Home health care is a growing field. Home health care companies range from franchise personal service companies to retailers who rent or sell home healthcare equipment to private companies that offer licensed medical care. Marketing is a basic requirement for all types of home health care companies. Online marketing is more cost-effective than traditional methods.
Here are three questions to help you plan your online marketing:
Who is your customer?
Chances are good that the person you most often serve is an older person. Does that mean you shouldn’t consider online marketing?
Not at all. First, internet use among older Americans is climbing. According to a recent report from the Pew Research Center, 34% of seniors use social media, 42% of seniors now use smartphones, and 67% use the internet in some way. These are the numbers for all adults 65 and older.
But the numbers for more educated and more affluent seniors are much higher. 95% of this group uses the internet and 97% have smartphones. If you’re willing to work with educated, affluent seniors, you’re looking at a group that uses online sources as much as younger Americans.
What’s more, you may be just as likely to be talking to the sons and daughters of the elderly customers you serve. This group includes the younger Baby Boomers and Generation X. All in all, you can expect that people looking for home health care services will look online, just as they do for other services.
What’s the path to purchase?
While consumers may look for “home health care near me” or “nebulizer services,” word of mouth is the top source of new clients for home health services. This breaks down into two paths.
First, people needing home oxygen delivery or Alzheimer’s companions will ask their friends for recommendations, online or in social media. The top takeaway for this situation is simple: make sure you have a great website.
If Miranda’s golfing buddy shares the name of the great home health care service she uses, Miranda will be very likely to Google that service. Your website needs to show up and present your service well. In most cases, this means you need to pay attention to local SEO as well as to the quality of your website.
You also should show up well in social media:
- Have a page on major social media platforms that makes your service look good.
- Encourage your patients or clients to check in at your location — their Facebook friends and Swarm playmates will see you.
- Share stories and images that your clients will want to share: engaging, informative stories.
When people are looking for your goods and services, their earlier social media connections will make you a trusted, familiar company — not a stranger.
Second, you’ll get referrals from insurance companies, physicians, and medical facilities. Again, you have to have an up-to-date, polished website that makes your company look good. And again, you should look good in social media. In this case, LinkedIn may be more important than Facebook.
What’s a conversion at your website?
You’ll get traffic to your website from people who are looking for your goods and services, and from people who’ve gotten a recommendation from their friends and family, healthcare providers, or insurance companies.
What do you want those visitors to do when they reach your website? Certainly, you’ll be happy if they just walk into your office and write you a check. The path to purchase is often a lot longer than that, however. If you can set up and track smaller conversions along the way, you have a better chance of bringing in the customers who are thinking about signing up.
Some of the actions you can track online:
- Reading information people need when they are making a decision about home health care
- Downloading an ebook or white paper in exchange for contact information
- Booking an appointment for an initial consultation
Make sure your website includes a blog or news section, a useful download, and (if appropriate) an easy way to make an appointment. Not only will these steps give you a chance to collect contact information, they’ll also let you track the kind of traffic that is most effective at bringing you new customers.
Haden Interactive can help.
Let us help you with SEO and content marketing for your home health care company. We serve clients on four continents with professional blogging, SEO strategy, and more. Contact us today for assistance.