No one lives forever, and no business keeps employees forever. The shortest life span, however, for those in home care jobs are the “marketers”. In the home care industry, the employees tasked with cold calling, calling on doctors and discharge planners, and attending networking events all in order to get business, i.e., selling services, are called marketers, not sales people. Why? It seems that “selling” services that allow people to remain at home to recuperate or to age in place from frailty until death, is seen as tactless, and calling these folks marketers instead of sales people seems a better fit. And for government reimbursed services, sales are not included as a reimbursement. Creating strategy and being a community liaison in order to market home care services are OK, but direct sales or solicitation is not. So, how does a sales person/marketer get the best results? And how do those good results keep that sales person on staff longer?
That happens when marketing (strategy, branding, messaging and communication) and sales (calling, visiting, making an “ask” and following up) work together.
So what does a “Marketer” (AKA sales person) for home care services need to do to generate business? And what will keep him/her happy in the job and liking what he/she does?
First, the company needs some branding, visual appeal and a basis for design and messaging that are consistent. All communication that goes out should be consistent in design and messaging. Also, the company needs a business-wide mindset that any potential clients or referral sources are the most valuable persons in the world. The goal of the agency should be to provide the ultimate client experience, whether it is in the inquiry process or in the delivery of services, or in the sales and marketing processes.
Secondly, there must be a plan and a system in place that strives for success with goals they are attainable and some measurement so all will know when they have reached those goals.
- A plan includes setting goals and objectives, and targeting those with the best chance of buying, or being interested in an ongoing relationship
- The focus should be on the more high-potential opportunities, which can be high potential for revenue like 24-hour cases, or high potential for ongoing referrals, like a hospital discharge planner or a rehab facility, or an assisted living facility or Medicare certified agency that does not provide home care
- After contact, whether inbound or outbound, consistent follow-up is needed. Plan on at least three to five meetings to get noticed and to be recognized. And, for these meetings, collateral material that is suited to the specific target and branded to the agency and provides helpful resources should be handed out. (Marketing and sales working together….)
- When in person or on the phone, learn to listen more than talk. Really try to learn what the client or referral source needs and wants. Then use marketing to create something that will help them.
- Ask for the business, when appropriate. Closing is hard, and that old “sales” feeling kicks in here, but you really have to ask not only for the business, but for others who might also want you to visit who might have needs.
Some people are natural “rainmakers”. However, it is like luck and chance, those who succeed may be lucky and take advantage of chance, but usually they are where they are for a reason. Rainmakers start with a plan, take advantage of opportunities, set goals, and persist. Working with marketing first to have the right materials, the appropriate messaging, the content to deliver when necessary and the measurement in place to know when you are winning is the best way to go to market as a home care company. And, winning at sales is what keeps sales people on the job longer.
Conversely, but just as certain as over a long timeline the survival rate of everyone is eventually zero, over a long timeline when marketing and sales work together, the growth rate for the agency is bound to go upward. And be positive. And keep everyone working at the agency active and happy. Call corecubed and see what our marketing services can do to help your salespeople succeed and how much more beneficial it will be when you have marketing and sales working together.