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This Young OD’s Videos Will Have You Rethinking Your Approach to Eye Health Education

Her meme-driven Instagram Reels videos get the word out and drive patients in.

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Dr. Inna Lazar on IG

WHEN THE RIGHT tool ends up in the right hands, something new and interesting is bound to result. INVISION came across a perfect example of this in an Instagram-savvy eye doctor in Old Greenwich, CT, who combines a command of pop culture and a talent for video making to raise the bar on getting vital eye health info out to the masses.

THE IDEA

Fielding the many questions posed by her patients at Greenwich Eye Care, Dr. Inna Lazar began to grasp the extent of the demand for public eye health education — and realized she already had the perfect channel through which to provide it: her well-tended Instagram (@dr.innalazar), in particular the platform’s new Reels feature (basically IG’s answer to TikTok). “Patients I was seeing in my practice had many questions,” she says. “‘What are floaters?’ ‘Why are my eyes watering?’ ‘Will glasses make my vison worse?’ ‘How can I help my kid with his or her myopia progression?’ This made me rethink and use my platform to educate the public, my followers, by creating short clips that are 15, 30 seconds long that hit the main points and answer the most-asked questions I encounter on a day-to-day basis in my practice.”

Dr. Inna Lazar on IG

THE EXECUTION

A great example of Lazar’s approach can be seen in the video “Top 5 Eye Beauty Blunders,” in which she employs the popular “Toxic person, walk the other way” meme, pointing to captions describing such beauty-product eye hazards as “waterproof eye makeup” and “lash extensions” while miming the lyrics “See that toxic person? Walk the other way.” The videos have an unmistakably Millennial/Gen-Z sensibility, but their humor and wit give them a fun, inclusive feel and Lazar says they aren’t aimed at any one demographic. Other videos address dry eye symptoms to watch out for, myths surrounding the environmental impact of contact lenses and even the tribulations of being an eye doc.

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“I am naturally a very spontaneous person. And that’s how my videos come along as well. If I have an inspiration I can make a video while the next patient is being prepared or checked in.”

Lazar shoots the videos herself on her iPhone, using IG Reels’ templates to edit and produce them. “I did invest in a small ring light that I use for my videos, although I do try to shoot the videos in natural light.”

THE REWARDS

This Young OD’s Videos Will Have You Rethinking Your Approach to Eye Health EducationOld Greenwich is a small town with a lot of young professionals, a demographic heavily represented on Instagram, and Lazar believes her presence on the platform is a patient driver. “I do have a lot of patients that come to me because they found me on Instagram. They found me because I made a video about myopia, or because I made a video about dry eye. Or they just thought I’m young, I’m interesting and I’m using the latest technology, and they do like to have a doctor that is interested in advanced technology. I do believe there is a return on investment.”

She also gets DMs from patients further afield. One thanked her for her retinal health video and said it prompted them to get a full eye exam with dilation, which turned up a retinal tear. “So that’s the reason I am using my platform. Just giving them these little pearls may change their thinking, may change their life. If I get one patient where their life has been impacted by my video, that’s all I ask for.”

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Do It Yourself: Create Educational Videos Using IG Reels

  • LISTEN TO YOUR PATIENTS: “My patients are my inspiration,” says Lazar. “I try to discuss the topic that was mostly talked about in my practice that day or week.”
  • QUALITY CONTROL: “The lighting is so important in creating a good quality video,” says Lazar, who recommends investing in a ring light and using it to complement natural daylight.
  • ALGORITHM BOOST: Lazar recommends using trending songs or memes as the basis for your clips. “It definitely helps with algorithms and catching the viewer’s eye.”
  • EXPLORE: Entrepreneur.com recommends those using IG Reels to make full use of all the service’s features: music, font styles, layering texts, graphics, GIFs, etc.
  • STUDY UP: Taking the IG Reels tutorials is highly recommended; even tech-savvy users have reported a somewhat steep learning curve.

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 [email protected]

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