A good marketing plan can help take your veterinary clinic to the next level. We have the tips and tricks you need to grow your veterinary practice.
1. Provide great care Treat everyone’s pet like you would treat your own pet. When you can, go above and beyond the call of duty. If you are a great vet, people will take notice and organically spread the word about your business. Word-of-mouth advertising can be a vital source of new business. Even the greatest marketing plan will fail if you are not committed to providing great care to every animal.
2. Invest in good website design If you don’t have a website yet, it’s time for you to get one. There are companies that specialize in veterinary web design. If you already have a website, you might want to consider upgrading the design. Is your website optimized for people viewing it on their cell phone or tablet? If not, it needs to be. More and more consumers are using their mobile devices to research local professionals, like veterinarians. You also want to make sure your website includes all relevant information about your business including the services you provide, hours of operation, phone number, and office address. Don’t hide this information either! Most of it should be easy to find on the homepage.
3. Establish a strong online presence These days, just having a website is not enough. You also need to actively manage your reputation online. This is something that you can do on your own or you can hire an agency to help you out. If you are going the DIY route, ask your clients for positive reviews. If your veterinary clinic is highly rated, people will be more willing to call you up. Any additional visibility online will be beneficial to the success of your veterinary practice.
4. Give direct mail marketing a shot
Sending a simple postcard with a coupon can be a great way to contact your existing clients and prospective customers. A direct mail vendor can handle everything from graphic design to postage. They can also help you put together a list of prospects to receive the mailing. For example, you might want to target people in a few select zip codes near your office. If you specialize in veterinary care for livestock, include that in the flyer! If you specialize in pet care, you might want to include a picture of a dog or a cat on your mailer.
5. Incentivize referrals If someone recommends their friend to your practice, show your appreciation. There are a few different ways to do this. You can offer them a discount on their next office visit or a free grooming session. You could also give their pet a free toy or maybe give them a gift card to the local pet supply store. It’s important to say “thank you”, even if it is just a small gesture.
6. Reach out to your clients via email When used properly, email can be a very effective marketing channel for a veterinarian. There are several email marketing vendors that make it easy to create and launch new campaigns. Getting someone to open your email is half the battle. A catchy subject line can make all the difference. The best advice we can give? Don’t send too many emails! You don’t want people unsubscribing from your list.
7. Try pay-per-call advertising Pay-per-call advertising is a simple and effective way to generate business quickly. How does it work? The pay-per-call company advertises on behalf of your practice. If someone is interested in your business, they can call you directly. You will pay a fixed price for each call. You could receive calls about rabbits, dogs, cats, horses, snakes, guinea pigs, pigs, birds, sheep, goats, turtles, and fish. These call leads may be for a variety of services, including 1) routine examinations, 2) spaying and neutering, 3) veterinary dental care, 4) ear cleaning, 5) nutrition and weight loss, 6) heartworm treatments, 7) vaccinations, or 8) euthanasia. If you are interested, some lead generation companies may sell leads for pet boarding and kenneling as well.
8. Use pay-per-click (PPC) advertising Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising can work for many veterinarians. If you are on a tight budget, this is something you might manage yourself. If you have a little more money to spend, you may consider hiring a PPC agency to help you out. PPC ads are quite simple. You are charged every time that someone clicks on your ad. You can edit the settings to determine when and where your ad shows up. For example, you can bid on certain keyword searches like “nearest vet clinic” or “vet offices close to me”. When someone performs an online search for “local veterinarian”, don’t you want your ad to be the first thing on the page?
9. Use social media to win people over Although social media does not work for everyone, it can be a good idea for some veterinary practices. You can entertain people by posting pictures of cute animals that come into your office. You can also educate people about the latest trends or give advice about animal wellness. Although you should always remain professional, not everything has to be serious. This is a great place to show the light-hearted, fun side of your veterinary practice.
10. Build relationships with related businesses It’s important to network and build relationships with pet businesses in your area. It can really help to know other people working in the same industry. For example, you can reach out to pet groomers, dog walkers, and pet supply stores. They may be able to refer new business to your veterinary practice. It’s also important that you get to know other local vets. For example, you may not provide 24/7 emergency care. You may not be an expert with exotic pets or livestock. If you cannot help someone, is there another vet’s office or animal hospital nearby that could? You want to feel comfortable recommending another local practitioner. They, in turn, can return the favor by recommending your veterinary clinic to their own clients.
11. Find your niche What separates your veterinary practice from the rest? Do you specialize in caring for livestock? Do you only care for horses? Do you prefer to care for pets? Do you take house calls? Do you provide 24/7 emergency care? You want to emphasize your niche (or specialty) in all marketing materials (flyers, business cards, brochures, etc.) and on your website. This can help you stand out from your local competitors.
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