Show the Sandwich Generation how you can help

All across the country, adults expend their time, energy, money and love caring for their children or grandchildren while also caring for their own parents. This group, known as the Sandwich Generation, takes caregiving to new heights.

July is Sandwich Generation Month, an observance initiated by the Sandwich Generation Resource Group. Make a point to reach out to members of this group and show them how home care can help ease their caregiving responsibilities, allowing them to enjoy more of the time they spend with their children and aging parents.

Here are some ideas to get started:

  • Host a family day at a local museum, zoo or park. Encourage your clients’ caregivers and their families to attend.
  • Partner with non-competing providers and host a large multigenerational family picnic for your community. Have snacks, music and fun activities for people of all ages. Be sure to have plenty of agency brochures and flyers available to educate about how home care can help with a family’s caregiving duties.
  • Create a flyer about the Sandwich Generation and include tips to help these caregivers manage their many duties — don’t forget your agency’s contact information. Leave them in the waiting rooms of your community’s general practitioners. Find great articles with relevant information here, here, here and here.
  • Contact a local television news station and pitch a story about the Sandwich Generation. Tell them about a client’s family that is doing it all — adults caring for children and aging parents while maintaining full-time jobs. Offer yourself as an expert resource on how to cope with the situation and the kind of help available for members of the Sandwich Generation.
  • Partner with a financial planner and elder law specialist and host a workshop at a senior center or place of worship on planning ahead to protect a parent’s assets. Topics can include estate planning, long-term care options, Medicare and advance directives. Focus your agency’s presentation on ways to make caregiving easier, including how home care can help.

Health education: A marketing opportunity you may be missing

Hosting regular health-related classes for seniors is a simple and direct way to reach out to your community’s older members and help them see you as an expert when it comes to senior care. You will establish a meaningful presence in the locations they frequent (senior centers, libraries, ILFs, ALFs, etc.) while you provide relevant and useful information they can apply to their lives right away.

Free health-related education classes are also a great way to build relationships with facilities that serve your area’s senior population because they help strengthen their own image, too. After all, that’s the place they’re turning to for this great programming.

It may be daunting to consider setting up an education program from scratch, but there are ready-made classes designed to make it easy.

TAG Partners’ Health Matters Education Series is a collection of senior-focused classes designed for a non-clinician to present. Topics cover a broad range of issues important to this community, including understanding Medicare, fall prevention, heart health, and depression.

In addition to instructor guides, other available presentation elements include a pop-up screen to draw attention to your event, informational flyers for attendees, posters and postcards to promote your event, sales brochures to assist in setting up your event, and a marketing kit to help you tie it all together. Items are available in a package online, but email to ask about individual pricing.

Download our free e-book “12 Steps to Strategically Improve Your Home Health Referrals” to learn about other ways you can engage with this community and build referral partnerships.

Celebrate senior independence this July 4

Maintaining the independence they’ve enjoyed their entire lives is one of the most important goals for many seniors. This Independence Day, celebrate more than the birth of our nation. Celebrate the great strides your community’s seniors have made in maintaining their independence — and show them what you can do to help.

  • Studies have shown one of the best things a person can do to maintain health and independence throughout life — and especially during older age — is to engage in regular physical activity. Learn more about the amount of physical activity recommended for older adults in this CDC physical activity information sheet. Sponsor a fitness activity at your favorite local senior centers and encourage the attendees to make an effort to get more physical activity, such as walking, in their everyday routines.
  • Call your local VA hospital and offer to sponsor a local talent and patriotic musical event. Include sing-alongs, skits, and musical performances. Use this as a great opportunity to get to know the decision makers at this hospital a little better.
  • Challenge your community’s seniors to exercise their mental and competitive skills by hosting a patriotic trivia contest. Topics can include the Fourth of July, civics, modern government, or wars such as WWII, Vietnam, and the conflicts in the Middle East. Find facts and quizzes here and here.
  • Sponsor a Stars and Stripes dinner dance for all your referral sources by teaming up with a local senior center. Offer other non-competing healthcare providers the opportunity to play a role in the event — it could become an annual community celebration!
  • Take strawberry, vanilla and blueberry ice cream to a local assisted living facility and deliver a quick 30-minute presentation on identifying and avoiding depression. Find helpful information here or use this ready-made class on depression that a non clinician can present.
  • Offer to chaperone and assist with SNF or LTC residents who want to attend a local fireworks display. Attending a July 4 fireworks display is fun and requires very little physical activity. Some events are even accompanied by orchestra concerts or other musical performances.

5 ways to improve your brand’s visibilty

You’ve hired a great team and have solid educational materials to promote your services. Now what? Polishing your image and marketing yourself goes far beyond your logo, staff training, and agency collateral. The essence of who you are is ingrained in the details, big and small.

It’s important to step back and make a big-picture assessment of who you are, how you are being interpreted, and whether the message you’re conveying is the right one. Are you doing everything you can to maximize your positive visibility in your community?

Here are five ideas that can help:

  1. Make a great first impression. At minimum, your company should have a clear outdoor sign that makes it easy for visitors to find you. Once this is accomplished, you should review the elements on the interior of your office to ensure your brand is represented strongly and cohesively throughout your property. Even though your clients may never see the interior of your office, your employees, community stakeholders, and business partners will. Make sure this impression is a good one with strong signage, wall coverings, and more.
  2. Don’t overlook the obvious. There’s a way to make sure community awareness of your agency increases exponentially: turn your company cars into mobile billboards for your services. This can be as simple as a decal or magnet affixed to your door or as snazzy as a full vehicle wrap. This is a surprisingly affordable option that has a great ROI.
  3. Stand out. Whether you’re participating in a health fair or hosting a community presentation, make the experience more professional with branded retractable banner stands, table throws and hop-up tension fabric displays. Items like these will give your presentation an enhanced air of professionalism and authority.
  4. Improve recall with branded promotional items. Hand out useful promotional items that tie in with your presentation and feature your logo and contact information. Some ideas for this include branded nightlights for fall prevention presentations, branded pill boxes for medication education events, and home-shaped stress balls or collapsible hand fans for community events. Make the most of your investment by making sure your giveaways are not throwaways – useful and memorable items are key.
  5. Make your referral sources’ day. When you’re considering what to leave behind at physicians’ offices, the best branded materials are durable, educational and useful. Consider branded clipboards with referral criteria, guidelines for admission flip charts, or pocket reference guide for home health or hospice. There also will always be a place for items like adhesive notepads and pens – make sure yours are memorable by choosing something  a little unusual (like a pen with a built-in stylus tip to make working with EHRs a little easier).

If you’re ready to take the next steps, TAG Partners can help. Together with our parent company, Brand Imaging Group, we can help you showcase your brand and stand out in your market.

Shine a spotlight on headache awareness this June

One unexpected aspect of aging has a huge impact on the lives of many older adults: fewer headaches. Migraine headaches tend to occur less often and lessen in severity as people age. Symptoms such as nausea, vomiting and light sensitivity also often decrease.

But when older adults develop headaches for the first time or their chronic headache pattern changes, it’s important to investigate whether an underlying condition is at work. June is Migraine and Headache Awareness Month. Join the effort and spread the word about headache awareness.

  • Visit the Migraine and Headache Awareness Month observance webpage of the National Headache Foundation to learn more about the observance and how you can participate.
  • Visit a local senior center and lead a discussion about headaches and different ways to relieve headache pain, including acupuncture, massage, meditation, stretching, yoga, heat and cold.
  • Partner with a local ophthalmologist to man a booth at a local health fair to provide information about how headaches may relate to vision changes or vision loss. Be sure to have plenty of agency information on hand.
  • Create a flyer about the various age-related causes of headaches in older adults, including arthritis, degenerative changes, vision problems and poorly fitting dentures. Distribute it at adult day care centers, assisted living facilities and independent living facilities.
  • Post an item to your municipal government’s regular meeting agenda seeking to recognize Migraine and Headache Awareness Month. Invite local migraine specialists to attend and participate. Be sure to speak during the reading of the agenda item or during the public comment period about the important work these professionals do. Find migraine specialists through directories from the American Headache Society Committee for Headache Education, the Migraine Research Foundation and the National Headache Foundation.