Oticon Inc, Somerset, NJ, has formed a partnership with Healthy Hearing to connect people actively seeking hearing solutions and hearing loss information to hearing care professionals in their communities.

The optimized search function aims to ensure that the 400,000-plus yearly visitors who seek hearing health information at healthyhearing.com are directed to hearing care professionals who can provide the professional care and counsel needed to achieve a successful outcome. Unlike companies that sell directly over the Internet, the Oticon/Healthy Hearing partnership supports both the growth of hearing care practices and relationships with end-users.

“The simplicity of using the Internet and the ease of localized search has allowed online information search to happen more quickly and effectively,” says Oticon President Peer Lauritsen. “Research tells us that 30 to 40% of individuals are ready to take action when they conduct an online search. With the Oticon/Healthy Hearing partnership, we provide an alternative to Web sites that sell directly to consumers and at the same time, support our valued business partners with access to people in their communities who are actively seeking hearing care solutions.”

Lauritsen cites research that shows today’s seniors are using the Internet more than before. In the past 7 years, the amount of seniors online has grown by 85%. On an average day, nearly 60 million people use search engines. People who are between 70 and 74 years old represent 45%  of that number, and half of that number use online search engines for health and health-related products.

Oticon notes that health care professionals who partner with Oticon and Healthy Hearing on the new initiative will be able to optimize their visibility online by appearing at the top of the search engine results. Practice profiles will highlight services, personal biography, staff information, and office hours. “We know that when end-users search for hearing care providers, most hearing care professionals don’t appear at the top of the list,” Lauritsen says. “Consumers often look at only the first five links offered by a search engine. By partnering with Oticon and healthyhearing.com, hearing care professionals maximize their visibility online by appearing at the top of search engine results. It is a win-win both for people seeking expert hearing care and for hearing care professionals looking to expand their practice reach.”

For information on participating in the Oticon/Healthy Hearing referral system, hearing care professionals should contact their Oticon account manager.

[Source: Oticon]