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Discounts? No!

Practice Smarter

Marking down prices on veterinary services is the bane of our profession, so consider an alternative approach.

I don’t understand why the veterinary profession discounts its services. To my way of thinking, a business that discounts services is basically saying that customers are being overcharged the rest of the time, so now the services are being charged appropriately. When was the last time you got a discount from your physician, dentist, surgeon […]

The union question

Organized labor gained a foothold at two West Coast veterinary hospitals, but whether its entry is an aberration or the sign of a groundswell is up for debate.

Morgan VanFleet finally had enough. During 13 years as a veterinary technician working in Oregon and Washington, she had watched as she and her colleagues struggled with low wages, meager benefits and employee turnover that often left the hospitals stretched thin. The practice owners, VanFleet said, responded to the staff’s concerns with silence or empty […]

When selling to an associate makes sense

Money Matters

Consolidators possess deep pockets, but practice owners might welcome a partner’s offer when the property itself, creative financing and even one’s legacy are taken into account.

Corporate consolidators get all the attention these days when the topic is practice sales. As a generation of veterinarians reaches retirement age, the number of practices available to purchase is greater than the number of private practitioners ready to buy. If consolidators can and will pay more for a hospital than an associate veterinarian can […]

NAVC Media E-Commerce Summit set for Sept. 18

Senior executives and legal counsel are invited to a day of seminars in Kansas City.

Want to learn more about changing consumer dynamics, emerging models, MAP strategies, blending channels and best practices for maximizing your e-commerce strategy? Our one-day NAVC Media E-Commerce Summit, happening Sept. 18 at the downtown Marriott Hotel in Kansas City, Missouri, will feature educational seminars from a dynamic lineup of experts from diverse industries. The cost […]

Mix business and pleasure

Selling Points

Introducing a bit of imagination and a staff focus to product sales can motivate the team.

To some team members, selling products and managing inventory is nothing more than a severe pain in the you-know-where. I choose to see the task as an incredible opportunity and privilege. There is nothing better than being able to recommend a solution to a client who has a problem with his pet. To hear the […]

Flow in the face of adversity

Go With the Flow

When a difficult situation arises, you can change it, remove yourself or accept it.

Difficult or unwanted situations invariably arise almost daily as busy professionals seek to balance work, family, friends and other passions. So, the question naturally arises: How should we navigate our more challenging moments? While we don’t want to pretend to be psychologists or psychiatrists, we have observed some approaches that are useful for dealing with […]

Fighting the good fight

Thwarting gray-market suppliers is a challenge for manufacturers.

The direct-channel relationship between veterinarians, drug manufacturers and distributors ensures clients that the medications prescribed for their pets are safe, effective and of the highest quality. In the internet age, however, consumer websites offer pet drugs at discounted prices, and many national stores, such as PetSmart, Walmart and Target, sell name-brand prescription pet products. How […]

Deliver the goods

Veterinary practices can fulfill client needs — and reduce inventory costs — by working with a vendor to ship drugs and food directly to the pet’s home.

Today’s veterinary clients can easily go online or stop at a human pharmacy to purchase their pets’ pharmaceuticals. From their perspective, what could be simpler than filling a personal prescription and a pet’s prescription at the same time? Unfortunately, it means in-clinic veterinary sales suffer. Some practice managers looking for ways to bring lost pharmacy […]

Put your heart into heartworm prevention

Constant communication and education, often through technology, can raise the client compliance rate.

How often do you walk into an exam room and ask the client whether her pet is getting its heartworm preventive and she says “yes”? Your practice management software, though, shows that Ms. Smith bought a six-pack of prevention 12 months ago and always obtains it from you. Technically, Ms. Smith might be giving Fluffy […]

A dark secret

How one veterinarian became a diverter of pet medications, and why he might do it again.

Product diverters are often regarded as traitors in the veterinary community. Practitioners who sell veterinary-channel flea treatments, painkillers and other brand-name products to pet stores and online pharmacies are seen as helping the competition. But one longtime California veterinarian isn’t the least bit apologetic about his foray into the gray market. He spoke with Today’s […]

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