For any organization, customer loyalty is one of the most valuable and tangible assets that has a significant financial impact. However, there can only be customer loyalty if there is client engagement. Client engagement involves building trust, commitment, perceived value, and customer relations. In a recent study, over 300 pet owners throughout social media were analyzed through descriptive and inferential statistics. The results revealed that customer loyalty is directly related to communication on different points in a veterinary clinic. Customer loyalty is influenced by trust in the veterinarian, communication with the staff and the veterinarian, and commitment to behavioral intentions. If trust, communication, and commitment are prioritized by a veterinary clinic, the pet-owner will continue to consume products and services from that veterinary clinic. With this in mind, veterinary owners and managers can use a few strategies listed below to enhance customer engagement and improve customer loyalty.

1. Find the right communication tool

Great customer service and great communication skills from veterinarians, veterinary technicians, check out staff, and even classified advertisements go a long way in securing a clinic’s success. It is therefore essential that every point in a veterinary clinic finds a suitable communication tool that will optimize communication and create a good relationship between pet-owners and veterinary clinics.
By communicating the right message at the exact time of need, you will be able to supplement your clinic’s communication platform, enhance the client experience, and bring more clients through the clinic’s doors. At every point of the clinic, you should ensure that there is great customer service and that every communication tool you have employed (from emails to social media accounts, to brochures) precisely represents you and your beliefs to your potential customers and the regulars too.

2. Customer loyalty discounts

There’s no doubt about it, people love free things; but even more love to feel appreciated. Customer loyalty discounts are a great way to offer value to your customers, strengthen ties between your customer and your clinic, and collect consumer preferences that can be used to improve the customer experience in your clinic. You can offer customer loyalty discounts by giving points for every dollar used that can be redeemed over time, offering member-exclusive experiences and services, offering membership discounts, free check-ups, gift cards, etc.

3. Telemedicine

Everyone nowadays would rather stay at home and have all their matters handled over the phone. The good news for vets is that they can offer high quality veterinary medical care with professionalism, and still offer convenience for the vet and the pet and pet-owner. By using specific applications and technologies, vets can enhance their accessibility and client communication and still support exceptional patient care. These technologies allow the vets to diagnose and prescribe medication or otherwise treat their patient because they have sufficient knowledge of the patient’s medical history. The vet can also follow-up or arrange emergency coverage or continuing care and treatment. All this can be done at the vet’s and the pet owner’s convenience.

Every veterinarian or veterinary staff member knows that trips to the vet’s office are not always easy for the pet or the pet-owner.  Without a foundation of trust and commitment, there would be meager numbers of loyal customers because trust creates the confidence of future reliability of services, mediates perceptions of value, and influences the frequency of service or product usage. It is therefore crucial that you create a trustworthy relationship with your customers in order to keep them coming back.