In today's economic climate, many businesses, including many veterinary hospitals, are struggling. In many parts of the country, fewer owners are bringing animals to the veterinarian for regular checkups, and more are waiting until their pets are ill to have them examined. Given this situation and their often limited advertising budget, veterinarians now, perhaps more than ever, must market their businesses successfully. But how do we veterinarians know how best to spend our advertising dollars? Only through trial and error and the advice of our colleagues can we see what kinds of advertising bring the strongest return on our investments.
To this end, I invited 6 veterinarians, practicing in successful clinics in different regions of the country, to share their experiences regarding marketing their veterinary practices. As you will see, what works for some, may not work for others. The participants are Thomas Bankstahl, DVM, Parkway Small Animal and Exotic Hospital and Parkway Veterinary Clinic, Clinton Township, MI, USA; Ann Bourke, DVM, Dipl ABVP (Avian), Northeast Bird Clinic, Ashford, CT, USA; Louis Crupi, DVM, Dog, Cat, & Bird Clinic of Nutley, Nutley, NJ, USA; Tia Greenberg, DVM, Westminster Veterinary Group, Westminster, CA, USA; Jeff Rhody, DVM, Lakeside Veterinary Center LLC, Laurel, MD, USA; and Michele Velasco, DVM, Dipl ABVP (Avian), Fleming Island Pet and Bird Clinic, Orange Park, FL, USA. In hearing about how they successfully advertised their practices, I hope that veterinarians everywhere will learn from them and be encouraged to market their businesses wisely.