One good marketing idea: Dont give up on the mail!

November 14, 2019
Tracy Sheffield, BS, LVT, CVPM

Tracy Sheffield is practice manager at Wimberley Veterinary Clinic in Wimberly, Texas.

Spruce up your print marketing approach by trying some of these creative ideas

Galina Barskaya/stock.adobe.comYes, you should be thoughtful about how you spend your marketing dollars, putting your money in the right places for the best return on investment. And the world may seem to be digital-only these days, but I can assure you print isn't dead! It can-and should-be used. It just needs to be used right.

Companies such as HomeOwner Data Services can provide mailing lists of individuals who have purchased a home in your area in the past 30 days. If new subdivisions are popping up where you live, consider using Every Door Direct Mail (EDDM) from the U.S. Postal Service.

Local papers, magazines

Does your community have local publications? Offer to write a regular column. A solid formula is a humorous or provocative introductory paragraph, followed by information about your topic and why it's important to pet owners, with a call to action for your conclusion.

Using print in a targeted manner can yield a profitable return, but make sure your envelopes are interesting enough to open. Skip “Current occupant,” and instead address your mailer to “The pet lover who lives here.”

This thinking isn't just for new clients, but lapsed clients, too-those who haven't been to your practice in the past 12 to 18 months. Research shows that these clients are at high risk for becoming totally inactive.

Choose a product or service-for example, feline rabies vaccines-and craft a letter that explains the importance of the service. Close the letter with a promise to follow up with a phone call to answer any questions the client may have and book an appointment. This way, the client is likely to be expecting the call and you'll experience less resistance. I've experienced a good return of 10% to 15% appointments booked from letters sent and phone calls made. Keeping clients active is easier than attracting new ones.

Tracy Sheffield, BS, LVT, CVPM, is practice administrator at Wimberley Veterinary Clinic in (you guessed it) Wimberley, Texas, as well as co-owner of T&L Veterinary Business Consulting. She was a dvm360/VHMA Practice Manager of the Year finalist in 2016.