Do you have your new puppy spiel down to a fine-tuned speech you can deliver in under a minute? You’ve no doubt given the same lecture hundreds of times during your years of practicing veterinary medicine, but this is your client’s first puppy, and they may be overwhelmed. That 30-minute wellness visit can turn into an hour or more, and after the visit, your front desk team still handles daily phone calls about Fifi’s food, treats, toys, and socialization. You could have sworn you covered all that during Fifi’s initial exam, but there must have been a communication breakdown.
In truth, there was no breakdown—the average person actually needs to hear something seven times before they remember it.
So, if you tell a pet owner they must expose their puppy to new things in a positive manner before 14 weeks of age, they will likely forget this crucial fact without a brochure, blog post, social media post, or website content—or all of the above—that reiterates the information time and time again. If you’re searching for ways to really get your message across, educate your clients beyond the exam room using these methods.
#1: Make your website valuable by publishing monthly blog posts for pet owners
A stagnant website is considered irrelevant, by search engines and your clients. Ensure your website is always the go-to source for current information regarding all things pet care to help boost your ranking. As your website continues to provide relevant, useful blog posts—ideally, published at least monthly, if not weekly—your ranking will keep climbing, and non-clients will more easily discover your practice.
Your continuously updated blog will not only become popular with search engines and clients, but will also serve your main purpose—providing useful pet-care information.
Instead of your clients turning to Google or a random breeder’s web page, they can sift through your blog posts for credible information on everything from vaccinations and parasite prevention, to nutrition and behavior. If, as they leave, Fifi’s owner still seems confused about their puppy’s vaccinations, the timing, and what they protect against, email or text them a link to your vaccination blog post.
#2: Post a mix of fun and educational content on your social media channels
Who doesn’t love those adorable first-visit pictures of puppies and kittens posing with a chalkboard of their stats? However, although filling your Facebook page and Instagram story with cute pet pics would be quick and easy, your clients need more value—namely, educational content.
Clients may come to your page to ooh and ahh over adorable pictures, but you should also share lessons and industry news important for pet owners (e.g., an unvaccinated puppy who got rabies, food recalls, vaccination protocol updates, and new treatments).
Try to split your social media posts between fun fillers and educational content—you don’t want to get too serious—and use links as needed. For example, when listing the latest pet food recalls, link to your blog post about nutrition myths to help pet owners learn about healthy pet diets.
#3: Spice up your website with how-to pet care videos
As a pet owner whose pet receives a diabetes diagnosis, the first thing that likely runs through your mind is, “I can’t give my pet insulin injections!” As a veterinarian, you kindly explain to your client that the procedure is simple and, before they head home with a box of syringes and a bottle of insulin, you demonstrate giving an insulin injection, and think your client is good to go. The next morning, your front desk team is met with a voicemail from a hysterical client who cannot figure out how to give her pet an insulin injection and is convinced her pet will die if you don’t immediately call her back.
You know this scenario all too well.
Your clients will be more relaxed handling difficult tasks if they have a how-to video with a friendly, familiar face on camera.
You can add the video link to your discharge instructions to ensure your client has a reliable source of information. Have fun with these videos and don’t make them too dry and educational. Videos on the following subjects will greatly benefit your clients:
- How to trim nails
- How to clean ears
- How to apply eye medications
- How to give injections or subcutaneous fluids
- How to give a fractious cat medication
- How to put a muzzle on a dog
The sky’s the limit for educational videos. If you’re feeling extra photogenic, you can hop on a Facebook Live video and show entertaining, or gross—but not too gross—aspects of veterinary medicine, like trying to give a wiggly puppy vaccinations, or cleaning out a kitten’s mite-infested ears that includes a peek under the microscope.
Educating your clients using various forms of communication outside the exam room will allow you to focus more on your patients in the exam room. Plus, pet owners will be more knowledgeable about their pet’s care, and their pets will be happier and healthier—every veterinarian’s dream.
Although we’re not as amazing as Facebook at reading your clients’ minds and offering them eerily coincidental ads, our Rumpus Writing and Editing team can solve your pet owners’ woes when they Google for pet care information. Our experienced writing team can create top-notch blog posts, social media content, newsletters, educational brochures, website copy, video scripts, and more that will connect with your pet owners and position your practice and your team as the leading experts in all things pet care. Get in touch to discuss your writing and editing needs.