This piece is intended to highlight companies that deserve attention from individual, independent veterinary practice owners. No compensation was provided in return for inclusion in this series of posts; in fact, none of them knew ahead of this article’s writing that they would be featured. At present, VPP only does business with Petdesk, though we have had conversations with all of these companies about potentially piloting them in our Partner practices.
Petdesk – www.petdesk.com
Welcome to 2018! Hopefully by now all of you reading this have a mobile-friendly version of your practice’s website. Do you have an app for clients? Admittedly, the app market is, in my estimation, the most treacherous out there for practice owners. There is a lot of over-promising and under-delivering in this space, so the best advice is to be careful and fully vet (pun intended) providers before committing. In comparison to some other exhibitors who are seemingly trying to do way too much and will likely deliver mediocrity, Petdesk is focused on doing a few really, really important things exceptionally well. These focal points drive real value for practice owners and are precisely the type of vendor an individual practice needs.
So what is Petdesk? First and foremost, it is a client-facing mobile app (Android/iPhone) and a reminders platform. We’ve talked ad nauseum about the importance of being exceptional with your reminder process – it is your easiest path to revenue growth. Petdesk helps you in this regard by pairing traditional appointment/service reminder communications channels (e.g. email and postcards) with the immensely valuable mobile channel (e.g. push notifications and text messaging). Some other app providers actively dissuade you from sending postcards. Please, whatever you do, do NOT stop sending reminder postcards. Yes, I know they are not free, but they are critically important for all practices because your client contact information is not flawless. Until the day comes when you have accurate email addresses and cell numbers for your entire client base, postcards are a necessary evil. By having one provider coordinate your reminder communications across all of these communication channels, you, the individual practice, have a higher likelihood of generating higher compliance without negative responses from clients about bombarding them with communication. It also helps that their organization loves data and is actively combing through pet owner behavior to drive toward more successful reminder communication strategies for you.
Additionally, Petdesk offers two other things to get excited about: the opportunity to have your own loyalty/rewards program and a cleaner view of your appointment book than your practice management system is currently giving you. There are only a few players in the loyalty space at present and the weakness of many of them are poor technological execution and/or restrictive points systems. Petdesk, like most things they do, has kept it simple and flexible. Since no two practices are identical, it is advantageous to look for providers who offer flexibility and don’t force everyone into cookie-cutters. Likewise, they’ve taken the appointment book and made it more valuable to you by highlighting opportunities in each appointment. What do I mean by that? Look at an appointment book in Cornerstone, AVImark or Infinity and you have no idea who you are missing an email address for, who has other pets in the household with overdue reminders, who you should discuss installing your cool new app with. Petdesk’s practice dashboard does all of this with a very clean, easy-to-read way.