Spring Is In The Air! Celebrate With A Strong Veterinary Marketing Strategy
Dear friends and colleagues,
As Winter comes to an end here in the Northeast, we turn our focus to preparing for the seasons to come; similarly, the end of the cooler months nationwide is an ideal time to ensure your veterinary hospital's business remains strong and primed for future growth.
Growing your practice's revenue relies on a strong year-round veterinary marketing strategy combined with cost-conscious time management practices. We're dedicating this edition of your monthly newsletter to these topics so you're well-prepared for the months ahead.
First, we get back to basics with Marketing 101 tips which promise to "Make Business Bloom Year-Round." Then, we round out this month's newsletter with an article presenting five time- and money-saving tips you can easily implement at your practice today to see benefits from tomorrow.
Ready to learn more about these vital additions to your veterinary marketing tool kit? Read on. It's our foremost goal to provide veterinary practice owners like you with valuable information to help you grow your practice.
Mark Feltz, DVM, Owner
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Spring is just around the corner and for many veterinary practices, this marks the busiest time of the year. With an influx of new puppies, kittens, and pocket-sized pets, the season serves as a fresh start and end to the slower winter months when pets are primarily indoors and thus less apt to get into any mischief.
But, don’t let good business leave you complacent. Strengthen your veterinary marketing strategy now to reap the benefits all year long! The following Marketing 101 tips will keep you seeing green from now through December:
Nurture existing relationships – Your longtime clients are invaluable to your bottom line. Don’t let them slide through the cracks and fall into the arms of a local competitor. Send out friendly emails with pet-related news articles or special offers periodically to remind them that you value their loyal patronage. The more personal, the better.
Learn from your clients – Your existing clients can provide insight to the strengths and weaknesses of your practice better than anyone else. Take advantage of this by promoting online reviews or by sending out email surveys to strengthen your customer service. Don’t forget to send out a ‘thank you’ note to everyone who participates.
Market creatively – A flimsy, faded-looking mailer that says a pet is due for X, Y and Z isn’t going to inspire anyone to schedule an appointment. Your marketing efforts should attract clients to you. Invest in a high-quality postcard mailer, include an incentive, or come up with an attention-grabbing, cost-conscious marketing package to attract business from new or existing clients. Be sure to have a clear objective and method of measuring your campaign’s success.
Commit to email marketing – Combining email marketing with your other veterinary marketing strategies is a great and affordable way to market your practice while also establishing your expertise with your audience. This is done through informative monthly email newsletters, new technology or staff announcements, and periodic promotions. As long as the email has value, your clients and prospective clients will read it. Again, know your objectives and make sure your email piece reflects your veterinary brand.
Utilize publicity – Local newspapers and media outlets are your practice’s best friends. Not only can news stories get the word out about things happening at your hospital, they are also more credible and more cost-effective than most paid advertising. Don’t expect every lead you provide to the media to result in a story, but if you have something worth sharing – do it.
Veterinarians don’t get into the field because they have an interest in veterinary marketing. You became a veterinarian because you love animals and doing anything you can to make their lives healthier and happier. Marketing the benefits that your hospital provides to pet owners, however, plays a significant role in expanding your practice and ultimately achieving your financial goals. To cut down on time spent worrying about your veterinary marketing strategy; consider these time-saving tricks of the trade:
1. Relinquish some control, lessen your load – By sharing some of your marketing responsibilities, you’ll be able to focus on what you do best: provide quality care to your patients. A hospital manager and tach-savvy technician can handle most updates and postings on your social media accounts.
2. Use social media the right way – If you feel swamped by the many social media platforms you’re using, scale back. It’s better to have one platform which you update regularly with engaging content than to spread your online presence too thin. Original content is very important; however, not all of it needs to be. There’s a reason cute animal videos or photos go viral – pet owners love them.
3. Automate whenever you can – Online reviews of your practice are invaluable when it comes to attracting new clients. Have a system in place to automatically send review requests to clients following appointments. You can also be notified when reviews are posted rather than having to continually check the many different review sites. This will allow you to respond to negative reviews and unsatisfied clients more promptly.
4. Stay organized – Planning ahead can save a lot of time in the long run. Consistency is important on Facebook, and a social media calendar can help you stay on-time and on-message. Generate a pool of great marketing ideas by storing your thoughts as an outline or in a marketing ideas folder. These can be ideas centered on future blog topics, brochure designs or informational YouTube videos.
5. Reuse & recycle - A lot of time goes into creating original content. Don’t be afraid to reuse and repost old blogs and articles. You own them and their value is enhanced by their longevity. Update old material from time to time to give it new life.
Free up more of your time by hiring a veterinary-specific marketing firm to handle some – or all – of these tasks for you. VetNetwork offers veterinary website maintenance, social media management, online reputation management, and so much more! You may question how outsourcing your veterinary marketing will save you money, but we have a wide range of packages designed to meet your expectations and your budget. Learn how we can help, call us today at (800) 564-4215 or contact us online.
Sign up for a new website, mobile site, or any of VetNetwork's services before March 15 and save $250 on your total purchase. To learn more about this limited-time offer, please contact Jenna Doughtry, our Customer Account Executive. Both knowledgeable and personable, Jenna is here to answer all your questions and make sure your needs are met fully by our professional design and editorial teams.
A native of Massachusetts, Jenna now lives in Eliot, Maine with her husband Dave and their English Bulldog, Buddha. Outside of work, she doubles as a professional lifestyle photographer.
VetNetwork is owned and operated by a veterinarian with 20 years of hospital ownership experience, and is staffed with a team of veterinary marketing experts who are dedicated to growing your practice. For more information about reputation management and growing your business, please give us call at (800) 564-4215 or send us an email today.
Mark Feltz, DVM and the Staff at VetNetwork
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