October 1, 2021
Words You Can Steal: A Check-In Email for Dog Trainers
The perfect way to get back in touch.

puppy peeking out from a mailbox; article on writing a check-in email

Many dog trainers see a slow down in business this time of the year. If that’s you, and you’re looking to fill up a few more spots in your schedule, the check-in email is the ultimate tool to help bring in repeat clients.

For folks who may be considering new services, it’s a great way to remind them of their previous experience working with you — and let them know you’re available and thinking of them.

Others might not even realize that they need additional services — or that you offer ones they might be interested in. Checking in is a great way to let them know about what you else you offer.

Think of the check-in email as the post-follow-up email follow-up email… This would be a great one to send out about a month after your last email. Your goals here are to:

  • Check in on any updates since you worked together. What’s going well? What still needs improvement?
  • Let them know about any new or additional services they might be interested in.
  • Offer a chance to chat if there’s something else they might be looking for or curious about.

So, how do we squeeze that all in in one short-but-sweet email? Let’s look at an example.

Check-In Email Template

Here’s a fun example from Austin L. Church:

sample check-in email

This email covers all the goals we outlined above. Here’s how I’d reword it for dog trainers, though:

Hi [client name],

I hope you and [dog name] are doing great!

I’m reaching out because I have a brand-new class on [class subject] coming up on [class date] that made me think of you. I know you’re interested in learning more about [client interest/pain point], and this class can help you achieve [client desired outcome].

How are things going with [client pain point] — have you been successful at [thing you worked on together]? I’d love to hear more about how I can help you reach your goals. Let me know if you have any questions about that new class or any other training you might be interested in; I’d be happy to chat through some options.

Hope to hear from you soon!

[your name]

Why does this email work?

Because I personalized it to the client’s particular goals and needs. I offered something I think would be helpful to them — but I also gave them a chance to tell me what they think they need. So, if that class doesn’t seem like a good fit, I’m creating an opportunity for me to explain why it can actually help with their pain points… Or sell them on something else.

Other Check-In Email Considerations

If you’re going to try to sell a previous client on making a purchase, one effective way to do so is to offer a discount. Even a small one can be enticing — and give them yet another reason to keep coming back to you instead of someone else for all their dog training needs.

Of course, it’s possible you don’t have a new class or something particular to “sell” — that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t check in. Consider other resources you can offer. Would signing up for your newsletter be helpful for them? Maybe you recently wrote a blog post on the same subject you trained with them on.

Maybe you even just thought of them because you bought coffee from a spot they recommended.

While getting a sale is an obviously important part of marketing, it’s not the only end goal. The long game here is finding ways to create authentic relationships with customers that are built on trust. When they need a service you offer, you’ll be the first one they think of. And who do you think they’ll refer friends to who need similar services? In fact, most dog trainers we surveyed this year said that referrals — from clients or other pet-related businesses — were a successful part of their marketing tactics.

If nothing else, that should be a big reason why you might want to stay in touch!

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