6 Tips to Help Your Clients Accept Your Dental Recommendations

veterinarian talking to a woman with a dachshund

As veterinarians, you walk a fine line with certain clients who doubt your recommendations, thinking you’re only doing it to boost your bottom line. It’s a frustrating spot to be in when you’re trying to do right by your client and their furry friend. “So,” you might ask, “How can I get my clients to take my dental recommendations seriously?”

1. Prevention is key.

Emphasize the importance of regular brushing and dental exams – share articles via email or on your social media platforms. There are lots of resources out there you can reference, including content from Embrace Pet Insurance:

2. Change the way you say it.

While there are some pet parents who are more financially conservative when it comes to their pet’s care, more often than not you’re working with someone who views their pet as part of the family and will do whatever it takes to keep them healthy. Instead of beating around the bush when it comes to recommendations, be assertive. When you give your client the option to say “no,” they might not give your recommendation as much merit.

Try saying: “Scout needs a dental cleaning.”

Instead of: “We could do a dental cleaning.”

3. Show them why you’re recommending it.

Share the results of your findings with your clients while they’re in your office rather than waiting to send them later. Obviously, certain tests require time before results can be shared, but anything that you can make real to your client right away will help. For example, “Scout’s x-rays are showing severe tooth rot here, he’s probably in a lot of pain,” will create a sense of urgency and make the situation real. Emailed results with a recommendation lack that urgency.

4. Give the most accurate cost you can.

The first question you’ll undoubtedly receive is, “how much will this cost?” It’s a fair question, but not always something that you can answer exactly. Keep a record of similar surgeries and their cost to have at least a price range for them. Estimate low and high to prepare them for the best and worst-case scenarios. And be frank with them, treat them how you would want to be treated in the face of a tough decision.

Pro-tip: Embrace Pet Insurance offers a pre-certification process that allows estimates be sent to us for review so we can help your client understand what’s covered before the procedure.

5. Help them understand.

Chances are high that your clients aren’t going to know what you’re talking about. There’s a hilarious comedy standup act by Dane Cook where he explains what it’s like going to the auto mechanic and they’re throwing costs at him for things he’s never heard of, and he said they could be telling him that a tiny unicorn is poking holes in his engine and he’ll totally buy it because he doesn’t know otherwise. While an exaggeration, your clients likely won’t know what a peripheral odontogenic fibroma is – plus, it sounds terrifying. This goes back to steps two and three: recommend treatment firmly, explain why it’s important to treat it, and put it all into real terms.

6. Recommend pet insurance early and often.

Learning to change the way you make recommendations doesn’t stop with dental cleanings. These steps can be applied to recommending a better flea or heartworm medication, reminding pet parents the importance of annual exams, and even how to recommend pet insurance. The younger and healthier, the better! By showing your clients the value of having pet insurance early, your recommendations will be easier to accept later on because they’ll know they’re covered. Embrace has interesting and sharable real-life client claim stories that are jaw-dropping examples of how pet insurance saved our pet parents’ budgets and pets.

We’re all in this to help pets live their best lives. Your recommendations come from a place of honesty and integrity, and you know that a client who leaves without accepting could put their pet at risk. Increasing your bottom line is an added bonus of the recommendations that you make. According to John Jeffreys, practice manager at Coastal Animal Hospital in Encinitas, California, by changing the way the client conversation was handled, the clinic’s client compliance doubled in the past three years and dentistry services revenue grew $30,000 each year.

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Pet health insurance is administered by Embrace Pet Insurance Agency, LLC and underwritten by one of the licensed insurers of American Modern Insurance Group, Inc., including American Modern Home Insurance Company d/b/a in CA as American Modern Insurance Company (Lic. No 2222-8), and American Southern Home Insurance Company. Coverage is subject to policy terms, conditions, limitations, exclusions, underwriting review, and approval, and may not be available for all risks or in all states. Rates and discounts vary, are determined by many factors, and are subject to change. Wellness Rewards is offered as a supplementary, non-insurance benefit administered by Embrace Pet Insurance Agency in the United States. © 2016 American Modern Insurance Group, Inc.