The Holidays are filled with opportunities
Considering the inherent, caring nature that envelops the home care industry, this season of holidays ranging from focus on expressing gratitude to giving/charity creates a natural enironment for an agency to seriously level up their brand awareness. There are myriad examples you could find if you look to what other home care agencies have done around this time of year, and even more ideas to be found in millions of blog posts on marketing for the holidays.
Before selecting from among any of those options to take on to help elevate your brand during the holidays, it’s critical to start know the answer to these questions:
- Who is my Right-Fit Client? This defines the audience you’re pursuing to get your brand in front of. This will also help you narrow down who you’re going to send messaging to, who you hope to serve through the campaign (if doing a “give” campaign), and who you’d like to involve in the campaign directly (if it involves the community).
- What resources are available (budget, partners, time, digital, etc)? The cost and logistics of various campaigns you could consider ranges drastically. Decide if you have partners you could work with that can help elevate your brand through options you’re considering. Determine a budget and the outcome that will deliver a desired “Return on Experience”.
- What could we do (with time and resources) to make the biggest positive impact in our community? This is the time do get imaginative in alignment with your brand. You know your community. You know the needs of those you serve. From the limited list included in this article – and any others you consider, which would mean the most to your Right-Fit Client (RFC) audience and which would exemplify your brand essence best?
Right-Fit Client (Audience)
- In Need – Your RFC doesn’t just need home care services. They need the specific services you excel in providing.
- Disabled/Dimentia – Which temporary or permant obstacles do you provide solutions for and how do you identify them?
- Elderly/Enhanced Opportunity – Consider the age demographics of those you serve and/or other circumstances that would make them an ideal prospective client.
- Available Resources – Which forms of payment (LTC, Private Pay, V.A., Medicaid, etc) are you best equipped to manage and work within?
- Long-Term Care – An RFC should be someone you can continue providing services to for an extended period of time. This increases the Lifetime Value of clients served and reduces the costs of aquiring new clients.
Part of identifying your right-fit client should also help you hone in on other influencers to your RFC, namely health professionals and family members your RFC trusts and relies on. There’s a common misconception that digital misses the mark because the RFC are generally seniors… However, (even with seniors becoming increasingly digital capable) their adult children and health professionals can be influenced through your social media and other digital branding efforts.
If you come up with something newsworthy, submit a press release to various media outlets in your market to see if they can show up and capture the outcome of what you (and others involved) accomplished for the community or a family or an individual selected. In addition to the “Live at 5” TV coverage – just before Jeopardy and Wheel of Fortune, the story will become available online for those who consume news online.
Through Social Media, you should share posts leading up to what you’re doing and invite people in the area to share/like (and – if applicable – get involved). Select specific posts or videos shared to Boost (paid sponsorship), ensuring that you set the target audience using as specific as possible demographics (where, gender, age, etc) and interests. If you’ve done a great job of collecting emails from current clients and loved ones, as well as prospects you’ve determined are ideal, you can use those emails to inform social media (or a Google/YouTube campaign) who to seek out as part of a “Like Audience” build. This basically tells the ad platform to seek out people who have similar interests, search history, affinities, and other online activity.
What Resources are Available?
For some, this might feel like a chicken vs. egg scenario. Yet, it’s critical to set up a realistic commitment in terms of budget, time, and other resources based on the desired outcome. If budget is tight, it requires being more creative with your time and other resources to pursue the same outcome.
Before setting and committing resources, determine what the desired outcome is. Here are some potential outcomes you might pursue:
- Establish [#] new, significant partners in your community.
- Social Media Posts reach [#] people online
- [#] new page likes for your Facebook business page
- [#] new email addresses for new contacts (Lead Generation)
- [#] unique visits to your website (to a specific page/article)
Work backward from these outcomes to determine (based on past performance) what it will require to reach said outcomes. To get reach # new people, how much budget and time and effort is realistic? To establish a new partner through this campaign, how many potential partners will you need to meet with? How much time/effort will that take?
Specific Resources to Consider:
What to do?
Some companies might be reluctant to take on efforts to drive their brand forward during the holidays. Perhaps a poorly executed attempt by another company become a source of discouragement. Perhaps it’s simply uncertainty of what your agency could/should do that wouldn’t come off as opportunistic. When you take the opportunity, however, to do something authentic to your brand essence, you can expect a positive response from those you reach.
While exploring options, your team needs to acknowledge that while it may take some effort to make it a success, the ideas should not be “forced”. If the various options discussed aren’t an obvious fit with your brand, other ideas should be looked into.
These steps that help companies define their brand could help you align your brand with ideas that will reflect your brand and help it connect with others.
- Brand Personality – How you want your clients to relate with and feel about your agency.
- User Values – What values align between your agency and your right-fit clients?
- Emotional Rewards – What feelings do you want your clients and those in your community to have as a result of this campaign and what you do?
- Functional Benefits – List the tangible benefits from “what” you do that will stand out.
- Features – This gets down to the literal “What” you will do that will – as a result of this campaign – directly tie back to your brand.
Some things others connected with home care and seniors have done
Adopting a Senior
Whether for a meal or gifts, including the community to nominate and help select a senior (or seniors).
Adopting a Family
Involve the community to nominate a family that fits with your RFC for you to provide a meal to or gifts.
Creating an Experience
Look to your resources and see if there’s unique experience you can provide someone in your community. Examples:
- Getting a former pilot back in the air. Check out this Bucketlist News Story.
- Getting a family together. Helping a family that is normaly separated celebrate the holidays together.
Look among families you serve and take nominations from the community to select a senior to help shop for gifts to send their family for the holidays.
- Veteran’s Day
- Caregiver Appreciation Day
- Thanksgiving Day
- Black Friday
- Small Business Saturday
- Cyber Monday
- Pearl Harbor Day
- Poinsettia Day
- Boxing Day
- New Years Eve