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Robert Bell

A Patient’s Own Pair Can Be the Perfect Opportunity for Second Pair Sales

Stop acquiescing to the dreaded “patient’s own frame” scenario.




A Patient’s Own Pair Can Be the Perfect Opportunity for Second Pair Sales

WHAT THE EYECOACH Selling System does, more than anything else, is to lead your patients to make decisions (regarding their eye health and eyewear needs), quickly and decisively. Yet, when your patient wants to put new lenses in an old frame (Patient’s Own Frame or POF), they’ve already made a decision, haven’t they? Their vision is what they’ve decided to scrimp and save on. Yeeesh! 

It’s not their fault. They don’t know any better. So, can we blame them for such a decision, even if it came without your expertise? 

The two things that “grind my gears” in this industry of ours, are the terribly low percentages of multiple pair sales and how most ECPs handle the POF situation. 

Too often, I see ECPs acquiesce to a POF scenario. “Sure, no problem, Mrs. Miller. We can do that for you.” There is no discussion of a new pair of glasses for a patient like this. I’m speculating here but, it seems, ECPs who do this, don’t want the argument; they don’t want their patients thinking they’re all about the money.

Do me a favor. Grab a pen.

Write down all the reasons a patient should not purchase a complete new pair as opposed to just new lenses in an old frame. 


Then why they should get a complete new pair.

I’m sure the latter list is far longer! 

What does it tell you?  

But, I get it. How do you open the conversation with this kind of patient without making them angry, or think your only concern is making money? There are several ways. I’ll share one with you:

Patient: I’d like to put my new lenses in my current frame. 

ECP: We do this, sometimes, for our patients. It usually takes about a week (note: do not tell them it will take an hour or a day, even if you have your own edging lab). Do you have a backup pair you can use in the meantime?


Pt:  Uh, well no. 

ECP: Based on your Rx, won’t being without your glasses, even for a day, be problematic?  

(wait for the answer) 

Pt: Well, yeah.  But can’t you do it, like, in an hour? 

ECP: I wish we could but this is your vision we’re talking about. We take that very seriously here. Quality and precise optics takes time. Is quality important to you? 

(Yes, ask this question!)


Pt: Yes, it is.

ECP: Ok, great. So, I may have a solution: your current frame would make a great back up pair. Why don’t we look at some new frames? When the new glasses come in, you can give us your current frame and we’ll put new lenses in them, too. Then, you won’t be without if you ever lose or brake a pair and you’ll have a new look as well. How’s that sound? 

Pt: Well, it sounds good but it also sounds like it’s going to be more than I was prepared to spend.

ECP: (Nodding your head) I understand. (continue nodding, pause two beats) Other than being a little more than you wanted to spend, are there other reasons stopping you from going this direction? 

Pt: Um, no.

ECP: Ok. If I write these orders up together, we can give you a second pair discount. But, you only have to pay for the new glasses ordered today. When you come back and pick them up, we’ll take this current frame and you can pay for those then, with the discount.Would this work for you? 

How about it, ECPs?  Does this work for you?

Amongst the other things Robert Bell does in the eye care industry, he helps to oversee the Vision Services Program for California CareForce and inspires others to volunteer in their own communities throughout the United States. You may contact him at or send him a message on The Vision Volunteers page on Facebook.


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