In this post, you'll learn how to get clients for your home care agency.
Maybe you’ve just started up your own homecare business, and you’ve got some wonderful care professionals ready to go?
Perhaps you have one or two clients already, but you want to expand and grow your business? In this article, Birdie will help you with some tips on how to get clients for domiciliary care - with a selection of tried and tested ideas that really work!
What is a domiciliary care business?
A domiciliary care business, or homecare agency, is a business that provides care and support for people in their own home. This could include elderly people, disabled people, young people or anyone who just requires a little extra help to live their best lives. A domiciliary care business usually consists of an office team to manage the business itself, and a team of trained care professionals who support clients in their homes.
8 ways to get clients for your homecare agency:
1. Use a Referral Scheme
Nothing beats recommendation! So if a current care recipient, or their family, is happy with your service why not encourage them to tell others about their experience? Word of mouth soon gets round - and there’s always someone looking for domiciliary care, or who knows of someone who’s looking for it.
Perhaps you could create a referral scheme, providing an incentive to encourage your existing clients to suggest your good name to someone else looking for care at home? A small but effective email marketing campaign to your current clients is a super way to get this message across. Typical incentives for referral schemes like these can be a temporary reduction in fees, a free session or a wellbeing related reward like tickets or vouchers.
2. Have a Website
If you don’t already have a website for your homecare business, you should think about getting one designed as soon as possible. It doesn’t have to be a huge professional website, but having an online presence is so important - the very first thing most prospective clients will do is search for your business online. If they can’t find you, they are very likely to go with a competitor that is visible online!
Websites don’t need to be expensive - shop around and build something according to your budget. You could do it yourself using tools like Squarespace, or pay someone to do it for you from a site like Upwork.
When it comes to what to include on your website, why not look at what your competitors do for inspiration? Create a list of what you think works and what doesn't on their websites, and design your own accordingly.
3. Use Social Media
Social media is a powerful tool, with nearly 60 million British people using it regularly. If you’re not already set up on social media, you could be missing out!
There are some platforms that will work better for a homecare business than others. For example, Facebook has a business page section, where you can link your website and post information on what you do. Facebook is also the social media platform of choice for a slightly older demographic - making it more likely to be used by people with elderly parents. There are numerous local groups on Facebook, and some allow you to advertise. Search for groups looking for care professionals, using search terms such as 'carer needed' or 'support for elderly parents', and join them to see what sort of need there is in your region and to connect with potential clients.
You could also use Facebook's paid advertising service, which allows you to place sponsored adverts for low-cost. Paid advertising helps an advert for your business to appear infront of people who need your services, making the chance of a new client much more likely. Have a look at this useful guide to Facebook advertising by Meta.
Another excellent social media network for homecare professionals is LinkedIn because it is business-related. While its audience is mainly business to business, there are lots of groups related to the homecare industry and it’s worthwhile building a profile for networking purposes.
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4. Use Google Advertising
One of the first places that people look for domiciliary care is Google. So you could use the power of Google Pay Per Click advertising. Every time someone searches for domiciliary care, your business name will pop up right at the top of Google. It’s also relatively inexpensive - you set your budget and you key in your demographic, even down to the local area you want to target which is why it’s good for local businesses. You only pay when a customer clicks on your advert taking them to your website. As there are no contracts, you are never tied in, and you can pause your advert whenever you want or amend it if you need to!
5. Consider Leaflets
Get some eye-catching leaflets or flyers printed and do a maildrop in your local area. There are plenty of maildrop companies, like this one, who hand-deliver leaflets through letterboxes. You could also organise for local newspapers to include your flyers in their next issue, so that residents in your area see it when they read the paper.
Why not take your leaflets or flyers into local shops? For a small fee you may be permitted to display them in the shop window. Hospitals, doctors’ surgeries, clinics and any other medical centres are also ideal places to leave leaflets and flyers.
6. Take Out an Ad in the Local Paper
Another way to get the word out is to place an advert in a local newspaper, which is usually an affordable way to gain more clients. As a tip, get your advert placed on the right-hand page as this is where the eye naturally falls when turning pages!
7. A Good or Outstanding CQC Rating
Of course, being rated good or outstanding will make all the difference too. CQC inspections are important, not just for you, but also for care recipients and their families. The inspection is there to monitor your provision and gives those receiving your care confidence that you’re reputable.
The CQC website displays the rating of every healthcare and social care provider in England, so anyone seeking care can easily look up your business. By maintaining quality care, you show others that you’re safe, effective, caring and responsive. That’s testimony to your business and another way of attracting more clients.
8. Use Content and Keywords
Technology plays such a large role in business nowadays, and that includes the domiciliary care industry.
It’s obviously essential to have a good website with plenty of detail about the domiciliary services you offer - but to keep that website visible, it needs to be regularly updated. Google is the largest search engine of all and of course, there’s a lot of competition! Staying relevant online is very important.
So, if you don’t already have one, start a blog and populate it with lots of information that about care at home. Regularly update your blog, perhaps once a week or once a fortnight, and tell your audience that you’ve published a new blog. You could email your database, or post on your social media channels.
Perform some keyword research to find out what your most searched for terms are (the terms that people type into Google’s search bar) and make sure that those words are within your website’s content. You can find out more about keyword searches by clicking here.
Hopefully the above top tips to grow your domiciliary care business will help you attract more clients. Even if you choose just one or two ideas to start with, you’re sure to get the word out there!
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