I spoke with a DVM new practice owner recently that was simply following the Òbuild it and they will comeÓ business adage and painfully waiting for new clients to arrive, all the while his practice expense meter ticked away in the background! A nail-biter? Absolutely. A couple of things needed correcting with this situation…
The viewpoint of the owner. It’s too passive.
01- Fact: Simply hanging out your shingle or just physically being there is not sufficient enough in most cases to attract the right amount of attention to your practice. New Clients are the life blood of your practice. You need 30–40 of them each month for each full time DVM. Don’t ever forget this. (If you have lots of new clients and are the only game in town, then just wait until you get some new hot-shot DVM move in.) So don’t wait! You need to pro-actively market (I.e. do things to turn up the spotlight on your practice and drive new clients in.) Your external marketing division is one of your key 7-divisions of practice management.
02 - Your marketing needs to be effective in bringing in new clients. Effectiveness is the key word here. I am not against Yellow Pages or any other form of advertising or promotion if they are effective. So how do you know if your promotion is effective?
Count the number of new clients separately from your regular transactions. Track where they come from. Ask them “Where did you find our phone number to call us today?” You may be very surprised.
Remember: A healthy practice should be bringing in 30 to 40 new clients a month for each 40 hour per week DVM.
03 - An effective marketing program creates a strong emotional response in potential clients by “pushing their button.”
A button is something you push that produces a response. The response you want is obviously for new clients to choose you as their veterinarian. What’s not so obvious is if you fail to properly align even one aspect of your marketing & presentation—your pricing, positioning, quality, presentation, design, staff friendliness and so on—you won’t hit your client’s button. These buttons can vary within different communities. There’s not just one standard method. You have to do your own market research for your area.
If you are at all interested in learning more about this subject, then consider signing up for our 2010 Online New Client Builder Workshop. It’s a 3-part workshop that gives you an excellent overview of veterinary external marketing and a step-by-step program to follow.
Monday, December 13, 2010
Thursday, December 9, 2010
“How to write effective company policy is a great tool to make things run smoothly in our organization and people are not waiting for the orders for every situation and jamming my lines.
Policies would be in place for all aspects of the business. The staff would know it that they exist and they need to be followed strictly. This prevents staff from setting their own policies and taking wrong decisions which are counter productive and causing chaos.
It prevents my lines from being jammed all the time. Staff does not have to run to me for approval of every decision out there.”
Manjit Jammu, DVM; Practice Owner
Clearwater Animal Hospital; Windsor, ON
Planning & Policy Course
“This was a very good course. It was enlightening to see why so many plans just don’t happen. And now – hopefully that will not continue top happen in my practice.I especially liked understanding how to get a special project going. This has been a mistake in our clinic and now I can correct it to get things going.”
Candy Stables, DVM; Practice Owner
Bow Valley Veterinary Clinic; Brooks, AB
Planning & Policy Course
“What an amazing course! What I thought I knew and when I was finishes, what I learned was incredible.
Will use this information at work but also as an individual.
I love statistics!”
Althea Caveney, Practice Manager
Lakeside Animal Hospital; Tilton, NH
Formulas for Business Success Course
“This is a fantastic course. There is so much extremely reliable information in this course. Using the tools learned in this course are no doubt going to be extremely well received by my staff; because their course will be much clearer for them. They will also immediately see the fruits of their work.”
Ruth Doe, DVM; Practice Owner
Nob Hill Cat Clinic and Hospital; San Francisco, CA
Management By Statistics Course
“This MBS course and its implementation have given me hands-on control of so many areas of my practice. It has shown me, through the application of the condition formulas, that there is always something that can be done to turn around a slump or to reinforce a positive trend. For years, before contacting VPS, I would get to year end, look at my plateaued statistic (VSD) and think that if I would just work harder next year I could get out of this stalemate. But it never happened until VPS showed me how to take control and analyze each week’s statistics, allowing for immediate control of any down statistic. Management by Statistics has been one of the major forces in the transformation of our practice.”
Tom Wiles, DVM; Practice Owner
Pittsburgh Spay & Vaccination Clinic; Verona, PA
Management By Statistics Addendum
Monday, December 6, 2010
“The Ethics for Business Survival course is the meat and potatoes course that uses our foundation courses and explains in detail what is needed to determine what, where and how to survive in the business environment. The skills learned here will be used to manage in a way that will produce the expansion every business needs to survive.”
Evelyn Bock, DVM; Practice Owner
Southwick Veterinary Hospital; St. Louis, MO
Management Basics Implementation Program
“The Client Compliance Builder Course gave labels to put on situations that are already happening in my practice. I now have the tools and knowledge to move [clients] through the steps of the sale to reach "closing" and "delivery" of my treatment plans. I never thought of myself as a sales-person but after taking this course I realize life is a series of sales and closing the deal.
This course has shown me that I can be an advocate for the pet by "selling" clients that right treatment plan. We all win!"
Dr. Beth Neuman, DVM
Client Compliance Builder Course
“This course helped me to get a better handle on good solid ways to make plans, and then more importantly the way to see it through.
I think this info will be very helpful in the future if we expand or renovate our facility, as well as the smaller day to day issues at the clinic."
Wes Wood, DVM, Practice Owner,
Breaking The Code Course
“So much of my life up until now has been a series of dreams, plans; so many of which have failed to come to fruition. Now I know why.I am excited to utilize these tools; whether they be applied to a goal of cleaning out the garage, making sure I have the garden this summer, that vacation, lifestyle, clean office or secure retirement. I just have to work through each step, one-by-one and finally get there."
All I had were plans, without the actual structure or series of necessary steps to make those plans a reality.
Janelle Walker, DVM, Practice Owner
Best Friends Veterinary Medical, Portland OR
Policy and Planning Addendum
“Wow – I was intimidated at first glance through the workbook but really had fun with this course. I learned a lot about myself through the drills – some of it being that I already had some skills in place. Addition of the other skills made me feel great. I want to be a good listener and I want to be heard. I want to be a good gatherer of information. This course gave me some pretty handy tools to help me achieve my goals. This course was fun and I’ve already used a couple of techniques back at the clinic...”
Nina Ferguson, Director of Administration
Kamloops Large Animal Veterinary Clinic
Improving Business Through Communication Course