Blogging for Your Senior Care Business –What, Where and How?
Updated: Jan 3
In today’s world, everything is digital.
Deny it, as you might. But our dependence on computer algorithms and data networks is a reality we can no longer shy away from, considering it is practically in everything we do and everywhere we go. The numbers say it all. As per January 2020, 4.54 billion people have been estimated to be active internet users. That is 59% of the global population!
Need we say more? In the age of the internet, even the McDonald’s meals we consume are ordered via cellphone apps or those large touchscreens at the outlets. And in our humble opinion, it would be just plain silly to not even try to reap the many benefits of ubiquitous computing. Today, there is no better place for one to market themselves or their business than the internet. And this is especially applicable to those focused on senior care.
Is Your Senior Care Business Keeping Up With The Trends?
Most businesses catering to seniors or their families are keeping up with the trend and promoting themselves online as well. And what’s more, they are doing great because literally, everyone is on the internet now! As per the latest research by Pew Research, 69% of adults between 50 to 64 years of age, and 40% of those above 65, use social media. Whether you offer hospice services, dementia care, at-home nursing or specialize in legal matters of the elderly, there is a spot for you on the World Wide Web.
Blogging For Senior Care Business Is Smart
Blogging is one of the main avenues taken by businesses that serve the elderly. With America’s ageing demographic comes a rising tide of such institutions and if you run one of them, you will know just how important it is to distinguish yourself from the competition. A blog affords you the chance to showcase what it is that makes your business so special, as well as keeps all potential and existing clients up-to-date on its proceedings.
In this article, we will delve deep into the world of blogs and how they can help senior care business owners use the internet to their advantage.
What is blogging?
Let’s start off with the basics. For the uninitiated, blogging is a long-term marketing strategy that allows businesses to feed readers free but useful data about themselves and what they do, thereby boosting traffic and building a brand identity for themselves overtime. In this way, they cultivate a good relationship with existing and potential customers, which benefits them in the long-run.
According to Hubspot, companies that blog get 97% more links to their website. In other words, they get more potential clients. Similarly, marketers who regularly resort to blogs to promote their clients are 13 times more likely to enjoy positive Returns on Investment (ROI). Also, small businesses that blog have shown as much as 126% more lead growth than those that do not.
Since the advent of the internet, everything there is to know about a businesses is but a few clicks away. This can be frustrating for you as a business owner because of course, there is much more to your company than some generic texts and a few pictures. How do you retain client’s attention long enough to show them your value?
With a Blog.
As your business grows, networking, advertising, recruiting and generating leads will take over your daily to-do lists. All of these demands your utmost attention but if you really want to maximize your online marketing strategy, you must start a blog.
Blogging for senior care businesses in particular
Now, most people do extensive online research before making major decisions. This is all the most important when it comes to the elderly, what with their health and wellbeing at stake. Rest assured, other people – like your future residents or their family members and caretakers – are doing the same before committing.
That’s why, it is important to connect with prospective clients and make them feel comfortable. This is where your blog will come in.
Why should senior care businesses have blogs?
A company website is pretty much a given nowadays. Having one helps businesses add a certain degree of legitimacy to themselves, making them appear more structured, more established. On the other hand, not having a website casts doubt on its professionalism. It is a great landing point for old and new clients to find out more about your company.
Not all company websites have a blogs section but there are several benefits of doing so.
1. Offers engaging content for clients
Most business tend to fill up their official websites with generic information about themselves, their team members, the products and services they offer and how they came about in the first place. These are things that largely remain unchanged, even as the business itself changes.
But as they say, change is the only constant. A blog can help you display your long-term care facility as one that is keeping up with the times. The pandemic has made this even more important, seeing as how the elderly are especially susceptible to Covid-19 and those looking after them have had to alter the way they do so, lest they catch the virus.
2. Opportunity to create positive brand image
A blog can add a “human” touch to your identity. By this, we mean that it shows prospective clients your business is run by real people for real people, and that it understands not just physical but emotional needs as well. Through a well-written blog that carries a personable and thoughtful tone, you will be adding value to your services, as well giving readers a piece of who you are and what your business stands for.
Truth be told, it is but natural for clients to be a bit on the fence about checking their loved ones or themselves into an old-age facility. Anecdotes of clients and staff members, for instance, will go a long way in making them more comfortable about it.
3. Filters competition by providing show-and-tell platform
Many a times, businesses operating in the same industry end up with similar promotional content on their websites or advertisements. For instance, you may have noticed how many old-age homes boast of exquisite living quarters, restaurant-level dining, trained staff and thriving social calendars, etc., to attract clients. That is all well and good but you would prefer something deeper, no?
Blogs can demonstrate all that your assisted living business has to offer in a less bland way, offering greater details or first-hand experiences to set it apart from its peers. Think posts with lots of pictures from special events and outings or quotes from clients who have availed your services. How you made it easier for a busy mum-of-two to hire an at-home nurse for her ailing father or how a staff member is supplementing her geriatric care classes with a part-time job as a hospice. Anything to boost relatability.
4. Adds credibility to medical knowledge
Usually, company websites include a list of qualifications held by the more prominent staff members at least, if not all. But why not substantiate them with timely and thought-provoking blog posts?
This is especially advisable for hospices or other medical practices focusing on senior care. Your website, for example, can boast of how all the degrees and diplomas your key staff members have under their belts.
It might already feature articles or sentences that say stuff like, “Our workplace is equipped with state-of-the-art technology to provide you with the best care possible.” A blog post, however, will build on these benefits further by say, detailing the great lengths you went to in order to secure that latest piece of machinery for your business. Alternatively, you could write about a real or hypothetical medical emergency wherein the equipment came in handy or would come in handy.
Again, the idea is to highlight the USP (unique selling proposition) of your company and how you are enabling it to respond to the vagaries of the competitive market by maintaining that USP.
5. Blogs are Ideal for SEO Boost
Data analytics show most people do not scroll beyond the first page of search results so you need to make yourself conspicuous on the internet. Unless someone comes to your website by typing its URL in the address bar or searching for the name of your business specifically, there is no way they will end up there. For example, if we were to Google “Best dementia care facilities in America,” would yours come up? And if yes, how high would it be on the results shown?
These are just some of the questions that come up in Search Engine Optimization (SEO). For the uninitiated, this an umbrella term for all the different ways in which one can improve their website and its content so as to make it rank highly on search results online. The more relevant the content is to the search terms plugged in by users, the more likely are they to find your website.
As more and more seniors take to the internet, optimizing your website becomes crucial. If you don’t, your target audience will likely end up going to a competitor or not even realize your business exists! The same applies to children of seniors, who are generally more tech-savvy and use the internet to look for the right facilities for their parents.
So how does one manage SEO? Some actionable tips include:
· Using the Right Keywords:
Google is great at understanding the context and nuances of every search initiated on its website and serving up exactly what the searchers are looking for. Still, you must tag the right words to make sure your stuff comes up top as solutions to particular problems. For instance, “How much does assisted-living cost?” or “How to deal with dementia in a loved one?” You can include cities and counties here too.
· Develop Compelling Content:
Try to write valuable information that reinforces your authority and expertise in the senior care industry. It may help to focus your blogs on say, common problems your audience faces and how you can help eradicate them. For instance, you could include something on arthritis using keywords like “arthritis solutions.”
· Increase Mobile Responsiveness:
Thanks to smartphones, laptops are almost a thing of the past. Most us are using the internet via mobile devices and search engines use mobile responsiveness as a ranking signal. Make sure your website is mobile-friendly to make your blog more readable on the go.
· Google My Business Listing:
Some directory listings hold more authority on Google. Listing your senior care business on these can boost its own authority and make sure it tops the list of search results using location, contact information, hours of operation and client reviews, etc., as tools.
SEO management for senior care businesses may sound complicated but trust us! It will make a huge difference to your blog.
6. The power of video - Vlogs Anyone?
Who said blogs can only be written? Go the extra mile and add a visual flair to your page by creating a video blog – or Vlog, as they are often referred to in pop culture.
When you are promoting a senior care amenity, it is especially important to connect with prospective clients and vlogs can be of great help here. Don’t believe us? Well, did you know that nearly 500 million hours of videos are watched every day on YouTube alone?
Also, as per tech giant Cisco, online videos will comprise more than 80% of all consumer internet traffic in the U.S) by the start of 2022! This is because people are much more likely to appreciate a product when it is accompanied by explainer videos. When it comes to senior care, you aren’t exactly selling any one particular product but the same principle applies: When you give prospects an inside view of your business and community, they will only believe in it more.
HumanGood – an assisted-living community based in California – shares videos on its website, as well as on Facebook and YouTube. Some are fun, others are a bit more serious and informative. Either way, they do the trick.
Some of the topics HumanGood has vlogged about include “Will Life be Interesting after Retirement? And “Couples Moving to Senior Living: A Love Story.” You can do so too, depending on the type of elderly care services you provide.
And the best part is, video content can easily be repurposed to aid other aspects of your sales and marketing plan. For instance, if you have recorded a Q&A session on memory care with a neurologist or caretakers of patients with dementia, you can pick up what they say and flesh it out into a written blog too! Feel free to email a link to the blog (including the video) to your lead database later on.
How can you promote a blog?
Once the page is ready, it will be time to get the word out. Make sure it contains a direct link to your company website (ideally, in the most prominent spot on the home page or the main menu) so readers waste no time in clicking through.
Engage your social media pages, personal and private, and again, don’t forget to add a direct link here too! Some social media websites have the option of paid promotions that you can utilize to plaster your message anywhere and everywhere.
Wrapping it up…
It is pertinent to mention here that while the benefits of blogging for senior care businesses abound, do not assume them to be a sure-shot solution to any financial troubles you might be experiencing. Blogging is a long-term marketing strategy – one that might take several months to beget any favorable results. It may even take a year or more and often, you will feel like you are simply churning out content no one really cares about and be tempted to stop.
But remember: This is something every blog goes through, at least in its initial phase. Persistence is key, as is choosing the right style, topics and mediums for self-promotion.
If you can nail these important factors, your senior care business is likely to grab a lot more eyeballs than ever before. The thing is, higher traffic leads to a greater number of referrals. These, in turn, translate into clients. Blogging has been proven to drive this growth. All you have to do is keep at it.
You know you probably should start a blog for your business. But it just seems to time consuming and maybe even a bit overwhelming
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