Being Spectacular in Eyewear with Wendy Buchanan

Learn how to be spectacular in eyewear with Wendy Buchanan. Join us on the latest episode as we welcome our special guest, Wendy Buchanan, the Eyewear Image Expert. Wendy Buchanan is a Licensed Optician, Image Consultant, and Sales Trainer, who was a finalist for the 2022 “International Optician of the Year” award. Founder of a unique mobile eyewear styling service in Toronto, Wendy has styled thousands of clients, developing her Be Spectacular Methodology. She’s dedicated to helping Optometrists and their teams boost their capture rate and grow their optical gallery business.

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The Creation of Five Specs Style Personalities by Wendy Buchanan

Dr. Darryl Glover:

In the business world, right? Well, I’ve seen your work both online and in person, and it seems you’ve created and pioneered something quite unique – the ‘Five SPECS Style Personalities.’ I assume you use this concept to cater to your clients in person effectively. Currently, the landscape of optometry is challenging, especially with big businesses dominating.

Wendy Buchanan:

Yes, the Five Spec Style Personalities were born out of a need to survive in my business. When I was three years into my practice, I realized I needed to grow and sustain my business beyond just theory and training. For an entire year, I meticulously observed every client I styled with eyewear. I studied their facial features, clothing styles, preferred colors, and complexions. I also examined why I intuitively chose certain frames for them.

This analysis of over a thousand people led me to create the Five SPEC Style categories. It’s my ‘fashion science’ – a way to articulate what was initially just an intuitive process. This categorization eliminated any biases or judgments about what clients could afford. I began offering multiple pairs of glasses in every meeting, realizing that most people fit into at least two spec styles, often three. This method allowed me to explain why certain frames were ideal for them, not because they were trendy, but because they were right for them. As a result, my sales increased significantly.

Wendy Buchanan Discusses Mastering SPEC and Style for Retail Success

Dr. Darryl Glover:

That’s fascinating, especially how you delve into details like face shape and complexion. Understanding skin complexion is vital in eyewear, a skill many of us need to develop further.

Dr. Darryl Glover:

There’s a significant retail aspect to our field. Much of our income comes from retail, and many are losing business either by not providing that ‘wow’ factor or to online competitors. I’d like to explore this more thoroughly, as I believe it’s crucial for our colleagues to excel in their practices.

Wendy Buchaun:

Yes, and the spec styles are foundational to the entire SPEC methodology. SPEC, S-P-E-C, is a bit of industry wordplay, but it’s significant. The first part, ‘See,’ is about strong self-awareness, understanding how you see yourself, how you want to present yourself authentically. This self-perception is critical, but there’s also the perception others have of you, which you have complete control over how you engage with your patients, how you talk and present yourself, are all parts of this.

Wendy Buchaun:

Focus on yourself first. When you get this right, it’s your visual power. You become unique, eliminate competition, and turn into a walking, talking marketing machine for your business. Once you’ve mastered this, move on to ‘Perceive.’ This is where you help your patients or clients with their desired image – how they want to be seen and perceived. Using the five spec style categories, which are all different but equally valid, you can assist them without judgment or bias. Let them show you who they want to be.

The third part is ‘Engage.’ This involves using the language of spec styles to connect emotionally with your client. Seamlessly transitioning from the technical aspects of an eye exam and lens technology to fashion and style is key. Fashion motivates people to buy multiple pairs of glasses, beyond just functional needs. This is where the magic happens.

Building Credibility and Connection in Eyewear Consulting

Wendy Buchaun:

Finally, there’s ‘Connection.’ Everyone wants to jump straight to this step – connecting, influencing, making the sale. But you can’t do that effectively without first going through the other steps. When you make recommendations at this stage, they’re credible because you’ve built a relationship and understood the client’s needs. You gain credibility through intentional conversations and curious questions.

Dr. Darryl Glover:

Absolutely. The patient journey is crucial. For all care professionals, if you haven’t mapped out your patient journey, it’s a major oversight. Understanding each stage, the time spent, and potential difficulties is key. You want to anticipate every need. By the time the patient selects eyewear, they should feel understood and catered to. Wendy, your methodology enhances this journey, making the selection process enjoyable and tailored to the patient.

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