By: Peter Weinstein, DVM, MBA
In Part 1, we discussed the foundational aspects of marketing and more specifically of Retention Marketing including the need for multiple touches and why retaining your clients is a good business move. Now we’ll move on to the 3Rs of Retention Marketing. Before any client leaves your practice, one or more of the 3Rs of Retention Marketing must be documented. What are the 3Rs?
One: Recheck. Two: Recall. Three: Remind.
Rechecks are the process of physically bringing the pet and pet parent back into your practice for a medical progress exam and evaluation of the status of a medical condition or post operatively. Or it includes a hands-on assessment of the pet to determine its health.
Rechecks are very common after skin cases or ear cases. For what other clinical conditions should a standardized recheck protocol exist? Corneal ulcers, bladder infections, post-operative soft tissue surgery, post-operative orthopedic surgery, after the start of chronic medication such as thyroid supplement, etc. Does your practice have a standardized recommendation for rechecks on the most common medical or surgical conditions that you do? If not, put this on your “to do list.” The doctors create the time frame for rechecks and all of the staff are responsible for implementing the program.
Rechecks should be given the message, we care so much about your pet that we want to make sure that the medical or surgical condition from which they suffer is improving, better, or cured before we can give a clean bill of health. The other message is that only a member of your professional healthcare team can truly assess the status of a medical condition. In other words, what looks good at home may still have a festering condition when examined more deeply.
Many clients perceive rechecks as simply a manner for practices to make more money unless you provide value and service associated with them. Thus, treat rechecks with the same importance you treat full physical examinations and let the client understand that value by explaining why they are so important. Remember it is the why that bonds clients not just the what.
If a recheck isn’t really needed, then at least one of the other Rs is.