How To Improve Client Interaction for Veterinary Clinics with Wendy Hauser of PeakVet Consulting

Written By:
John Donato
June 28, 2022
Many vet clinics out there may not have problems getting clients, but they stumble around with keeping those clients. ‍And that’s not good.

Studies have shown that by only increasing your customer retention by 5%, you can see a 25%-95% increase in your profits. It couldn’t get any better than that, right?

So how can your veterinary clinic retain clients?

We interviewed Dr. Wendy Hauser of PeakVet Consulting, and one of the topics we discussed was how you could wow pet owners in the hopes that they become loyal clients. Her answers might just be what you need to give your vet clinic that much-needed financial boost.

Banking on Client Interactions

According to Dr. Hauser, client interaction should be considered a critical component of the day-to-day goings-on of a vet clinic. Only by creating a solid and thoughtful partnership with clients can there be a true collaboration between the team and clients. According to Dr. Hauser, significant client interaction produces a win-win situation where everybody will be happy.

Go Relational Instead of Transactional

Dr. Hauser pointed out that relational interaction is better than transactional to improve your vet clinic's client interaction. She clarified that it’s not just about getting the job done or having a checklist filled out. This kind of transactional interaction alienates pet owners. Vet clinics should not consider it a “fee for a service.”

The goal is to build a relationship with your clients so you can become partners and collaborate. Dr. Hauser included tips on how to do this.

Doing Relational Interaction With Veterinary Clients Right

Get to know their names.

Find out what the clients’ names are, and what the patient’s name is. Always aim to use those names when you address them from the first call to the end of their appointment. This lets you "connect" with them in a level much more than that of service provider and customer.

Make Them Feel Heard

Every client wants to feel heard. This is a primal desire, especially when we feel negative emotions like fear and uncertainty (such as in the case of a pet owner and a pet visiting a vet clinic). That is why your goal should always be to make your clients feel like you are not just listening but that they are heard.

You can do this by asking open-ended questions such as “Can you tell me what a normal day for *insert pet’s name*?” or “What are your goals for today’s visit?” These questions are an excellent way to let them open up and be more comfortable. Also, make sure to pause after asking the question to give them time to answer fully.

You might also want to ask follow-up questions, like, “I understand that *insert pet’s name* likes to sleep for long periods. Can you give me an average in hours?”
Lastly, summarize everything they have mentioned so they will truly feel like somebody is listening to them. Doing these things will require you to give your patient your 100% undivided attention, but it will be worth it.

Use Sign Posting

One last tip Dr. Hauser mentioned was to use signposting. This basically means you need to take your clients through the whole process. Then, explain what those processes are and answer any questions they have. Make sure you simplify things when needed but be specific regarding sensitive stuff. By doing signposting, the client will not feel left out and will know what will happen next.

If you are interested in watching our interview with Dr. Wendy Hauser of PeakVet Consulting and her thoughts on how you can improve your veterinary practice then we suggest you watch the video here. You can also reach out to Dr. Wendy Hauser and PeakVet Consulting if you require management consulting for your veterinary practice and hospital.

However, if you need help with the digital marketing needs of your veterinary business, don't hesitate to reach out to Apex Veterinary Marketing. Apex is your one-stop shop for everything marketing related for all veterinary practices and hospitals.

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