When you think of marketing, online tactics like SEO, Google AdWords and social media probably come to mind. More traditional media like billboards and radio advertising likely do too. Perhaps you are investing in one or more of those tactics, and because they cost you money and you can easily measure ROI, you are putting all your attention into them. But what if you looked internally at the marketing you are already doing within your organization. We are talking about referrals and reputation management.
Why are client services and reputation management important?
Referrals are one of the most fruitful lead generation tools that aging services organizations utilize. So much so that it was recently reported that “people are 90% more likely to trust and buy from a brand recommended by a friend.” How do you get people to make a referral or share their feedback on a review site?
- Provide supreme service.
- Make it easy.
Provide Supreme Service
There are countless ways you can ensure that your team is providing amazing service and care to your residents or clients, their families and your prospects. Start at the beginning. When a prospect tours your organization, are you using inclusive language to make them feel at home? Are you empathizing with their current situation, challenges and concerns? As you think through your tour process, see where you can go above and beyond to make visitors feel more comfortable – provide them a welcome packet they can take with them, offer them their favorite beverage (you can ask what this is when they scheduled their tour), sit with them one-on-one to dive deep into their heart and mind. They will see you care right from the get go and they will tell others.
Make it Easy
If you want people to make a referral or write you an online review, make it easy for them to do so! Send monthly referral reminder cards in the mail with your business card and a handwritten note. Email easy-to-follow instructions for posting a review on Google or Facebook. If nothing happens after the first attempt, continue your efforts. People are busy and it can take multiple attempts to catch them at just the right moment when they’re ready and willing to share your name.
It’s important that you ask your favorite residents, clients and their family members to make referrals and write reviews, and it’s important to do it at just the right time. One of the easiest and most natural times to ask is after you receive a compliment. If a family member calls to thank your team for providing amazing care for their parent after a fall, ask if they know of someone else who could benefit from their level of compassion and attention.