Connect with us

Sky’s Not the Limit

This Colorado practice learned to ‘stop being afraid to offer the best’.

mm

Published

on

Eye Care Center of Colorado Springs, Colorado Springs, CO

OWNERS: Dr. Sara C. Whitney and Dr. Reed F. Bro; URL: eyecarecs.com; FACEBOOK: facebook.com/eyecarecs; TWITTER: twitter.com/eyecarecs; INSTAGRAM: instagram.com/eyecarecs; YELP: yelp.com/biz/eye-care-center-of-colorado-springs-colorado-springs; YEAR FOUNDED: 2001; YEAR OPENED FEATURED LOCATION: 2018; EMPLOYEES: 8 full-time, 2 part-time; TOP BRANDS: Moncler, Ørgreen, Morel, Lafont, MODO/ECO; AREA: 5,000 square feet; BUILDOUT COST: $210,000; ARCHITECT AND DESIGN FIRMS: YOW Architect, Thomas General Contractors


EARLY ONE MORNING ABOUT four years ago, Dr. Sara Whitney, co-owner of Eye Care Center of Colorado Springs, rubbed her eyes and glanced at her Instagram feed. “Get out of your own way!” the screen implored her. “It was a fitness post, but I immediately knew it was intended to help me improve as a doctor and a business owner. Many of us never come to realize that our only limits are self-imposed.”

Whitney and co-owner Dr. Reed Bro have gone to great lengths to ensure their customers experience a similar epiphany when, walking into the expansive optical, they take in the natural stone walls lined with reclaimed wood shelves, and the sunlit frames they display. “In our practice, ‘I don’t get a frame this year’ is no longer valid,” Whitney says.

Dr. Bro founded the Colorado Springs, CO, business in 2001 after years in a group practice. He realized the only way he was going to provide the level of service he felt comfortable putting his name on was to become an independent owner. The business launched less than two weeks before 9/11. As much as the commercial impact, Dr. Bro recalls bonding over a national tragedy with patients. “Yes, 9/11 was a factor during the start-up … I remember the weeks after 9/11, the appointment schedule was slower and I spent a good deal of time just listening and sharing thoughts and feelings with patients about what we were experiencing.” Once the business was on its feet, Bro knew that to get to the next level, he needed an associate. He made the offer to Whitney in 2010; by 2014 she was a co-owner.

Whitney has learned a lot since then, most of it coming back to the idea of throwing off self-created boundaries. “I stopped being afraid to offer the best. I used to worry that patients would balk at price, but I realize now it’s not within my scope of practice to read minds. I can’t assume someone will think a treatment or designer frame is too expensive for them … My fear as an optometrist is that a patient will come back and ask, ‘Why didn’t you tell me about overnight corneal reshaping lenses? Why didn’t you tell me I could have lenses that block blue light?’”

This year, the business moved into a historic building downtown, adding to its clientele office workers, military personnel and elite athletes in residence at the city’s U.S. Olympic Training Center. With nine employees and two doctors tripping over each other in their previous, 2,500-sq.-ft space, they needed more exam rooms. One day they got wind of an old building that was available, but the agent tried to talk them out of it. “You probably wouldn’t like it,” Whitney remembers being told. “It has concrete floors and exposed brick walls.” She insisted on seeing it. “We knew our search was over.” That space is the 1902 structure that Eye Care Center of Colorado Springs now calls home.
“We are definitely industrial chic!” says Whitney, pointing to the added elements that soften the hard vibe of the industrial space. The result is a welcoming ambience that weds early 20th-century commercial architecture and modern elements like acrylic seating, quartz work surfaces and iPad check-in. “We took a hospitality approach to eliminate the dread many patients feel [in] doctors’ offices,” Whitney says. The retail area is furnished with over-sized leather chairs and plush rugs, and basks in streamed music and sunlight that pours in from skylights in the bowstring truss roof. With natural stone walls and a reclaimed wood wall behind reception, the large space encourages browsing.

Advertisement

Full-length mirrors give customers a complete picture of themselves in their new frames.
Whitney and Bro make it their mission “to connect the exam dialog to the optical dialog, so we are all speaking the same language to the patient.” Eye Care Center is especially proud of its large specialty contact lens practice, with referrals from as far afield as California.

Their dedication to reaching beyond limits extends to the staff. “We have to re-educate ourselves and any new team members we hire,” Whitney says. The results speak for themselves — business is good, she says. “In July 2018, we hired a full time associate optometrist, a new grad from UMSL, Dr. Taylor Little. We are keeping her and ourselves busy!”

 

PHOTO GALLERY (13 IMAGES)

 

Five Cool Things About Eye Care Center of Colorado Springs

1. BIG SHOTS. Eye Care Center’s patients include Olympic shooters. The best marksmen in the world trust their eyes to their care.
2. BLAST FROM THE PAST. The historic building housing the practice dates to 1902, and was once used as a commercial carriage house. It was acquired in the 1930s by the Van Dyke Motor Company, whose historic sign remains.
3. FOCAL POINT. Eye Care Center has a large specialty contact lens practice. “We believe strongly in the importance of myopia control with corneal reshaping lenses or soft multifocals. We also fit therapeutic contact lenses such as scleral lenses, hybrid lenses, and scleral cover shells,” says Dr. Whitney.
4. SPREAD THE WORD. Dr. Bro will soon begin giving educational talks at contact lens-related industry events nationwide.
5. STREAM ON. Eye Care Center streams a wide variety of music including pop, “throw-back”, coffee house and classical guitar.

Advertisement

 

Judges’ Comments

  • The website has strong, thorough content for patients. Their social media platforms are very active, and the Yelp reviews were expertly managed! Natalie Taylor, Artisan Eyewear, Meredith, NH
  • This is really a beautiful practice. I really like all of the natural elements and the open, expansive feel to it. It has a bit of a rustic yet modern look to it. They carry some great frame lines, and seem to do a really good job with their social media. Michael Kling, OD, Invision Optometry, San Diego, CA
  • The interior of this store is by far one of my favorites. It is quite chic with its exposed brick, salvaged wood and industrial finishes. As a customer, I would feel very confident that the opticians know what is hip today and be able to help me select a frame appropriate for me. Jennifer Coppel, TURA, Inc., New York, NY

 

Fine Story

Eye Care Center of Colorado Springs hired Mark Hinton, a respected optician and industry speaker, to teach their team how to create the best patient journey. “He taught us the power of words, to use phrases that say ‘yes’ to customers, and how to ask questions to uncover opportunities,” says Dr. Whitney. “He taught us that ‘sell’ is a dirty word, and that we have the exciting privilege of helping our patients buy. We are giving them permission to get what they need or want by systematically eliminating phrases that allow insurance to dictate what is attainable.” She adds that Hinton visited to see the new space in June, to reinforce what staff had already learned and “to teach them how to guide patients through the patient journey in our new — as Mark would call it — ‘Eyecandyland.’”

After years covering some of the farther flung corners of the world of business journalism, Heath has more recently focused on covering the efforts of independent eyecare professionals to negotiate a fast-changing industry landscape. Contact him at heath@smartworkmedia.com.

Advertisement

SPONSORED VIDEO

SPONSORED BY SAFILO

Max Mara —True Elegance in Eyewear

Whether energizing the classics or creating imaginative new silhouettes, Max Mara designs dynamic eyewear for today’s woman. The Fall/Winter 2018 collections continue the company’s sartorial heritage with eyewear that effortlessly blends fashion with innovation to create elegant, timeless designs. Be inspired—watch the 2018 Fall/Winter Collection video!

Promoted Headlines

Want more INVISION? Subscribe to our newsletter.

Comment

America's Finest

A Sleek Practice in the Heart of Downtown Austin, TX, Prides Itself on Its Eye for Detail

Attention to detail, in both eyewear and eyecare, is the calling card of this practice deep in the heart of Austin.

mm

Published

on

Optique, Austin, TX

OWNER: Courtney Rhodes, OD; URL: optiqueaustin.com; FOUNDED: 2009; OPENED FEATURED LOCATION:2015; BUILDOUT COST: $500,000; ARCHITECT AND DESIGN FIRMS: Design: Michael Rhodes, Construction: Acero Construction; AREA: 2,200 square feet; EMPLOYEES: 7 full-time; TOP BRANDS: Mykita, Lindberg, SALT, Barton Perreira, Garrett Leight, Ahlem, Rolf; FACEBOOK: facebook.com/OptiqueAustin; INSTAGRAM: instagram.com/optiqueaustin; TWITTER: twitter.com/optiqueaustin; YELP: yelp.com/biz/optique-austin-2


DR. COURTNEY RHODES OPENED Optique in the heart of downtown Austin, TX, in January 2009, becoming just the second optometrist to open in her area. She and husband Michael, an architectural engineer and builder, designed the office to have a sleek, modern appeal. Rhodes envisioned an optometry office and optical boutique “like no other.” She stocked exclusive, high quality eyewear and set the goal of providing eyecare and service to match.

In 2015, Optique relocated to a new, larger office at the Seaholm Power Plant. Just a year later Rhodes opened a second location about a mile away at the new South Lamar Union development. (Designed by architect Burton Baldridge, the South Lamar Union location was featured in Texas Architect.) For the last nine years, Optique has continually grown with two optometrists and an in-house lab.

Rhodes says that when looking at potential sites for the practice, her choice was guided by “Location, vibe and high foot traffic,” adding that it was always her plan to have multiple practices. “Our patients live or work near downtown/South Austin. They are willing to pay more for high-quality products, value the experience — i.e. they are looking for one-of-a-kind, hard-to-find items that no one else has — and want to find it in an environment that isn’t replicated anywhere else.” She adds that her clients generally want a more customized and personalized experience, and are looking for a one-stop shop to get all their vision needs met. They are the kind of customer that likes to shop at small, local businesses, and that “values creating a long-term relationship with their medical providers.”

Optique is set apart by a cool look and sleek, elegant finishes. Michael personally designed and built Optique’s Seaholm office to serve as a showcase for the Mykita, Lindberg, Rolf, Garrett Leight and other distinctive frames that line its walls, while delivering on Dr. Rhodes’ interest in service excellence. Every detail of the finishings, Courtney says, was “meticulously designed and custom fabricated” to be durable and ergonomic. The result is a timeless, elegant look that is something of a trademark for Michael’s projects. 

“As a small, local business,” Rhodes says, “we prefer to support independent and handmade brands. We value our relationships with these companies. We appreciate their detail, quality and craftsmanship. We want patients to be inspired by their eyewear and feel they are making a personal statement.”  

Rhodes has set herself the ambitious task of “perfecting the customer’s experience.” This entails analyzing the practice’s operations from start to finish. When the patient walks in, they are greeted at the reception desk/wet bar and offered a choice of sparkling water, wine, or local beer. Snacks are provided and a bag of jelly beans is handed to every patient at their frame dispense. “We pride ourselves by operating on our four core values: approachable, distinctive, proficient and conscientious. I tell my staff to make every decision regarding our patients and practice with these principles in mind.” Rounding out the experience, “We try to communicate with our customers as much as possible whether it be with a hand-written thank you note or phone call to check on them,” says Rhodes.

Rhodes refuses to engage in “pressure sales.” She believes in “fast and easy-going exams,” after which patients are handed off to opticians with a combined 40 years of experience fitting frames. Among Optique’s conveniences are an in-house lab that can often make lenses in one hour, and home/office delivery.

Optique’s attractive website and Instagram emphasize frames and outside events. And while Rhodes hasn’t ruled out the idea of online sales, she believes that “with the current race to the bottom with online retailers like Warby Parker, it is so important now to focus on the customer’s experience. Happy customers are our lifeline, and we depend on their referrals.”

Staff have weekly team lunch meetings and quarterly team-building activities including escape rooms, happy hours, Top Golf, bowling and swimming. At least once a quarter, the store organizes a party, frame pop-up or sponsorship of an outside event. Outings this year have included numerous trunk shows and events related to the SXSW festival and Austin Fashion Week. “They are fun! It gives our patients a chance to come hang out and get to know us. We have drinks, often with a specialty themed cocktail to match the event, and snacks.”

As for the bottom line: Business, Rhodes says, “is great! We love being in Austin.”

PHOTO GALLERY (13 IMAGES)

Five Cool Things About Optique

1. CHOICE ITEMS. Staff feature their favorite frames with a “Staff Pick” card. Aside from highlighting key collections, “it also helps spark a conversation between the optician and patient,” says Rhodes.
2. TO YOUR DOOR. Optique’s white Fiat, featuring the business’s ‘See Well, Look Better’ logo, delivers “anything and everything” to patients.
3. HOME TRIAL. Customers can take three pairs of glasses home for 24 hours under a “keep some or none” offer.
4. PRIZE-WINNER. Optique won a Mykita contest for 10 custom-made frames based on an elaborate POP display staff created in the store.
5. HIGH PRAISE. Dr. Rhodes’ husband Michael Rhodes is an architectural engineer and builder who worked on Optique. Among the other projects handled by his firm is a home featured in Architectural Digest.

FINE STORY

Dr. Rhodes is a fitness enthusiast, and provides regular opportunities for staff to live a healthy lifestyle together: monthly team workouts after work (Wellness Wednesday); a weekly allowance for healthy team groceries; participating in the Austin Capitol 10K run as a team; and sponsoring employees in the Austin Marathon. ”

 

WHAT THE JUDGES SAID

  • “Optique’s presence is a “signature” that modulates nicely from one location to the next. The ultra-clean palette is balanced by a pleasing combination of wood, white, and insertions of warm and cool colors. Smart and logical, as if they epitomize the clarity of vision customers will enjoy.” Brent Zerger, l.a. Eyeworks, Los Angeles, CA
  • “Hands down, one of the best exterior storefronts I’ve seen of any retailer, not just optical. My favorite aspect is the “staff picks” card. I’ve been preaching this for years. It’s a natural conversation starter and makes the selling process that much easier.”  Robert Bell, EyeCoach, San Francisco, CA
  • “Both interior and exterior are very chic and mirror the high-end product the optical carries.”  Jennifer Coppell, Tura, New York, NY

Continue Reading

America's Finest

A Love of Fun and Experience In and Out of Eyecare Create an Ohio Practice That Is Anything But Clinical

Drawing on owner Dr. Cynthia Sayers’ experience — in and outside of optometry — and sense of fun, EyeShop Optical in Lewis Center, OH is the ‘opposite of clinical.’

mm

Published

on

OWNER: Cynthia Sayers, OD; URL: eyeshopoptical.com; FOUNDED: 2011; BUILDOUT COST: $10,000; ARCHITECT AND DESIGN FIRMS: Real Space Design, MeetMeg; AREA: 2,000 square ft.; EMPLOYEES: 4 full-time, 2 part-time; TOP BRANDS: FYSH, Lilly Pulitzer, Kate Spade, Ray-Ban, Nike; FACEBOOK: facebook.com/EyeShopOptical ; INSTAGRAM: instagram.com/eyeshopoptical ; TWITTER: twitter.com/myEyeShop ; YELP: yelp.com/biz/eyeshop-optical-lewis-center


IF YOU SHOULD STRAY INTO EyeShop Optical Center in Lewis Center, OH, looking to go through the motions of an eye exam just to “get it done,” it shouldn’t take you too long to realize you’re not in your typical optical chain. If it isn’t the non-stop ’80s music that tips you off, or being greeted by the sight of Monsters Inc. Mike wearing an eyeglass on his one eye, then maybe bumping into Barbie in the exam room or the glasses-clad dogs in the bathroom will do the trick. And if all that fails to set you straight, it’s probably safe to say that if your appointment happens to be on Dessert Friday (or the store’s monthly Lollipop Day), the penny will drop.

“EyeShop is 100 percent me, in every way,” says owner Dr. Cynthia Sayers. “I love adorable things and anything that represents whimsy.”

By any measure, Sayers’ experience owning and operating EyeShop Optical has been a successful one. But the achievement she’s most proud of is having learned how to connect with her patients. “I love finding the common ground with people; whether we are both dog lovers, have children the same age, or like to gripe about our 40-something struggles. That makes the day worthwhile,” she says.

Being relatable, she says, means walking out into the optical to voice very honest opinions when a patient is stuck between three pairs of glasses. It means returning phone calls and responding to emails personally. In the management sphere, it means hiring employees “based on personality, not experience, she says. “I could not work six days a week and go to a place that I didn’t love. I wouldn’t expect my employees to either. So, making the environment light hearted makes every day a good day.” 

Looking back, Sayers remembers hoping that “people would just pop in without an appointment just to say ‘Hi,’ or grab a cup of coffee. Who knew that would actually happen?” 

Sayers opened EyeShop Optical in May 2011 after 10 years of practicing optometry in a commercial setting. During the first decade out of OD school she worked at a LensCrafters as an associate doctor. “The experience was great,” she recalls. “We saw a lot of patients from varying backgrounds. I learned who I wanted to be as a doctor and what was important to me.”  

By the time her daughter was 3, nights and weekends were starting to take their toll and she decided to look for alternatives. “My boss at the time was well versed in the business side of optometry. Watching and learning gave me the confidence to go out on my own. I knew I wanted to be involved in all aspects of the process, not just the exams … After driving by my current location many, many times, I finally decided it was time.”

Sayers and her husband started to piece together how they wanted the business to feel. The goal, she says, was to be the opposite of all things clinical. She recalls thinking, “Don’t show me one of those optical cabinets! I refuse to have matching waiting room furniture! EyeShop would be the place to go.” She opened the doors offering appointments six days a week with just herself and one employee.

Opening cold was nerve-wracking, she admits. “You have no idea if your plan will work or if people will come. I was lucky to align myself with great people. My marketing guru, Meg Russell, truly made my voice come through.” The toughest part, she says, was figuring things out as you go, “finding out labs can’t just do anything, and that you have to learn to problem solve quickly.”

Sayers describes Lewis Center as “the perfect demographic … a growing area that has just added a fourth high school so family is everything.” EyeShop carries several independent brands for those who are seeking to stand out, but they share optical space with brands people have come to rely on, she says. “We love FYSH and KLiiK. Unique design, great color options to make our boards pop, and a great price point. We also love Kate Spade for classic looks with a twist. And due to our large volume of families, Ray-Ban provides styles for kids, moms and dads, as well as great sunwear.”  

The results speak for themselves — business is booming. “We continue to grow at an amazing rate seven years in. I couldn’t be more proud,” Sayers says. If years as a business owner have taught her anything, it’s that “an optometry practice isn’t just about vision and health; it’s about earning someone’s trust and becoming a primary resource for their overall wellbeing.”

Oh, and one other thing, she says: “Why can’t it be fun too?”

PHOTO GALLERY (19 IMAGES)

Five Cool Things About EyeShop Optical Center

1. TGIF. “I love to bake,” says Sayers. “So every Friday is Dessert Friday. I bring in my baked goods to share with patients.” Some even make a point of booking on that day.
2. NAME GAME. Last Christmas, staff received new titles. Explains Sayers: “My optical manager Rachel is the ‘EyeShop Overlord,’ and my lab tech is ‘Living on the Edger.’” There’s also a “Creative Genius,” “Style Guru” and “Master Organizer” on staff.
3. PLAY BALL. Last year EyeShop sponsored a little league team and, you guessed it, Sayers treated them to popcorn and other goodies before the first game.
4. SUMMER RITUAL. The town’s July 4th parade is taken seriously at EyeShop. “We’ve been Jedis, Superheroes, Emojis, and the Founding Fathers. Patients try to get us to give up how we are dressing each year,” Sayers says.
5. VISION PLAN. Under the store’s EyeTeam Membership plan, patients can purchase a yearly membership for themselves or their families. They pay a reduced cost for exams and discounts throughout the year on glasses and contacts.

WHAT THE JUDGES SAID

  • “EyeShop sparkles with personality and love for the customer … Complete engagement on every level, from the customer to team-building and the community.” Brent Zerger, l.a. Eyeworks, Los Angeles, CA
  • “The owner has added a lot of unique touches to her office. You can really see the personality of it come out. She’s done a great job creating marketing materials and is very well branded.” Mick Kling, OD, Invision Optometry, San Diego, CA
  • “I love the in-house vision plan and the detailed card… and that the owner makes baked goods for patients on Fridays and holds contests with prizes.” Natalie Taylor, Taylor Vision Consultants, Boston, MA

Continue Reading

America's Finest

First Place – Todd Rogers: For This Andover, MA Optician and His Family True Independence in Business and Style is the Only Way to Go

For this Andover, MA optician and his family, true independence in business and style is the only way to go.

mm

Published

on

Todd Rogers, Andover, MA

OWNER: Todd Rogers Berberian; LOCATION: Andover, MA; URL: toddrogerseyewear.com ; OPENED FEATURED LOCATION: 2014; FOUNDED: 1999; AREA: 1,900 square feet;; EMPLOYEES: 3 full-time, 2 part-time; BUILDOUT COST: $300,000; ARCHITECT AND DESIGN FIRMS: Todd Rogers and Leigh Berberian, Tim Latrell – Newell Farm Builders; TOP BRANDS: Barton Perreira, Face à Face, Orgreen, Todd Rogers, Lindberg, Dita, Thom Browne, STATE; FACEBOOK: /toddrogersandover; TWITTER: /toddrogerseye; INSTAGRAM: /toddrogerseyewear


THE SPACE AT 18 PARK STREET in Andover, MA, now called Todd Rogers, was previously a historic bar and grill. A crooked, two-story building in the heart of downtown, it was perfect for Todd Rogers Berberian and his dream of owning a commercial space. With careful consideration given to Andover’s Historical Commission, in 2014 Todd and wife Leigh gutted and redesigned the shabby 1840s space.

Still a little crooked, the exterior sports patina’d goosenecks and authentic New Orleans gas lanterns hinting at the experience that awaits customers inside: the perfect blend of old and new.

The old was easy thanks to the building and its centuries-old exposed beams, but how to incorporate the “new”? Luckily, Leigh Berberian had handy inspiration. “Todd said, ‘I want it to look like me. If I were a building I’d want it to look like me,’” she says. “I took a good look every day at what he wore, what his proclivities are, and what people already associated with him. It was a collaboration between the two of us every step of the way and I think it ended up looking just like Todd as a building!”

She started with his hometown, Somerville, outside Boston. “It’s got some real gritty history but Todd’s also kind of refined, so I wanted to make sure the space felt like that old school, local hangout where people walk by and wave to each other, but be refined and gentlemanly and not so masculine that females didn’t feel at home in it,” Leigh explains. “I always say Todd is that guy that every guy wants to be friends with and who makes elderly women blush. He just has that kind of general appeal. So, we went into the design saying, ‘How can men and women both fall in love with this space?’”

They started by repurposing the original bar. “It tells a story and it’s bulletproof. It’s been stained, drooled on, spilled on, I’m sure thrown up on. All this stuff,” shares Todd. So, they  made it into their check out desk and dispensing tables. “So many people will rub it and say ‘Oh, I’ve had many a drink at this counter.’” The back of the bar where the liquor shelves were was refinished and stands in for frame boards. “It fits eyewear really, really well,” adds Todd. “I love the fact that it has some holes in it, some dings and cigarette burns all over it. It tells a tale. It shows its past and history.”

 

They’ve had lots of fun with the space, including a riff on a famous fashion logo. “I used a lot of PhotoTech, which is digitally printable wallpaper. Instead of buying something, we customized everywhere we wanted large wall murals or patterns,” shares Leigh. “We’ve got our ‘Louis Vuitton’ wall with the logo replaced with all Todd Rogers logos.”

‘Signed’ pictures line the walls of the optical with such glasses-wearing notables as Marilyn Monroe, Harry Potter, and Gandhi. “The idea is that all these people have gotten their glasses from Todd over the years and people think it’s hysterical,” she explains.

Both are huge fans of The Kingsmen and — in a nod to British spy movies — have included a collection of Todd Rogers-branded accessories fashioned after accessories displayed in the movies.

There is a wall of album covers and collections of hard covered books with titles like Evil Genius, Prision Days and Nights and Are Men Necessary? “We actually scoured used bookstores for the funniest ones we could find,” Leigh says.

The design is beautiful restoration meets Kartell meets your local bar, but Todd Rogers also offers the latest in lens finishing and eyecare tech. In a corner, behind glass, is a state of the art lab. They finish 95 percent of their lenses in-house and offer complete customization. They are also the only Boston-area EnChroma lens dealer. “We’re independent in our lens lines as well and we’re all about educating our patient base,” explains Todd.

There is an optometrist on site, Dr. Charlene Glynn, who has been the resident OD with Todd Rogers, and his previous practice Andover EyeCare, since 2010. In addition to providing comprehensive eye exams using an Optomap, she is experienced in pediatrics, contact lenses and ocular disease.

But it’s not all cheeky touches and fancy tech. Todd is on a mission. “The most important thing I’ve learned in my 27 years as a licensed optician is… properly educating our clients is the non-negotiable job of every optician. Knowledge is what will keep our vocation and our craft relevant.”

It’s a topic he can wax poetic on: “We, as a society, champion the best in automobiles, the finest in wines… yet consumers will easily be lured by the cheapest eyewear. It boggles my brain.” Asked why his glasses are more expensive, he educates his clients on “the technology behind each brand and why I align my business with these lens companies.”

His plans for the future? “F*cking world domination!” He’s kidding… mostly. “We’re looking to stay who we are and to not forget where we came from. But we want to continue to grow and become a name in the industry that when someone says, ‘Hey man, I’m looking for a really great frame,” people say, ‘You should really check out Todd Rogers. They’re the real deal.’”

PHOTO GALLERY (13 IMAGES)

 

Five Cool Things About Todd Rogers

1. WORLD DOMINATION: Todd Rogers is also home to the headquarters of Todd Rogers Eyewear, an independent wholesale frame brand. While the shop is known as the flagship store, the collection designed by Todd is distributed to over 600 independent practices in the U.S. and Canada.
2. LATE FOR DINNER: At the Berberians’ wedding, many on the guest list started out as clients. Never do business with friends doesn’t apply at Todd Rogers. The downside? Todd is often late for dinner, because he’s having too much fun at work.
3. COMMIT: “Commit to the Turn.” It’s a phrase Todd has been saying since he was a kid. “When I went independent in the office or when I decided to do the frame line, we said, ‘OK, we got to commit.’ So, for us, as a family, as an optical family, as a frame family, as the all-encompassing eyewear family, we’ve said if we’re going to do this, we’re going to commit to the turn and the turn is true independence.”
4. ALL THE FEELS:  “Our marketing is really fun,” shares Leigh. “If you poke a small emotion inside someone with your marketing they are going to remember you. We do full page ads when we market in local magazines and tend to use ourselves, our family, our staff. It can be about eyesight over a lifetime with a heartwarming photo of our children or everybody naked behind a big banner that says, ‘All you need is a great pair!’”
5. READ UP: There are so many little design touches that Leigh added museum-like place cards; if you’re waiting to pick up your glasses or be seen by the doctor, you can read all the little asides that tell you why they made the design choices they did.

FINE STORY

Winning awards isn’t the be-all and end-all of a successful business … but it doesn’t hurt. In addition to being named this year’s America’s Finest Optical Retailer first place winner, Todd Rogers also won the inaugural “OPTImum Independent Retailer of the Year” at this past Vision Expo East, which celebrates independent boutique retailers by showcasing their products, storefronts, visions and — most importantly — their stories. But that’s not it for the accolades. In 2017, Todd himself was named “Optician of the Year for Massachusetts.” His response upon receiving the news? “All I could afford for years was peanut butter sandwiches. Let’s go get a steak.”

 

JUDGES’ COMMENTS

  • Jennifer Coppel:Todd Rogers seems to consistently deliver charm and authenticity in all aspects of his business.  From the comfortable yet artistic interior of his store to his playful advertising campaigns, he connects with his clients and delivers a high level of professionalism.
  • Dr. Mick Kling:Very unique space. What sticks out are the unique and creative ways they’ve displayed not just their eyewear, but also some of the pictures and frames. It looks like they’ve spent a lot of time thinking about ways to be creative and unique. They seem to be on top of their social media, and get quite a bit of press.
  • Robert  Bell:What is often missing in optical retailing is the story. Today the story is harder to tell well because it must be told, engagingly, in everything one does. One must live the brand! Todd Rogers is one master storyteller. Their marketing pushes the envelope and, somehow, makes me think they’re challenging me to come up with reasons not to shop with them. I’m a fan of “less is more” in an optical retail shop. But, every once in a while, someone comes along, breaks the rules and does it extraordinarily well.

Continue Reading

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Facebook

Most Popular