you need to consider why these Avatars will choose or reject your practice. What is it that you do well and what should you be doing better?

We realised that we could classify different practices as a combination of 4 or 5 out of 14 specific offerings or Archetypes.

There are 4 different price positioning Archetypes

and 10 that define expertise, products, services and experience

Each customer Avatar will be attracted to a certain combination of Archetypes and therefore choose the practice that best demonstrates that they deliver them.

For example, the Glamorous Granny might be looking for the Ordinary Plus Price,Value, Boutique, Clinical Specialist, Archetypes instead of a Ordinary Price, Dispensing Specialist, Convenientoption. Whereas the Presbyopic Professional would most likely choose a practice with Premium Price, Five Star, Experience Plus, BoutiqueArchetypes over a practice that is Pillar of the Community, Premium Price, Clinical Specialist, Convenient.

Once you know the optimum mix of Archetypes for your ideal customers you can use it to define everything that you say and do, and in so doing ensure that they are never in any doubt as to why they should choose you.

This is an essential marketing exercise, but it goes far further in that this model enables Independent Practice owners to define the foundations for building a profitable practice.

At iDay Andy will explain the system during his presentation, where he will be joined by Practice Owners who have had used it to define and build their own successful practices. Attendees who wish to discover more can discover the ideal combination of Archetypes for their own practices during his subsequent interactive workshop session.