WHY HEARING AIDS ARE NOT LIKE EYEGLASSES First, how hearings are like eyeglasses -the process anyway. Well Step 1. get eye exam and you can do that at any optometrist. Step 2. get the results..and Step 3. you can then go anywhere to get your glasses - 1800contacts etc. With hearing aids. Step 1. Get a hearing test. 2. Get the results or the audiogram. Step 3. With your audiogram in hand....you can go anywhere to get a hearing aid. - I will talk more about that audiogram in Secret #5 Why are Hearing Aids not like Eyeglasses? A colleague of mine, Dan Kennedy - who has written over 10 marketing books and sold his marketing services to 1000s of audiologists said, "The stigma and resistance to wearing eyeglasses diminished in the 1950s and was pretty much gone by the 1970s - today even eye-wear is positioned as a fashion statement - a billion dollar fashion statement - take a look at the websites like www.warbyparker.com. What helped de-stigmatize this was that fact that young people needed vision correction, so glasses were never a symbol of surrender to age or infirmity. Eyeglasses successfully moved out to the doctors office to a billion dollar eyeglass fashion retail industry. Not so with hearing aids. They ARE symbolic of surrender to age. People are resistant to even thinking about trying them. People are embarrassed by having to wear them, even now that technology has made them tiny, nearly invisible, 100% digital, with pocket remotes - thus liberating users from a device for fiddling with volume. Seen or unseen, the consumer still feels old and diminished by wearing them...or even thinking of wearing them.

The second thing to know, and probably the most interesting secret fear, is that few people buy hearing aids simply to hear better. Most of us who wear eyeglasses buy them to see better. Its a simple proposition. With vision below par and worsening, trouble reading small print or seeing signs or driving at night, we go buy glasses - some of us start with reading glasses. But the of buying hearing aids is more complicated, and most people are not sufficiently motivated by hearing difficulties to go and buy them. Instead there are hidden fears and hidden benefits driving people to buy a hearing aid. For example, one of the things baby boomers fear most is "being stuck in nursing home." For the more affluent you can call it "Assisted Living". But still, seniors want to stay in their homes, They want to live independently. They fear nursing homes. And they fear adult children moving them into them. This inspires some creative and risky behavior, as seniors endeavor to conceal difficulties they are experiencing with daily life. They rightly fear their adult children's perception they are "losing it" or "addled" or "confused" which being unable to hear properly can create. Another hidden fear is that their adult children will be reluctant to trust them alone with their adult grandchildren, especially away from home, driving about, on excursions, Being deprived of independent time with the grandchildren will

strike terror into the hear of a grandmother, and at least irritate a grandfather. Age and hearing loss fuels fear. So who wants to get in the car, lug their spouse with them, go through an hour and a half of diagnostic tests, got scientific proof that they have hearing loss." This is what Dan Kennedy learned about working with local audiologist offices - do you feel infirm-ed? Addled? About ready to go into a nursing home thinking about hearing aids? True to you or not - there is a stigma to overcome.