In veterinary medicine, marketing was easier than it is today. Many practices relied on Yellow Pages ads and a few other programs like local advertising or community events. The internet has opened up a world of possibilities for marketing. There are many options for marketing, but most practices now concentrate on digital marketing.
There are many options, and associated costs. A part of the marketing plan should include tracking the success of each one. Marketing is primarily about bringing in new clients. The management team must know where new clients are coming in, what the customer acquisition cost (CAC) is, and which programs bring in the most clients. Many owners and managers aren’t sure how to do this. This is especially true with digital marketing which can generate lots of responses (clicks and likes and shares), but may not bring in new clients.
What amount should I spend on my marketing efforts?
Digital efforts such as the website and social media platforms of the practice, as well traditional non-digital advertising, community activities or sponsorship of local organizations, should be included in the budget. The budget should include the amount necessary to achieve the goals as set out by the practice via its business plan and strategic planning.
These goals may be related to the number of clients that are desired. However, they could also include revenue growth targets and the desired level of profitability. While the above answer is correct, it does not provide any guidance for practices to make decisions about marketing spending.
The COVID-19 pandemic is a constant topic in business discussions. Many practices are overwhelmed right now and it is terrifying to think about trying to get more clients. Marketing programs that aim to bring in more clients might not be as important if your practice is busy. The pandemic’s increased growth will not last forever. Therefore, practices will need to continue to work on new client marketing. Client retention is another important goal of marketing.
Let’s begin by looking at how much marketing is being spent on their budgets as a percentage gross revenue. 1,2
These numbers are usually for established, stable practices. Startups and those that are focusing on significant growth will likely spend more. These percentages do not include costs associated with outside marketing services. These costs are not included in compensation for staff members who spend their time updating Facebook posts or performing other promotional tasks. This does not necessarily mean that practices are spending the right amount on marketing activities. It also doesn’t mean that the money is being spent on the correct activities. If your spending is higher than the average, it may be a sign that you need to examine your spending and determine if it is reasonable. Although they are more common than those in articles, or during continuing-education programs, these recommendations may not be appropriate for your practice. There is no one spending level that fits all.
Next, ask your clients how they found out about you. It is important to focus on what brought them to you, and not what they did online. A question asking clients how they found out about you should be included on the new client worksheet. Then, a list of all your marketing initiatives will be provided to help clients answer. This list should include all of your formal marketing programs (Facebook Ads, Google Search Results, Newsletter, etc.) and any other information that clients may have.
The front desk staff should be trained to request this information if the clients do not fill it out. It is the responsibility of the management team to ensure that front desk staff have enough time to meet with each client. This means that data must be regularly collected and reviewed. Data may not be complete. Clients may have driven to the office, searched for the practice online, then received a recommendation by a colleague at work before making the decision. It does however give you an idea of what works and what doesn’t.
You can also collect a lot more data through your digital efforts such as the number of individuals.
However, the downside to digital data analysis is that even though hundreds of people have visited your Facebook page, that doesn’t necessarily mean they intend to visit the practice. What if 91% of page visitors are located 1000 miles away? It can be difficult to interpret the data. It is important that your marketing service provider has the ability to help you collect the correct data and understand how to interpret it. What percentage of them have become clients?
You’d like to be able to compare the costs of acquisition for different programs, regardless of whether they are digital or traditional. Let’s take, for example, the flyer you gave out at a pet fair offering a free exam to new clients how much do veterinarians make. The both was provided at no cost and you had all the decorations you needed. The cost of printing the flyers was $100. You also had to pay $200 for staff compensation for those who worked in the booth. In the following 2 months, 14 clients came to the practice and received a complimentary exam. They also spent $25-150 each.
How much did it cost to acquire customers?
The lost cost of an exam is not included in this calculation as the practice does not actually pay for them. It simply does no business with the exam revenue. This exception might only apply if your doctors are on production pay, and you give them some money when they take these free exams. Some practices have this option, while others do not. You can add that cost to the calculation if you have.
Is this a fair CAC? There are no good benchmarks for CAC in the field of veterinary medicine. These numbers are not applicable to our field and they can be found in articles from other industries. It is best to evaluate the CAC of all marketing activities tvlinks in your practice. This will take into consideration the number of clients the program generated and the lifetime value of each client. If you have a program that generates $5 per client and has a CAC of $50 per client, will it be worth your time and effort?
The objective and subjective components of determining whether a practice is spending the right amount on the right activities are important. Although the analysis might not be perfect, it will provide you with the information you need in order to make better marketing decisions. Retaining clients is more important than bringing in new clients. If your practice isn’t doing this well, then focus on finding the reasons and fixing them.
The veterinary-client relationship doesn’t end with an annual visit. It continues to grow and evolve with any luck. The loyalty of pet owners to a veterinary care team will grow when practices make use of technology to meet their needs.
Prescription management software that integrates with PIMS can be upgraded to allow practices to approve, renew, and create prescriptions for chronic medication, prescription diets, and parasite preventatives. The practice can notify the pet’s owner and veterinary team of potential expirations and send them automatic refill reminders.
Clients can access vaccine records, which can be shared with grooming facilities, training facilities and boarding facilities to improve their satisfaction and reduce calls to the front desk. Medical record access is a great way to reduce frustrations sockshare tv in emergency situations or when clients need outside veterinary care. Portals allow owners to request appointments, refill prescriptions, and to send secure messages to their pet’s care team. This can make it a game-changer in the workflow.
Ongoing communication with clients
Updated technology programs such as texting, email or chat can help practices communicate with pet owners in a more efficient way. This includes sharing information about pet health and practice, answering non-urgent questions, and providing valuable advice. These technologies can be used to improve efficiency and satisfy client communication preferences. Practices can use templates and schedule reminders. They can also send push notifications and newsletters.