Nish Vasant is the audiologist and owner of Fresh Hearing, a small but busy private hearing care centre in Haslingden, just north of Manchester, that has been helping people hear better for over 30 years. 

Although hearing instruments are provided free of charge by the government, people will often visit private practices to be fitted with more sophisticated technology. Nish’s clients have usually been shopping around before they see him, and have frequently already purchased private hearing aids they haven’t been happy with. This means he has the difficult job of recommending they spend even more money on different technology. “It's a big ask and you have to really prove to them that the solution you’re recommending is right for them.”

By incorporating FLEXTM into his practice, Nish has gained a critical diagnostic tool to guide his recommendation. Being able to not only convince, but prove to his clients exactly what level of technology they need has not only resulted in stronger sales for him, but a much better experience for his clients. “Working with FLEXTM has completely changed my business. It's turned it upside down.” 

“We're getting known to be the hearing care providers that people come to for an honest opinion” says Nish, who’s seen a significant increase in referrals, as well as a return rate that has dropped from 25% to 0%. 

“We're getting known to be the hearing care providers that people come to for an honest opinion” says Nish, who’s seen a significant increase in referrals, as well as a return rate that has dropped from 25% to 0%. 

  • Return rate dropped from 25% to 0%
  • Increased average selling price
  • Decreased advertising spend by 40%
  • More word of mouth referrals

At just 28 years old, Nish was ready to run his own practice. He took over the longstanding Fresh Hearing clinic in Haslingden when the previous owner retired in 2013. Having worked at the clinic for a number of years before acquiring it, Nish “knew the customers and the area very well,” making for a very easy transition. Under his leadership, the clinic employs more modern techniques, “essentially bringing it into the 21st century.”

Fresh Hearing now has three centers scattered around the Northwest of England. The main centre remains in Haslingden, with the others in Warrington and Bolton. “Haslingden is in the Rossendale Valley, which is an old, industrial village, essentially, where there were lots of cotton mills, a lot of mining, et cetera. It’s a small population, and people have usually been here for a long time.” Today, the manufacturing sector still employs a larger proportion of the population than the national norm1.


  • Population (Haslingden): 16,849
  • Population (Rossendale District): 67,982
  • Population Breakdown (Rossendale District): 22% under 18, 8% from 18-24, 26% from 25-44, 28% from 45-64, and 16% 65 and over
  • Median Age (Rossendale District): 40
  • Median Personal Income Estimates (Rossendale District): ~7% lower than the UK Median Personal Income Estimate

When Nish first heard about FLEXTM it didn’t particularly appeal to him. But at a Unitron event, as he chatted with other hearing care professionals about FLEXTM, he heard one phrase that struck a chord with him – ‘It's essentially a diagnostic hearing aid.’ For Nish, “that phrase is so powerful because in today's society, if you go to the doctors, they'll send you home with blood pressure monitors, diabetes checks, all sorts of stuff. That's essentially FLEX:TRIALTM. We're sending people home with diagnostic evaluation tools, regarding their lifestyle. And it works, it definitely works. And it was just that, literally that one phrase has changed everything.”

The decision to go beyond the free option provided by the National Health Service and purchase private hearing instruments is not one that Nish’s clients take lightly. “Sometimes people will be saving their money for a good year or maybe slightly longer before they decide to go down the route of finding help with their hearing.”

In addition, Nish’s clients have often already “been down the road of buying private hearing aids from other companies, and they've been let down.” These clinics are “very much commission driven” with the goal of making the sale rather than really helping the client. Whether it’s due to poor service, high-pressure sales tactics, or simply being mis-sold, when people come to see Nish, they’re understandably apprehensive: “one of the biggest challenges we have,” he says, “is not only convincing, but proving to people that what they're doing by spending even more money on hearing aids is the best thing for them and the right decision for them.”

“We fit hearing aids down to lifestyle nowadays and not severity of loss” Nish explains. Before introducing FLEXTM into his practice, he would he would go down the traditional route of testing and then asking clients about their lifestyle. His clients would often “miss huge chunks of information” about their lives that would be the difference between going for a lower end technology and a higher end technology. This meant Nish was “forever spending time fine tuning hearing aids, trying to make adjustments,” sometimes having to go so far as to refund the product completely..

With FLEXTM, he says, “everything has completely changed.” As he prepares his clients for their real-world assessment, Nish explains to them that they’re going to experience “what wearing private hearing aids is all about”, and at the same time he’s going to be gathering data about their lifestyle. “You can see the look on their face, it just changes. They think ‘wow, I've never experienced anything like this before.’”

“A lot of the times on the first consultation, I don't even talk to them about costs. I just tell them that part and parcel of the hearing tests and the consultation is you're walking out with a set of hearing aids that are going to help you hear better.” He tells them not to worry about the cost until they’ve got some data to look at. “You see the mindset switch,” he says. “Instantly they’re a lot more relaxed.”

After their real-world assessment, Nish invites his clients back to the clinic to review the lifestyle data that was gathered with Log It All. He’s able to show them how much time they’re spending in different listening environments, and uses this data to back up his recommendation. “We prove to them with hard facts and figures what level of technology they need. So essentially all I'm doing right now, rather than going for the sale and saying ‘you need to spend X amount of money off the bat’, I'm proving to them that what they need to buy is what's right for their lifestyle.”

“FLEXTM has been brilliant because I now don't have to sell. I'm just guiding them through the whole process, holding their hand. Which makes my job a lot, lot easier.”

With FLEXTM, Nish is able to prove to his customers that he’s really there to help them hear better, not just to sell to them. Because the real world assessment gives them the experience of hearing better and the data to back up the recommendation, Nish’s clients come back to his office happy and ready to make a purchase. “The sale’s almost done before you've even mentioned the price.”

This has led to a much more pleasant work experience for the team at Fresh Hearing, as well: “I'm more of a relaxed person now in terms of an audiologist. The staff that work alongside me are a lot more relaxed. We don't sell anymore. We really don't sell. It's transformed the business dramatically.”

Fresh Hearing has also seen a steady increase in referrals, so much so that he’s been able to significantly decrease his marketing  budget. “I haven't spent any money on any kind of hearing aid advertising for almost a year. I haven't needed to because word of mouth is so powerful,” he says. “People are just recommending us naturally because of the experience that they're having.”

The impact of FLEXTM can be seen in Nish’s sales as well: “I've found that my average selling price has gone up by a few hundred pounds per unit. Not only that, my return rate has dropped dramatically from 25% to zero. Now, I don't have any returns at all. That's purely down to the FLEXTM experience that customers are receiving.” As business continues to boom at Fresh Hearing, Nish never loses sight of his mission. “We're in it to help people hear better. If you help people hear better, the money comes.”

Extend the hearing assessment beyond your office and into the real world. Your clients can experience hearing instruments at home, at work, or wherever they spend time.