Lever 1: Acquiring New Customers
Since it’s already top-of-mind for many agencies, we’ll hit on it first.
At this point, most agencies have taken some steps to adapt to the reality of marketers being locked out of facilities and other institutions that traditionally have been steady sources of referrals.
And unfortunately, this situation is unlikely to change anytime soon.
As our team has analyzed the situation, what we’ve found is that the tactics that successful home care marketers are shifting to are many of the same ones that business-to-business software sales teams, including our own team, have been using for a long time.
Our sales team has always been remote, in the sense that we’re unlikely ever to make in-person sales calls when our sales team is located in Idaho and North Carolina and our customers are scattered across North America.
There’s an established way of doing remote business-to-business sales that’s been refined by software companies and similar vendors for decades. While not every aspect of these companies’ playbooks are transferrable to a home care referral-marketing setting, many are.
Here are some of the things we’ve learned that might be relevant for home care agencies right now:
1. You need a system for organizing touchpoints, progress, and next steps.
Chances are, your marketers are able to get (or at least attempt) many more touchpoints in a day than they used to, since they’re reliant on calls and emails instead of driving around to meet in-person.
The more touchpoints, the more potential there is to over-communicate or let important messages slip through the cracks.
At the very least, you should have a detailed spreadsheet tracking every target account and every touchpoint with them. However, this can get cumbersome and time-consuming. We strongly recommend you start using a CRM system if you haven’t already; our team uses HubSpot and it’s not an exaggeration to say that we’re exponentially more effective than we’d be without it.
It also goes without saying that metrics, goals, and quotas become more important than ever in remote setting as a way of ensuring accountability and tracking the success of new methods.
2. You can optimize your process much more quickly as a remote salesperson—take advantage of this.
The process of analyzing what works best and doubling down on it is an instinctive process for most marketers; however, remote selling is even more conducive to quickly iterating and optimizing your approach because you’re able to complete more actions and track them more closely. Make the most of this.
If you’re attempting first-time (or at least early-stage) outreach with a number of new accounts, you can analyze the open rates and response rates for your different emails and begin to optimize for the approaches that work best.
3. Keep in mind the balance between personalization and scalability.
This tip mainly concerns emails. Emails are always more effective when they’re personalized to the receiver; no one likes getting an email that feels like it was written by a robot.
At the same time, you’ll be able to be much more effective if you’re not creating every new email completely from scratch—a level of scalability and duplication speeds up your process significantly.
My advice? Work on creating templates for each stage of outreach that can be used with any account, but always take a moment to put yourself in the shoes of the recipient before you send an email and ask whether there’s anything that would come across as robotic or irrelevant. Then customize accordingly.