The Best Referral Development Strategy for Personal Care Home Health

The #1 best strategy I have come across to increase the number of referral inquires for Personal Care Home Health (aka, private duty) is: THE INTERNET.  Not sales people on the street or community events but the web!! Last year, the Wall Street Journal sighted people using the internet to search for medical and health information only second to people searching for adult XXX content. This fact is a high leverage point for those of us (yes, I own two Personal Care Companies myself) who are looking to increase referrals in a very competitive market place.

Unlike hospice and skilled home care where most of the referrals come from a case manager, physician, SNF, etc. Personal care is just that, personal, and the people searching for care are usually loved ones, children, etc. that use the internet because it is convenient, fast and full of information.

Let me give some specific examples from my own Personal Care Home Health business, Homewatch CareGivers located in the Detroit Metro area. I started my Homewatch business 7 years ago and had three Community Liaisons on the street calling upon hospitals, rehab facilities, senior housings, Elder law Attorneys, etc. and only had minimal success driving referrals. Between the three of them, they drove 5 to 6 per month. Very Sad :=( Because Homewatch is a franchise based model, our company had a preferred relationship with Eldercare Link. An internet based referral generation company. People would go online in search for help for mom and come across Eldercare Link and would ask for information. This request was set to my company in addition to two others. I received 30 to 50 referral inquiries per month. The only issue is they are not very well qualified leads and my conversion rate to a Start of Care was very low. But nevertheless it demonstrated the power of the internet.

My current long range plan is to use the Internet as my number one source of “cold market” lead generation. I have adjusted my marketing strategy by reducing the number of community liaisons to one (down from three) and repurposing some of those marketing dollars to develop a new, best-in-class “authority” website and hire a professional agency to manage my online marketing initiatives. I learned very quickly that having an attractive website was not enough. The true power of a website is only realized when you can actually drive targeted traffic to your site and converting those leads into clients. It’s amazing to me that many home care companies will consider invest in building a new website, but, at the same time, they’re not at all thinking about how that new website will generate traffic and leads. What if often misunderstood is the fact that you really can’t separate web design from website marketing and expect to be successful online. Each needs to be built with the other in mind and work in sync to achieve your marketing goals. It doesn’t do much good to generate a tons of traffic to a website if the messaging fails to convert the prospects into new client leads. By first creating an impressive online image and then generating targeted traffic and leads through proven online marketing strategies, you will not only increase revenues, but also build substantial long term brand loyalty as the “expert in your field”.

This is where I am spending my money to make sure all my 127 page of my website are optimized and maintained. The new website itself is Best in Class as you can see for yourself.

The other internet based activities I focused on were building our reviews and testimonials on Caring.com and Google Place. As my reviews and testimonials on Caring.com went from zero to over 15 within the past several months, so has our referral inquiries. Caring.com is becoming a good referral source for us.

Now my strategy is to obtain and train quality staff to work the referral inquiries and convert them to business. This also means working the pending list of those referral inquiries that do not immediately convert to a Start-of-Care but are still hanging out there.

I would highly recommend you further explore the internet as one of your best sales people.

Please write and tell us what your experience has been with the internet.

The Best!!

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.