May 12, 2020

8 ways to promote your Video Consultation Service

Joanna Woodnutt BVM BVS MRCVS

May 12, 2020

So, you’ve decided to go ahead and embrace this new technology to provide an extended service to your clients. Nice work! Once you’ve chosen your platform and got to grips with it, the next step is to get your clients on board.

This is easier than it sounds – from our research, clients are keen to have access to this service. In one of our surveys, 38% of clients would like to contact their usual vet through video. Clients are keen to embrace this technology – you just need to tell them that you’re offering it

1.Free Email Offer

One of the quickest ways of getting your clients registered on the video consultation platform is to take advantage of our free email offer. We create a fully branded, professional email and send it to your client list on your behalf, encouraging them to sign up to the platform. Signing up takes a couple of minutes, and clients can do so from the comfort of home, without the worry of having a sick pet to contend with. Simply contact us to arrange your free email campaign

2. Facebook

Your clients love seeing your updates on Facebook, don’t they? And social media use has skyrocketed in the wake of the COVID-19 lockdown, with one report claiming 40% of people are reporting an increased usage. So – get the message to where your clients are with Facebook posts. You can use our free of charge posts to advertise to your clients or, for a longer-term option, why not consider talking to our sister company VetsDigital for a Social Media Marketing Package?

3. Website

Even long-standing clients will check your website as a source of information, especially in these changing times. Keeping your website up to date is a critical part of ensuring that clients feel able to seek help when they need to. Why not create a page on your website detailing the video consult set-up? You could add it to a page about COVID-19, but if you want to use it long-term, having a separate page explaining the service – just as you would have a page about nurse consults or specialist appointments – is a great way to distinguish yourselves from the competition. Don’t forget to add a free website badge and link it to the platform.

4. Letters

Although you could send out letters detailing your new service, many vets would prefer to keep postage charges to a minimum. Why not add a compliments slip with the information included with your vaccination reminders, or when you’re posting out routine treatments? You could even include a QR code to the sign-up link. This way people can hear about the service and start getting their heads around it before they need to use it.

5. Answerphone

Most practices have some sort of message on their phones right now, detailing opening hours or COVID arrangements. Why not add that video consultations are being held and can sometimes replace the need to see the vet in person, then direct them to the website for more information?

6. Reception Team

Of course, most of your clients will still contact the practice using the phone. And this means that your receptionists are the most important people to be pushing the new service. But they can’t do this without training. You’ll need to tell them which consultations are suitable for video consultations, and which are not. And encourage them to get clients signing up and using the system. Just as they might discuss the healthy pet club to a client ringing to ask about vaccination price, they should be prepared to discuss video consultations and their pros and cons when clients ring.

7. Practice Displays

A simple display in the waiting room can be a great way to get the message across to clients. Whilst the waiting room is probably barely being used right now, getting the message up there and out to your clients can start anytime. Don’t forget to detail the types of consults they can request to be taken over video, and the benefits to the pet, as well as outline the pricing and what happens if the appointment needs to be taken in person to complete the examination.

8. In Consult

Don’t forget that clients in-consult can be reminded of the service and offered a video follow-up. This works especially well for post-op checks (especially if there are no stitches to remove) and new medication checks after a couple of days. Many clients will find this the easiest way to trial the new technology, as a direct recommendation from the vet can go a long way!

The success of this service depends a lot on how you approach the subject with your clients. If you treat it like a sticky plaster over the gaping wound of Covid, clients aren’t going to trust it. But if you see the value in offering this service, both now and in the future, you can get clients on board early. If you’ve got advertising tips that have worked for you, please feel free to email us!