How telehealth made My Eyelab an industry disruptor

Disrupting an entire industry is no easy task, but My Eyelab has made it look simple. The company’s telehealth-based eye exams make it convenient for customers to book same-day appointments or come as a “walk-in” anytime the store is open. Exams are performed live—in real time—yet remotely by the company’s large network of doctors and technicians.

My Eyelab’s use of technology, and the margins it allows, has made the brand an attractive option for investors. In fact, about half of the 67 My Eyelab franchises awarded in 2020 went to existing franchisees. “First generation franchisees are coming back for more because they have experienced such great success,” says Mike Wootton, Vice President of Franchise Development for Now Optics, My Eyelab’s parent company. “We have a model that’s bullet-proof.” 

Wootton describes My Eyelab as an industry disruptor. Among the reasons he gives to support his claim, the fact that there is no barrier to entry is most noteable. “Anyone with business savvy can own a My Eyelab. There’s no medical expertise or prior industry experience needed and there’s none of the typical hassles that come with running medical franchises,” he says.

Wootton says My Eyelab attracts savvy investors who would never have considered owning a traditional retail eyecare brand. “Telehealth has been a game changer,” he says. With it, franchise owners don’t have to staff eye doctors who require six-figure salaries. Instead, exams are conducted by the franchisor’s doctor network, on demand, at a pay-per-service structure. “Not only is this model more profitable, but it makes the customer experience super convenient,” he says. Customers can walk in any time the store is open and get an eye exam…no appointments necessary.  

Increased demand

My Eyelab’s hassle-free structure has set the brand apart from the get-go, but the pandemic created even more of a competitive advantage. “People still needed eyeglasses through COVID, and teleheath offered a safe way to have an eye exam,” Wootton says. “We have something that works, no matter what’s going on…even a pandemic,” he says. 

In fact, Wootton says that because more folks are working remotely and students learning virtually, people have experienced new eye strain and have had greater needs for My Eyelab’s services. “Once folks step into My Eyelab, we have customers for life,” Wootton says. “We make buying eyeglasses more fun, more affordable and more convenient. It’s as simple as that.”

THE MAKING OF A DISRUPTOR

Any brand can call themselves a disruptor, but My Eyelab lives up to the name. With convenient services and the use of cutting-edge technology, My Eyelab is adding fun and flexibility to an industry known for rigidity and stodginess. Here’s what My Eyelab does differently:

Convenience: Thanks to its use of cutting-edge technology, customers can walk right in and receive an exam, no appointment necessary. 

Value: With two-for-one deals, customers can find stylish glasses for the whole family without breaking the bank.

Fun culture: Whimsical marketing campaigns, a friendly environment and hassle-free service add up to a great customer experience from start to finish.

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Jill Abrahamsen
Jill Abrahamsen’s career spans more than 20 years in editorial, design, and marketing roles. She serves as editor-in-chief of Franchise Consultant Magazine and FranchiseWire. Through both platforms, Jill reports on industry news and helps Franchisors spread the word about their brands.

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