For over a year, the coronavirus pandemic has changed the way veterinary clinics operate. With the recent decrease in coronavirus cases and increase in vaccinations, the light at the end of the tunnel is showing. With the many changes happening, being properly prepared for the influx of questions regarding these changes will help you effectively navigate this chaotic time. We’ve broken down some things to consider as your business transitions to post-pandemic life.
Are your veterinary services changing in any way? Many clinics have paused services during the pandemic, such as grooming and boarding. If you are reopening any services or expanding hours, make sure your clients are aware. Letting them know in the clinic is the first step, but you’ll also want to get the word out online. Is your Google My Business profile updated to reflect these changes? How about your Facebook, Instagram, and most importantly, your website? Consider adding a banner to your website to highlight the shift with any major changes at your clinic. If you’re a WhiskerCloud client, we can take care of any website additions for you with a simple email to our team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It’s also a good time to reflect on your clinic’s adjustments over the past year and evaluate what has worked for your business. Many of our clients begin providing some form of curbside service and found that this was a more efficient way to see patients. In a previous blog, we detailed how you can automate the curbside check-in process. If curbside is working for you and your clients, then keep doing it!
Telemedicine is another feature that many clinics implemented during the pandemic. Providing virtual visits not only eliminates physical contact between staff and clients but is a great option for your regular patients to check in with you between routine exams. We’re always looking for ways to help bring veterinary medicine into the 21st century. Digitizing your processes and providing virtual services are key ways to do that.
Use your social media accounts to highlight situations that pet parents may face when transitioning to post-pandemic life. With many people returning to the office and generally spending more time outside of the house, pets will be left at home for extended periods of time, making the transition difficult. Gear your social media content to topics related to transitioning pets, including relieving separation anxiety, combating boredom, the importance of a daily routine, etc.
We’ve put together a few social media posts that you can use to inform your followers about difficulties they may experience with their pets and how to handle them.
This is also a great opportunity to tie back to any services you provide, including doggy daycare or pet anxiety consultations.
Have you considered how your in-clinic operation will change as time goes on? Ensure to keep up with local and national health guidelines (the CDC is a great resource) and stay in communication with your staff on updated coronavirus safety procedures and protocols. There can be a lot of confusion between what governmental guidelines are versus what is expected in your clinic. Spend time developing your expectations regarding facial coverings, social distancing, and sanitation practices, ensuring that staff and visitors are informed and prepared.
In a time of constant change, it is critical to get ahead of what you can. Taking the time to develop plans and strategies now will decrease the chance of confusion between your clinic and pet parents later.