Just Stubborn I Guess
So, not that y'all want to know or care, but we've been getting frustrated about something around here, and wanted to let you know about it, and what we're doing about it. The folks who read this mess are the only people about whose opinions we care anyway... ;-)
We're at the point where what started as a little project on Centenary has become a legit "company". We painted our own walls in that office suite, put together the desk, did the trim, bought the furniture on the cheap at Big Lots, and let 'er rip. We had exactly none employees. Matter of fact, if any of you have been around long enough to remember, we were appointment only because we couldn't afford to hire RNs to work all day, and had to just pay them to meet patients at the office, and pay them by the patient.
These days it's a little different. We have 25 or so employees, 4 locations (two of which are deader than doornails), and a mess of bills.
So, we're at the "it's time to get serious about profits" phase of things, and honestly, we just aren't willing to do what we're being told/shown in order to make that happen.
Every day (I do mean EVERY day) we get someone who wants to "help" us with our advertising. They tell us that they have a way to send an email or ad to everyone who comes to our website but doesn't book an appointment. You get those emails I'm sure. They say crap like "We saw you were interested in the Fast Swing golf training aid. Click here to get it for 10% off," or something similar. They tell us that they can shove our ads down the throats of anyone who googles "flu relief" or "Covid symptoms". For me, it's one thing to shoot an ad to someone who googled "IV therapy", but a whole 'nother thing to invade their personal space and say "hey we saw that you have a cold, how about an IV?" I'm not doing that crap. I hate it when people do it to me, and I'm not going to be on that end of the deal. We aren't willing to start looking at people like they're numbers.
We face the scummiest of situations at three locations too. There are actually other IV companies who PAY (as much as $11.83 a click at one point) for THEIR AD to pop-up when someone googles "Rapid Recovery". Like if you hear our radio ad and try to google us for directions, some dirtbag's ad pops up at the top of the screen. Who does that? Would we make more money if we did the same? Probably, but we aren't willing to live like that. If you google "Jane's IV Place" I'm not going to go full ruthless and run my ad at the top of the screen. If you like Jane better, it is what it is. We just need to get better so you prefer us to Jane.
Then we get the old "cost savings" discussion. When we first started this company the kickass multivitamin we use (Infuvite) was $5.75 a dose. It's now almost 13 bucks. That ain't your fault, so no, we aren't raising the price of bags with Infuvite. Maybe the medical world will figure out its supply chain issues and the price will go back down. We have the best prices around (we think), and we aren't willing to screw that up.
The other alternative is to use a less awesome multivitamin that's cheaper. Honestly nobody would probably know, but we preach quality, and somebody would put two and two together, and even if they didn't we'd feel like crap. We aren't willing to cut corners.
We see a lot of IV places that don't as much as take your blood pressure or pulse, to say nothing of a medical history or allergy profile. Could we whip through patients quicker, make it more convenient for them, and have a bigger patient base if we skipped that stuff? Probably. Not willing to risk our licenses or your health though. Not going that direction.
Another thing we won't do is "little white lie" about an IV, or exaggerate about it. I see IV company websites that literally tout Vitamin C as being a cure for cancer. Folks, that's horseshit. There was one study almost 50 years ago that showed that a ton of Vitamin C stopped the growth of tumors in a few rats. It probably won't hurt as long as you stay under 20 grams, but probably won't help either and it's never been successfully tested in humans to show it matters. I WISH high dose Vitamin C cured cancer. I'd buy all I could afford and give it away for free. I hate cancer. Cancer got my Grandma and she never smoked or drank. We could probably make more money if we BSed everyone like everyone else, but we aren't willing to do that. "This Beauty IV reduces the fine lines and wrinkles in your face." Well, no kidding, it's pumping you full of fluids so you're more puffy and less dehydrated looking. Two bags of fluids reduces even MORE wrinkles, but it doesn't have anything to do with what's in the IV. You can do that by drinking a butt-ton of water. We aren't willing to BS anyone to make a buck.
We also have a LOT of competition now. In every city we're in there's someone who offers IVs and also offers all sorts of other crap like Botox, eyelash micro-needling, facials, and 13 other things. We could probably get a LOT more traffic in the building, and subsequently do more IVs, if we started doing things like that. Hormone replacement, fat-freezing machines, all that jazz. Not willing to do it. I believe you do one thing, and you do it better than everyone else. If people are willing to get IVs where they get their nails done, nothing I can do about that. Or at least nothing I'm willing to do about that. We'll just lose.
So, maybe we're stubborn. Maybe it really costs us and we close locations or even go under. I don't care. We aren't willing to give up on the values we have had since the beginning, even if that means we aren't corporate-savvy enough to survive. I'll just be sad the world has come to this, and go fishing.
We're not going to use crappy products because everyone else does and it's more profitable.
We're not going to skip the important medical precautions.
We're not going to start a "membership" program to get your money every month whether you need an IV or not.
We're not going to dig around in your interwebs cookies and shoot you an ad if you said the word "nausea" in front of your Alexa.
We're not going to raise prices because we have to maintain some margin or other.
We're damned sure not going to start adding bullcrap services that belong at a Revlon Salon in the mall just so we can do more IVs.
So, we want to be successful, we really do, but not at the expense of doing the right thing or sleeping well at night. The one thing we will do is ask you to (1) let us know if there's something we need to be doing better, and (2) tell your friends about us if you think we're great. That's it. I don't have a problem with asking that because I recommend great businesses all the time, and if I go somewhere that doesn't live up to my expectations, I don't crap on them on google reviews, I let them know so they can fix it.
So that's it. We aren't going to start doing things differently, despite the fact that we're getting absolutely MUGGED by our competition because of the way they do things. We aren't doing any of the "wouldn't feel right to do to my friends" things that serious profit-oriented businesses do. We do hope you pass that news on to your friends if any of them are sick, or dehydrated, or feeling run down, or that you bring us up if someone says they are. That's about all we're willing to do... because we're stubborn.