Want a steady stream of new furry patients coming into your practice — without all the guesswork?
Here are 20 proven-to-work veterinary marketing ideas you can use to GROW your practice starting now!
1. Define what makes you different — and BETTER — than fellow vets
Before you invest any money into veterinary marketing services, you should examine how exactly your practice differs from your competitors.
Understanding your competition is SO important. In fact:
It’s one of the FIRST exercises we do at our live Growth Summit event!
Also called your Unique Selling Proposition — or USP — it’s a clear statement that communicates to prospects how your
- And staff are different (and better!) than your competitors.
Once you define your USP as a crystal-clear statement, you’ll use it in ALL of your veterinary marketing strategies.
If you’re the only holistic vet in town, say it! That’s pretty unique, and it’s something health-conscious pet owners would want to know!
Here are some examples of vet USPs to give you more ideas:
- The ONLY Large Animal Vet in All of Clark County!
- The Only Holistic Vet That Offers Surgery Services
- The Only Vet That Offers FREE Pet Check-Ups
- The #1 Rated 5-Star Vet on Yelp! in Danville
DON’T skip this step!!
Without a well-defined USP, all of your veterinarian marketing money could be wasted.
Your prospects don’t want to figure out how you’re different/better —
They want to SEE it right away in your veterinarian marketing…
Which brings me to this next one…
2. Stand out with a professional, unique logo
Having an attractive logo professionally designed for your practice is important for 2 reasons:
- It helps you look like a professional trustworthy business
- It creates name — and image — recognition
Both of which amount to more leads and pet patients!
Something like this:
That’s a local vet in the Clearwater area where PostcardMania is.
LOVE how they build in their USP (from #1) into their logo! They say they’ve been loving and caring for animals (awesome)… since 1977… so, a long time!
They didn’t HAVE to include that information in their logo — but they did, because they know that information instantly creates credibility, trust, and potentially LEADS.
So get a legit-looking logo that communicates you’re the BEST at what you do!
Once you have your logo, you’re going to use it on the rest of your veterinary marketing strategies…
Such as these super affordable ones:
- Pens- just 99 cents
- Branded fetch balls for dogs- $1.50 per ball
- Dog waste bag holders- $1.57 per clip
- Aluminum sports water bottles (always good)- $2.95 each
- Car magnet- $8 each
- V-neck branded T-shirts for your staff- $14/$11 per shirt!
- Logo design- $995
With prices like those, your veterinarian marketing will effortlessly create more awareness of your practice all over town!
3. Create an irresistible special offer that gets prospects calling in
Your special offer has 2 MAJOR functions in your veterinarian marketing:
- Enticing prospects to trust you and give you a try
- Rewarding current patients to ensure future loyalty (and encourage referrals!)
So a special offer isn’t an afterthought for your veterinarian marketing.
It needs to offer a risk-free way to try out your practice.
Here’s an example from one of our client’s successful veterinary postcards:
Your eyes draw to that bright red circle with the FREE first exam special offer —
Which is a killer deal and something prospects will call in to get!
If you’re worried that discounting your services — or offering free exams — will jeopardize your business’s revenue, think again:
The idea behind special offers is you want to drive in LOTS of people to you.
Once you prove to prospects that you’re the #1 vet to take care of their pet(s), you’ll have more people to convert into long-term, loyal customers who’ll come back for years.
To help you out —
Here are some special offers PROVEN to work in veterinarian marketing:
- FREE first exam
- $1 rabies shot for NEW patients
- $15 OFF premium pet food
- 20% OFF organic flea treatment
- $20 OFF grooming services
Now that you have a USP (#1) and special offer ideas your prospects will jump at, check out #4…
4. Market consistently year-round to generate 30-40 NEW pet patients
When your pet isn’t aging, you don’t need a vet every single month.
That’s why when your prospects DO need a vet, you want them to think of YOU.
How do you remain top of mind for prospects??
You stay in front of them year-round.
Take our client Northern Illinois Cat Clinic, for example:
When they were handling their marketing in-house using letters, they usually received about 10 calls from a few thousand letters sent… but:
Using veterinary postcards — mailed consistently — they generate more than 5 times that many leads.
In fact —
The clinic manager, Bryan, estimates Northern Illinois Cat Clinic brings in approximately 30-40 new clients for every 5,000 postcards mailed.
Here’s their veterinary postcard design:
“I think the cost that you spend to send the postcards out is insignificant with the return you get from them,” said Bryan.
Want to see gorgeous veterinary postcards?
5. Use this time-testing marketing tool to generate 130 leads (and $4000)
Believe it or not, direct mail remains the most preferred form of marketing —
And YES, even in our hyper-digital age!
It’s the MOST likely of the veterinary marketing strategies to generate your practice leads and sales.
Check out these statistics:
- Direct mail produces up to 500% more responses than all other marketing methods. (DMA 2015 Response Rate Report)
- 92% of consumers prefer direct mail when looking to buy a product. (DMA 2015 Response Rate Report)
- The average return on investment (ROI) for direct mail marketing is 18%-20%. (DMA 2015 Response Rate Report)
Not just any old postcard design will get you leads.
You need to make sure your veterinary postcards each have the 10 postcard design elements on them —
Otherwise you risk your veterinarian marketing campaign not giving you the best results possible.
Your veterinary postcards need to:
- Grab attention
- Clearly communicate your USP (#1) to prospects
- Mention an irresistible special offer
- Provide your practice’s contact information
- And entice your prospect to ACT NOW on your offer (aka, call you!).
Don’t forget —
You undoubtedly have competition looking to take away your business.
So whatever veterinary marketing strategies you’re using, remember these 3 rules to grow your practice:
- Reach prospects FIRST with your marketing
- Reach prospects more often than your competitors
- Stay top of mind for when prospects need you — so they call YOU!
Start planning your year-long marketing campaign now to stay in front of your prospects with your USP (#1) and professional logo (#2).
6. Use these 16 website tweaks to generate more leads online
Check out this CRAZY statistic:
95% of people who see your veterinary marketing strategies will head straight to your website to decide IF they’re going to contact you.
95% is almost ALL of them.
Your website has mere seconds to grab your prospect’s attention…
But guess what:
96% of prospects will statistically DITCH your website without taking any action!!
Meaning — GOOD-BYE LEADS. Yikes!
Your website MUST not only look professional, but it must be designed to capture contact information and turn it over to you.
I found that there’s 16 website design elements that help generate leads, and good news:
They’re not difficult to implement!
You can download a list of them for handy reference, too!
If you want an expert hand to tweak your website — or create an entirely brand new one — we design websites for an EXTREMELY affordable price.
7. Capture up to 96% more leads right from your website
Like I mentioned in #6, 95% of people will visit your website once they see your veterinary marketing strategies — whether it’s:
- Veterinary postcards (or any direct mail)
- A Google ad anywhere online
- Facebook — specifically ads
- Or even a Google review.
Like I said:
A staggering 96% of people will LEAVE your website…
Which is a HUGE waste of marketing money!!!
That picture is EXACTLY what’s happening when you don’t address your website!!
One tool you can use to capture more leads from your website is pop-ups…
But not “just pop-ups.” Let me explain…
Pop-ups aren’t anything new obviously, but they do work in capturing more leads from your website, specifically when you use a super enticing special offer (#3).
Word to the wise:
If you do use pop-ups, make sure to test and re-test them often.
That’s the ONLY way you’ll know which designs, colors, and special offers produce the most leads for your business!
Or, if all that sounds too technical —
We created the Catch-That-Lead Tool to manage your pop-ups and online leads for you.
It’s the most affordable way for you to get MORE leads out of your marketing expenditure and capture more leads from your website.
8. Nail your Google listing to generate FREE leads from Google
Register for a FREE Google Business Profile account. It’s how you’ll update your Google listing for your practice, meaning…
Your Google listing shows pictures of your clinic plus all information googlers expect to see. Your business’s information gets pulled automatically from data you enter in your Google Business Profile account.
If someone is looking for a local vet (which is VERY likely obviously!), if and when they search on Google Maps, they’ll also see your Google listing there!
Google is the #1 search engine in the world, so you need to ensure your clinic’s web presence is optimized for it!
When you log in to your Google Business Profile account, double check that this data is correct:
- Your business’s actual name
- Address (Google will verify it with a postcard)
- Phone number
- Hours of operation (important!!!)
- Category of your business
You’ll also manage and respond to your Google reviews from your Google Business Profile account — more on why that’s important in #9 next.
Again, make sure you keep ALL your contact information updated in your Google Business Profile account since inaccurate information will actually prevent Google from pulling up your practice in searches.
If your address OR hours change (like for holidays) make SURE to update it in Google Business Profile!
Nothing is more frustrating than thinking a business is open according to its hours listed on Google, but then, it’s not.
Like I mentioned, your Google listing also ties in to Google Maps.
When someone uses Google Maps to search for a local vet (HIGHLY likely!!), your correct and updated information on the internet in general (including Google Business Profile) will enable your ranking in Google Maps to be higher than those (meaning, your competitors) who don’t take the time…
So make sure your contact information is correct on these websites too:
- Other social media accounts
Google Maps results show up even BEFORE organic results.
Meaning, prospects see Google Maps results FIRST when they search on Google.
The first organic listing for a vet in the above search comes AFTER those Google Maps results at the top of the search page.
Remember that Google LOVES consistency —
So just keep your clinic’s information updated across anywhere it’s listed online and work on getting LOTS of positive reviews for your clinic on Google, which I talk more about next:
9. Use Google reviews since 90% of people trust and act on them
Consumers today RELY on reviews to make purchasing decisions, particularly when they’re considering a brand new business.
Check these out:
- 85% of consumers trust online reviews just as much as personal recommendations
- 68% of Americans said positive reviews made them MORE likely to use a business
- 84% trust Google reviews specifically just as much as word-of-mouth recommendations
You want to get LOTS of 4- and 5-star reviews of your clinic specifically entered on GOOGLE.
Here are some ways to do that:
- Have patient-facing staff members ask for reviews
- Make sure people know HOW to leave a Google review
- Add a link to your Google reviews in your email signature
- Then email gentle reminders that you’d appreciate a review
- Automate your review-getting process (read how here)
Here’s an idea of what you can add to your email signature:
“Have feedback about your experience with us? We’d love a review!”
And make sure you respond to ALL reviews because your communication online will show prospective clients that you care enough about your clinic to respond to all feedback — good or bad.
30% of consumers will actually look at how you handle negative reviews before deciding whether to contact you or not.
So it’s worth your time to respond to negative reviews!!
Even if you can’t remedy whatever went wrong which resulted in a negative review, at minimum your attempt to fix a problem shows people that you care.
Here’s one more point about reviews:
When you have lots of 4- and 5-star Google reviews, your Google listing will automatically stand out to prospects searching for you because they’ll immediately recognize those illustrious golden stars.
And guess what:
Star rating is the #1 factor used by consumers when judging a business’s credibility!
It’s like Google has trained us to recognize that stars = ratings, and the more, the better!
And if you need a step-by-step guide to gain more reviews, grab this:
10. Update your online listings to reach 93% of online prospects
As many as 93% of all online experiences begin with a search engine, according to SearchEngine Journal.
While many of the people who receive your veterinary postcards will search for you by name and go directly to your website (remember #6 and #7!!), those prospects who haven’t received your postcards yet will simply search for what they need online, like:
“Best vet in [your town].”
And they’ll see several listings, many of which will be search-and-review sites, like:
- Google Maps
- Angie’s List
- Yellow Pages
Make sure you’re listed on those sites, too — and that your vet clinic profile is correct, up-to-date, and filled with photos of your facility and team —
Or you risk LOSING all of those prospects to your competitors.
Here’s a great example of a thorough listing on Yelp, which is likely one of the first review websites to pop up:
I love how they uploaded several pictures of their cute pets — that’s exactly what prospects want to see!! That it’s a friendly practice that you just want to go to!
Any business that gets up close and personal with its clients (aka, anything medical) should use pictures of their staff in their marketing because prospects then feel like they know you and can trust you more easily.
Don’t just sign up for accounts with online listing sites and think you’re done…
Keeping your listing current means setting aside time to upload new photos regularly and asking your happy patients to leave you a review on the site (remember #9)!
11. Target and reach prospects with the #1 social media site in the world
Yup, I’m talking about Facebook!
First, get a Facebook Business Page for free.
I recommend running Facebook ads at the same time you’re mailing your veterinary postcards.
Here’s the matching Facebook ad:
Your prospects will see ONE cohesive marketing message from your clinic whether they receive your postcard in the mail or see your ad on Facebook.
Because here’s the truth:
Love or hate Facebook, social media is NOT going away.
If you look around in life, it’s clear people are glued to their smartphones, and they’re constantly in-taking social media content. So your veterinarian marketing MUST be there too.
Check this out:
You can TARGET the same prospects with your Facebook ads as who receives your postcards.
This coordination of mailing matching postcards plus simultaneously showing Facebook ads online gives your prospects the perception that your business is the #1 vet!
It’s called Everywhere Small Business. With it, your veterinarian marketing gets blasted using:
- Direct mail
- Google ads (across thousands & thousands of internet websites)
- Facebook ads
- AND Instagram ads
YOU don’t have to do anything.
We’ll run your direct mail campaign at the same time we design and run Google, Facebook, and Instagram ads online (including mobile devices!).
Your Google ads get blasted across hundreds (and thousands) of different internet websites in the Google network… including many HUGE website you’d be surprised at, such as:
- And MORE!
And your Facebook and Instagram ads?
They reach prospects where they browse, click, and “like” up to 50 minutes each and every day.
Watch the Everywhere Small Business video to see how this program works…
12. Improve your Google ranking with search engine optimization (SEO)
Search engines work by finding websites which match the keywords your prospects search with.
So if your prospects enter “[Your City] vet” (aka “Miami vet”] your website will rank higher in Google to the degree that your website pages have the keywords aka “Miami vet” in them —
As well as other factors that are more complicated which we won’t get into detail on here.
The vets you see above have websites that are built to be found by Google when prospects search with “Miami vet”, and that’s really good SEO because they’re on page 1 of Google (aka, EASY to find!).
To get your website found on Google (the world’s #1-used search engine), your website’s data must be both helpful and accurate — and filled with keywords your prospects use to find a vet like you.
Make a list of keywords using Google’s free keyword planner tool, and have your website guy (even if that’s you!) use them on the pages of your website — your homepage, your About Us page, etc.
It’s NOT only keywords you need for awesome SEO.
Here are some tips to increase your website’s SEO:
- Each page’s title (learn about page titles here) should be different
- Homepage’s page title should have “vet” (or the like) + your city & state
- Your contact data (on your contact page) must be correct
- Your business’s data must be referenced (cited) on other popular web pages
- You should have and use a free Google Business Profile
SEO is NOT a one-shot deal — much like most veterinary marketing strategies in general!
So beware of any company that claims to guarantee to get your website to #1 on Google in a short amount of time…
SEO is a continual process since Google and its algorithms (formulas) change all the time.
That’s why getting reviews (#9) and making sure your website is set up to capture leads is 100% worth your time (and it’s WAY less complicated too!!).
13. Create a video of your clinic for 80% more leads
Get a professional video made that clearly shows prospects how friendly your staff is!
Check out these stats on video marketing:
- Increases (FREE) traffic from search engines to your website by up to 157%
- Using video on a landing page can increase leads by 80%
Visitors stay on websites 88% longer when there’s video to watch.
I recommend getting a video made that introduces your practice to prospects by giving them a tour of your space in under 2 minutes.
14. Ask for referrals since 92% of people trust them
92% of consumers trust referrals from people they know, according to a Nielsen report.
Not surprising, right?
When you ask someone for a referral, you’re usually asking them because you know and trust their insight!
Don’t assume your clients know you want to grow your practice though.
That’s why you should add a line at the bottom of your invoices that says:
“We LOVE referrals! Get a FREE healthy treat for your pet for any referral who becomes a new client with us!”
You can also add this to the bottom of your email newsletter.
Know another great thing about referrals?
You don’t have to PAY to generate them as new fresh leads.
Instead — just reward your current clients who give you referrals…
Which will make them feel valued and save YOU extra dollars in your marketing plan!
15. Use live chat to talk to 92% of website visitors
The beauty of live chat is it puts a real person on your website, answering questions even after your practice has closed for the day.
Here’s why live chat’s so valuable today:
- 92% of consumers love using live chat on a website (Zendesk Report)
- 44% find live chat one of the most valuable website features (Forrester Report)
- 77% won’t contact or even buy from a business without live chat
Live chat turns your website into a real human interaction so prospects can get answers immediately, and most live chat assistants are trained to direct calls to your practice when possible…
Generating your business new leads in REAL time!
Here are a couple live chat companies you can check out:
Plus, most live chat systems today have a mobile app so that you can respond to your online visitors’ questions on-the-go and never miss a beat (or lead)!
16. Close up to 80% more leads with your current prospect lists
The MAJORITY of your leads will not close right away.
In fact, about 80% of your leads will close ONLY if you follow up with them on a consistent basis.
But don’t worry —
Following up with your leads can be done automatically with free email marketing tools.
Most email marketing tools have ready-made templates where it just takes a couple clicks to design professional-looking emails you can set up on an automatic schedule to send to your prospects. (No graphic design skills needed!)
That way, you can send consistent emails to your prospects with information like:
- What makes your clinic different (your USP from #1!)
- What your practice LOOKS like (with pictures!)
- If you have any special therapies or technologies
- How you’re better than your competition
- And any special offers or promotions you’re running.
When you consistently send out veterinarian marketing communication to your prospects, they’re less likely to forget about you and thus —
They’re MORE likely to contact you when they need you.
You can use that same email marketing tool to send out a monthly newsletter to keep your current patients feeling like they have a good relationship with you and your practice.
Feature practice updates or even special events (adopt a pet!) that they’d be interested in attending too.
Again, you can set up these automated email campaigns in most email providers — such as MailChimp —
Or we can set these up for you easily for a fee.
17. Turn NEW movers into automatic new clients without lifting 1 finger
About 11% of the American population moves every year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. MANY of those people need new local vets!
With our New In Town program, you can reach new movers in your area every month without you even having to think about it, which makes it one of the easiest-to-implement veterinary marketing strategies…
Here’s how it works:
- You tell us your target demographic and service area
- We design veterinary postcards for your business
- Every month, we automatically send all new movers that fit your targeting criteria your veterinary postcards
- They call to redeem your offer, then you wow them with your service and create new patients!
And this is cool:
Your veterinary postcards are personalized with the first name of the recipient (they can also be customized for each recipient to match their demographics), so they take notice of your marketing right from their mailboxes!
Here’s an example:
By automatically mailing to all the new movers in your area, your practice can simply receive a steady stream of new patients who need your help for their pets!
Want to see more awesome veterinary postcards already designed?
18. Reach out to other animal-service businesses and form partnerships
What other businesses have (or know) prospects who need your help?
How about these:
- Feed stores
- Rescue or adopt-a-pet places
- Pet stores
- Animal control authorities
It’s who you know!
19. Host events and promote them like crazy where 97% of people look
I’m talking about social media!
97% of people ages 16-64 login to at least one social media site in a month’s time…
But obviously —
We know it’s WAY more than one time per month.
If you host an adopt-a-pet event, for example, share tons of pictures on your vet’s social media!
Customers will like and possibly share your cute photos, which will spread awareness of your clinic!
If you host, for example, a pet costume contest for Halloween, you can even discount pet treats and generate extra retail sales!
Here’s the last ninja trick:
20. Track your results like a PT marketing pro
Only TRACKING will show you what parts of your vet marketing create leads (and income) for your business.
So — HOW do you track?
A new caller sheet is one way!
All you do is print off a stack of these sheets, give them to your receptionist (or keep them by your phone for whoever answers it), and ensure that each and every staff member uses them to:
- Gather ALL vital information from prospects calling in
- Find out which veterinary marketing strategies they saw
- And ensure if they don’t book an appointment, that you collect their email address to follow up with them
Another way to track:
Google Analytics — a free tool from Google that tracks the following:
- Who visits your website
- Where they’re from
- What pages they visit
- How long they stay there
- And WAY more!
Here’s a practical way to use Google Analytics:
Let’s say you mail out 10,000 postcards, and you check your Google Analytics account and notice 200 people visited your website when your postcards hit prospects’ mailboxes (which is knowable using mail tracking).
Let’s say 100 people landed on and spent 1-2 minutes on your practice’s “About Us” page.
Maybe only 5 people made it to your contact page to actually contact you and become real leads for your business.
Here’s an idea:
Why not put a pop-up form or lead capture form on that “About Us” page to capture more of the leads who read all about you.
This simple (and SUPER affordable tactic) turns these folks into tangible leads you can contact and actually invite in for a new pet appointment!
The most important metric to track?
Return on investment (ROI)!
The ultimate measurement of ALL the veterinarian marketing ideas you implement is how much sales they generate for your practice.
I’m always asked what response rate you can expect from your direct mail, and my reply is always the same:
You should be asking how much SALES your marketing can generate!
It’s endless —
As long as you’re consistent with your marketing.
Consistency can make or break your marketing campaign…
So there you have it!
20 proven-to-work veterinary marketing strategies to use to grow your practice — no guesswork required!
If you want more help on a one-on-one basis with your marketing, or if you’re interested in the Google/Facebook/Instagram combination of Everywhere Small Business, contact one my marketing experts for a no-obligation consultation by calling 800-628-1804.
Their advice and help is 100% FREE to you.
Or, you can always email me directly at Joy.Gendusa@PostcardMania.com.