The care Home Industry
For those of you who don’t know in the UK alone, there are 430,131 residents in around 11,300 care homes across England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Care homes are a massive business globally and in the UK the care home industry is worth a staggering £ 7.7 billion, yet many are not using up-to-date methods on how to collect enquiries and manage them following the initial interaction. This is due to nature of dealing with an enquiry regarding care homes. As it is a difficult decision people are looking for empathy and sympathy when asking questions about a care home which the majority of chatbots can not deliver. However, we have worked with Athena Care Homes to overcome this issue and to deliver just that, a chat bot that works 24/7 which has empathy towards potential residents and their friends and family.
About Athena Care Homes
Athena Care Homes is a prestigious care home facility in the UK. Beginning with Amberley Hall in 2014, the company has grown year-on-year to become a group of five care homes for the elderly, located across East Anglia. In 2021, after having the website completely redesigned, they decided to look for a new chatbot option and we caught up with James Eley – Marketing Manager for Athena Care Homes – on how EnquiryBot has transformed lead generation within their business.
What made you look at EnquiryBot as a communications provider for your website?
“LiveChat wasn’t working for us so we looked for an alternative and we are so glad we did!”
I joined the amazing team at Athena Care Homes in 2021 and the company had invested heavily in the website just before I joined. What’s important to us as a company is that we’re there for our residents and their friends and family when they need us. That’s why we were really keen to have a chatbot on our website instead of live chat as it’s always on and delivers a consistent experience which not many other care providers offer.
What do you like most about EnquiryBot?
“We have multiple residenial homes and each home has a page, EnquiryBot allows us to tailor the experience so questions reflect each home’s facilities!”
We have found that we can use EnquiryBot to generate leads for recruitment as well as potential residents. This has been amazing with the growth of the business. It’s allowed us to add screening questions into the chat functionality to direct jobseekers to the correct parts of our careers webpage and has made recruitment a lot easier to handle. It allows us to manage overseas enquiries much more efficiently and not have concerns about the speed of our communication with different time zones.
The other stand-out feature of us is that each of our care homes is unique. EnquiryBot allows us to tailor the experience on each page so each chat reflects individual homes’ facilities.
How has EnquiryBot increased business?
“Digital enquiries are up 208% YOY and enquiries specifically from the website are up 351% YOY!”
When I started at Athena Care Homes we had a lovely blank slate. Developing our digital marketing capabilities and relentlessly optimising our website alongside having EnquiryBot integrated, we have seen a huge improvement in enquiries.
Comparing 2021-2022 with 2022-2023 digital enquiries are up 208% year on year and enquiries specifically from the website are up 351% year on year
What were the first changes you made coming into a business that didn’t have a marketing programme?
“A lot of the initial work was around understanding where our enquiries came from”
When you have the opportunity to shape your department from the beginning, it’s hugely exciting. I firmly believe you always need to start with your current clients, so a lot of the initial work was around understanding where our enquiries came from. That includes mapping where our enquirers were geographically, which we use to inform all of our targeting on our adverts.
What advice would you give someone who is looking to expand their business?
“Do your research into your customer demographic!”
It really depends on what you’re selling and to who, and this is a massive simplification, but I would recommend researching what the people who buy your products search for and how they find the products you’re selling. Then make sure you have your ads appear in those places and that would be a solid foundation if you have nothing currently in place.
What do you think about the sales management platform and reporting dashboard?
“It’s really useful to have this available as an option in the bot and the reports are fantastic”
It’s really useful to have this available as an option in the chatbot. As a care home facility, we have to have a separate CRM system because there’s lots of niche information and sometimes an extended customer journey in our industry. But we still use the EnquiryBot reporting as an overview, the reports are fantastic. It’s great to see clearly the open rate, engagement and enquiry generation numbers and percentages in an easy-to-use dashboard.
To see EnquiryBot working on Athenas website click here -
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