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Examining Ways to Add Impact to Your Web Site

CLICK is the latest in a series of popular e-newsletters from Vision Monday. Every month, CLICK provides ECPs and optical retailers with the tools they need to build their presence online and grow connections with patients. It's a monthly briefing designed specifically to provide practical insights and ideas about the latest Web site features, tools and Web-based applications.

CLICK will feature a variety of topics including innovative ideas in Web site development and examples of cutting-edge initiatives. See the complete 2009 archives of CLICK at Tried something new on your Web site? Have a comment about CLICK? Tell us about it and we'll consider it for an upcoming feature in CLICK.
—The Editors

in focus

Being Part of the 'Conversation'

NEW YORK—In addition to the hundreds of ECPs and optical retailers who are now embracing social media, a similarly large and growing range of ophthalmic suppliers are taking part in the “conversation” online via a growing presence on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Companies and brands are using their participation to build dialog and “push” information in new ways to develop a fan base, keep tabs on issues and advance ideas. The simple-to-use formats also allow ECP sites to connect to showcase collections and technologies that they offer to user groups to enhance the “social” experience.

PixelOptics, the composite lens company, is opening a social media dialog with plans to expand to other interactive sites in the future. “We still value traditional media, but we want to be sure we reach the growing number of people who rely primarily on the Internet and online resources for their information,” said Ron Blum, PixelOptics CEO. “We feel strongly about the need to be in the social media arena. As a cutting edge technology company, the way we communicate should be as high tech as the products we produce,” added Bill Spies, chief operations officer.

PixelOptics is now online with a channel on YouTube and a Facebook page. Both offer video “podcasts” depicting topics ranging from the company’s distribution methods and the theory behind composite lens technology, to simple videos showing the PixelOptics booth at 2009 Vision Expo West. It also includes profiles of company executives, photos demonstrating the effectiveness of composite lens technology and other features. Future video messages will feature additional videos, photos, blogs and other insights from company executives and researchers. It will also offer demonstrations of new products. In addition, PixelOptics will begin “tweeting” company updates on Twitter. The popular site, which allows communication in 140 characters or less will be used to deliver timely updates with links to videos, blogs or photos.

Italian eyewear manufacturer, Allison, has chosen to enter the new era of what it calls “industrial networking” to socialize and share its optical philosophy via the Internet. Allison has embraced the two most popular social network sites of YouTube and Facebook to demonstrate to a wider audience the company's products. Allison has created “Try Eyewear” videos for YouTube, directed to the end consumer, ( On Facebook, Allison’s page showcases photos and information about new products including a fan page Try which gathers comment and suggestions with its friends on the community site.

Fashion designer brand Gucci has launched Gucci Eyeweb, a new collection of sunglasses designed by its creative director Frida Giannini with the digital generation in mind. For those avid social networkers, Giannini has created an innovative microsite at where visitors can “reflect and connect” their own creativity virally across the Internet using the silhouettes of the new Gucci Eyeweb collection as their palette.

Produced under license by Safilo, Gucci Eyeweb consists of two models, in six different colors and will be followed by the subsequent debut of 3 new models in early spring. An unprecedented interactive campaign is supporting Gucci Eyeweb where users will encounter a multi-functioning online world to meet, play and share. The site’s main feature is a striking 3D image of the sunglasses which rotates through 90 degrees and reflects images in the lenses.

Users can “connect” (log on and share images with friends) as well as “reflect” (upload images which will flow over the 3D eyewear lenses as in a real life reflection). All images will be time-stamped, geolocated and placed on a timeline through which users and friends can save and track memorable moments. Music plays during photo uploads, a “time-slider” allows users to choose whether they want a day or night ambience. Visitors can choose the city they feel like being in, which instantly changes the ambience, language and background music of the site. “It was important for us to speak to these customers in their own language and in their own world,” said Giannini. “The novelty of this microsite illustrates that perfectly.”


Social Media Enables Consumers to Embrace 'Wellness' Messages

PINELLAS PARK, Fla.—Transitions Optical has announced the grand-prize winners and finalists of the “Live Your Vision” photo contest in the eyecare professional and consumer categories. The winning photos and captions, determined by online voting and a panel of celebrity judges, illustrate how healthy eyesight has impacted the lives of the winners and allowed them to realize their dreams.

Leonard Bertoli, OD, Melrose, Mass., the grand-prize winner in the eyecare professional category, was rewarded with a $10,000 prize. Bertoli’s photo, which showed a sunset through a pair of eyeglasses, creatively reinforced how he lives his vision by providing his patients with the best eyecare. Other finalists in the eyecare professional category were: Beverly Smith-Jue, Danville, Calif.; Tina Mazza, Tinton Falls, N.J.; and Jennifer Braun, Manorville, N.Y. These finalists each received a $1,000 prize.

“I've dedicated my career to helping people make the most of their vision. When I came up with the idea for the photo, my goal was to show the patient's perspective—to convey the idea that what I do will change the way all my patients see the world,” said Bertoli.

The two grand-prize winners also had the opportunity to designate a charity of their choice to receive an additional $10,000 donation from Transitions Optical. Bertoli selected Helen Keller International, devoted to fighting and treating preventable blindness and malnutrition around the world.

Sharon Tudor, Mays Landing, N.J., the grand-prize winner in the consumer category, demonstrated her vision of building schools, medical clinics and water wells in Tanzania and Uganda through Tower of Hope International Ministries. To further the vision shown in her winning entry, Tudor selected Tower of Hope International Ministries for her charity of choice.

The celebrity judging panel included National Geographic photographer Steve Winter, sports broadcaster Lesley Visser and Healthy Sight Ambassador Sheila Johnson, who selected the grand prize winners and finalists based on each photo’s demonstration of how the entrant “lives their vision” rather than on the basis of photo quality alone. The winning photos can be viewed at


cool tools

Click-to-Add Site Enhancements, which offers professionals easy-to-add special features to their Web sites, now has a range of new offerings via the company’s XTend platform. In addition to its existing tools for patient reminders, appointment confirmations, e-newsletters and others, the new XTend platform offers analytics, Smile Reminder Video, Maps, Social Networking, Google local business listings and ZubuMail. Those who sign up before the end of this month can receive a free Amazon Kindle.

Web Solutions That Fit

7strategy is strategic Web design company, delivering a full range of high performance Web sites, interactive services and integrated marketing solutions for any company looking to be successful. The design and Web development firm specializing in online solutions for all types of companies from large multinational Fortune 500 corporations to traditional brick-and-mortar small businesses.

sites to see

Some Web site techniques might be better executed by your own Web site creator or developer, but other social media tools work just fine with simpler updates that someone on your own team can create. is a site which provides step-by-step instructions on everything from “How to Create a Photo Slide Show for YouTube” to those that detail how to use special photo images and unique signatures. Forums, blogs and a “Top Tutorial” search are helpful features of this site.


Want to enliven your practice Web site with a “Word of the Day” or “Article of the Day” offering free content and easy-to-create widgets which can enliven the messaging of your site for patients. Check out the options on Simple boxes and instructions enable you to keep things fresh.