Nursing Home Marketing is More Than Just Dropping Off Cookies!

Cookies for marketingI recently discussed different sales and marketing strategies for nursing homes with a friend of mine.  One strategy that I always see is the practice of dropping off cookies, candy, doughnuts, and other goodies at potential referral source locations.  Many “experts” advise against this practice as the referral sources may come just to see you as the candy-lady or the cookie-man and forget the whole reason you’re dropping by.  And, they’re absolutely right.  This CAN happen.  I have seen many times a marketer go into an account and the individuals in that office ask where the candy or cookies are.  Are they thinking about where your referral is?  Probably not.

However, some very successful marketers still utilize this tactic very effectively and manage to produce referrals.  How is that?  It’s because they don’t use the candy or cookies to replace the communication that should be taking place – the reason you’re actually there.  The candy or cookie drop-off is used as a tool, as a supplement to their visit.  It’s a reminder they were there and serves to produce a positive experience for the customer, the referral source.  We don’t do candy drop-offs; we do sales calls.  Never forget the reason you’re going into an account.  It’s NOT to drop off cookies.  It’s to strengthen your relationship with that referral source and assist them with referral placement.  The cookies are just a tool like business cards or brochures.

Are candy and cookies necessary to conduct a proper sales call?  No.

Is it wrong to use this tactic?  Not as long as you are still communicating effectively.

Can it be an effective marketing tool?  Absolutely, but only as a supplement.

Look at some of the most successful marketers in your company and I’ll bet they have learned to use this tactic as a tool to get them past gatekeepers or to make themselves stand out from the competition.

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