Posts

Home Care Marketers report their #1 objection is, “My referral sources or prospects tell me they can’t afford my Home Care Services.”

Here’s the deal. That is not the “real” issue!

The REAL issue is how the Home Care Marketer feels about money and value and their own mindset.

They have a scarcity mindset.

Haven’t we all pulled up to the house and made an “assumption” based on how the house looked that the potential client “can’t afford our services”?

…Only to walk out with a signed agreement for more hours than what we thought?

The Marketers make (false) assumptions about what someone is willing or able to pay for value based on their own limiting beliefs.

The prospect feels this “energy”, and it becomes a self-fulling prophecy. The next thing you know… no signed agreement.

“See, I knew they couldn’t afford it!”

Let’s talk value.

Do you believe that you provide a valuable service?

Of course, you do! If you do not – then change jobs. You have too much integrity.

I am not kidding. If you do not think your agency’s services are worth it – move on.

The rest of you who are continuing to read believe in your services.

They are worth it.

The value the services bring to your clients goes well beyond the dollars you receive.

We speak all the time about consultative selling. You are the Senior Care Expert!

When you identify a problem, share solutions that are part of the process! Price is the last thing on your mind.

I had a mentor who once told me, “Recommend what they need – not what you think they will pay.” It is the best advice I have received. It allows me to paint a picture of our services’ results to the client or their family.

Time to delete from your self conversations

#1. They can’t afford it.

#2. I am sure they will just want 4 hrs.

#3. They have already met with the XYZ agency. I know their price is lower, so I am not going to get this case.

EVERY interaction you have has the potential to lead you to the next case.

You need to connect with the prospect.

Uncover their wants, needs, and desires through great open-ended questions as we teach you.

And be the consultant. Recommend what they need to achieve those desires.

My grandmother – Grandma Pete – was on Medicaid. On paper, you would not think she could afford services. But when you asked the right questions. Her late husband was a veteran. Her three children were willing to pitch in and help. She received services. Most marketers would have stopped at the VA, but the real decision maker was my Mom, and she had influence over her brothers, who pitched in funds.

You know your Mom always said you don’t “Assume.”

A fellow sales trainer Mike Weinberg says,

“When there is a perceived desire and need, and there is perceived value in filling that need, and they can see it in their mind’s eye, there is always enough money IF you are talking to the right person.”

Write this on your whiteboard, or print it out and frame it!

BELIEVE the VALUE you CREATE through your services!

Keep Serving Seniors!

 

Together We Grow!

Melanie

 

PS: If you are struggling with the price objection struggle no more! We got you covered in the High Performance Sales Academy. Click here to get instant access 

Every once in a while I read an article that moves me to the core.  This is one of them.

This week we are going to republish an article from a fellow sales trainer Dave Kahle.

Does this describe your sales rep?  Or you?  If it does reach out we can help with our industry-specific “corn planting and harvesting” to help you feed your agency!

On a fairly regular basis, I run into a belief that limits a salesperson’s behavior. These often sound reasonable and are embraced without question. Looking a bit closer at them, however, uncovers how they limit a salesperson’s performance.

One of the most common of these negative and limiting beliefs is this: I have my own style of selling. This is one of the most pernicious of them all because it excuses the salesperson from any responsibility to improve. More salespeople have remained plateaued far below their potential because of this limiting belief than any others.

Let me explain.

Like so many of these limiting beliefs, this has a ring of truth to it. In one sense, everyone has their own style of selling because we are all unique individuals and act out our own unique blend of knowledge wisdom, and life experiences. No two of us are alike. The problem comes when the salesperson uses that belief to ignore the efforts of management and sales experts to help the salesperson sell better. The thought process goes like this: “Since I have my own style of selling, I don’t need to listen to or give any credence to what anyone else tries to teach me. They don’t understand my style, so their advice is irrelevant.”

“My own style” thus becomes an excuse that absolves the salesperson from any responsibility for improving his/her sales skills. And because he retreats into the psychological fortress of his own style, nothing can penetrate it.

So, for example, his manager sends him an article that impressed his boss. The salesperson deletes it unread because he has his own style of selling. Nobody can teach him anything.

A highly recommended seminar comes to town. The salesperson says he is too busy to go, but really means “I have my own style. I’m not going to learn anything at the seminar.”

The company buys a copy of a well-regarded book for all its salespeople. It gathers dust on the salesperson’s shelf because he has his own style of selling. There is nothing in the book that is going to help him. The author doesn’t understand his style of selling.

The company unveils a new product line and directs the salesforce to begin promoting it. The salesperson doesn’t bother, because it doesn’t fit within his style of selling.

“My own style of selling” then because the mechanism to absolve the salesperson of any responsibility to improve his/her sales skills, consider more effective strategy, or refine his tactics.

Best Practices

In every sophisticated endeavor, some people prove better at it than others. And some of those people are thoughtful and analytical and identify those practices that brought better results. Since they are identifiable behaviors, others can mimic them and attain similar, better results. Those behaviors are called ‘best practices.’ They are the behaviors that have been proven to bring better results.

This body of best practices eventually wells up out of every sophisticated human activity. Since the world changes rapidly, this body of knowledge is dynamic, and the serious practitioner regularly studies the best practices of his/her profession, roles them into his routines, and then repeats that process forever. That’s how a professional remains relevant and valuable to those who rely on him.

That why teachers go to in-services; doctors attend conferences’ pilots attend refresher training; ministers and social workers; psychologists, managers, human resource directors, CPA’s, etc. all regularly expose themselves to the latest knowledge of the best practices in tier profession.

I like to compare this process to the task of growing corn. At one point in human history, no one grew corn, they gathered it. I am sure that some gathers were better than others at the skill of spotting corn stalks and knowing when to remove the ears. Those folks thought of themselves as very good and valuable gatherers.

Then, one day, someone thought a bit differently and decided that you could intentionally grow corn. After some experimentation and trial and error, a body of best practices emerged. You got a better result if you planted the corn at a certain depth, for example, with a certain distance between each seed kernel, at a certain time of the year. You got better results if you watered it a certain amount, and fertilized it, etc. Before long, this body of best practices was mimicked all over the world, and mile upon mile of cornfields developed. Millions of people who would have starved are fed, and mankind, in general, has been lifted up by enough people following the best practices of growing corn. Millions of farmers and workers make their living by studying and then implementing the best practices of growing corn.

Every profession follows that process. There is only one exception to that process. Salespeople. This is true despite the fact that sales is the one profession that is more prescribed than any others. Look at how many sales books are published each year, for example, and compare it to the number published for all the other professions. There is no comparison. Sales books far outnumber those produced for any other profession, lawyers, ministers, social workers, nurses, teachers, etc.

Like every other profession, there is a body of content consisting of a set of best practices about how you do sales better. The problem isn’t the content, it is getting the salesperson to engage with that content.

Can you imagine boarding a plane and have the pilot announce that he has his own style of flying? Or, the CPA to whom you have entrusted your annual tax returns telling you that he ignores all the best practices of good accounting, and has developed his own style? Or, the surgeon coming to see you just before they wheel you into the operating room, just to tell you that he hasn’t updated his skills since medical school – no need to, he has his own style.

Can you imagine interviewing for a sales job at one of the industry-leading companies – say IBM, Microsoft, or Northwest Mutual – and telling the interviewer that you have your own style of selling?

The salesperson who hides under the smokescreen of ”his own style” hinders his/her career and robs the company of the potential that could have been realized but will never be because of this limiting belief.

On the other hand, when salespeople are exposed to the best practices of their potential and motivated to add them into their routines, the results are often dramatic and career-changing. See some of those results here.

But, alas, few salespeople actually do, and few sales leaders actually insist on it. Why? Because they have their own style of selling.

**From Dave Kahle

 

You know what, Dave? We couldn’t agree more!

 

Together We Grow!

Melanie

PS.  Does this sound like your marketer?  Ready to get off the revenue roller coaster and have consistent growth? We have the best practices you need to GROW your agency. (Click here to schedule a time with Mike to discuss best practices) Giving you the FREEDOM to GROW! Grab a time on Mike’s calendar to discuss ⤴

This week on a coaching call, one of the sales team members we work with said:

“I really want to plan my q3 routing and then into fall, but the masks are coming back out. And I am super nervous about when we “go back inside” due to the cold are we going to be in the same position we were in last year? So I don’t want to go back. Plus – I am super disappointed we are not going to have our holiday party in person. What are your thoughts? 

Here is what I told her:

#1. You know how to get referrals remotely. You had a record year last year. Yes, I know it has been WAY more fun to market without masks and in person. BUT you know how to do this! The Roadmap to Referrals that you follow – has in-person VM scripts and email templates. You got this!

#2. Find the silver lining – I have written about COVID being the “great rep filter,” i.e., referral sources keeping reps out and using COVID as the reason. We also learned that those who stay in touch with their referral sources, EVEN when you can’t get in – in-person, deepen their relationships and get more referrals during and on the other side when you can go back in person.

#3. FIND your motivation – what is your “WHY” you are doing this job? Keep it front and center!

The Key to success over these next months

 

Have a SOLID plan.

One that you can count on AND be flexible.

You just finished your Quarterly Game Plans – does it include a valid reason to educate your referral sources each week?
Make sure you have the flexibility to turn it at a moment’s notice into remote marketing with VM and email templates to highlight high-value patients and get them served!

The agencies who can be agile enough to flex from in-person to remote and everything in between are going to win!

This is YOUR time!

If you did well during the last round of remote marketing – We have evolved and sharpened our training and products.

If you didn’t do so well last time, this is your chance to upgrade and get it right!

Curious to see what evolution looks like? Click here to find a time that is convenient for you on Mikes’s calendar.

 

Together We Grow!

Melanie

 

P.S.  This owner also has staffing issues (don’t we all!); the 1st thing we are tackling is how to “Market” when you don’t have staff!

This week an owner called, and this is what he said to me:

“Melanie, I heard you were managing sales reps again. Is this like the last time you did this for us back in 2017? You know, the time you helped me with my marketer. Well, she left, and I hired a new one. 

I hated Marketing then, and I still hate it. So, what are you doing now that different?” 

Good Question!

With a mindset like that, this owner knows himself, and he should absolutely not manage his marketer!

He is not shy about his opinion, and you know he says things in the office that will influence his office staff on how they “feel” about their marketer! And “Marketing” is a “team” sport we need everyone to be on the same page!

How is our upgraded HCS Sales Management program different than the last time he hired us back in 2017?

 

#1. We have evolved the sales process to reflect today’s environment. If you have listened to us in the past – it’s just that: history. Today’s landscape is changing so quickly you have to move with it to be seen and heard by your referral sources. Are you taking advantage of all of the avenues to access your referral sources? Would you like to have access to top email templates? Voicemail scripts AND in-person methods that are getting results today in 2021? YES! I want in!

#2. The power of the collective.  What we know is peer interaction and learning are crucial to rep success!  We have proven some of the best ideas are sparked when one rep hears another rep share their success tactics and how they got their last referral from a “tough account.” That momentum keeps reps motivated and supported (We have spent countless hours and money learning how to use group dynamics positively!)

#3. Accountability. Yes, that was part of the old program, but the new program uses a specific sales platform to help leverage technology for reporting and marketing support! For example, using technology to provide the structure, custom handouts, and access to the RoadMap of Referrals – WAIT A MINUTE did you say Roadmap to Referrals is included in the management of my sales rep? YES! I AM IN!

#4. Experience+.  In the past, you either got Cheryl or me for a coach. In the NEW HCS Sales Management program, you get access to both of us in live Q and A-PLUS guest experts to share areas of expertise that you can only get from them! YES! I WANT THAT TOO!

#5.  Saving you TIME and MONEY! Like this owner who is not a fan of marketing (I could write a complete manual on why falling in LOVE with marketing is KEY to embracing your business – that is another topic for another day!) We will not only save him TIME and MONEY but help him MAKE MONEY TOO!  Through GROWTH! Giving him the FREEDOM to not have to worry about marketing or his marketer – IT IS DONE FOR HIM!

Curious how HCS Sales Management might be a good fit for you? Click on the link to find a time that works best for you on Mikes’s calendar.

 

Together We Grow!

Melanie

 

P.S.  This owner also has staffing issues (don’t we all!); the 1st thing we are tackling how to “Market” when you don’t have staff!

We do A LOT of sales management at any given time. We have between 25 -40 sales reps under management.

For the past 20 years, I have managed Home Health, In-Home Care, and Hospice reps. It has been some of the most rewarding times of my life. Helping representatives craft the right message and gain that specific patient or client type. And most importantly, impact a family’s life with the care that you provide.

When we take over sales management for an owner or CEO, they all want one thing – growth. (And they don’t want to manage the sales reps themselves)

They also want FREEDOM. Sales reps are change agents, and the best are consistently bringing back improvement ideas and requests. It can be exhausting for an owner or CEO.

That’s where we come in. We take that stress away from the owner or CEO and give the rep a space to share ideas and gain best practices.

Recently we were hired by a CEO who had a Sales Manager move on and was looking for immediate help to provide structure and support to her reps. Not to mention the board was on her about growth!

One rep (we will call her Jane) – she had been at the agency for six months and was familiar with the business but not the territory.

The first step was orientation. A structured orientation timeline and milestones as set forth.

She discovered the alphabet soup of acronyms we use to be overwhelming, but she learned about the service line and the account types with our orientation.

Next up – The High-Performance Sales Academy – Time to get certified and learn how to move an account from Step 1 Qualifying to Step 3 REFERRING! And what to do if you don’t have staff!

Many of the owners who have us manage their marketers are struggling with staffing. Unfortunately, this is the reality right now- many of you don’t have a problem with referrals. So, how do you keep a rep motivated and referral sources happy when you don’t have staff? We got you covered!

Just this week, I spoke to Jane who was struggling with staffing, and she was anxiously concerned about “her reputation.” What if she asked for a referral and they could not staff it – like had happened on three occasions in the last month? She was gun shy and not “marketing full out”. (She was also concerned about the lack of bonuses!)

So much of marketing is mindset. When you have a scarcity mindset, you will not build deep, meaningful relationships…let alone referrals!

Jane said the right things during coaching calls. She was knowledgeable and completed the training, but she wasn’t producing.

In our sales management program, we have an expectation document. This document spells out exactly what the rep will be held accountable to:

  • Number of calls a week
  • Documentation
  • Coaching Calls

Jane knew the expectation. She was coached up. But could not produce because of mindset. When I spoke with her during coaching calls, she always said, “But I can’t because we don’t have staffing.”

That is MINDSET!

Don’t you say and think you can’t! You CAN, and we have many reps who ARE making it work!

She had the full commitment of the leadership team. Bring in a referral, and we will staff it. Period.

But she couldn’t get over the past experience. In her mind, they couldn’t do it. And therefore, she couldn’t do it. She made TONS of sales calls drove 700 miles a week! But no referrals came in.

After being coached up and on an improvement plan, she was not able to achieve the goals. It was time to move on. Was she surprised? No. She had been coached and held accountable to the numbers.

It is never an easy thing. It’s the worst part of my job. I hate it. I also know it was not a good fit for her or the agency. In the end, everyone will be better for it.

Now we have another rep.

She is open-minded. She doesn’t have the industry experience, but she has grit and lots of personality. We are building her industry knowledge. She received her first referral this week, and I am thrilled for her!

With the right mindset and training, she is going to knock it out of the park.

Sales Management is tough.

It’s tougher now than it was two years ago.

Lack of staffing. Referral sources reopening but not letting reps “in” and keeping them at arm’s length.

Keeping a rep motivated and part of the solution for your staffing needs is key to your success right now.

Cheryl and I were on a call yesterday, and the leadership team was voicing their concerns about staffing and lack of availability for the reps to “market.” And Cheryl asked this question.

“What are your reps doing to be part of the staffing solution?”

And the answer was silence.

And finally – “I don’t think anything.”

Your marketers are PART OF THE SOLUTION!

Cheryl and I are announcing our opening of the Home Care Sales Sales Management Program.

If you wished you could give your marketer the tools they need to succeed – look no further.

IF you are just plain EXHAUSTED and don’t have time for your marketer – We got your back!

Let us take over your marketer – we can help.

Want to learn more (click here)?

Keep Serving Seniors

Together We Grow!

Melanie

 

I came home recently to a flyer on my doorstep.

 

We have a young entrepreneur in our neighborhood, and his name is Redford.

 

Yes, like Robert Redford, he will tell you when you struggle with his name.

(See the Pic…Still a hunk…)

 

(Sales Win #1 Redford helps you make the connection and NEVER forget his name- salesman 101 “it’s your job to be remembered, not their job to “remember you”)

Let’s take a look at his flyer:

 

 

1. He leads with a question – Need a dog walker?

Good one – your brain already answered yes I do – or no I don’t. He quickly qualifies his clients.

(Sales Win #2 Redford will spend time with people who answer YES – just like you should spend time with only people who are willing and ABLE to refer to you! Step 1 of the High-Performance Sales Process- QUALIFY!)

 

2. The first walk is FREE – The most persuasive word in the English language is FREE!

(Sales Win #3 – He gets your attention and reduces the risk. While you may not be able to give away your services for “Free,” – what can you do? A “Free assessment”? We have used this for years to reduce the risk and barrier to care.)

 

3. Extra dog – reduced rate!

(Sales Win #4 – Add more on. We will make it worth it! Such as a couple’s rate or if you have ever offered care sharing!)

 

4. Want more? Ask him he will give you more – of course for a fee!

(Sales Win #5: You can always upsell your way into more care!)

 

5. ENHANCED customer service!
(Sales Win #6 – When you want to shine and beat out your competitors – you can “out” customer service them!)

 

And here is my favorite part of this flyer:

“WHY CHOSE ME?”

 

He comes right out and says it! You were already thinking it (so are your referral sources) so TELL THEM!

Differentiate!!!! Step 2 of the High-Performance Sales Process! THIS one of the HARDEST parts of marketing and selling Home Health, In-Home Care, and Hospice.

Go ahead make a list (answer the question, “Why Choose Me?“)- how far did you get?

We have an exercise in the High-Performance Sales Academy and our (Let us take over your) Sales Management program that NAILS this for you!

Time to shine and be able to fully and confidently answer “Why you should choose my agency….”

I LOVE that Reford even talks about PPE on his flyer.

Redford is a 13 yr old marketing genius and well on his way to becoming a successful business owner!

How do your marketing efforts stack up to Redfords?

 

If you wish you had effective marketing messages and custom flyers that get results – jump on a call with Mike and let him show you all the tools we have to offer! (click here for his calendar for your convenience)

Keep Serving Seniors

Together We Grow!

Melanie

 

The good news: Most home care, home health, and hospice marketers are getting into their accounts!

It’s a perfect time to reflect and prepare. You just finished your Quarterly business review, so you have most of the hard work done! Your top accounts identified and ranked.

After all, these months, here are the next steps to take this summer to make the most of these meetings with the 5 R’s of “Re-opening.”

 

    1. Reconnect – Connect to the human first. This pandemic has been a trauma. Take the time to connect to the human first. Ask how they are doing. What life changes have happened since the last time you saw them in person.
    2. Requalify – Step 1 of the High-Performance Sales Process. SO much has changed, and you need to know the current state of your top accounts and qualification sales calls are easier and more conversational in person. You used to know everything about this account – now take a current “pulse” of what is going on and how they are referring today.
    3. Re-engage – Time to set the stage on how you are going to interact with your referral sources. Do you need to go back to “old” call frequency patterns? Be ruthless with your time. You have an opportunity to reset expectations and boundaries. As one rep shared with me – “the pandemic taught the social workers how to use a fax machine to fax in referrals instead of demanding I drive across the city to pick up the paperwork – I want to keep that faxing habit alive!”
    4. Regenerate and generate more referrals AND relationships – Everyone we coach has been doing an AMAZING job of nurturing the relationships remotely. Some accounts will continue with remote marketing. In my opinion, nothing beats in-person marketing. You can see and feel so much more than on the phone or via email. The new hybrid model of in-person and remote marketing is key to covering more ground and gaining more referrals.
    5. Resource – For over 20 years, the cornerstone of Home Care Sales has been for marketers to be a resource to your referral sources. Selling = Profound Service. You are a senior care expert!

 

 

I am thrilled to see so many home care marketers get access and census driving up!

Thank you for all you do out in the field!

 

Together We Grow!

Melanie

PS ready to launch into your accounts and grow. We got your back. Get a time on Mike’s calendar and see what’s new!


This week on a coaching call, one of the new home health and hospice marketing teams we recently took on for sales management shared with us:

 

“We are good. But the hospice competition is getting tougher. More and more reps are coming in and just beating us.”

 

I asked, “why is that?”

 

She said:

 

“I don’t think they provide better care. I don’t think they “do anything special,” but I think they are just showing up, sharing their message, and getting a referral here and there. You multiple that by five new competitors in the last year and it’s chipping away at my numbers.”

 

I told her – “I bet you are right.”

 

Let’s see how we can make a plan to take back your share!

Step 1 Identify and Qualify:

 

Look at your data; where are the gaps?

Where are you losing your share compared to last year or the year before?

Be sure to identify new accounts.

NOW GO QUALIFY!

Ask the six questions to qualify your accounts and rank them.
(From the High Performance Sales Academy)

Step 2 Make a routing plan:

 

Target the accounts in the same geographical area and MAP IT!

Step 3 Calendar it :

 

The calendar does ALL the heavy lifting for you so that you can be YOU! Where are you going and on what days?

Step 4: Execute it

 

DO IT! Make your calls and share your unique sales education message of the week for Home Health, Hospice, or In-home care!

This rep is in the middle of creating her hospice marketing plan – after our 60 min session, she had a clear plan on her top 10 accounts.

See, this rep just needed a little guidance in putting it together. She is a super hard worker and a caring representative. I know she will execute it, and we will be there for her every step of the way.

Sometimes you just need a guide to help you move forward. Someone who has been there, done it, and is STILL doing it!

 

We can help!

If you are interested in our sales management and coaching programs, reach out to Mike@HomeCareSales.com

Here’s to taking your MARKET BACK!!

Together We Grow!

Melanie

This week on our owners Caring Agency Mastermind (CAM) call, we were discussing Medical Directors.

I know many of you have Medical Directors, and we always talk about the value. Making sure the agency utilizes them to the best of their abilities, and they are paid fairly.

The conversation was around “what does a Medical Director do for your agency?”

 

Is it worth it?

How do you pay them?

Does the agency and care staff gain needed expert advice and direction?

 

There are many points of discussion, and one of my favorite things about our CAM FAM is that the owners who share their experiences so that this owner who had not had a Medical Director before for her private agency could navigate and avoid the pitfalls that the other owners had experienced along the way. The hard lessons learned. So that she could prevent costly mistakes, at the end of her time on the CAM session, she walked away with a plan. And we opened our Rolodex to her of professionals who could give her more guidance specific to her state.

One of the other owners reported that this was precisely why he joined the Caring Agency Mastermind. All the resources and connections allow him to ask questions and get instant access to experts who can guide you in the right direction!

I am so grateful for all our members who trust us to help them solve challenges and move faster towards their goals! Coming away from the session with incredible gains!

One connection, resource or opportunity, or person you meet can make it all worth it!

 

What could you create in your life and business if you came and joined us?

The possibilities are endless… maybe you’re looking to get back on track after the past year because it caused you to have to pivot…..

Maybe you’ve been looking for a space to recalibrate, realign or restore after growing like crazy over the past year…. Or maybe your just looking to grow in a supportive inspiration and collaborative environment

We invite you to be part of the CAM FAM.

Join us:

Click here and see if it’s the right fit for both of us!

Melanie