Skilled rehabilitation centers or nursing facilities help patients transition from a hospital setting back to a home environment or long-term care facility. Patients are typically referred to such centers by doctors or social workers, or through positive word of mouth from family and friends.
Get the Basics
Create key pieces of marketing literature that describe your services, particularly your nurse-to-patient ratios, your specific on-site amenities, rooming options and specialized care providers. If you cater to a particular medical demographic or focus on specific services, such as memory disorders or burn care, emphasize that in your literature. A photo-heavy website, brochure and business cards are a must for marketing and networking.
Establish Professional Relationships
Network with social workers, physicians, nurses and other care providers by getting involved with and advertising through local branches of professional associations and organizations, like the National Association of Social Workers. Attend medical conferences and trade shows in your area and exhibit or distribute marketing materials to prospective clients. Tout the training and specialization of your staff and the state-of-the-art features of your facilities when talking with others.
Make Personal Contacts
Visit medical and surgical centers, doctor’s offices and hospitals to distribute information about your skilled rehabilitation facility. Set appointments with social workers and administrators to promote the establishment of long-term referral relationships. Ask questions about what healthcare providers look for when making recommendations and describe how your facility meets those needs.
Conduct Community Outreach
Market directly to potential patients and their families through community outreach initiatives. Partner with community centers, senior centers and health districts to distribute information and answer questions about the benefits of skilled rehabilitation centers. Conduct open houses and tours so prospects can get a first-hand look at your center before they need your services. Participate in community health fairs to reach a larger general audience.
Write and publish feature articles or blogs with a byline from your CEO, medical director or lead physical therapist. Focus on dispelling myths about skilled rehab facilities, addressing frequently asked questions and providing tips for caregivers. Become a resource by providing links to relevant information on Medicare, Medicaid and area social services.
Ask for Referrals
Continually ask for referrals from satisfied customers and from healthcare providers who regularly recommend your center. Follow-up with letters of thanks or token gifts, like logoed coffee mugs, water bottles or gift baskets. Create a database of patients and physicians and send email or direct mail updates on new amenities, success stories, employee profiles and other relevant news. If you’re a small center, focus on topics related to individualized care and customer service.
Lisa McQuerrey has been a business writer since 1987. In 1994, she launched a full-service marketing and communications firm. McQuerrey's work has garnered awards from the U.S. Small Business Administration, the International Association of Business Communicators and the Associated Press. She is also the author of several nonfiction trade publications, and, in 2012, had her first young-adult novel published by Glass Page Books.