The home is now the central node for healthcare delivery today. Largely due to the rising costs of healthcare and patients’ heightened awareness of their health care options.
This, paired with the reality that the Baby Boomer generation is reaching retirement, lead generation for home health care agencies is a competitive stage.
To get a referral edge today, home health marketers must:
- Maintain consistent contact with referral sources
- Reply to leads in minutes
- Support patient care to improve rapport to increase the likelihood of referrals from patients
- Automate repetitive and time-consuming tasks to focus more on maintaining relationships and responding to leads
For a home health care sales or marketing team to do all of the above, they need comprehensive solutions in healthcare tech.
In this article, we’ll share the top home health care tech solutions to help you increase lead generation, streamline referrals and intake processes, and maintain stronger relationships with your referral sources.
Healthcare CRM (Customer Relationship Management)
A CRM in any industry basically acts as a cheat sheet to all of your customers/ patients, no matter where they come from.
Not only will it allow you to track all the leads as they come in, but can also:
- Trigger workflows such as the home health intake process
- Pull data that is essential to the pre-admission and referral sourcing
- Automatically share the necessary data with clinicians, schedulers, and admissions professionals
- Decrease data-entry needs and eliminate the burden of “paper-pushing”
- Give you insights into admissions and denials from each referral source, as well as insights into which sources provide the highest quality leads
Many home health care agencies don’t track their referrals. Even when tracking is in place, there isn’t a system for knowing where those leads come from and which referral sources are stronger than others.
Why is it so important to track home health referral sources?
Referral data should be built into any home health marketing strategy.
When it is, you can trim the fat on strategies that don’t work, cut out sources that don’t offer any ROI, connect with more leads in a shorter period of time, and drive care and revenue.
Besides cutting out what isn’t converting, the referral data builds context around a physician or care home that helps you tailor your messaging and approach to those sources.
On your part, it’ll take a degree of standardization across your marketing and sales team, but this will establish some accountability and responsibility for the referral loop.
MAP: A Home Health Care Marketing Automation Platform
While marketing automation and a CRM are often thought of as the same platform by those not familiar with them, they hold quite different functions.
While a sales team thrives on the streamlined lead pipeline in a CRM, a marketing team relies on a MAP to create and automate campaigns and redundant processes.
Best uses for a MAP for home health agency marketing include:
- Creating and automatically sending newsletters to family members, keeping them informed of their loved one’s activities and health care status.
- Building social media campaigns across marketing channels for your target audience.
- Keep family members updated with changes in the agency or to healthcare policies.
- Building workflows and customer journeys, and developing the media needed for those touchpoints.
- Developing web forms to help you deanonymize health care leads.
A MAP and CRM often work in tandem. While the CRM funnels all of the leads and makes workflows easier, a MAP tracks all of the individual communications with those leads. It’ll even tell you if or when a lead viewed your emails or interacted with campaigns.
This is one of the most valuable pieces of knowledge for a sales professional because it allows you to capture that lead when they’re primed and ready.
Contact Center as-a-Service
The Harvard Business Review conducted a study to discover just how lucrative it is to respond to prospects within the first hour of their outreach. What they found was shocking, yet altogether unsurprising:
Companies that responded within an hour of the query were 7x as likely to convert that lead into a customer than those that waited longer than an hour.
What’s more interesting, is that companies responding within that first hour were 60x more likely to convert the lead than organizations that waited more than 24 hours to respond.
It might seem unusual that any agency would wait that long, but the Harvard Business Review states otherwise.
According to them, only 37% of businesses respond to leads within the first hour.
The average lead response time is 42 hours, but half of companies in B2B industries take up to 5 days to respond, while more than half (58%) never do.
In most cases, this is because these organizations are spread too thin. They don’t have enough representatives to handle the amount of incoming leads.
Thus, the rise of contact centers as-a-service. Instead of hiring on more sales representatives, schedules or administrators, a contact center can take on the following:
- Call answering- available as a center for calls across all of your locations.
- Outbound follow-up- contacting web inquiries and referrals before they become cold, or send out reminders for appointments.
- Customizable terminology- establish phone processes to tailor the conversations to your business.
- Integrations- usually with your CRM, to ensure that you never miss a lead from any lead source.
- Automated workflows– building call triggers with that CRM integration ensures someone is always picking up the call at the right time, with the right data and approach. They’ll be able to send all of the collected data from the contact and feed it back into your workflow.
Home Health Live Chat Integrations
Above, we show just how vital it can be to respond to your home health leads as soon as possible. But consider this to be another driver- 51% of leads expect customer service to be available 24/7, according to Ubisend.
The Chat Shop, a live chat service, found that the number of online intake forms increased by 50% for healthcare agencies that included a live chat feature on their website.
For home health services, live chat can help in a few ways:
- To guide patients through products, hospital treatments, and complicated documents.
- Filtering out customers who might be looking for a different service than what’s on offer.
- Helps with sales training, as you gain a better understanding of what prospects are interested in/ want to know.
Since live chat integrations are customizable and very easy to add to your healthcare website, it’s one of the simplest ways to optimize home health lead generation.
Business Intelligence for Home Health Care Agencies
Data is the key to figuring out which referral sources provide the most ROI. Without it, you lose a lot of time to useless efforts with physicians and sources that equate to nothing for your organization.
At the least, you spend a lot of time trying to understand and attribute leads manually.
Having access to financial and clinical analytics, and health data for specific patient populations (such as those in need of palliative care vs. respite or long-term care) gives you a referral edge. Not only do you respond to the prospects faster, but you understand them better, and can use the most effective messages.
Deborah Wesley, CEO of Addison County Home Health and Hospice, during an interview with Hospice News, locks on to that point:
“We have patients that can be in different business units at the same time, and we need to know when to move them from home health or palliative, the hospice when they’re on waivers. ”
A competitive edge isn’t the only advantage of home health care Business Intelligence (BI). Other benefits include:
- Real-time, actionable analytics on referrals, denials, admissions, and source profitability.
- Data filtering to customize your dashboard and reports, and focus on the information that’s most important to you.
- Automatically generated analytics reports showing trends and opportunities for improvement (which are also customizable).
- Dashboards to view the data in real-time.
- Instant lead tracking and referral pattern spotting.
Key takeaways on home health care tools
Data is actionable. Building it into your home health care marketing and sales approaches not only gives you a competitive edge, but it increases physician and patient satisfaction.
By receiving answers faster, the intake process is smoother, and the redundant tasks are automated.
Traditional, siloed referral processes are outdated. To remain competitive today, home health services need health tech solutions like marketing automation, CRM, BI, and live chat.
Enquire has all of the above, and more. See how we can help you increase your home health care lead generation today.