Chasing referrals

Monday, February 28, 2005

MUNDELEIN, Ill. - When HMEs talk, Medline listens.

The manufacturer/distributor recently surveyed more than 100 providers about their marketing needs and based on the responses put together the HME Rewards program, a promotional kit that includes a custom 24-page product catalog, personalized brochures, order pads and product fliers, as well as access to the Medline Learning Center, a portable HME showroom designed for product demonstrations.
Tom Tucker

“Having effective referral source marketing tools is one of our dealers’ highest priorities,” noted Dave Jacobs, president of Medline’s Durable Medical Equipment division. “They typically don’t have the time or expertise to do it in a cost-effective way. This program allows them to expand their referral source base, get more business from their current patients and strengthen their retail sales component.”

All printed materials can be tailored to the provider’s main referral source base and providers can include specific information about their company. The inside front page of the catalog is reserved for an introduction letter to the referral source, describing the company’s history, scope of services and other promotional material.

The book also contains explanations on product options so that referral sources and patients can leaf through it together, added Tom Tucker, vice president of sales for DME and respiratory. Moreover, the order pads focus on high volume, cash items and explain the need for various products so patients can understand their use.

The Medline Learning Center, which company officials call “the traveling showroom,” enables referral sources to see, touch and use Medline products in their own environment. Providers need to reserve its use at least six weeks in advance.