Member Spotlight: Cascadia Eye Care
2018 Growing Through Giving Practice of the Year
Cascadia Eye Care, a practice of seven staffers and one doctor in Lake Oswego, Oregon, makes giving back a big part of their everyday business. In fact, when PECAA first introduced its Growing Through Giving program back in 2017, an initiative aimed to grow Member practices through cause-related marketing and branding, Cascadia was one of the first practices to sign up.
“When PECAA announced this possibility, it was a no brainer,” says office manager Lynn Robison. “We’d been looking for something like this, but never had the time to develop it ourselves. Giving back is something we really love to do.”
By participating in the program, Cascadia Eye Care received ready-made marketing materials that they could implement into their practice. “PECAA made it so simple for us to be able to participate and promote it to our patients,” Robison says. “It was an ideal situation all around.”
Not only did Cascadia Eye Care donate twice the suggested amount (10% of each of their quarterly 2017 IncentivEYES rebate checks), but they also developed some of their own marketing materials, on top of what was already provided to them, to make their patients aware of their participation in the program. These innovative methods to incorporate the messaging into their practice ultimately landed them the award for the 2018 Growing Through Giving Practice of the Year, awarded at the most recent PECAA Annual Meeting in Tucson, AZ in April.
Posters explaining the program are posted around their office, and flyers are handed out to patients when they pick up their glasses or contact lenses.
“Now, when patients pick up their glasses, we thank them for purchasing from us and let them know that they’ve also contributed to this charity,” Robison explains. “That opens up communication with everyone who walks through our door.”
Funds raised through the Growing Through Giving initiative help support Optometry Giving Sight, which aims to provide eye exams and glasses to children in developing countries.
When asked why Cascadia Eye Care signed on to participate in the program, Robison says it’s because their practice and the charity aligned perfectly. “We are dedicated to helping our patients keep their eyesite for a lifetime. Optometry Giving Sight really aligns with who we are.” Robison explains.
So, how have Cascadia’s patients responded to finding out about their participation in the program?
“In general our patients respond positively and are pleased when they hear about the charity and how they have helped support it,” explains Robison. “Occasionally somebody will share their own story of giving. One patient described how his family had sponsored a little girl in Peru. They followed her progress throughout her life and even visited her a few times. She is now an adult and doing well. This program is a great way to validate giving by all.”
Recent research shows that companies that engage in social responsibility efforts benefit from a “benevolence halo.” This halo effect goes well beyond customers simply associating the company with better business standards; ‘the customers actually experience the product in a different way.’ Participants of the study rated product performance higher when they were made aware of the company’s charitable giving.
For more information on Growing Through Giving and how cause-related marketing and branding can benefit your practice, click here.