Monday, September 22, 2014

None-Too-Small: Email Marketing for Nursing Homes

Welcome to my second in a series on places that should do email marketing but in most cases probably don't.

Today, nursing homes.  Let's start with the objections:

My customers are already here. And they're really not the email type.

The audience for email marketing for nursing homes aren't its residents. They are:

Audience #1: Children and Grandchildren of Residents

The decision to move a loved one into a nursing or assisted-living home often comes with guilt. But there are many reasons, some that need rationalizing and some that are obvious and legitimate, but the guilt will still persist. Email marketing for a facility will serve to build confidence that their loved ones are well-cared for and that they made the right decision selecting this particular facility.  It will also serve to give families additional things to talk about when they do come to visit or talk by phone or Skype.  Emails might cover fun events, guests or enrichment activities that residents participated in, birthdays, profiles of notable residents and profiles in excellence lifting up staff who have gone above and beyond. It also serves to educate readers about the different levels of care available and answer frequently asked questions that the staff otherwise spends a lot of time answering over and over again.

Each email gives the recipient a glimpse into "campus life" for their loved ones. And I suspect that will also result in more frequent visits and phone calls to the residents from their families.

Audience #2: The Facility Staff

As the newsletter communicates professionalism, care and dedication to its residents, making it required reading for staff means that they see what you're telling the patients' families and it serves to reinforce the mission, expectation and level of excellence expected from staff by the facility management and the families.

For some staff, it might need to be printed out and placed into their mailboxes if they aren't typically or regularly interacting with computers, but I would presume that most facilities these days do have a few computers available to its residents and staff could use those same computers to engage with the online version of the email if so inclined.

The more that's done to celebrate staff in the newsletter, the more they will want to engage with it as well.

My customers are all but locked-in already. Why expend the effort?

The email newsletter also serves as a marketing tool. An impressed reader will share the email with their friends and say "Look at the kind of stuff they're doing with dad!" That will cause others to consider that facility if they have need of residential care for a loved one and raise the bar on facilities in general.

Your customers have choices. 

Moving to a new facility isn't easy, but it's possible. Also, they, too, may someday be in the market themselves. An email marketing newsletter will serve to build confidence that this the right place for a family member's care or for their own care and evoke positive emotions about an industry that suffers from the very true and sad fact that some people will pass away while in their care.

By focusing on the positive aspects, you will create an atmosphere that celebrates life, brings families closer together and replaces pointless guilt with confidence and peace of mind.

I started BoostCE to help businesses use the power of Email Marketing and other Social Media channels to improve their engagement with their customers. If I can help you, please call, tweet or email me today.If you think you can stump me with an industry that you can't possibly see how Email Marketing would help, please leave it in the comments.
Post a Comment