Traditional marketing methods are no longer enough to guarantee success.
Home care marketing can be quite a challenge, given the vast industry competition. Not only are agencies working to obtain clients, but they also must hire large numbers of qualified caregivers.
The good news is that social media is proving highly effective for forward-thinking home care agencies. LinkedIn is a particularly great marketing and recruitment resource. Here’s why:
Connecting with Referral Sources –
Home care agencies know that there’s no substitute for in-person marketing to hospitals and other referral sources. However, LinkedIn is a great supplement. The tool is especially helpful when trying to connect with high-level industry leaders.
Caregiver agency representatives may build relationships with hospital staff on the ground level. But, they usually don’t have access to c-suite executives or other leaders within a large organization. Proper use of LinkedIn can facilitate introductions that ultimately lead to larger partnerships with the referral source.
LinkedIn doesn’t permit users to send messages to random professionals, but it does allow people to send “connection” requests with a short introductory note. A well-written and concise introduction often encourages the recipient to “accept” the request. Once connected, a full “pitch” can be sent via direct messaging.
Company Branding –
Many different social media platforms assist in home care marketing. But, LinkedIn is a great focus for company branding. The community provides a perfect balance of professionalism and socializing.
Savvy home care agencies can announce company updates, industry honors and charitable campaigns. A company’s brand can be carefully honed in accordance with its overall vision and values. Furthermore, employees can participate in the effort through “sharing,” posting company updates and general industry networking.
Market Intelligence –
Some people underestimate the passive value of LinkedIn when it comes to business planning and strategy. Official company posts, articles and promotions are beneficial, but these are forms of active promotion. Just as in face-to-face interactions, communication is a two-way street.
Home care agency leaders can gain a wealth of valuable industry knowledge simply by scanning their LinkedIn feed daily. Competitors post their own promotional materials. This sometimes has the unintended consequence of tipping-off others to strategy and marketing techniques.
Caregiving companies can also stay current on industry trends by “following” various medical company profiles and healthcare publications. Once a robust network is established, users benefit from a broad range of industry education daily. It’s fair to say that LinkedIn may now be the single best resource for free home care market intelligence!
“Connecting” with Caregivers –
In the early days, LinkedIn was primarily a network for sales professionals, marketers and executive recruiters. However, caregivers are starting to use the service more-and-more. Many now reach-out directly to home care agency managers with “connection” requests.
In addition to passive recruitment benefits, agency staffers and office managers can actively seek to connect with caregivers. LinkedIn offers an effective keyword search function that makes filtering straight forward. A sample search may include the words, “caregiver, CNA or HHA,” combined with a city or region.
Organizing Recruitment Events –
Home care agencies with official LinkedIn company profiles can use their presence to promote community and caregiver recruitment events. The most successful campaigns will likely merge caregiver recruitment with a charitable cause that encourages participation. One great example is coordinating a recruitment event that coincides with the local Alzheimer’s Walk.
Agencies can further maximize the impact by providing incentives to employees who invite or bring guests to the events. Small gift cards or rewards such as additional PTO can prove very motivating and yield great recruitment ROI. However, it’s important to remember that companies with large online networks will naturally benefit the most from such efforts.
Caregiver Appreciation & Spotlights –
Any home care agency can tell potential caregiver candidates that their company is terrific. But, actions speak louder than words. Sometimes, the best recruitment involves subtle advertisement for an organization’s great work culture.
Agencies can implement monthly “Caregiver Appreciation” or “Caregiver Spotlight” LinkedIn campaigns to honor the work of especially-valued team members. This improves employee retention and overall morale of the existing workforce. Furthermore, it advertises a great work culture to potential candidates.
In the end, it’s fair to say that most home care agencies should have an active company profile on LinkedIn. They should post regular content and updates that highlight their culture and promote their brand. Leaders should also encourage teams to contribute to LinkedIn marketing campaigns through “shares,” “likes,” and posts.
Senior care agencies that learn to harness the power of LinkedIn will benefit from new client acquisition, improved caregiver recruitment and positive company branding. If your home care agency is seeking growth, you should also consider the aid of an industry-specific marketing firm!