Home care agencies are already business to business companies (B2B) if they work with institutions to receive referrals. They are also business to consumer (B2C) since they market directly to consumers who need care for themselves or their loved ones. But what is B2E? Business to Employee represents companies that rely upon a reliable flow of quality employees – like others in medical staffing, that clearly fits both home health and home care agencies. Navigating the relationships and various marketing channels makes B2E, B2C and B2B a challenge.
The B2E Challenge in home care marketing:
If a lack of care givers is hampering your growth, then one of your core marketing activities has to be focused on recruiting – that’s B2E.
B2E means that the job of winning employees has to become a marketing focus that is just as important as winning new customers. The same level of the energy you expend to win customers – brochures, websites, emails, digital and print ads, outreach, social media – must be considered for the job of making sure you have care givers to meet customer demand. And, when it is done using a well designed plan, it can spur real growth.
Paid job lead services often delivery very few quality leads and have a high turnover rate. But, companies that don’t have recruiting methods that utilize digital marketing are left with just one choice – paid ads or job search services. A growing reliance on paid job search sites is strong evidence that a B2E approach is needed.
The good news for these companies is that strategies like Inbound Marketing can easily be applied to employee recruiting. Inbound marketing brings together search engine optimization (SEO), social networking, email nurturing, content management, customer response management (CRM) and other proven marketing approaches into an integrated package.
By contrast, paid job search not only delivers a lower quality of prospect, it puts the business in a perpetual “rent leads to grow” situation. Since you don’t own the employee leads, and use only temporary rented employee lead services, you don’t build any long term capacity to recruit. Your investments in these advertisements just don’t create marketing assets that you own, because you have to keep paying the fee in perpetuity.
Inbound marketing, when used for recruiting, connects care agencies with prospects who build a real understanding of the differences your agency offers. They become connected to your culture in the process of exploring work opportunities. As a result you build a strong employer brand, not just a customer brand.
Understanding your B2E role as a company means that you begin viewing employees as customers who need the same kind of branding, messaging and prompts to get connected and stay connected to your organization. And just like other customers, marketing doesn’t stop once they sign on – continued communication and brand connection is needed over time. Like other customers, the long term goal for employees is that they buy into the culture and values of your agency. They move from being people who show up for a JOB, to champions who are excited to share about their work and the company wherever they go.
One simple example is what happens when an employee shares excitement about their job in a social network – just one component of an inbound strategy. Research makes it clear that consumers trust the opinions of employees more than any other group in your business (except outside academic researchers). When you employees share satisfaction with their role in your agency, it makes a big impact.
If your employees, who each have a conservative average of 150 people in their social networks, (the actual number may be over 800), share positive experiences about their work, how many people could just one post reach? Since social networking is built on a viral principle, it means that friends can share what their friends share. If even 3% of your employees ‘social friends pass on something positive about your business, the reach of that single post could be massive. In just three steps one post can reach more than 3,000 people. A home care agency with 50 employees could have a consistent social reach of 40,000 people, with the right approach.
Inbound Marketing integrates social media with all of the other elements that are needed to convert powerful social reach into new employees and agency growth. But it means making an important shift from just relying upon external employment lead services toward an inbound strategy that puts together website, email, social and other assets to create something that can build momentum in recruiting.