Leave a Mint in Your Digital Lobby

By Distinct Advantage Partner

How do you run blindfolded down a road while trying to avoid oncoming traffic? We are figuring out that question every single day during this strange time. We are unsure of what is around the corner, what it looks like, or if we will be crushed in the onslaught. However, there are a few road signs for digital marketing you can see as you navigate the path in front of you. Here is a quick checklist to keep your business visible to your clients
Small dog on a couch with its owner

Digital lobbies

Digital is now the new front door and lobby to a veterinary practice. People search online and engage with a business before they ever speak to a person. The top two places people look for information are a business’s website and Google My Business. A third search location is Facebook. Making sure the hospital’s digital lobby is up to snuff is important to keep tails coming through the door.

Check off the items that have been completed.

□ Prominent notice of hours and clear drop-off procedures on a banner or pop-up on the business’s website. Make sure to also include these details in a permanent place elsewhere on your website.

□ Forms on the website for new patients, boarding, grooming, surgery, etc., in an online format that is submitted digitally and not printed.

□ Updates to Google My Business (GMB) =, such as Woman-Owned or Black-Owned Business attributes. GMB has new features for different hours depending on services offered as well.

□ Updated photos on all digital lobbies showing life during COVID-19, especially if pet owners are not allowed into the practice.

□ Easy-to-find links to reorder meds or make a telemedicine visit.

"People who are surprised, in a good way, tend to spread the word about that moment, which creates positive marketing."

Setting expectations

We are all stressed. Sick fur babies only add to the stress an individual carries with them all day long. Managing stress for staff and pet owners is now a daily part of running a veterinary hospital.

Marketing can help to manage this stress to ward off explosive moments. How? It sets clear, consistent messaging and engagement with the pet owner from start to finish. Here are some places to utilize marketing messages.

  • A clear list of expectations for the office visit, including the reasons why, should be posted on the website and sent to the pet owner before the visit.
  • On-hold phone messaging about wait times and working together is helpful.
  • Expectations on masks, wait time, where people wait, steps in the visit, etc. should all be clearly spelled out and given to the pet parent multiple times, e.g. discussed on the phone, sent in email, and a reminder sent the day before.
  • Try text messages like: “We are working together to make Fluffy better.”
  • Google My Business card/posts that are updated weekly.
  • Posts on the hospital’s Facebook page about the rules or shout-outs to clients who had a great visit that day.

Leave a mint

Have you noticed that we brace ourselves most places we go now? There are multiple rules that may or may not be the same from place-to-place. Plus, people are edgy. Nobody wants to set someone off. That makes doing something totally unexpected and positive really noticeable.

This concept is like a finding a mint on your pillow in a hotel room. It is a small, touching, unexpected gesture. For example, when people come to the practice, give them a packet of Skittles and say: “We know life is hard. Here is a rainbow in a package from us to you.” It derails an individual who might be on the angry train and gives the opportunity to insert a new narrative for the office visit. People who are surprised, in a good way, tend to spread the word about that moment, which creates positive marketing.

The world is changing rapidly. In response, I have a daily Facebook Live show at noon Central for 15 minutes. We already have over 95 shows which you can view at https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLcunNemJYBMzW3P-JEjmOvJkB3K8ueaJc. We feature hospitals, industry experts, and Beyond Indigo team members. We focus on content that applies to hospitals, in the moment, to help them adapt to the changes occurring. To see the current week's schedule, go to https://www.beyondindigopets.com/ and look halfway down.

Beyond Indigo is here to help you and your business through the uncertainty of these times. Our full-service marketing packages make it easy for you to maintain a relationship with your current clients and reach out to new clients so you can grow. They adjust as your goals shift, which allows you to see results and not to-do lists. We are here to help whether you are open, reopening, or adjusting to the new normal. Call 877.244.9322 ext. 100, or go to https://www.beyondindigopets.com/contact/,

Also check out:
Facebook Live series at YouTube.com/playlist?list=PLcunNemJYBMzW3P-JEjmOvJkB3K8ueaJc
Educational Blog at BeyondIndigoPets.com/Blog
Facebook at Facebook.com/BeyondIndigoPets
YouTube at YouTube.com/BeyondIndigoPets
Instagram at Instagram.com/BeyondIndigoPets

Kelly Baltzell, M.A. is President and CEO of the Beyond Indigo family of companies which she founded in 1997. Beyond Indigo is a full-service marketing company focusing on Search Engine Optimization, is a Google Adwords Partner, Social Media Marketing, Online Reviews and websites. She has been a monthly columnist for MWI Animal Health since 2011. She has also has presented and been published in Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the UK.