Optical Retail Success 107


Tasty, weekly nuggets of random goodness; tips, stories, and science hand-picked to help you find the most success in your optical retail business/career.


“What man actually needs is not a tensionless state but rather the striving and struggling for some goal worthy of him.”

—Viktor Frankl


What Does This Remind You Of?

If you are thinking about store design,

If you feel like you deal with a disproportionate number of stressed-out, angry customers,

If you ask yourself, how can I compete with x, y, or z,

Or if you wonder why I endlessly stress the importance of separating optical from medical—for those truly interested in selling eyewear,

it is absolutely essential you know a little about human psychology and the associations we make with our environment.


This Stinks (or reminds me of something that does) podcast episode

Even if you answered “no” to all of the above, it’s still worth a listen.



Reimagining Retail 

There is a growing distinction between shopping and buying. Shopping is an experience and an exploration. It’s about connecting. Increasingly, people crave meaning, connection, and a sense of community when they shop.

People are becoming more automated in buying things they don’t feel a particular connection with and at the same time, acting with more intention in buying the things they care about.


In the long run, as Amazon takes over the world, brick and mortar has to be about something bigger than consumption, it has to be about memorable experiences and connection.


How Big Lives is reimagining fashion retail.



Death of A Salesman 

Your aversion to sales is hurting your business.  

We all have a natural distrust of salesmen that comes from the suspicion that their objectives don’t coincide with our own. 

But selling, good selling, helps shoppers get what they may not have known they wanted...or more than they expected when they left their homes.

We need to embrace the idea that selling is a transference of feeling—passion and enthusiasm—that helps shoppers and gives them a human connection to the store’s products.

After all, human connection is the one thing people can’t get online.



Killing It On Instagram

Don't forget this is your last week to make your killer 150 character Instagram bio and DM me @laramykoptical for your chance to win a box of t-shirts and other cool swag.

Remember your bio should be about your customer but at the same time tell them what makes you different and ideally include some call to action. A paradox wrapped in an oxymoron?

See you on the 'gram.



Be Cool

Face it, eyewear, and fashion, in general, is very much about being cool. So it stands to reason, that if you are selling cool you probably ought to appear cool. It turns out—fortunately for the chic ...ness-challenged like myself—the most important factor in being perceived as cool could be whether or not you smile.



HIIT It and Quit It

A recent study seemed to show that people who regularly engage in high-intensity workouts make $25,000 more per year than people who don’t.

If that isn’t enough motivation to get to a gym after work, what is?

Correlation, causation, pfff. You say po-tay-to. I say po-tah-to. At this point, I’m afraid I’d have to get my ass surgically removed from my chair, the cost of which would probably consume all that extra cash I’d be making.



Forgetting How To Walk (Metaphorically This Time) 

I opened with a Seth Godin podcast and I’m closing with Seth Godin blog post. Not because I am a fanboy—well, yes I am, but that’s beside the point. I’m closing with Seth because, in a stroke of serendipity, he shared a riff this morning that perfectly underscores the most critical issue with our industry today and one of the most important points in this week’s video lesson:

Opticians are forgetting how to walk.


Here’s a simple hierarchy:

The self-driving car

Cruise control

Manual driving




The arc? As you move down the list, it gets harder and harder to coast. It moves from “set it once and forget it” to “one step at at time.”

The growth of audiobooks is outpacing reading. Why? Because audiobooks come with their own motor. Even readers are pointing out that they’ve forgotten how to read. But of course, that’s not true–we can still read a word, or even a sentence, it’s pushing ourselves through a chapter that’s difficult.

The internet is the greatest self-teaching resource ever developed. But few take advantage of it, because it doesn’t come with a motor. No tests, no certificates, no cruise control.

The decline of our personal momentum might be the great untold story of our time. That electronic media, incoming, ‘breaking’, please reply, didn’t you see that, react right now, click here… this has a cost.

And the cost is our internal drive to initiate instead of to just react.

Someone’s driving. It’s either you, going where you choose, or someone else, pushing you.

—Seth Godin



Video of The Week:  Frame Size and Shape Matter, But YOU Matter More

As I alluded to in the title, this is perhaps the most important lesson we’ve ever done. Yes, we cover choosing a frame and then designing a set of lenses for high minus powers and working with the lab to obtain the best result possible, but there is a much bigger lesson to be learned as we look at our profession through the lens of one particular customer.



Through the OpticianWorks free video lessons, Laramy-K Optical is making every effort to provide better and more accessible education for opticians everywhere, but we’re only able to do it with your support.

You can help keep it going in two ways:

Become a paid member of OpticianWorks.com for access to the best in online optician training (The videos are only a small portion).

Or, even better, open a Laramy-K Optical lab account for the very best in independent uncut work and we'll throw in the OpticianWorks memberships for free! Your customers and your staff will thank you!


I hope you enjoyed this edition of Optical Retail Success.  

Here’s to your success in this year and beyond.

Thanks for reading and sharing!