A London-based group of veterinary practices had grown significantly over the past two years. It now incorporated 12 practices.
- The holding company had an ambitious expansion vision: a five-year plan to become over 50 practices strong.
“Vets aren’t very good at marketing!” (quote from the owners!)
- Competition was fierce.
- Most veterinary practices rely on email as their sole means of communication.
- There was no effective or clearly defined marketing strategy.
- Competitors often “cost-cut” to gain new business.
- Organic growth was static.
- The company was spending around £5,000 a month on paid advertising but didn’t know what was working at what wasn’t.
- They found it difficult to get hold of leads and follow up with potential new enquiries.
- Leads went cold fast.
After consultation, the company agreed to implement the following recommendations:
- Integrate a multimedia marketing funnel, to include the use of direct mail and SMS.
- Install a robust tracking system so that all new leads could be tracked from source.
- Incentivise customers to “Like” the practice’s Facebook page and post pictures of their pets after treatment.
- Get more prospective clients to attend FREE open days/workshops.
- Set up a messenger bot on the website to field inquiries to the right practice area.
- Start increasing Facebook ad spend.
- Retarget prospects who visited the website and left.
Within 60 days of implementing the new system, the client reported the following:
- 84 new clients – compared with an average of 12-15 a month previously.
- Although ad spend has increased by 50 percent, the returns have far outstripped this, with a 461 percent increase.
- The cost of acquiring a new client has fallen by 126 percent.
- The major benefits of the solution include:
- More effective advertising: The more robust tracking and reporting revealed that approximately 85 percent of the client’s previous lead generation spend on Google AdWords was ineffective. We moved the budget from under-performing ad campaigns to those that performed better.
- Higher footfall: To win new clients, it was important to get more people coming into the practice. We helped the owners create a series of FREE open days for each practice, with 10 exploratory events held over 60 days. This resulted in 137 new prospects attending and 26 new paying customers already. We expect that number to increase with a 90-day direct mail promotion.
- Lower cost of acquisition of new clients: Since switching to use Facebook ads, the cost of acquiring a new client has been reduced by 126 percent.
- Fewer “no shows”: There has been a significant (23 percent) reduction in “no-shows” for appointments.
- Increase in customer value: Although this is a longer-term play, early indications are that the use of a more systematic follow up with clients will increase annual customer value.
Summary & Next Steps.
Because of the success so far, the client has appointed us to manage their Facebook ad campaigns.
- We’re building Facebook and Google display retargeting campaigns to bring visitors back to the websites and build brand awareness.
- We’re also building out more direct mail campaigns to systematically follow up with all new leads.