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TUESDAYOctober 25, 2022

Dear Veterinary Student,

Whether you have considered practice ownership or plan to enter the profession as an associate, veterinary business education has never been more crucial to your career. This weekly publication is designed to supplement your education by providing information on veterinary business including ownership and management, finance operations, communication, team building and emerging technologies that will shape the future of veterinary medicine.

New to the Veterinary Student Insider? Click here to sign up for free. And if you like what you read here, share it with your peers!

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Click here to sign up for a free account using your .edu email address. Once you do, you’ll also receive complimentary access to other VetMarketingTalk discussion boards.
  NEWS & TRENDS  

VIN Foundation updates student debt resources 
The VIN Foundation has updated its student debt education resources to reflect new changes and benefits announced by the Department of Education.

The foundation's My Student Loans tool and Student Loan Repayment Simulator have been updated to reflect information for borrowers such as payments made during COVID forbearance, tax information, and notifications on Pell Grant status to help borrowers understand how much cancellation they might expect to receive. 

> Read the full article here. 
 


Feeling caught between high costs and labor needs? Marketing can help. 
At the same time veterinary practices are facing rising costs for goods and services, they’re having to pay more to get the labor they need. This could be a prime time for practices to use marketing to build their client base and revenue, Kelly Baltzell, CEO at Beyond Indigo Pets, wrote in last week’s Fountain Report. 

Kelly offers advice for practices to get their existing client base to return to the clinic and to reach new clients as well. Whether through social media ads, emails and texts, or phone calls to check in on top clients, practices have several relatively simple and inexpensive potential strategies at their disposal. 

If you want to put these tools to use, it’s better to do it sooner rather than later, Kelly says. “Marketing can produce results but is less expensive if planning for a three-month window instead of a three-day window,” she writes. 

> Read the full article here. 
 

How distributor reps can help practices save in a tight economy  
Writing in Veterinary Advantage magazine, health industry consultant Todd Brodersen gives advice for distributors to help their veterinary customers deal with rising inflation and client hesitation to spend. 

Reps should look at their customers’ purchasing history to see what they’re pulling back on and whether they’re choosing alternatives, Brodersen says. Good product indicator categories for companion and mixed animal practices are flea and tick products, pain management, antibiotics and in-clinic testing products. 

If the practice is cutting back in any of these areas, it’s worth a discussion with them to find out why. Then reps can work with practice leaders to come up with potential solutions, whether by offering promotional sales or cost-effective alternative brands and generics. 

> Read the full article here.
 

Veterinary practice valuations softened in the third quarter, analysis finds 
Veterinary practice valuations softened in the third quarter of the year due to factors like rising interest rates, high inflation, the war in Ukraine and a year-over-year decline in veterinary hospital visits, according to a new report. 

Valuations have stabilized to a range of 8-15x EBITDA from previous highs of 12-15x EBITDA in late 2021 and early 2022, according to the report from Ackerman Group. Consolidator recapitalizations have slowed in the spring and summer of 2022 due to economic uncertainty and its negative impact on price valuations, a trend analysts expect to continue. 

“Consolidators are still active buyers,” the report says. “There is a strong supply of practices for sale leading to high transaction volume in the veterinary space.” 

> Read the full report here. 

Commentary from Terry Sheehan: 
While the veterinary clinic remains a very attractive target for outside investment money, this report may indicate some softening in demand.  
 

Veterinary technicians are critical for practices’ success, but they need the opportunity to do their best work: AVMA 
In honor of National Veterinary Technician Week, the AVMA urged practices to empower technicians to use their full skill set. 

“Ask technicians themselves if they have abilities that aren’t getting used and whether they want to contribute in new ways,” the AVMA says. “And ask associate veterinarians if any of their tasks could be performed by technicians.” 

The association offers additional advice to help practices empower their technicians. And marketing company S&A offers eight facts to demonstrate the importance of these veterinary team members. 

> Read the full article here.
 

Chewy partners with Lemonade to offer new pet insurance plans 
Chewy is expanding CarePlus, its insurance and wellness plan program, with new insurance plans provided by Lemonade Pet. Through the partnership, Chewy customers will be able to select and create customized plans. 

The plans are expected to launch in spring 2023. 

> Read the full announcement here.
 

The Vet Watch Weekly Insight Report 
For the week ending October 15, year-to-date revenue was up 5% over the same period last year at veterinary practices across the country, according to the latest Vet Watch Weekly Insight Report. 

The report was compiled by Animalytix, whose VetWatch platform each week provides metrics on practice revenue and purchasing trends for thousands of practices across the country. 

Total invoices for the week were down 2.3%, unique clients were down 2.2% and unique patients were down 2%. Month-to-date revenue was up 0.9% over the same period last year. 

> Read the full article here.
This week’s Veterinary Student Insider was compiled by managing editor Breanna Demaline and industry consultant Terry Sheehan. 

Like what you read? Click here to sign up for free. 
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