Referral Marketing: Building Strong Relationships with Referral Sources

How to forge mutually beneficial working relationships with top referral sources 

A picture depicts businesspeople smiling and shaking hands, representing a strong relationship with home care referral sources.

The people, healthcare providers, and organizations that send you client referrals are a powerful part of your home care marketing strategy. Recommendations that come from a trusted professional are worth their weight in gold, and these are relationships every home care agency must cultivate.

The relationship you have with your referral sources should be more than just an exchange of information. Get to know your sources as people and as professionals.

Here’s how to make those relationships beneficial to all.

How to build strong relationships with your home care referral sources

Forging and maintaining relationships with your referrers can help ensure you continue to fill your sales funnel with warm leads.

Follow-up quickly

When your home care referral sources make a recommendation, it’s not just your agency’s reputation, but their reputation on the line as well. If a geriatric care manager sends you a potential client, but that lead never hears from you, that reflects poorly on them too. So when they pass you a client lead, follow up quickly.

Following up with a client lead within an hour makes it 7x more likely that you will get the key decision-maker on the phone, and 60x more likely that you will have a meaningful conversation with that decision-maker. Don’t waste your opportunities.

Listen to their needs

The professionals making those referrals have their own long list of responsibilities. They have clients and patients they need to care for, and part of that care includes making helpful recommendations for home care services. Ask them about the problems they encounter at the point of referral.

Empathy and compassion should extend beyond your clients, it applies to your business partners as well. If they’re making what feel like unreasonable or hasty requests, pause and consider the position they may be in.

Build a referral kit

Make it as easy as possible for your referrers to talk authoritatively about your agency. Build a referral kit full of information about your agency and what you can offer to clients. Don’t forget to provide print and digital versions.

  • Your value proposition
  • Information about the home care services you offer
  • Information about insurance and medicare coverage
  • The qualifications and certifications of your caregivers
  • Awards and certifications your agency has earned
  • Details about your service area(s)
  • Information about your agency leadership
  • Several ways to easily contact your agency (with a person’s name attached)

Treat them like the experts they are

Your professional referral sources possess a wealth of information about your client leads. They care for them through life-changing experiences, help them make hard decisions, and are with them at the point just before they need your services.

They know about their state of mind, worries, and concerns —and they know a lot about the type of care your clients will need before they even get to you.

For example:

  • Local physicians’ offices and primary care providers can help you understand the medical histories and precipitating events of your target audience
  • Facility discharge planners know how to keep their patients from returning to the hospital unnecessarily
  • Residential care representatives know the line between in-home and on-site care
  • Insurance providers and medicare coordinators know how to mitigate long-term problems and promote cost-savings for clients
  • And don’t forget, your personal referral sources—that is, your existing clients—are a rich source of knowledge about how you can smooth out the sales process and provide better care

To forge deeper relationships with these sources, schedule regular check-ins, invite them to client meetings, ask for their advice and feedback, and make them a partner in your client care plans.

Demonstrate a high standard of care

The care you deliver to clients is a reflection of your referral sources. They want to know that the agency they recommend provides a consistently high standard of care.

As you put quality control measures in place and improve the qualifications of your caregiver staff, keep your referral sources updated. The more expertise you can guarantee, the greater your chances of landing an enthusiastic referral.

Return the favor

You’re asking your home care referral sources to send warm clients directly into your sales funnel. So, how can you make their job easier too?

Ask your sources what you can provide to them, the problems you can help them solve, how you can be a better partner in caring for their clients—and be ready to send referrals their way too.

Ready to convert more leads from home care referral sources into clients?

The experts at Home Care Marketing Pros can help you manage your client referrals, track their progress through the sales funnel, and convert more leads into clients. Our CareFunnels power your marketing strategies from contact to conversion. Get started by scheduling a demo with our team.

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