Yes, February 27, 2017 is a turning point in home care history. It is one of the events that mark the transition from provider-directed to consumer-directed care.

Are you ready?

Looking at the websites and advertising across the market, there appears to be enormous opportunities for more differentiated branding.

Our summary of the situation is that it will be more competitive than ever, especially with home care providers appearing with innovative service offerings.

Consumers will be tempted to shop around, and cost cutting or under cutting will occur. We will see the closing of unprofitable fixed branches, with more mobile workforce models.  Consumer underspending will create a financial risk burden on forecasting. Clients and families will struggle with how it all works and be confused. The advertising environment will be cluttered and aggressive.

In the past 2 years the aged care home care advertising spend category as risen 62.4%  from $18 million to over $28million.*

Therefore, what can marketers do? We offer some advice.

Collect all your competitor advertising, pin it on a wall, and put your advert in the middle. Now stand back and question.

“Do we stand out, and importantly, what do we stand for that is different?”

If you have not already, you need to explore the characteristics and values that make your organisation special to the consumer. The more focused the positioning is, the faster the consumer will understand and the less you will have to spend attracting them.

Bringing a brand positioning to life is the hardest, yet most important, part. With home care, it is particularly complicated as the brand is a product delivered via service.  For ideas to get an edge, we suggest marketers look at the travel and hospitality industry.

They understand the product (rooms/meals) are just one part of the equation, and the brand magic is the human experience that is initiated with the staff at every touch point; including call centres, reservations, check in, the bar and food service.

We have aged care and home care clients that contributed to the successful shaping of their brand experience by employing a senior manager from hospitality to help nursing-trained teams offer care with a more consumer-directed focus.

*Nielsen Data