Phonak Slim™: Hearing Never Looked Better
AudiologyOnline: What were the drivers behind making a product like Slim? Was there really a desire for this in the market?
Abigail Poyser: Absolutely – our innovation is always driven by market research. We were inspired by the 12 Megatrends from the Future Institute. These are slow, yet powerful, social changes in habits. Things like health, personalization, and what’s known as the “Silver Society.” This Silver Society is a group of ageing people who, thanks to good health care, are staying healthy longer. They are slowly helping to remove the stigma of aging – they’re working longer, and invest in their well-being to enjoy their life as they age. These are our future patients!
We partnered this with MarketTrak data showing that 1 out of 5 people still wouldn’t purchase a hearing aid, and that appearance and design of traditional hearing aids continues to be one of the main reasons for low adoption.
How can we appeal to this emerging Silver Society who are wanting to invest in their well-being, with a product that would be more appealing? This is where the concept of Phonak Slim came from – a product years in the making.
AudiologyOnline: What makes Phonak Slim different from other products on the market?
Abigail Poyser: In addition to the modern, sleek shape, we also wanted to ensure the devices were comfortable. We implemented a 7° angle to the receiver port. This allows Phonak Slim to follow the contour of the head, making it a perfect companion for glasses or masks. Additionally, Slim features a push button allowing for changing programs or volume control, giving patients full control over their hearing experience.
AudiologyOnline: I noticed that you keep calling it “Phonak Slim” and not “Audéo” or “Lumity” – can you clarify?
Abigail Poyser: Slim is so unique, it doesn’t even need a last name! It truly is a category of its own, which is why we position it outside the traditional Audéo RIC family. However, Slim is indeed a RIC product, and it is on the Lumity platform, driven by SmartSpeech™ Technology.
AudiologyOnline: Do you “give up” any of these exciting Lumity features by selecting a Slim model? Surely you can’t fit all of that into this sleek housing!
Abigail Poyser: Surprisingly, no! Phonak Slim includes all the features from our successful Lumity platform, including StereoZoom 2.0, Made for All Universal Bluetooth® connectivity, rechargeable, AutoSense OS™ 5.0, RogerDirect™ and it’s compatible with the myPhonak app. No feature left behind!
AudiologyOnline: Who is the ideal candidate for a Slim hearing aid?
Abigail Poyser: From an audiological perspective, Slim can fit anyone with a mild to severe hearing loss. It uses the same receivers as our other Lumity RIC products (S, M and P power levels). From a demographic perspective, Slim is ideal for existing patients looking to upgrade their hearing into the modern age. Our internal market research found that 52% of existing wearers said Slim would improve the overall appeal of wearing hearing aids, and 41% said Slim would motivate them to consider repurchasing sooner. And, for anyone coming in to your clinic wearing glasses, Phonak Slim should be your first recommendation
AudiologyOnline: It seems that Slim can really bring in a whole new kind of patient to clinics. What kinds of support does Phonak offer to help with marketing?
Abigail Poyser: We have an entire Marketing Toolkit designed to help customers market Slim to their communities. From database mailer letters, to postcards, newspaper ads, digital banners and social media posts, we have everything you need. Contact your Phonak representative or marketing specialist to learn how to get started.
AudiologyOnline: Where can readers go for more information?
Abigail Poyser: You can visit www.phonak.com/slim for all the latest. And thanks for having me here today!