We have found that this simple question from prospects causes one of the biggest mental obstacles with the person handling intake calls for new service.
We have some great tips to share with you on how to handle the price-based question, avoid some common missteps and have a higher level of conversation and conversion ratio for inquiry to scheduled assessment.
While this article is geared towards private pay home care, the principles apply to any business where there are direct out of pocket costs for the consumer and there is more complex pricing involved; from assisted living, to cleaning services and beyond.
Consumers want as much transparency as possible in their search for the best quality service for the cost of care/service for their loved ones. While some prospects are less price sensitive than others (they may have long term care insurance or other subsidies accessible to them), in each case price is usually an important part of the decision-making process. Whoever is conducting the intake for new service in your group, will have to answer this question to the satisfaction of the prospect such that the inquirer feels comfortable enough in moving to the next step. Simple enough…
Most business owners and managers believe that they are the best possible choice in their market – and with saturation of competition and high selection of other possible choices for consumers – understanding the perspective of the caller, being on their page and listening carefully with no interruptions and hearing their specific needs, are more important than ever.
Here are 3 simple but common mistakes and how to avoid them regarding the price question.
- Mistake# 1 – assuming price and cost are differentiated in the consumer’s mind. You don’t equate price for an hour of your service with the revenue that the consumer will bring to your company on a monthly, quarterly or yearly basis. HOWEVER, the consumer DOES (most of the time) confuse price with cost. The consumer will psychologically and emotionally react when they hear the hourly price, especially out of context. It’s important to sift this out for them, if necessary, in the Q&A process with relevant examples for their specific situation.
- Mistake # 2 – Stating a price (range) with no frame of reference and no follow up question. The call handler at your home care company may provide the price range and mention variance will depend on the level of service. Then waits (some pray, some hold their breath, some people even flinch…) for the caller’s reaction. Or worse they ask “OK?” This is less helpful to the consumer as they’re left to do the financial gymnastics mentally and unsure what they’d specifically be agreeing to anyway. It’s best to provide the frame of reference and information in a palatable format that makes sense for the prospect; and then asking a follow up open ended question such as: “help me better understand what’s going on with mom, could you tell me more about that?”
- Mistake # 3 – Assuming your value proposition and differentiators are clearly understood. The other side of not giving enough information is too much information that may or may not be relevant to the prospect’s specific situation. For example, during the inquiry process the intake person states the price range, that it depends on the level of care, then proceeds to provide an unnecessary number of examples (to any questions that may be asked). Overall there is more information provided than open ended questions being asked. The person conducting the intake may be under the false impression that the prospect is on the same page because they are providing information, they think the prospect wants to hear.
Note – if someone cannot afford service and this has been explored, it is best to refer out to your network to be the best possible asset for that person. If you’ve done a great job, they can always review your service and comment on how helpful you are.
Exploring ways to maximize your conversations with customers and return on marketing investments with your home care, hospice or assisted living business? Schedule a discovery meeting with Sixth Sense Solutions today. Call us at 949-241-6690, or you can reach our team via email at info@SixSenseSolutions.com