You currently work as a marketing coordinator for New City Home Care, a private home health company that offers nursing care and therapy services to the elderly residents of a medium-sized Midwestern city with a population of about 55,000 people. The neighboring town, about 10 miles away, has a much smaller population, but as the population ages, this town is seeing an increase in retirees. The chief executive officer (CEO) of New City Home Care has decided that it would be beneficial to expand into this town by opening a satellite office. She is eager to be the first home health company to open a physical office in this new territory and has tasked you with developing a marketing plan. You have been asked to provide an executive summary to the management team of the marketing plan. The summary needs to explain how the following will used in your team’s marketing plan:
- The company’s historical resident trends and current strategic plan
- Demographic data
- Quality standards
- Marketplace analysis, including competition
- Models and best practices for reaching the target audience
- Developing recommendations to ensure alignment with company strategy
- Writing the plan and setting expectations
- Implementing the plan and proven best practices for implementation
- Tools for evaluating and adapting the plan
Sample Marketing Plan For New City Home Care
New City Home care is a private home health company which provides therapy and nursing care services to the elderly people residing in a medium-sized Midwestern city with a population of approximately 55000 individuals. The company is considering expanding its operations to the neighboring town, which is located about 10 miles away with a smaller population, though with increasing number of elderly people. Despite this change, the town does not have any single home care facility to cater to the elderly. The company thus plans taking advantage of being the first ones to open an elderly care center, but after understanding the market. This paper present the marketing plan for the New City Home Care in the intended new market.
Company’s Resident History and Current Strategic Plan
The history of the area is considerably important while making the marketing plan. The history gives an overview of the life of the people in the area and how they have been taking care of their elderly population in the past. The history can also tell on the changes taking place in caring for elderly people. For instance, a community which is used to community groups nurturing elderly people at home or where elderly people meet and provide each other support, may not be attracted to a facility offering residential services. In a different situation, elderly may be taken in by younger family members and be nurtured by them as part of the community tradition. In other communities, elderly are left to manage their situation, without obtaining any external help. Different situations will influence the marketing strategy to be employed in this case, and the success of the marketing process.The history also assists in understanding the preparations individuals make during their early age to be able to survive after retirement. The identified trend should be compared with that of the company to determine if they align based on the kind of customers anticipated by the company and the needs that the company address, compared to what is provided by the community in the region. The marketing department will use this information to define marketing techniques that will influence the decisions of most of the targeted customers despite of their traditional practices in caring of the old.
Demographics data include data on age, gender, socioeconomic status, education, and household size among others. This information will helpthe company to understand the kind of population the market has, people’s lifestyle, their financial ability and social activities. This data is also used to identify the size of the targeted customers and its future trend based on the current population based on age. For instance, in this case, New City Home Care will assess the elderly population in the area using the demographic data. The organization will also manage to evaluate the future trend of the targeted population to determine the likely changes that may take place in the market in the future. This will be done by assessing the adult population as well as young people in the population. This will guide the organization in making decision on the best marketing strategy to employ and how they can influence the aging generation into considering its service. Demographics also assist the company in assessing the population ability to afford its services. Assessing the use of modern technology that include internet, smartphones, social media and electronic mails among the targeted elderly population will guide the marketing department in determining the most effective ways to reach the targeted audience (Majumder, et al., 2017).
The market research should assess the company’s ability to maintain quality standard after the expansion, compared to the quality standard anticipated by the customers and permitted by the authority. Home of care may need to handle different health needs of the targeted customers. This includes medical services and regular checkups for those experiencing chronic health issues (Amaria, 2013). They should also be able to cater for their social needs, and assistance in their daily life, by offering quality care.
The facility provided should be easily used by the elderly people. The facility should be able to provide professional care givers, and be connected to a health facility that can take care of its customers even in during emergencies. They should be able to cater for physical, social, psychological, emotional and daily activities needs, and maintaining high quality of their services. These standards should be defined by the individual needs of the elderly people in the population.
The marketing plan will also need to conduct an analysis on the marketplace. Market analysis focuses on analyzing the customers to determine their willingness to utilize the company services and how much they would value such services. This will focus on determining the community understanding of residential care for elderly people and their attitude towards it. The assessment can include the elderly attitude orthat of their care giver; family members or guardians taking care of them (Winston, 2012). It will also determine the population willingness to give up their loved ones in a residential care and to pay for the services provided. The analysis will also assess the competition in the market. Although there is no any elderly care center in the region, there might be other practices that are used to ensure the survival of elderly people in the area. These practices can exact a high level of competition to the company and its services. The competition assessment should also check on possibilities of other organizations planning to venture into the same field in the area in the future to, determine how this might impact the organization operations in the future.
Model and Best Practices for Reaching the Targeted Audience
The model in this case should focus on reaching to the elderly people who are the targeted customers. It should therefore be founded on their best mode of communication; verbal or written, or the accessibility of assistance where need be. The model should also evaluate the level of accessibility. The communication mode selected should be able to access majority of the targeted audience. In this case, marketers should focus on places where elderly people are highly accessible which include spiritual or religious places like churches, and meditation centers, and also in hospitals. It is assumed that most of these elderly retired recently or they are about to retire, meaning that they are able to read and write. Thus, banners can be placed in such places to be able to communicate to the majority (Winston, 2012). Another best practice would include working with healthcare facilities in the area which would be requested to refer patients needing special care that cannot be provided at home to the organization. The model should focus on accessing as many customers as possible, and ensuring that they effectively understand the services provided in the organization and why they are useful to them.
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Recommendation to Align with Company Strategies
The organization offers therapy and nursing care services to the elderly residence. The organization thus mostly targets elderly people who need therapeutic and nursing care services. It is therefore recommendable that the developed marketing plan should focus on attracting these elderly persons that need extra nursing care and therapeutic services, which are not available in their homes.
It is also recommendable that the marketers should ascertain the actual therapeutic and nursing care services provided in the organization to ensure that the marketing results do not overburden the organization with conditions it cannot manage. For instance, elderly needing hospice care may be hard to manage, compared to elderly needing nursing care just due to the age issues. The right communication tools should be used to ensure the message get to the right persons. In addition the right message should be communicated. Based on the age of the targeted customers, the message needs to be simple, visible or audible, and easily understood.
Writing Plan and Setting Expectation
The marketing plan will start by identifying the mission and the objective of the marketing research. The aim of the marketing research will be to establish if the neighboring town is viable for company’s expansion. The research strategies will focus on assessing the demographics of the population and possible competitors, and wiliness of the population to embrace the services provided by the company.This will be followed by defining the targeted customers and means to get to them. Marketing strategies will then be employed to ensure the organization reaches most of the targeted customers effectively. It would be expected that with effective application of the marketing strategies, the organization will be able to attract a handful of customers within the first week of its establishment. It is also expected that provision of quality services to the first customers will build the residences confidence with the facility, encouraging enrollment of even more customers in the near future (Shipley, 2014).
Plan implementation will start by finding the best site to establish the physical office. Once the place is identified, the marketing department will develop adverts in forms of banner, flayers, radio, newspapers, and television adverts to inform the targeted population of the new center opened to serve them. Electronic media will also be used based on its usability among the targeted population or their caregivers. The above forms of advertisement will be employed since most elderly people are highly conservative. This means they will prefer consulting old media compared to new. Exemption will only be applied based on the analysis result. The services should then resumes immediately the first customer shows up. The implementation of the plan will therefore engage the marketing department and all other departments needed to enhance effective running of the center.
Tools for Evaluating and Adapting the Plan
The effectiveness of the applied marketing plan can be determines by use of various tools. One of the tools is the customers register book. Being a new center, the organization should consider keeping a register book, where customers visiting for the first time will be registered and offered customer identification number. This tool can be used to evaluate the marketing plan success based on the customers flow. Head count of elderly placed under the care of the organization can also be used to measure the success of the marketing plan. Another tool that can be used to measure the success is the financial tools. The organization cash in-flow from the center or the total revenue within a specific time period can be used to determine whether the marketing plan met its anticipation or not (Sychrova, 2013). Customers’ referral following provision of quality services can also be considered as part of the marketing success. The marketing department in healthcare considers quality of services provided as part of marketing. Provision of services of high quality will ensure that the customers pass a word of mouth to their friends, neighbors and relatives, and hence increasing of customers from referral. To measure this, the initial registration should consider asking customers how they learnt about the organization.