Home Care Heroes Blog

Leveraging Online and In-Person Events to Market Your Home Care Agency

ticket-2974645_1280Utilizing a variety of marketing strategies can help home care agencies feel confident that they are doing as much as the are able to generate leads. One potentially powerful approach to marketing your home care agency that you may not be currently using is leveraging events as part of your overall strategy.

Both online and in-person events (that could include events that you organize, sponsor, or participate in) can be an effective way to showcase your agency's services to potential clients and team members, build ties within your community, and hopefully, drive your referrals and clients. 

Here are few steps that you can take to utilize events to generate leads and to build your brand. Of course, the following list doesn't offer every single step needed, but this resource is intended to give you an overview of the process and "big picture" steps:

Define Your Objectives

Before planning an event, it's essential to clearly define your marketing objectives for the event. Are you looking to increase brand awareness? Generate leads? Or educate the community about your services? Understanding clearly defining what your specific goals are can help you tailor your events accordingly and to measure and quantify their success.

Choose Your Event Format

Different types of events, the purpose of each event, and the community norms of your target audience can determine what event format you feel would be best for your marketing goals.

For example, online events such as webinars, virtual workshops, or live Q&A sessions can help you reach a broader audience and the events can be easily recorded for future use or reposting in an email or via social media. In-person events such as health fairs, community seminars, or events for helping caregivers hone their skills, are just a few ideas for you to consider.

Be sure to do research, such as attending events organized by others, asking fellow attendees for their opinion about the event or events they've attended, reaching out to event organizers for advice and feedback, and looking online for third-party articles or posts about the events, and so on. The goal here is to gain an understanding of what works and what may not resonate with your audience.

Whatever format and style of event that you choose, it's important to understand exactly what your goal(s) is for the event (in advance), understand what your audience likely expects and is comfortable with, and what provides the best ROI for you. All this can often be a combination of research and "trial and error", but it important to keep your goals, you're audience's goals, and your time/money investment top of mind each step of the way.

Identify Your Target Audiences

As part of choosing the event format that you feel has the best chance of achieving your event goal, it's important to identify the specific audiences you want to target with your events. Your audience could include potential clients, caregivers, healthcare professionals, or community organizations. Each segment of your target audience may have the same, different, or overlapping needs and expectations. By understanding your audience's needs and expectations, you can better craft an event that your target audience you feel is most likely to resonate with.

Be mindful and thoughtful to who you are trying to reach, why you are trying to reach them, and as above, do research as to what types of event topic, formats, and styles your audience resonates with most.

Research and Plan Engaging Content

Creating engaging and informative content that resonates with your target audience is, of course, a huge part of the process, but it can be easier said than done.  However, if you've done your research on the topic, you feel that you understand what your audience would be interested in, and you rely on your passion and your experience on the topic, you are on the right track toward creating a great event.

In a nutshell, take steps to understand your audience, build your network and get involved in your business community, use your creativity and passion to craft event ideas that you feel will bring value to all involved, and keep your eye on your ultimate goal ROI. 

Promote the Event both Online and "Offline"

Once you have your event details, logistics, and operational elements in full swing, promoting your event is often a key to having a successful turnout.

Depending on who you ask, between 20% and 50% of folks who RSVP that, "Yes", they'll attend a free event --- will end up not attending for an number of reasons. In my experience, the actual percentage varies wildly depending on any number of factors, including size of target audience and your "engaged" contact/email list, the strength of the offering (which is often hard to quantify), day/time/season of the event, competing events happening at the same time, the trends of your particular industry, strength of co-sponsors and/or partners, and any number of other factors.

The bottom line is that while it's important to stay positive, "expect the best," and hope for a full house (if you've done effective and consistent promotion),  it's also important to simultaneously understand that a fair amount of folks may not show up for reasons beyond your control. My advice is to focus on creating an event that you are proud of on giving those who do show up the best experience possible.

Another tip: Utilize a mix of online and offline channels to promote your events, including your agency's website, social media platforms, email newsletters, local newspapers, and community bulletin boards. 

Offer Incentives

Consider offering incentives to encourage attendance and engagement at your events. This could include door prizes, discounts on services, or free educational resources related to home care. 

Provide Networking Opportunities

Facilitate networking opportunities at your events and create opportunities to foster connections between attendees including, caregivers, healthcare professionals, vendors, and so on. Encourage attendees to exchange contact information, share their experiences, and collaborate on potential partnerships or referrals. Building a strong network within the community can lead to valuable business opportunities for your agency, and partners for future events.

Follow Up

After the event, be sure to follow up with attendees to thank them for their participation and gather feedback. Send personalized emails or follow-up surveys to gauge their satisfaction with the event and address any questions or concerns they may have. Maintain regular communication with attendees to nurture relationships and stay top-of-mind for future home care needs.

Measure Success

Measure the success of your events based on the predefined goals we covered earlier in this article.  Some  metrics you could track that might provide useful to you include: attendance rates, lead, client referrals, and social media engagement to evaluate the effectiveness of your event marketing efforts. Use this data to refine your future event strategies and optimize your marketing tactics accordingly.

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For more information on ways to grow your home care agency, including articles, podcasts, videos, and other resources, click here for Ankota's "Home Care Growth Best Practices," or click the button below:

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Ankota provides software for organization who enable older and disabled people to live at home, rather than in a nursing home or other institutional facility. We provide software for Home Care, EVV, Disability Services, Adult Day Services and other related needs like PACE Programs, Centers for Independent Living, and Area Agencies on Aging. To learn more, please visit www.ankota.com or contact us.




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