An advertisement from SVS Vision’s
latest campaign.

STERLING HEIGHTS, Mich.—While some eyecare practices use trunk shows to feature additions to collections they already carry, for SVS Vision, these special events are geared toward entirely new product. “We like to create excitement in the offices by bringing in higher-end lines periodically that we don’t normally carry in the office,” said Cathy Walker, SVS Vision’s VP of marketing.

According to Walker, SVS Vision has only been organizing shows for the past two years, at the suggestion of a store manager. The business now hosts two to three shows a month across all of the group’s 53 locations. She explained that, due to the company’s size, some locations will have three or four a year while some won’t have any.

Most important in executing shows across the Midwest—SVS Vision has practices in 10 states—is the organizational system Walker has put into place, one she said everyone follows. “We send out postcards, put up fliers and advertise on our website, use Facebook and other social media.” Walker, who started using social media for SVS Vision earlier this year, has noticed an increase in trunk show attendance. “It’s too early to call at this point. I can’t say that I’ve absolutely had people come in because of Facebook, but it can’t hurt,” she said.

Walker believes it’s the occasion of a trunk show that makes it successful. “Our offices do very well on the days that they have trunk shows. It’s the event of the whole thing. You get your staff excited and, in turn, the patients get excited. Customers tend to get wrapped up in the shows,” she said. SVS Vision’s shows are held during the week, when the office is open and usually go on for the length of business hours.

Recently, one SVS Vision location showed the Diane Von Furstenberg line from Marchon, an event Walker said had great success. For the future, she is considering starting partnerships with local businesses for catering.

For SVS Vision, the benefits of hosting a trunk show are clear: “You’re bringing in patients that you may not normally see thereby exposing your office to new people,” Walker said. But she added, “You really have to create an event or they’re not going to be successful. Anyone who’s going to have a trunk show has to be dedicated to making it a successful event.”


Prior to a trunk show, SVS offices are tidied up
and prepped for decoration.

“The offices do a great job of dressing up for
the events,” Cathy Walker said.