For many for-profit companies and corporations, marketing plays a key role in their overall success. This can also be true for non-profit and advocacy organizations, including Long-Term Care Ombudsman Programs.
Marketing can mean a variety of things, but in general, it encompasses advertising, promotions and public relations. According to the American Marketing Association, marketing is “the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.”
Marketing allows companies and organizations to develop and promote a brand. While ombudsmen do not have a specific brand to promote, they do provide much-needed services to long-term care residents.
For long-term care ombudsmen programs, marketing can be a way to communicate with long-term care residents and their families about the ombudsman program and its services. Ombudsmen programs can use marketing as a way to “advertise” their services. Ombudsman programs can also use marketing to raise awareness around certain issues like residents’ rights, elder abuse and more.
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Effective marketing can be challenging for several reasons. Ombudsman programs are likely to have fewer resources to work with and may not have dedicated communications or public relations support. They may also be limited by state guidelines or restrictions on state or local agencies.
Yes, many ombudsman programs often operate with extremely limited budgets, and marketing and communications is not often a priority. However, this page is intended to provide ombudsman with examples of how ombudsman programs across the country are using innovative ways to share messages and show support for long-term care issues.
Additionally, today’s technology can be inexpensive, and there are many outlets for communications, allowing your message to reach a broader audience. With an aging population, issues seen by ombudsmen on a daily basis are receiving more attention. Attention to these important issues also helps raise the profile of the long-term care ombudsman program and demonstrates the need for funding and training for ombudsmen.
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