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#valerievshow !!! Episode 1, Give Me Your Marketing Keys, I’m Taking Over! Meow. Website spotlight, SEO 2018, FB Changes are Awesome, Rich Snippets, and Voice Search. Don’t Miss This! #homecare #homehealthcare #homecaremarketing
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We at LTC Marketing University (aka LTC Expert Publications) are senior care and long-term care experts just like all of you. We seek to provide the most informative, relatable, educational and sometimes funny videos we can every day of the week. No matter what your job role, if you have a passion for marketing your senior care business or want to learn more about the amazing world of online marketing for home care and senior services, you are in for a heck of a ride.
Give me your marketing keys, I’m taking over. Hey, it’s Valerie Vanbooven. Thanks for joining us. Today is the first, I guess episode of the Valerie V. Show. Oh, that’s so weird. Okay, I’m going to tell you a little bit about what’s on the show today, and I’m going to tell you why show? Why would you call it a show?
Very excited to start this New year off on the right foot. Let’s start with why show? Why would you call it a show? It’s kind of like … Okay, so I met this guy. No, not really. I am a part of a group on Facebook, and the person who manages it, and who runs it, and the expert, and the authority, his name is Mark K. Hi, Mark. And he has a program put together, and he’s a radio show, talk show host in Jacksonville, Florida.
But he also is very smart, in that he has a whole other set of internet marketing things that he does. And one of the things I read, and it really interested me, was his philosophy on kind of everything marketing is a show. Everything’s basically a show.
So, for a lot of time, we’ve been thinking about, you know, should … Usually I’m the spokesperson for LTC Expert Publications. I’m the founder. I’ve always been kind of the face of the business, and the voice of the business, and the person that people talk to on the phone, for marketing, and operations, and things like that, which is fine. But sometimes, in the back of your head, you think, “Maybe LTC Expert Publications should be more on the forefront, and should be able to kind of survive without the Valerie V.”
And that would be great if we were going to sell the business. But we’re not really going to sell the business, and I got a long way to go until retirement, so we’re doing the Valerie V. show. Everything is a show, and everything you do as a marketer is kind of a show. You know, we’ve always heard that old adage, “The dog and pony show.” I’m about to leave for Las Vegas next week on Wednesday, and go into a wonderful conference on home care, home healthcare. Lots of home healthcare agencies will be there, and I’m going to do my dog and pony show. So, it’s always kind of a show.
So we decided to kind of rebrand this year, and instead of LTC Marketing University, this is LTC Expert Publications Show, but it’s the Valerie V. Show. Because frankly, I’m the only one on it, usually. Although this year, we’re going to do a lot of interviews. So, thank you for joining us. That’s kind of why we’re calling it a show, and I hope to be with you as much as possible.
The other thing that is interesting about having a show is you really have to commit to it. If you have ever watched any of these YouTubers that are really famous, or Gary Vaynerchuk, or I guess they call it … He goes by Gary Vee. Really interesting, although he does cuss a lot, so I wish I could be like him more. But, they are on 24/7. I’m a mom of triplets, and a wife, and I got other things going on, so I can’t be on 24/7. And, he also has a ton of people who work for him, who edit his videos, and do all that, and we don’t have that here. So, I’ll be on with you as much as I possibly can, I’ll record as many of these shows. They’re not lengthy, although I seem to be babbling on and on right now. They’re not really lengthy shows.
We’re going to go for 15 minutes max, maybe 30 if we have something, maybe an interview. But 15 to 30 minutes, and all of them are turned into a podcast. If you have not been on iTunes and subscribed to our podcast, if you do have iTunes, you can subscribe there. You can also go to our website, at LTCSocialMark.com, and you can subscribe to the podcast there. Our show will be turned into a podcast with every episode, and you can watch it there. You can listen to it there, or you can watch it here. And of course I’ll send out the replays to everybody.
Okay, so much for that. Welcome to the show. Okay, website spotlight. The next thing I want to do, is talk about a website spotlight. LTC Expert Publications is all about creating websites. A lot of our clients don’t need us to create their website, because we do so many other things. The other main thing we do is content. Unique content every single week, for home care, elder care, senior care websites. Hospice websites, home healthcare websites, we probably have about eight or 900 articles a month going up. But we do create websites, and we love our websites.
However, there are some websites out in the universe that are awesome. What I thought I would do since that’s kind of our business, and we’re going to talk a lot about online marketing, and the importance of combining your offline marketing with your online marketing. What I thought I would do is spotlight a website, whether we built it or not. Now, for the ease of this first show, and because sometimes the websites will be ones that we built, I want to highlight and spotlight one that we recently finished. The owners were very, very involved in the build of this website. They didn’t get involved in the technical stuff, but they got very involved in the content.
This is really a great reflection of their brand, and of their business. So, I’m going to show you their new website. I love it. It’s mobile responsive, it has a great load time, and it’s search engine optimized, and they get content every single week. New, unique content. And, they’re very active on Facebook, and LinkedIn. These are the keys to online marketing in 2018, and in 2017, and in 2019. You have to be very active, you have to be engaged, you have to participate. Let’s go to their website and take a look.
Okay, this is … Oops, I’ve clicked on stuff. This is LifeCareUS.Com. Love this website, it is extremely mobile responsive, it is one of those websites that we do, you know, you know that this is really going to make a difference for this home care agency. So, just wanted to kind of scroll through it, and show you some of the highlights. The first thing I want you to know, is that the call to action on any website is so important. These three things are really important here in the header. If you are constantly recruiting, which most of you are, this is super important right here, “Apply to join our team.” The phone number is clickable, so if you are on a mobile device, you can click on it and it will dial the number for you. “Request my free consultation.” That’s just basically a contact us, but nice. So very simple navigation at the top.
If we scroll down, you can see their awards that they’ve won. “Start here to find care near you.” If you look at all the different towns that they service, you can see that. Another place where you can dial their number, what we do. Love these icons. What our clients say, these are some of their testimonials. Our caregivers, and then as you scroll down to the bottom, you can see that there is more that you can look through, and of course they have a blog. They do have a chat system setup called Apex Chat. That’s something that they had before, so we added it on. This is their blog and all their social media. Really nice website. I really like the way it folds together. If you are on a mobile device, check it out at LifeCareUs.Com, and look at that mobile version. It’s super clean. If you’re on a desktop, check it out too.
That is our website spotlight. Love this website. These clients are great, and just really thrilled with how this turned out. There’s your website spotlight.
All right, next on our agenda, we’re going to talk about the changes that Facebook recently announced. If you’re a techy geek like me, you definitely know about this. If you’re not a techy geek, or you’re not a Facebook user, you have no idea what anyone’s talking about, and that’s okay. The good news about Facebook, is that they’re making changes so that it’s more family friendly, and it’s more … I don’t know if that’s really the right word. You’re seeing more of the things that you want to see. For instance, less of the fake news, less of the crazy stuff that people post that you don’t really care about, less of the business stuff.
However, keep in mind that for businesses, this is a great change for you, and it’s important that you implement a few new things. For our clients, we’re happy to help with that. But any of you can do this. Let’s take a look at a couple of the changes. This comes from Adam Mosseri, or Mosseri, however you want to say that. He is the Facebook VP of the newsfeed. He says, “There will be more friend content and family content. There will also be more group content.” I don’t know if you’ve noticed this lately, but I am seeing less stuff from people that I don’t know very well, and I’m seeing more stuff from my groups.
I am in a lot of Instant Pot groups. The Instant Pot is a cooking thing, not pot. Instant Pot. If you haven’t heard of it, it’s something that’s kind of all the rage lately. It’s like a pressure cooker. Well, it basically is a pressure cooker, but it’s automated, and probably won’t blow up like grandma’s did. Anyway, you can cook stuff in it really fast, it’s awesome. I belong to a lot of Instant Pot groups on Facebook, because I like the recipes, I like to trial and error stuff, I just kind of like to read about it.
So all of a sudden all I’m seeing, is Instant Pot stuff. And also, some of the other groups that I belong to. I’m seeing those comments over and over again, and I also noticed that anybody who I’m either really close friends with, or family members with, I see more of their stuff. And all of that is great, but what it tells me as a marketer, is that I need to be more engaged with my groups. As a marketer, I have a Facebook business page. My Facebook business page, if I’m advertising, is going to be seen. That’s not been effected.
But, on those Facebook business pages, you now have the opportunity to create groups that are associated with that page. If you have 1,000, 2,000 followers, you can create a group, and in our case being home care, elder care, senior care, hospice, home healthcare, that group can easily be a supportive group for those folks who are in need of care. They may not be your clients, but some day they might be.
If you’re going to start a group based on your Facebook business page. Number one, I highly recommend it. But number two, you have to commit to it, or have somebody in your office commit to it. Because you can’t just start a group and then say nothing at all. You actually have to go in there and ask questions, you have to introduce your members, you have to welcome people, you have to have content, you have to bring up new topics. Of course without revealing who any of your clients are. But just say, “We notice that some of our clients have this issue or this challenge, and here’s some tips on how we can fix that.”
You are able to reach out to those folks and ask them from your business page, to join your group. If they do, and if you are committed to it, and you are on there, and you are giving advice, and you are helping people who have questions, they’re going to see your name and your brand over and over again. This is really a good time to consider starting those groups with your Facebook business page. Now, we have Elder Care Entrepreneurs. That is our group. It’s been our group for a million years, but we never really used it right. We have now over 1,400 of you that are members of that group, and we want to grow it, and grow it, and grow it.
You can never have too many people who are actively engaging, and who are actively on there giving each other advice, tips, resources, examples of fliers, and examples of marketing material that they use. This is a really awesome group, so I would highly suggest and encourage you to join that group for free. Yes, you’re going to see that show up in your newsfeed, and it’s a great example of some of the changes that Facebook has made. So we are able to reach out to our fan base, our followers. The people who like our page, and we are able to get them transitioned into that group and say, “Hey, join our group.” And they do it. Of course it’s free.
Now, in our case, we ask two questions, which I’ve talked about before, just to kind of vet people. We don’t allow overt advertising. There are no consumers in that group. If somebody comes in with a product or service that’s fine, as long as they’re helpful. But when they start advertising their product or service, eh, that’s not really what that group’s for. It’s really to help each other. So, if you want to start a group, please do. Just remember, you have to stay on top of it. And I have found that, that is a little time consuming. But in the grand scheme of things, will it bring in new clients? Probably so. Please do it.
Also, Mr. Adam from Facebook says, “There will be less video. Video is an important part of the ecosystem. It’s been consistently growing, but it’s more passive in nature. There’s less conversation on videos, particularly public videos.” Okay, videos like this one, are videos that people will watch for longer than three seconds. Most videos that we create at LTC Expert Publications, are less than a minute long, because there is no attention span, there is not a large viewership of those videos, unless we’re advertising them, which we do. We boost those posts, and they do get a lot of views. And they will continue to get a lot of views.
But here’s the interesting thing, the videos that people are actively engaging in and watching, are ones that number one, sort of like your groups. Really appeal to them, maybe they’re funny, maybe they’re business minded like this, or whatever. If you’re going to make videos, they can’t just be, “Hello. Question number one. What is home care?” It has to be kind of interesting and engaging, you know? Mix it up a little bit.
And most of you don’t do your own videos, at least that we know. But for us, we know that when we make videos, if you advertise or boost those videos, they will get a lot of views.
Okay, next is shares and comments. On your Facebook business pages, when people share the post, or they comment, and not just a like, ’cause anybody can go in and like real quick. But when they comment, specifically longer comments, like sharing a story, or talking about how much something has helped them, or whatever. Those posts have more value now, than ones where people just like the post. Here’s a tip for all of you business owners with a Facebook business page. You need to go in, and like your post, and comment on your post, and share your post on your personal Facebook profile. And you need to ask your staff, your friends, your family, “Please, go in and not only like our posts on our business page, but leave a comment. A sentence or two, or share it on your own personal profile if you think it’s a great tip, or a great piece of advice, or it really resonates with you.”
Sharing and commenting, sharing and commenting. Liking is great. We don’t want to do away with that, we don’t want to do away with video, we don’t want to do away with our Facebook business pages. All of this still matters. But you have to actually be engaging. You have to share, you have to comment, you have to get involved. Often at LTC Expert Publications, we tell our clients over and over again, “We can do a lot of stuff that’s awesome. But we can’t replace you, and your staff. So you guys really need to step it up, you need to get involved, you need to engage, you need to take that time.”
In 2018 if you set aside marketing time for your online marketing, you will see rewards from that. In 2005, it was all about the individual, in person, direct referral marketing. In 2018, yeah, you still gotta get out there, and shake hands, and look people in the eye. But, you also need to pay attention to online marketing. Your clients are almost always going to find you, or their family’s going to find you on a mobile device. So your presence in your local area, being everywhere, being the experts, being engaging, and helpful online, is really where you need to be. Because they are looking for you, they may even meet you in person, or be referred to you. But, they’re going to look you up online next, so have that presence, and have all of that out there.
People will say to me, “Oh, you’re everywhere.” It’s not because I’m really everywhere, I just take my content, and I share it, and I post it to multiple places, and I do it every day. When I do that every day, then you see it. So, get engaged with Facebook. The changes that they’ve announced aren’t going to really hurt anybody, they’re actually going to help all of us see a better Facebook. And this is really what they intended to be all along. They intended to bring people together, not have as much negativity as has come up in the last couple of years. That is our little piece on the changes with Facebook.
Okay, last piece and then I’ll let you go. We’re going to talk about SEO in 2018. Just going to hit the highlights here, and let you know that first of all, mobile means everything. I don’t know if my husband will ever get back on a laptop or a computer, he really doesn’t need to. He has his iPad, he has his iPhone, and everything he needs is at his fingertips right there. He really doesn’t need it. Make sure that your website shows up nicely on mobile devices, and make sure that everything you do has a mobile reflection. So your E-newsletters, which we know how important those are. You may not think they’re important, but I guarantee you they are.
Those E-newsletters need to be simple, easy, easy on the eyes, scroll-able. Nobody wants to read a dissertation. You gotta be able to scroll through it, pick the article you want to read, and then move on. Scroll-able, mobile friendly, easy, everything. That’s one thing. The other piece of the best approach in 2018, is website speed. If you have a clunky junky old website that is slow to load, and you can find those speed tests everywhere. Then you might want to think about some of the things you can do to increase the speed of your website. This isn’t going to change … I don’t know, it’s super important, but you don’t have to go nuts on it. You’re never going to have a millisecond load on your website. Your server is somewhere in this world, serving up your website. It always takes a little time. But, website speed is important, so if you have a clunky junky old website, consider redoing that.
Website security. I don’t know what your web masters do, or your web developers do, but here in our company what we do for every client is, we do daily malware scans, and we do nightly backups of their website. So, if something does happen, which it can get past the malware scans, once in a blue moon. We can roll back that website, all the files are saved, and we’re good to go. Always, always, always check out your website, make sure that if you search it on Google it doesn’t have a tag, a red flag on it that says, “This site has malware.” If it does have that tag, then you know that chances are, you need to get some help and get it fixed. But yeah, security is super important.
Voice search, and rich snippets. Okay, I don’t know about you, but we have like five Alexa’s in our house. Those little Echo Dots or whatever they’re called. We have those in our house, and we ask Alexa questions all the time. In fact, I have Alexa sitting right next to me. Alexa, what’s the weather today?
Alexa: In St. Charles, it’s 12 degrees with clear skies and sun. Today’s forecast calls for more of the same, with a high of 25 degrees, and a low of 12 degrees.
Valerie V: Dislike. So, we have those everywhere, and I can talk to the kids from my office. They can say, I won’t say her name. “A, call office.” And it will call me right here in my office, so I can talk to them anytime they want. Or, Charlie can call me. We use voice search, and we don’t do it all the time, but occasionally we will ask her a question that is a voice search, and that’s becoming bigger and bigger all the time. Voice search and rich snippets. A rich snippet, I’m going to show you an example here in just a second, is a really cool thing. And it’s something that not everybody’s going to be able to accomplish, but I know that with certain parameters on your website, and with a certain style of question, you can get into a rich snippet. So let’s take a look at what that means.
Okay, this is an example of a rich snippet. I went to Google and I typed in, “How to get more home care clients.” Or, “How do I get more home care clients?” You can type in either one of those, and you’re going to get some results here, and of course, oh look, number one, because it’s an ad, is us. Yay, we have solutions. Okay, but this is a rich snippet. So Rose Mark’s System, this is actually from 2015. They have this, I guess question on their website, and then they put a little bit of an answer here, and they got this rich snippet, which is awesome. So what we did was, let’s see … See if I can find it.
Okay, so we put up a question yesterday. This is yesterday, and now it’s on the first page of Google. “How to get more home care clients in 2018.” If you click on that, that goes to our website. And of course we have several listings here about that. But, this is just an article on how to get more clients, and it kind of gives you the bulleted list. Our goal was to see, and I don’t know if it’s even possible, if we could bump … Oops, let me go back here. If we could bump our friends at Rose Mark out of the snippet spot, and put us in the snippet spot.
Now, I don’t know if we’ll be able to do that. But, this is pretty cool. It’s a pretty neat thing. If you were to think about, on your website, the long tail keyword phrases, or the frequently asked questions, “Does Medicare pay for home care? Who pays for home care?” Or, “Where can I find the best home care?” Things like that. If you write articles, or take your frequently asked questions and instead of having them all on one page, perhaps have them each on their own page, or as a blog post. That will help tremendously. And, putting a video on each page doesn’t hurt either.
Just a little thing about what rich snippets are, this is a great piece for SEO this year. It’s becoming more and more prevalent, and rich snippets and voice search are really coming together hand in hand, especially with Google devices. Think about rich snippets, and voice search, and what kind of questions people ask when they’re inquiring about home care, elder care, senior care, whatever business in the senior market you’re in, all righty?
Okay, that’s it for the Valerie V. Show. Hope you had a great time, I know I did. We’re going to try and do this sort of in different ways all the time. This was recorded, yes I am not live, for the first show. We’re going to try to do some maybe off the cuff stuff, sort of behind the scenes, what we’re doing on a daily basis. I’m probably not going to get many people to, in my office, to participate except for me. But that’s okay. We’re going to try and make sure that if we have any timely pieces of advice, or things that we think you should know right now, that we are always with you every single day, at least for a short period of time. Maybe five minutes, maybe 15 or 20 minutes. We’re going to do some interviews, it’s going to be a great year. Thanks everybody, and we’ll talk to you tomorrow. Tomorrow? Maybe so. Thanks, bye.
Valerie’s motto and favorite saying is: “Impact is not created by big budgets, impact is created by innovative marketing ideas!”
Valerie is a Registered Nurse and the author of three books, Aging Answers (2003), The Senior Solution (2007) and Priceless Caregiving (2009). Her adventure in internet marketing began as a self-promotion experiment and ended up becoming a full time marketing consulting business for the elder care market.
Valerie has appeared on national television (Today Show), has hosted her own local radio show, and has been interviewed for dozens of publications and radio shows across the country regarding her business and the business of elder care.
She fast became the foremost authority in driving sales via the internet, seminars, and e-mail for senior service providers and elder care entrepreneurs.While Valerie’s best known for her expertise in marketing, her students share that her biggest impact comes from her ability to make things happen quickly, even on a small budget.
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