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Is it time to implement a chatbot?

3 min read | February 2023 | admin_vvn

As a veterinarian and business owner, you are always looking for ways to improve the care of pets, the service to your clients, and the performance of your business. One tool that can help with all of these things is a chatbot.

Chatbots are computer programs designed to simulate conversation with human users. Many early versions (pre-2000) delivered mixed results, with chatbot conversations often being overly simple or stilted, with limited ability to understand context, and therefore falling far short of the conversational capabilities of a human. 

Roll the camera forward 20 years or so and the situation is quite different, modern chatbots are much better at understanding context and can therefore provide better and more relevant information based on the user’s intent. A very good example of a chatbot showing an understanding of user intent is the recently released ChatGPT produced by OpenAI.

Chatbots can be integrated into websites, messaging apps, mobile apps, and even practice management systems to provide quick and convenient assistance to pet owners.

Some of the main reasons why veterinarians should consider using chatbots are:

  • Improved accessibility: Chatbots allow pet owners to get in touch with your practice at any time of day or night, even when you are not physically present. A chatbot can provide information/advice and/or undertake processes like appointment booking.
  • Increased efficiency: Chatbots can handle a high volume of queries and requests simultaneously, freeing up your staff to focus on more pressing tasks. They can also provide quick and accurate responses to common questions, reducing the need for clients to wait for a response from you or your staff. Additionally, they can become a useful extension to your sales and marketing initiatives.
  • Enhanced customer service: Chatbots can provide personalised assistance to clients, suggesting articles or resources based on their pet-specific needs and concerns. When combined with outbound messaging chatbots can undertake post-operative surveys and manage tasks such as prescription renewals.
  • Cost savings: Chatbots can help to reduce the workload of your staff, leading to cost savings. They can also help to reduce the number of missed calls and the need for follow-up calls.

In summary, chatbots can be a valuable addition to a veterinarian’s practice, helping to improve accessibility, efficiency, customer service, and cost savings. If you are interested in implementing a chatbot, Virtual Vet Nurse is able to help, we specialise in integrating the latest AI-based chatbots with vet-specific operational practices to enable the benefits highlighted above.    

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