What is an effective way to educate my existing clients and bring in new ones? (Sponsored by Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health)

Jun 01, 2008

A free client and public education seminar held at least once a year is a tremendous practice builder. With the help of associates, employees, local sponsors, pharmaceutical companies, extension experts, and state veterinarian office personnel, we spend an entire day in the winter educating clients and the public about various topics.

Each year before breeding season, we have a program agenda of four topics of interest for associates to address. These topics have included but are not limited to lameness, reproduction, nutrition, herd health, dentistry, prepurchase examinations, and podiatry. We spend the first 15 to 20 minutes of the day discussing current news or timely care information, then the associates spend about 45 minutes lecturing and giving slide presentations on certain topics. A Q and A session takes place after each presentation. At the end of the day, we ask attendees to tell us verbally what they would like to see on the program for the next seminar.

In addition to the presentations, we also offer many handouts in the form of newsletters, American Association of Equine Practitioners client education brochures, and vaccination information. We also provide a continental breakfast, a lunch provided by our sponsors, and door prizes. It is an enjoyable day for all.

We start promoting the seminar at least a month in advance through community newspapers, organizations, county and neighboring county extension e-mails, bills, and practice mailings. The seminar venture doesn't cost a lot, and it's well worth the effort to serve the community and our clients. We gain new clients and better educate them and our existing clients. Lifelong education has its benefits!

Jack Easley, DVM
Equine Veterinary Practice
Shelbyville, Ky.