eople often view social media primarily as a platform for sharing pictures, status updates and even funny cat videos. But there’s no doubt that many businesses now leverage the technology to aid in robust marketing campaigns. While most home care agencies know that social media can add value to their company brand in theory, some leaders have put social media marketing strategy on the back burner.
Facebook is More than Just Cat-Video “Shares” and “Likes”
Here are 6 reason why now is the time to prioritize your home care agency social media presence:
1. “Passive” Outreach
Caregiver agencies engage in various forms of community outreach and advertisement just like any business. However, these mediums can wear thin on consumers. And, let’s face it—marketing home health care services is much more sensitive than selling cars or mattresses.
“Passive” outreach is positive for most consumer business models, but it’s particularly effective in home care and home health marketing. The soft approach is unlikely to turn off potential clients, and it’s also better for company branding. Agencies can subtly influence potential referral sources and clients through value-add posts and updates that don’t appear overly self-promoting or “sales-y.”
While branding ties into passive outreach, the objective of formulating a certain image is an endeavor unto itself. Years ago, companies were required to spend thousands of dollars on television and print ads in order to craft their brand. Today, however, smaller organizations can do the same with minimal budgets and a bit of social media acumen.
Agencies that want to project a community presence can share articles and links on local healthcare fairs and promote partnerships with area charities. Those that want to gain credibility as subject matter experts (SMEs) can publish informative blogs and articles. And if a company launches a new-and-improved version of their website, what better way to promote it than via social media?
More-and-more healthcare organizations are realizing the benefits of co-marketing activities. Non-medical home care agencies can particularly benefit from the strategy, since their services are private-pay and elective in nature. There are many ways a caregiver company can partner with established healthcare providers in order to gain access to lucrative referral sources.
Social media compounds the benefits of any home care and home health co-marketing activities. Co-branded campaigns can be announced on social media and shared between the online communities of both companies. “Likes,” “shares” and “linking” between the networks swell the influence and resonate throughout the local healthcare community.
4. Employee Engagement
Many active social-media users now work for home care agencies. The stereotype is a younger Millennial tapping away on her smartphone for hours on end. But the truth is that most Americans engage in social media these days regardless of age.
Companies that have a social media presence further engage their own employees. While having a built-in army of supporters can certainly benefit online marketing efforts, it also provides a medium for sharing company updates that benefit the employees themselves. So, a home care agency can post pictures and updates regarding internal company activities that employees appreciate for improved morale and corporate culture.
5. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Google Search results are incredibly important to all home care agencies, big or small. There are specific home health marketing techniques relating to SEO, and that’s a topic that is discussed at length in various articles. However, it’s fair to say that social media activity is an easy way to improve a company’s Google listing.
Articles and blogs published on home care agency websites can be linked and shared on social media. These efforts boost traffic to the website for immediate marketing benefit, but the increase in visitors also improves general SEO for long-term effect. Simply put, the more online presence a company has, the more likely it is to benefit from a higher Google Search listing.
6. Recruiting Benefits
Experienced home care professionals know that marketing to referral sources and prospective clients is just half the battle. New business is worthless without great caregivers to staff the cases. Unfortunately, home care recruiting has become very competitive in recent days.
There’s good news, however! Social media is perhaps even more conducive to caregiver recruiting than it is to general marketing. The best recruiting efforts often encourage word-of-mouth referrals, and that’s where social media shines.
Current employees can be asked to share openings with their online network and friends. Even the average person may have several hundred “connections” these days. So, that old-school word-of-mouth referral job pitch now reaches hundreds of potential candidates instead of just a few. Moreover, the prospective caregiver can review the company online to determine if it’s a cultural fit.
Most industry experts wouldn’t suggest that social media activities should consume a majority of home care or home health marketing strategy. However, consensus suggests that it is a useful tool and can help on multiple levels. Considering that it’s free and easy to implement, isn’t it worth a shot?
If you’re seeking home care or home health marketing solutions, be sure to check out an industry-leading resource today!