VMP 270: 5 Ways To Get More Veterinary Clients Without Spending A Dime

John Carter - Radio Webflow Template
Brandon Breshears
February 28, 2024
Listen this episode on your favorite platform!
Veterinary Marketitng Podcasts on   iTtunessssssThe Veterinary Marketing Podcast on SpotifyThe Veterinary Marketing Podcast On Google PlayAnchor Icon - Radio Webflow TemplateSoundCloud Icon - Radio Webflow Template

In our latest chat, we're tackling the ins and outs of digital marketing and how it can totally transform your vet practice. We're talking about drawing in new clients, keeping them engaged, and making sure they stick around. I'm here to guide you through this journey, so let's jump right in!

First off, I want to give a massive shoutout to our sponsors, WhiteSpark and CallRail. These folks are changing the game in digital marketing, and I'll be spilling the beans on how their services can seriously up your practice's game. Now, let's get to the good stuff. We're zeroing in on client-centered marketing because, let's face it, your clients are the heart of your practice. It's not just about listing what you can do; it's about understanding and addressing what your clients and their furry friends need. From the moment they call your practice to the messages they read on your website, it's all about making them feel heard and cared for.

And it doesn't stop there. We're diving into how to create meaningful interactions, educate your clients right from the start, and even how to get them to sing your praises to others. Plus, we can't ignore the power of online reviews. I'll share some killer strategies on how to manage feedback to boost your online rep. This episode is jam-packed with actionable tips that can make your practice the go-to spot for pet care.

So, if you're ready to make some waves in your digital marketing efforts and create a practice that truly resonates with pet owners, you won't want to miss this. Stick around for more episodes where we'll keep unraveling the world of veterinary digital marketing. Until next time, let's keep pushing the boundaries and making those meaningful connections with our clients. Catch you on the flip side!

Episode Transcript

Brandon (00:00:02) - Welcome to the Veterinary Marketing Podcast, where it's all about how to attract, engage and retain clients to your vendor in practice using digital marketing. My name is Brandon Breashears. Thank you so much for taking the time to listen. In today's episode, we're going to be talking about something I think you're going to love, which is how to get more clients and do better marketing without spending a dime. So today, it's all going to be about maximizing efficiency and effectiveness of whatever type of marketing that you're currently running and doing. So it's going to be applicable to everybody. And I think this is going to be some good things that are definitely fundamentals. But I know for sure 95% practices, probably even 99% of practices are overlooking most of these. So before we begin, we have just a few things. First, if you haven't done so already, be sure to subscribe in iTunes, Spotify, Google Play, or wherever you get your podcast from. And then we have two sponsors for today's episode, so let's jump into that.

Brandon (00:00:58) - Are you looking to get better SEO ranking for your practice? Probably everyone I know that runs a veterinary hospital would be benefited from having better local SEO, and that's why I want to give you some free tools from one of today's sponsor. It is WhiteSpark.ca. If you go to veterinarymarketingpodcast.com/seo, that's veterinarymarketingpodcast.com/seo. You can sign up to get a free account to give you some amazing SEO tools. WhiteSpark gives you everything that you need for better local SEO. If you haven't heard the episode I did with Darren Shaw, be sure to go back and look at it. He is the founder and owner of this company. It is fantastic. They have Google business profile management, local rank tracking, local citation, founder, reputation builder. They even have professional SEO services if that's something that you're looking for. So go to Veteran Marketing podcast.com/seo to check out White Spark and the free tools that they have available for you. You won't be disappointed. They're really cool. Uh, let me know what you think too.

Brandon (00:02:03) - If you need help with any of that, please don't hesitate to reach out. But again, veteran marketing podcast.com/seo. Have you ever said yourself, I wish I knew where these clients were coming from? If you've ever been wondering, you know what is actually driving conversions in your practice, then I have something that I think will be great for you and that is called CallRail. CallRail is a fantastic tool that allows you to measure and see where your conversions are coming from, and which of the calls and call sources are driving clients into your practice. CallRail makes it really simple to not only see where your calls are coming from, but the AI tools that they have that track and record the conversation so that you can assign outcomes to the calls is amazing. I highly suggest all of the clients that I have used CallRail, and if you've ever wondered where my clients coming from, you can try call roll out for two weeks for free. If you go to veterinarymarketingpodcast.com/callrail, you'll be able to try call Real for yourself and finally know where.

Brandon (00:03:10) - So if you want to do better your marketing meaning you want to be driving more clients in the door every single week, every single day, and you want to schedule that's full of clients that you absolutely love, but you don't want to spend more money to do it. This is the episode for you. We're going to be talking about some general concepts and things, but I think it's very, very important to take a step back from marketing on a regular basis and take a look and just see what the state of things are. You know, number one, baselines for new client numbers, um, how things are looking, what you're up to, what areas are growing, which areas are not growing. And understand that there's always room for improvement. And I think the more that you can do to set up systems around really capturing and maximizing what you have currently is always a smart step to do. Because if you add anything on top of it, it's just going to be a better mousetrap. It's going to do a better job at catching whatever comes through it.

Brandon (00:04:10) - And so thinking about these foundational pieces, I think people think about doing it and they just put it off and it gets put into the should. So the category and you end up shooting all over yourself is what Tony Robbins says. I like that, you know, he said that before, you know, you should do this and you should do that and you end up shooting on yourself and you don't want to do that. You want to actually take action. And a lot of times you have so much going on that it can be overwhelming. So my tip for you is just to do one thing, try just one thing per month or one thing per week. I'd make it a shorter term for yeah, so maybe one thing per week and it's going to be a non-urgent, highly important item. That's going to help you to move the needle for your practice. Okay. So don't just listen. Take action. If you're just listening. It's entertainment. And I guarantee there are more entertaining podcasts out there.

Brandon (00:05:02) - So please be sure to implement what you hear. If something stands out to you, be sure to actually make a move forward and do something. So I think the very first thing that I'm going to be talking about here, I've talked about this in depth in previous episodes. But you need to do better on the phones. So I'm going to give you three very specific things that will help you to do better on the phones. Number one, which is very simple, is don't let it ring more than three times. And that sounds really weird, but I've listened to so many calls and I can't tell you. I would bet the average practice, it's about a minute and a half before somebody actually picks up the phone and says, you know, ABC Animal Hospital, how may we help you? If you have somebody that sounds like they're smiling on the other side of that phone and they pick it up within three rings and they don't put you on hold right away, you're going to do so much better, I know that.

Brandon (00:06:01) - Um, especially with I hate phone trees. I've talked about that. I've ranted that please don't use phone trees. Um, there's tools out there like pause time on hold messaging. That is incredible. And that's a system in itself. I'm going to have Connie on here in the future. She's the owner of Pause Time and she's going to talk about on hold messaging and marketing with that. But it is such an important touchpoint. Most practices overwhelmingly have phones as the way that appointments are booked. And so because this is your primary acquisition channel for setting appointments, it needs to be dialed in and it needs to be perfect and you need to spend time with your clients, I'm sorry, with your CSR team so that they are effective at converting your your traffic. And I can't overstate how I'm sorry. I can't overstate how important that is. It is so important that the people answering the phone have some level of sales training, because they are in a sales position. They are also customer service, but they are in a sales position.

Brandon (00:07:05) - So number one is don't let the phones ring and make people hold and wait and leave messages. That kills conversion, and it sets a bad precedent for the rest of the relationship. The second thing is don't let them be order takers. I can't tell you how many calls I've listened to, and this is just frustrating. It gets under my skin because I help to drive traffic to practices, and then we get this qualified person who has a need and a want, but the person cannot convert because the team doesn't have the tools to to do it. So. You're not an order taker at your practice. What does that mean? Somebody calls and says, how much is this bay? And you just say the price. I'll tell you exactly what's going to happen, even if you're very affordable. If somebody's calling for a price on something and you're not building context, you're not building a relationship, you're not conveying value. You're just spouting numbers. The only thing that they're going to do is compare that number to another place.

Brandon (00:08:04) - There's no reason or benefit for them to make the appointment. Now, if I'm calling in pricing like auto dealers for a car park, just for example, and I'm just like, how much is this car? Okay. Thanks. Bye. How much is this car? Okay. Thanks. Bye. Even if they do get an appointment booked, there's no reason for them to actually show up in your practice. And as a result, you're probably going to get a lot of no shows because they just keep calling to try to find a better price. So you're not order takers? It's okay to say, well, here's that depends. Would it be all right if I gathered a little bit of information so that we could kind of develop some, some options based on your pet's needs? Because at our practice, we really value custom care. We want to make sure that you're getting the right care for your pet. And every pet is different. I wish I could just say, oh, it's, you know, 59 bucks and everybody's the same.

Brandon (00:08:57) - But that's not the case. And here's why we believe that. So building context, helping to really convey the fact that you appreciate quality and that you're trying to do a better service, they're going to get more than just show up, um, get the surgery and then get kicked out. Right? So whether you're doing pillows and you really want to emphasize the aftercare, the rehab that you have built into it, or spayed and neutered or vaccines, whatever it is, have a script in place so that you're not just an order taker and giving your CSR team some simple phrases that help them to position your practice in a way that conveys the brand is very, very important. And practice that and go through. And that's why I'm such a proponent of callrail, because you're able to listen and hear what's going on. Because for the majority of the calls where you become an order taker, it rolls right into the third point here for doing better on the phone sees really three simple steps. The last thing is just ask a closing question, because a lot of times they'll call what's the price for a spay? Okay, $120 for the exam and $400 for the spay.

Brandon (00:10:07) - Okay. Great. Thanks so much. And then they say I'll call you back. Right. You're not even asking that closing question is, what day were you hoping to get in for this bay? Right? Or, um, what time works better for you? We have three appointments available, so an assumed close I think works really well in most of these situations. They have a need. They have a want. They wouldn't be calling if they didn't. And so getting that is very, very important. If they say something like, you know, um, I'm just doing some research right now, we're really not sure when we want to do it. You could say, okay, that's that's totally okay. Would you like me to follow up with you to let you know what our schedule is like here in a couple of weeks? That's a fine follow up question. That's kind of like a down cell, but you're able to collect contact data at that point. And so following up is very important.

Brandon (00:10:58) - But these three things of number one is pick up the phones in a timely manner. Don't put people on hold. Be sure to not be an order taker and have scripts so that you can take control of the conversation and convey the points that you really, really want to. And then number three is ask for the appointment. Every single time somebody calls, you should ask them when they would want to set an appointment. If it's a new client, especially right if somebody is calling for a refill on a prescription or something not appropriate, you know, you know what I mean. So that's number one is do better on the phones. If you do better on the phones, everything you do in marketing is going to be more effective, I guarantee it. The next thing that I think you really need to do without spending any more money is make all of the messaging that's on your website. You focused, not refocused. What I want you to do really quickly is go to your website, take a look, read it just real quickly and think about from the perspective, are you talking about your practice or are you talking about your clients in the in the perspective of If I'm reading this, is it about you or is it about your client? And so instead of saying, we are so great, we've been open since this year, we have this training, we have this equipment, we have we we, we all about the US and how great we are.

Brandon (00:12:21) - That is good from a perspective of, you know, being confident in helping to say, like, we believe that we're a good solution. The problem is that the client cares about them, right. What's in it for me? That's what people ask. And so if you can change that framing of here's you know all about us to this is all about you, this is about your experience, your pet, your pet's care, how we value the health of your pet. We partner with your pet's health. Um, you know, all of those types of things make it about you and every part of the website. Because again, you have to remember, you have to enter into the conversation that your clients are already having in their mind, and they are looking for somebody who cares about them, who cares about their pet. And you have to really nail that with your messaging. And so make it about you. And when I say you, it's like I'm talking to somebody, it's about you.

Brandon (00:13:21) - It's about the other person, it's about the client. Right? The the things that are cool about your practice are features of your practice. But that's not necessarily benefits okay. So benefits are the big things. You want to sell benefits whenever you're doing marketing because it helps people understand why they should use you as a veterinary practice. So do you have convenient hours? That's a benefit right? Because then they don't have to take time off of work. And um, they have drop off, which is helpful because they can, you know, do other things on their day off instead of just sitting in the vet office all day long, you know, different things that are going to be important to your ideal client type. And this leads to the next point, which maybe this should have come before that, that previous point. But you need to understand your clients better. You have to um, I know you see a lot of clients in your practice, and I know that there is a big kind of, you know, spectrum of client types, but you probably don't understand your clients as good as you think, which is odd because you spend so much time with them.

Brandon (00:14:30) - Um, you know, I found that when I'm talking to, uh, potential clients for, um, working with ads and things, and I asked them, so what kind of clients do you want? They really have a hard time of conveying, number one, what value points and value proposition are very important. So we have to kind of pull that out. But it's it's truly important that you know what are important to these people. What makes them tick. What are they afraid of? What keeps them awake at night? You know, those types of things? Um, imagine, like if you ever set up a time with me to talk about ads, for example, we don't sit there and we don't talk about, oh, you know, I've run this much ads and here's all of the. That I have. And here's all the people that I've worked with. And it's not about me. It's okay. Let's talk about your practice. Who do you want to be coming in? What kind of procedures do you want to be doing? How many appointments do you have right now? How many appointments would you like to have? You know, so when when I'm assessing my potential clients needs, number one, I know what their struggles are, what their fears are, and when I talk to them, it's not about me, it's about them and the outcome that they're hoping to get.

Brandon (00:15:40) - Now we transition from that desired outcome to what is the likelihood that we're going to be able to get there? And if I'm able to convey a strong probability that they're going to get, they're probably going to work together. But ultimately I have to understand really what's in it for them, what their biggest fears are and what their biggest hopes are, and be able to communicate how these different solutions are going to help them get to where they want to go. And I think that because veterinary medicine is so kind of advanced, as far as you know, I think you're probably some of the smartest people in in the world, especially when it comes to education. You're absolutely very, very educated. And so it's hard to not think that, oh, you know, all of this stuff that that I've accumulated is really important for me to convey because it's important to you. And I get that. But your client wants to know that you understand them. They want to know that you value the same things, that they value, that you're going to help them get to the desired outcome.

Brandon (00:16:44) - And I made a post on LinkedIn about this is when you're communicating value to your clients, you can't just have equal value. If you have a thing that is a dollar and you trade it for another dollar with your client, right? So you're doing an equal value of trade. If I said here, I'll trade you a dollar, you give me a dollar. How's that sound? We'd trade our dollars and we'd be in the same position. So what we want to have happen is actually the perceived value of what you're offering needs to be so much more valuable that it's it looks like the the value scales are tilting in the favor of the client. They're getting way more value than what they're paying for. And what's cool is it can be a win win both ways. The client can say, you know, I feel like I'm getting way more value than what I'm paying for. And then you can say, I'm getting way more value than what I'm giving away, right? So both of us win.

Brandon (00:17:38) - It doesn't have to be somebody losing in somebody winning. But both are winning. So back to this though. You have to understand your clients better. You have to have conversations that are. I think you are spending so much time with your clients. You really need to understand what makes them tick and ask them how things are going. Become better at small talk, and really get into their minds and trying to figure out when people are saying things. Um, especially if it's new client potential. There's so much opportunity, right? Um, a lot of clients that I have right now are doing like same day appointment searches and things that we're trying to target people that need appointments same day. And so it's a good opportunity for them to get people that might be switching practices or things like that. And as you're switching practice, you have clients coming in that have previously gone to other practices before you can ask them. So they'll just volunteer stuff all the time, for example. Um, they'll say things like, you know, I used to go here, but I have to say that I love your practice and I'm going to be going to your practice now instead every time.

Brandon (00:18:43) - So you've got a client for life type of thing. I have several clients that hear that pretty frequently. And I think that they just say, you know, thank you that that means so much to me. But really, that's a missed opportunity to say, well, that's really interesting that you say that. What what specifically stood out to you. Right. Open ended questions that can get people to talk. And then they might say something that you really had no clue about, where they'll say, you know, the other practice that I went to was only open Monday through Thursday, and they were closed an hour for lunch, and they closed at 4 p.m. every day so I could never get in. But you're open till 630 and that's really helpful, right? So understanding what the market wants is valuable and understanding what your clients want and need so that you can then convey that value, build it up and give people what they want. And I think looking at what the market actually wants and what your client base wants based on the types of clients that you want to be getting.

Brandon (00:19:37) - I think a lot of times people do it backwards where they say, okay, I'm opening a practice. Here's what I'm going to do. Uh, I'm going to force this type of medicine out here, and we're going to do these services. These are ours. These are prices. And people will just pay because that's what we've said, that in reality, you should do research based on the people that you love working with what they're seeing as value, why they're coming in. And I think just getting that kind of feedback will help you to get so many insights. And, um, you know, based on things like with the types of clients that I work with, um, I really understand what keeps them up at night, what they're worried about, and how we can overcome those types of things so that, um, the conversations that I have that would typically be like a sales conversation doesn't feel like a sales conversation because we're not talking about, you know, convincing anybody. It's what what do you need? And is this a good fit type of thing? And I know that veterinary medicine is a lot more nuanced, but I think that you can get to the same location there at the end where you really understand what makes these people tick and how can we better serve them.

Brandon (00:20:46) - Um, so understanding your client helps you to do just far more better when it comes to building offers, conveying value, and selling your products and services. So I can't understate that enough. Sorry, I can't overstate that enough. Um, you need to understand your clients better. The next thing that I think would really be helpful is have upsells automatically built into your funnel that you have. So, for example, if you have a cool rehab treadmill or you have rehab services in your practice, but nobody knows about them, it doesn't do you any good. I think especially with your new client acquisition, they need to be put into a new client funnel that helps them get, uh, acclimated to the practice so that they understand how the practice works, the best ways to set appointments, what to do if they need anything from you, the best ways to communicate with you. And then also, here's all the other cool things that we have and here's why we have them. Here's why we recommend them.

Brandon (00:21:52) - And it helps just to build credibility. So upsell funnels or things. Maybe you have dental you know people do dental month. But I think you should probably build some kind of a dental month for everybody that's built in to, you know, new client things. So for example, somebody comes in their new client, they get automated welcome emails that help to basically indoctrinate them into your practice. And then they get special offers a month in to help increase dental compliance. And then they get emails that help to explain all of the cool programs and all the cool things that you have in your practice. But you have to make people aware. And so building out these types of automations that are going to help to build awareness and also ask them to, you know, book times to use these services is really, really important. And almost nobody does it. So once you build an automation too and you set it up, it just runs. And so it gives you a return on investment forever. And again, we're talking about things that don't cost extra money.

Brandon (00:22:55) - Any time you build out a system that makes your clients more valuable, it is so valuable for your business because now you can pay more to acquire customers. You're getting more bang for your buck. Anytime you do acquire a new customer, and they're probably going to be happier because you're giving them services that are valuable and that they care about. So it's going to keep them longer, too. So building upsell automations do it with text message. Do it with emails. Think about what you want to do. And I would say just have a once a month type awareness upsell. That's just like, hey, we have this product or service and you should use it if you're this kind of a person. So the next thing that I think that you really should do is build out a referral program. And it doesn't have to be fancy. You don't need a software necessarily. I know there's lots of softwares out there that do referrals, but just have it built into your email of, you know, we really appreciate you.

Brandon (00:23:51) - We're we love working with you in our in our practice. And we would love more clients like you. So we don't normally ask for things like this except to our best clients. And since you're you're so great, if you could do us a favor and refers to your friends and family, who would be appreciative. And if you frame it in a way like that, who's going to say no, right? If you're like, I just love working with you, who else do you know that would be interested in coming in? Just make sure that you have those types of things built in. And when I say referral program, it doesn't again, have to be a special software. It could just be a simple postcard that you send out. It could be a simple email that you send out. It could be. Just to mention, as everybody leaves, right? If somebody's checking out, you have this opportunity where you're you're concluding the transaction, talking about stuff, and then, you know, just casually drop that and have a script for your CSRs there as people are checking out.

Brandon (00:24:45) - You know, we we just really appreciate you. We love that you bring, you know, your dog Guinea. And if you have any friends and family, please let us know. We have a referral program. Is there anybody you know that needs a veterinarian right now? And if you frame it in a way of is there anybody that you know, if you're talking to somebody, you can frame it in an open ended way. So like, who do you know? That would probably be a good referral for us, those types of questions, um, instead of just a yes or no, if you ask somebody yes or no question, most of the time it's going to be no. So think about how to frame those types of referral questions because you're going to get better results if it's open ended versus just being a yes or no. Okay. And then the final thing that I think is just incredibly important. Most practices I think more practices are having this, but still it's just underused is have a review program in place where you are asking for reviews.

Brandon (00:25:40) - And I think if you can mention it and have just posters around your practice and things where it's asking for people, but build a system that actually asks for reviews, and I understand that you might want to control those and things where you're asking for some type of prequalification of like, did you have a good experience? Please leave us a review. But I think for the most part, I mean, I'm seeing reviews for clients and things, but, um. Most practices that are doing an amazing job. You shouldn't be concerned about asking for reviews. You're going to get some bad reviews just because you can't make everybody happy. That's totally okay. And I think that generally people understand that to you. Um, I had this one client that has, I think like 270 some reviews, and he got his first one star review. And, um, he was pretty, pretty devastated about it. And I can understand for sure I have somebody left me one star reveal my podcast, and I was like, what the heck? So I, I get that feeling, but, um.

Brandon (00:26:41) - Be sure that you're asking for it because it's very important. It's increasingly more important that your Google Business Map Pack is well-researched, well-reviewed, and is going to continue to drive a bunch of traffic for you. Um, interestingly enough, I've done a bunch of research on just how many conversions come from, like organic blogging versus Google My business, and it is not even comparable. How many more calls you're going to get from your Google My business versus like, people that spend a tremendous amount of time and energy into blogging. So blog posts are great, but they don't convert like Google my business. And I can say that safely that you're going to do much better if you invest in focusing on reviews, optimizing your Google business profile when it comes to just generating more of your clients. So those are all of the the strategies that we have today that are going to help you to get more out of your marketing without you spending a single dime. So number one is do better on the phones. This is so important.

Brandon (00:27:46) - One of the most important things make your content and messaging you focused not about yourself but about the client. Be sure to understand your clients better. What makes them tick? What are their hopes, fears, dreams? What do they want? What do they value? Why do they like you? What do they like about you? What do they like about your practice? Understand them and get a deep understanding and just spend time talking with them. Be sure to build an upsell automation that is upselling and cross-selling services that you have in practice. Build out a referral program and then finally build out a review program and have a review strategy in place. If you do those things, I guarantee you will see more clients or I'll give you a refund on this episode. Right. But no, seriously, you will do better. Most practices are not doing these things, so just try to set up something that you can actually set a time inside. So just try and set a time. Set aside. So just try and set aside some time and knock these things out, even just once a month.

Brandon (00:28:53) - If you do that, you're going to compound on yourself. It's going to get better and better over time. And then when you start running ads and you set up a time to meet with me to run some ads, for example, and you have these things in place, it's going to be so much more effective because you're going to be able to create content. You're going to be able to create marketing and ads that speak to your clients, and then you have the better mousetrap built, where you're going to be able to convert as many of those people as possible. I hope this was helpful. If you have any need for anything marketing related, please don't hesitate to reach out. You can go to Veterinary Marketing podcast.com or reach out on LinkedIn, and I'll see you on the next episode. Have a great day everybody.

John Carter - Radio Webflow Template
Brandon Breshears
Digital Marketer & Podcaster
Facebook Icon - Radio Webflow TemplateTwitter Icon - Radio Webflow TemplateInstagram Icon - Radio Webflow Template

I'm here to help you get more out of your veterinary practice using digital marketing. Learn how to attract, engage and retain new clients to your veterinary practice using digital marketing.