Marketing a practice is often viewed and treated as if it were a tedious errand. Instead of doing something that needs to be done, like cleaning out the garage, we make up a reason not to do it. We delay doing it by another few days, weeks, or even months.
While many efficient marketing strategies do demand two limited resources — money and time – you can advertise your practice without having to hire a specialist or waste time and energy on a campaign that no one sees. For starters, you need an unclouded objective and some novel concepts.
Implementing a Marketing Strategy for Your Practice
Rather than marketing or advertising, it was probably your passion for animals that led you to a career in veterinary medicine. Although you may be “all paws” when it comes to promoting your facility and gaining new clients, you may begin to establish a good approach by addressing key questions.
- Who would fit the profile of your perfect customer?
- To what end do they require your assistance?
- How would you describe your veterinary clinic’s identity?
- What sets you apart from the competition?
If your brand is well-known, you may find the answers to these questions come naturally. On the other hand, this is a fantastic chance to unify your marketing efforts under a single brand and set of messages. If you’re still developing your practice’s brand identity, answering these questions will help you zero in on the precise message you want to convey to potential clients.
Also think about what you hope to achieve with the promotion of your practice. No one ever knew if or when they had accomplished anything because they hadn’t set any goals. Set a goal for the number of new customers you’d like to bring in before you start working on the project, and use data from your website or social media (such as page views, comments, shares, and likes) to gauge your success. You can also ask new customers how they heard about you and keep track of their answers in a survey, and make a note of the preferred methods of contact for both new and current customers.
Taking on too many projects or campaigns at once might make it difficult to keep track of everything, leading to subpar work and even inaccurate outcomes. You should begin with something manageable so that you can build on that success. Here are seven tried-and-true strategies for attracting new clients and maintaining strong relationships with your current pet owner clientele.
Create a prominent profile on the web
In today’s technologically advanced society, your online presence can make or break the expansion of your practice. Prior to launching a social media campaign, it’s important to provide specific people of your team with oversight of all related activities. If you want to keep your digital narrative under wraps, you need a plan for dealing with unfavorable feedback and improper remarks. The iMatrix is a great veterinarian marketing company to consider for your practice.
Keep your website current and free of obsolete content to increase its visibility in search engines. If you find it challenging to consistently publish new content, stick to posting evergreen stuff instead. Make sure your brand’s name, logo, and messaging are uniform across all of your websites and printed materials. Invest in advertising to reach a wider audience and encourage participation in your social media posts.
- Monthly contests with a pet-related theme, with prizes appropriate to the theme. Pet owners can help spread the word about your practice by tagging your name in pet images on social media.
- Feature unique situations and adorable creatures in quick how-to guides on basic pet care, with the owners’ permission.
- Articles posted to a blog on a regular basis not only boost your site’s search engine rankings, but also serve as a vital resource for pet owners.
- Inspire your audience to take action by inviting them to visit a website, contact you, or make an appointment.
Initiate online means of communicating and scheduling appointments
The attractiveness of a digital communication feature transforms it from something it isn’t into a marketing tool. Millennials are the greatest demographic of pet owners, and they are seeking a veterinary clinic that offers easy means of contact. Offering these varied means of contact, particularly online scheduling, is a surefire way to win over new customers and keep the ones you already have. Message features included into many veterinary app platforms facilitate more regular communication between pet owners and veterinarians, which typically results in more appointments.
- Make a name for yourself as the neighborhood pet “expert.”
- Contact the local media and have one of your veterinarians who enjoys customer education do a segment on pet health.
An instant audience and an air of authority are yours to command with a brief, scripted weekly or monthly piece. People will think of your hospital as a reliable resource because of this expert’s appearance on television and radio.
Add some curb appeal to your medical practise
Take a stroll or a drive by your office and try to imagine what it would be like to be a client. Can you determine from the signage and decor that this is a veterinary hospital? Is your signage professional and easy to read? How easy is it to spot your clinic from the main thoroughfare, and do you need any additional signage? Rejuvenate your outward appearance by doing the following:
- Putting up new banners or stickers on the windows
- Imparting a splash of color
- Putting in a dog toilet area with a park bench, trash can liners, and pick-up bags
Get involved in or sponsor a local event
Make sure people can find you. Sponsoring a local event like a race, concert, or festival can be a passive form of advertising or an engaging way to network with potential and current customers. Set up a booth at the next dog-friendly event in your area and provide free “pet health checkups” or activities to attendees. Whether it is for weight loss, dental health, or mobility issues, each pet is given a “scorecard” detailing these recommendations and your contact information. Make sure everyone takes home a branded pet item like a bowl, leash, frisbee, or waste bags.
Create loyalty and referral programmes, and consult your present clientele for guidance
It’s difficult to compete with word-of-mouth advertising, so have happy customers do the heavy lifting for you. Reward loyal customers who spread the word by giving them a break on their next bill or a free service. Incentivize regular customers to bring in new business by spreading the word about your referral programme via social media, invoices, and appointment reminders. Make a tier-based referral programme and reward loyal customers.
A loyalty programme that offers savings on preventative services, shopping, and multiple-pet exams is a great way to show appreciation for loyal customers. Customers who join up and upload their invoices to the website can earn points toward prizes, which can then be spent on anything related to their pet’s health and care. Client compliance and revenue will both rise as you honor their dedication to their pet’s well-being.
Talking to your long-term customers can give you great insight into your clinic’s strengths. These devoted patients can immediately list numerous advantages of your clinic over the others. Ask for written testimonials from satisfied customers, or promote the clinic based on the answers you receive.
Provide supplementary aid
Demonstrate to potential customers that you can meet all of their pet-related demands in a single stop. Put in a pet bathtub and let a groomer use the extra space. Provide a space for puppy and kitten socialization lessons during clinic hours of closure, or negotiate with local dog trainers to use your lobby during these times in exchange for a cut of their fees.
Advertise monthly workshops in pet CPR, first aid, nutrition, and basic husbandry at local pet supply stores and other companies catering to pet owners. Hand out your business card and a branded notebook and pen so that event participants may jot down their thoughts and keep in touch with you after the event.
You should stop thinking of practise marketing as horrible spam. Instead, you should use marketing as an opportunity to learn more about your clinic, including what makes it unique and what kinds of services and treatments your target audience is seeking. The next step is to figure out the best way to get the word out about those strengths so that more pet owners can benefit and more animals can get the best care possible.