Even if you’ve worked in the veterinary field for years, when you’re tasked with writing veterinary office on hold messages, it might be hard to get started. You may be tempted to list out every single service you offer, or every qualification, certification, and degree your doctors have. And while it’s true that some of that information IS important for callers, they’re more likely to tune out if they're listening to lists of information.
So, what SHOULD you write about?
Here are 5 ideas – with examples - straight from our creative team!
1. Offer seasonal tips. Your office likely sees different issues during different times of year, like scratching and “hot spots” from springtime allergies, digestive issues from too many holiday treats, or excessive heat exposure in the summer. Share tips that can help your callers prevent these seasonal problems, or some at-home treatment options, if appropriate.
Example: The heat can be dangerous for animals, just as it is for people. If your pet spends any time outdoors, make sure that they have plenty of fresh water and shade. Also, temperatures in parked cars can reach unbearable levels-causing serious health related problems or even death. So when taking a car trip, unless your pet will be accompanying you to your destination, it's safest to leave your furry friend at home.
2. Recommend preventive medications. Most pet owners are probably aware of heartworms and fleas, but may not understand the health problems that come along with an infection. You probably recommend preventive medication whenever pet owners bring their furry friends in for a visit, so using your on hold messages to promote that same medication can drive home the message to pet owners.
Example: Mosquitoes are more than annoying; they can be downright dangerous! These pesky insects can carry heartworms. With one bite, potentially fatal parasites can infect your pet. The symptoms of heartworm are often found in advanced stages of the disease. These include fatigue, loss of appetite and weight, shortness of breath, and a chronic cough. The good news is that heartworm disease is easy to prevent. So if your pet is not on a heartworm preventative program, ask us about starting one, today!
3. Promote your non-medical services. Even though you may offer a wide range of non-medical services, it’s best to keep each message focused on just one or two related services. If your busy boarding season is coming up, remind callers to book their pet’s reservations early and let them know what your boarding facilities are like. Share information about your bathing, nail clipping, and grooming packages too!
Example: If you're planning a vacation this season, don't forget to make accommodations for your pet! We would be happy to care for your cat or dog while you're away. At our facility, we can provide a home away from home, in our comfortable and safe environment. While your pet is here, we're also happy to take care of any vaccines, blood tests, or medications your pet might need. We can also apply flea and tick products, and groom your pet. So if you've made travel reservations this season, remember to make reservations for your pet too!
4. Ask for feedback. If people love your office, they’ll tell their friends and coworkers. But it never hurts to ask for referrals too! You could offer a discount on a future visit for a direct referral, or for their feedback or a star rating on Facebook or Yelp.
Example: At ABC Veterinary, we love you and your pets! If you love us back, be sure to visit our Facebook page and share your feedback or a star rating. And if you refer a friend to our office, we’ll give you a 20% discount on your pet’s next visit. Thanks for trusting ABC Veterinary with your pet’s healthcare.
5. Reinforce the importance of regular exams. If you see some of your patients only when they are ill or injured, their owners may not understand why regular exams are important. You know the benefits, so share your knowledge with your callers on hold and encourage them to schedule that annual exam.
Example: Whether you’re playing outside or snuggling up to watch a favorite film, a pet is a great source of companionship. Make sure you enjoy many years of fun and friendship with your cat or dog, and schedule an annual veterinary exam today. An annual exam is as important for pets as it is humans. It can detect early signs of dental diseases, as well as endocrine and neuromuscular disorders. You can also update your pet’s vaccinations in the same visit. Make an appointment when we return to the line.
BONUS TIP: Use some fun animal trivia to break up your marketing messages and make the hold time more fun and interactive for your callers.
Example: Regular dental cleanings are the best way to keep your pet’s teeth strong and healthy. By providing your pet with sufficient dental care, you can prevent the buildup of bacteria in the mouth, meaning fewer health problems later in life. Schedule your pet’s dental cleaning today! And speaking of teeth...here’s some fun trivia. Most adult humans have 32 teeth. Do you know how many teeth adult dogs have? Stay on the line to find out!
(10 second music interval)
A few seconds ago, we asked you how many teeth adult dogs have. If you said 42, you’re right! Be sure to schedule your pet’s appointment for a yearly cleaning, when we join you on the line.
We hope these suggestions can help get you on the way to writing some great on hold messages for your veterinary office. If you’d like a little additional help, feel free to give us a call at 800-584-4653 or contact us here. We have lots of experience with creating fun, unique, entertaining and informative on hold productions for businesses of all sizes!
(Image courtesy of iosphere at FreeDigitalPhotos.net)