How do people decide which veterinarian they’re going to use? By understanding the steps people take to find a new vet, you can better focus your marketing and your clinic experience to bring in and retain new clientele.
How do Clients Find You on the Internet?
Along with the typical review sites, there are three areas people are likely to check for recommendations: professional organizations, breed groups and social media.
When potential clients are looking for professional accreditation, they’re most likely going to check the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) website to find accredited practices. They can also check the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners for veterinarians that have an animal specialization.
Clients often seek advice from breed groups, so they can find a practitioner who knows how to deal with their pet’s specific health problems. Working with these groups both online and through events can help you build your clinic’s reputation.
Social media isn’t just helpful for showing up in web searches. Having a presence on these platforms makes it easy for people to send a link if one of their friends asks for recommendations. You can boost business with programs that encourage your current clientele to recommend new patients.
What is the Client Looking For?
Pet owners are looking for the right blend of care, cost and convenience that fits their lifestyle and their pets’ needs. This balance differs from person to person. Answering these questions through your marketing will help you attract new clients.
Who takes care of their pet? Some clients may prefer a practice with a single veterinarian, because they know their pet will see the same person every time. Others may prefer larger clinics, because it’s easier to schedule an emergency visit, and office hours are usually longer.
What medical services do you practice provide? If their animal needs blood work, ultrasounds or other specialty services, can they be done there? Do you have specialists on staff that can take care of common problems for their breed?
Does your clinic offer related pet services, like grooming or boarding? This lets the client get services from a single provider that they’re comfortable with. Repeat visits also help their pet feel comfortable there.
What is the schedule like? Is your office only open during regular business hours, or can they schedule a regular visit on the weekend or after hours, so it doesn’t conflict with their work schedule?
Does your clinic accept their pet insurance? Do you have payment plans available, so they can cover surprise expenses?
How do they interact with your clinic? Clients all have different preferences, including web sites, apps, phone calls, texts and emails.
Visiting Your Clinic
Getting new clients in the door is only half the battle. First impressions are crucial to establishing a long term relationship. Client surveys can help you find weak points in the customer experience.
What is it like getting into the office? Is it easy to find parking? Is there plenty of space for them and their pet? Do you have places to attach dog leashes? Are cats kept separate from each other, so they don’t fight? Is the clinic clean? Does it smell bad?
What is the staff like? Do they seem like they care about pet care, or does it seem like they just want to leave? Are they taking time to get to know the animal and talk to the client, or is everything rushed?
Make a Better First, Second and Third Impression
Good marketing can help your practice seem more appealing to clients, from the bags they get prescriptions and pet products in to the reminder cards they receive in the mail. Positive Impressions, LLC can help you stay in contact with clients and make their visits feel special. We offer custom printing for most of our items, so you can add your logo, name and address to your special occasion cards, labels and more. You can see our full selection of products on our website, or visit us on Facebook to see our monthly specials.