October 12, 2018
by Align Technology
Align Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ: ALGN) the leader in clear aligner orthodontics, announced today that it is expanding the interactive brand experience program that was piloted in late 2017, and will add eight new locations in major U.S. cities in the fourth quarter of 2018. The program expansion is designed to address the rapidly-evolving consumer market for clear aligners and connects consumers interested in Invisalign treatment with Invisalign doctors in their communities.
The Invisalign Experience program reflects the Company’s overarching approach to engaging consumers through brand experiences in consumer-based settings and environments: “Doctors have always been essential to Invisalign treatment, and 21 years later, a doctor’s prescription based on an in-person examination remains the only way to deliver Invisalign treatment to a patient, even if a consumer learns about the Invisalign brand through new or different ways.” said Joe Hogan, Align Technology president and CEO. “Through the Invisalign Experience program we’re learning more than ever about reducing barriers to treatment for potential patients so that they are excited about getting a better smile with an Invisalign doctor. There are more than 300 million consumers around the world who can benefit from Invisalign treatment, but most aren’t actively seeking orthodontic treatment. To reach those consumers, we need to connect with them where they spend their time online and offline – and Invisalign Experience locations are a new way to do that.”
Invisalign Experience locations are based in high traffic mall or outdoor shopping environments to reach consumers where they shop, dine, and play: “When we first launched the interactive Invisalign Experience pilot program, we thought of these locations as ‘stores’ because we were leveraging familiar retail environments,” said Jennifer Olson Wilk, Align senior vice president, doctor-directed consumer channel. “But we’ve learned a lot over the past year and the fact that we’re not selling orthodontic treatment directly to consumers is really important for us to emphasize. We’re providing a brand experience that informs and engages consumers with Invisalign treatment options in hopes they will choose to start treatment after we connect them to a local doctor’s office.”
The first four Invisalign Experience locations in California, Pennsylvania and Maryland have shown great progress since opening and have contributed to a significant influx of consumer interest in the orthodontic marketplace surrounding each location. Key performance metrics to date suggest that the addition of an Invisalign Experience location can have a significant positive impact or “halo effect” on overall Invisalign patient growth in the surrounding area, even among doctors that are not directly participating in the Invisalign Experience pilot program.
“The Invisalign Experience pilot program has been extremely beneficial to my practice, delivering new patient leads that would not otherwise have visited my practice and adding nearly half a million dollars in incremental revenue this year to date,” said Dr. David Boschken, an orthodontist with practices in Los Altos and San Jose, California. “Having patients connect to my practice through Align’s Invisalign Experience locations has been amazing and really opened my eyes to how many more consumers want a better smile, but who aren’t looking for a traditional orthodontic office. The Invisalign Experience location is open when I’m not, and its friendly, knowlegable staff help remove common barriers for consumers and answer basic questions about clear aligner treatment. Potential patients walk into my practice well informed, excited, and ready to start their Invisalign treatment journey with us.”
Invisalign Experience Location (Align Technology owned)
The Invisalign Experience locations help interested consumers connect with a local Invisalign doctor’s office, of their choice. By bringing the Invisalign brand directly to consumers in a cool digital environment with interactive touch screens, consumers can “browse,” ask questions, and learn about Invisalign treatment and the benefits of straightening their teeth. Invisalign staff answer their questions about the Invisalign process and technology and offer a complimentary iTero intraoral 3D scan and a visual simulation of what their smile might look like after Invisalign treatment.
Align currently employs 35 team members in its four Invisalign Experience locations in San Francisco, San Jose, Bethesda, and King of Prussia. By the end of 2018, Align will open eight additional Invisalign Experience locations in Texas, Illinois, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, and Massachusetts, and will employ more than 100 team members.
Invisalign Experience Branded Practice Pilot (doctor owned pilot)
In Q4, Align will also partner with a few Invisalign doctors in select U.S. cities who will pilot Invisalign Experience branded practices to test new ways to reach consumers and connect them directly with doctors to start Invisalign treatment. This pilot is intended to help doctors integrate consumer-friendly design and consultation workflow into their practices and test new Invisalign Experience branding and a consumer-focused approach to consultations and Invisalign treatment starts. It includes an initial digital scan and smile visualization with a scanner, and immediate appointments for walk-ins.
“By partnering with doctors to test a convenient, very consumer-friendly Invisalign Experience in their own practices or a consumer environment, we will help them to tap into an enormous incremental market that is well beyond the 4 million orthodontic case starts in the Americas region each year,” said Chris Puco, Align senior vice president, Americas. “As doctors have recognized the potential of this market, they have also asked us to help them engage more directly with consumers. As a result of increasing demand and interest from Invisalign doctors, we are piloting new ideas, including a limited number of Invisalign Experience branded practices, owned and operated by Invisalign doctors, that leverage the Invisalign Experience consumer-oriented look and feel to guide consumers in treatment.”
About Align Technology, Inc.
Align Technology designs and manufactures the Invisalign® system, the most advanced clear aligner system in the world, and iTero®intraoral scanners and services. Align’s products help dental professionals achieve the clinical results they expect and deliver effective, cutting-edge dental options to their patients. Visit www.aligntech.com for more information.
For additional information about the Invisalign system or to find an Invisalign doctor in your area, please visit www.invisalign.com. For additional information about iTero digital scanning system, please visit www.itero.com.