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5 Tips for Re-Engaging Clients Post-COVID-19

Updated: 1 hour ago

COVID-19 has had a widespread and long-lasting impact on just about every industry and, unfortunately, the veterinary field is no exception. In the wake of the global pandemic, many clinics found themselves suddenly and unexpectedly forced to close down. Some found creative ways to keep their businesses alive, from offering telemedicine and contactless appointments to delivering care via house call.

Now that the dust is beginning to settle and many of the restrictions are finally being lifted, the new challenge lies in finding ways to reconnect and re-engage with those clients who may have fallen off the radar over the past several months. If you’re looking for a few ideas to reel those dormant clients back in and reassert your value in their pets’ lives, here are a few suggestions.

Stay on top of your online presence

With so much uncertainty, it’s important that you provide your clients – new and old – with a quick and easy way to get up-to-date and accurate information about your practice. When they visit your website, check Google or head to your social media profiles, you want to make sure they’ll find what they’re looking for, including updated contact information, business hours and any changes you may have made to your available services.

You might also want to include information on how you’re handling the pandemic. For instance, letting people know you’re taking extra precautions for their safety will help ease their mind and increase the likelihood of them booking an appointment. Likewise, if there are additional requirements or protocols you’ve got in place, such as screenings and health attestations, it’s a good idea to include that info as well. The more informed your clients are, the better.

Send out some notices

Whether you choose old-fashioned snail mail, email or a combination of both, you shouldn’t just sit back and wait for your clients to come back to you, or assume they know you’re open for business and booking appointments again. You should be proactive in your communications with them.

Even if some of your clients aren’t yet ready to come in with their pets, at the very least, you’ll stay in contact and keep your practice top-of-mind with them. Be sure to always include reminders of the importance of staying up-to-date with ongoing vet care as well as compelling calls to action that prompt the recipient to take action as soon as they’re ready.

Offer something extra, if possible

Whether or not they were impacted by coronavirus from a health perspective, this entire experience has affected almost all of us in some way or another. It’s important to recognize that the quarantine has left many people feeling incredibly vulnerable, whether financially, physically, psychologically, or all of the above.

Extending a few special considerations can really go a long way toward demonstrating empathy and understanding to your clients. For instance, offering designated hours for seniors will not only help keep your older clientele healthy and safe, but it might be just the thing that convinces them to book an appointment.

Think outside the box

There are lots of creative ways to connect with clients and get them re-engaged with your practice and your staff. One idea is to host online seminars and other virtual educational events. Offering these types of “free perks” may also help you attract new prospects to your clinic. Not sure where to start? Think about the most common questions your clients ask and then see if you can turn those into free events that are informative, interesting and/or entertaining.

Invite feedback

Last, but not least, encourage your clients to share their thoughts, feelings and ideas with you. Learning what’s on their minds and what may be standing in their way of scheduling an appointment can help you discover ways to overcome those obstacles.

Likewise, you may find that some of your clients have great ideas for accommodations that might make an experience with your practice feel safer and less risky. At the very least, you’ll keep the lines of communication open and show your clients that you value their opinion. And that can go a long way toward retention and a more secure bottom line.

For more expert practice management tips, guidance and advice, be sure to bookmark our blog and check back often for fresh content.

Our Advice on Tips for Re-Engaging Clients Post-COVID-19 in 2024

What specific messaging should practices use in their client communications to convey empathy and understanding about the challenges of the pandemic?

Veterinary practices should craft messages that are empathetic and understanding towards the pandemic's impact on their clients. Communications should acknowledge the difficulties faced by clients, including financial strain, health concerns, and emotional stress. Practices should express commitment to safety, detailing any new protocols and accommodations, like designated hours for vulnerable groups. Incorporating language that emphasizes support and readiness to assist, such as "We understand these challenging times" and "We're here to help," will resonate well, showing clients that their well-being is a priority.

What are some best practices for creating engaging virtual events that clients will want to attend?

To create engaging virtual events for veterinary clients, focus on relevance and interaction. Choose topics that address common concerns or questions, such as pet nutrition or behavior training, to draw interest. Utilize interactive elements like Q&A sessions, live polls, and quizzes to keep attendees involved. Promote these events effectively through email, social media, and your website with clear, enticing descriptions and easy registration processes. Additionally, consider featuring guest speakers like pet experts or local trainers to add variety and expertise, enhancing the value and appeal of your events.

What role can telemedicine continue to play in engaging clients who may still be hesitant to visit the clinic in person?

Telemedicine can play a crucial role in engaging clients who are hesitant to visit veterinary clinics in person by offering a convenient, safe alternative for pet care. It facilitates ongoing engagement by allowing consultations, follow-up appointments, and immediate care for minor issues through digital platforms, thus maintaining continuity in pet healthcare. This service can reassure clients, showing that the practice prioritizes their safety and comfort. Additionally, telemedicine can enhance client education and compliance by making veterinarians more accessible for advice and support, further building trust and loyalty.

What metrics should practices track to gauge the success of their re-engagement campaigns, and how can they use that data to refine their approach?

To gauge the success of re-engagement campaigns, veterinary practices should track metrics such as open rates and click-through rates of emails, attendance rates for virtual events, and the number of appointments booked following targeted communications. Analyzing these metrics provides insights into what messages resonate best with clients and which channels are most effective. Practices can use this data to refine their messaging, optimize communication frequency, and tailor their promotional strategies. Additionally, monitoring feedback and engagement levels on social media can help practices adjust their approach to better meet client needs and preferences.

How can practices support the mental health and wellbeing of their own staff as they navigate the challenges of re-engaging clients and adapting to a "new normal"?

To support staff mental health and wellbeing during client re-engagement and adaptation to new norms, veterinary practices should prioritize open communication, offering regular updates and forums for staff to express concerns and provide input. Implementing flexible work schedules or remote work options where possible can reduce stress. Providing access to mental health resources, like counseling services or wellness programs, is essential. Additionally, recognizing and rewarding staff efforts can boost morale. Training on stress management and resilience can also equip staff with tools to handle ongoing changes effectively.

Want more practice management tips and tricks? Bookmark the DVMelite blog and check back often for fresh, relevant content.

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