How to become a market leader in the NDIS race

In this article, we discuss what organisations need to know about marketing to be NDIS ready. While we haven’t had to be commercially focused before, the time has come to build on our existing skills to attract and retain clients in a competitive and uncertain market.

What do organisations need to know about marketing to be NDIS ready?

What are the challenges?

  • Having a clear client value proposition and offer for your market
  • Attracting and retaining clients
  • Repositioning your brand in a commercial setting
  • Competing against private sector businesses


Client value proposition and market offer

Creating a value proposition has to start with having a clear picture of who your clients are, what their needs are, where they can be found, and how they like to operate.

This is just scratching the surface of how you create your value proposition of course.

When we are talking about client value proposition, we’re talking about building products and services that solve your clients’ needs, and adds unexpected value to them.  This is the foundation of your market offer.

To create your competitive market offer, you need to channel the solutions to your clients’ needs into your products and services.

Once you have a firm idea of your products and services, you need to test its commercial viability before you go live.

This includes – among other things – checking the validity of market demand, cost of product or service delivery, and gross margin for ongoing sustainability.

Attracting and retaining clients

Once you have your value proposition, you are ready to move forward with a bigger plan to attract and retain clients. We know that in the NDIS setting, clients control their plans for support services and equipment and that this is a new experience for all of us.

We also know that it means we have to work harder and smarter to attract the business directly from the client, where in years gone by, we’ve been accustomed to receiving upfront assured funding from government sources.

So, what does that mean for how we attract and retain clients in our organisations?

Well it all begins with understanding the role of technology in reaching our modern day client base.

Technology is now entrenched in every aspect of society and the way we live.

Just like everybody else, it is common practice for people with disability or their families and carers, to jump straight onto Google no matter what products or services they want in life. People have the greatest access to information that they have ever had in history and they’re not afraid to use it before making a purchase decision.

And under the NDIS, they’re going to be doing this more than ever to effectively express their freedom of choice when it comes to the services they need. If your online presence is setup correctly and your market offer meets their needs, you should feature in their search results.

When you can’t be found online it’s a real road block to the fundamentals of attracting and retaining customers in the modern era.

Digital marketing channels are now the widely accepted way of communicating and building client relationships. This means a solid online presence where clients can easily find you, access your products and services, and understand the value you provide.

So, what are the fundamentals of building a solid online presence and how does that link to attracting and retaining clients?

The fundamentals are a combination of integrated digital tools (such as your website, email marketing and social media) which guide your clients through the customer journey from lead to lifetime client. You need to create a digital ecosystem that helps you be in front of the right person, at the right time, with the right offer to capture, analyse and maximise leads.

Repositioning your brand in a commercial setting

With the new NDIS funding model, organisations have an opportunity to reposition their brand and become the sought-after authority in their particular corner of the market.

You will only be able to do this once you have:

  • created a clear value proposition and market offer
  • established a robust marketing ecosystem for attracting and retaining clients.


Here’s an example

One of our clients in the disability sector has made a pro-active move to broaden their services to better compete in the new world order and strive to become market leaders.

Recognising that under the new NDIS funding model the position they were niched into would not provide them enough market access to become commercially sustainable without government funding, they expanded their service offering to new clients cohorts.

This is what they did:

  • updated their website to reflect the new range of services and new mode of operating
  • prepared a digital marketing campaign to build awareness and establish new connections
  • and, modified their existing digital marketing approach to be able to capture and nurture leads.

It is early days for them yet, but they have laid the fundamentals for their success.

Here are some things you need to consider when repositioning your brand for commercial sustainability

In the new world order, your mission will struggle to succeed without adapting your operations with commercial outcomes in mind.

And a slick, modern and effective website should be at the centre of communicating and building relationships to achieve those commercial outcomes.

Your homepage should include:

  • who you are
  • what you do
  • what is in it for them
  • what action you want them to take next.

All of this should appear above the fold on your website.

*** ABOVE THE FOLD: This is all of the information you can see without scrolling when you first land on a web page ***

If your website homepage is dominated by Industry articles, events, and general information on the disabilities you support, it is going to distract visitors from taking the actions you need them to, i.e. accepting your offer and becoming a client.

Your brand position is reliant on more than the effectiveness of your website. While it is at the centre of your client’s online interactions with you, there is much more you need to consider.

For example:

  • the value proposition in your products and services
  • the key messages you are using
  • search engine optimisation (SEO)
  • a modern and sleek visual brand
  • being where the market demand for your product or services is (be it geographically or in the digital space)
  • thought leadership and innovation
  • marketing automation
  • event appearances/ speaking roles
  • quality, unique content.

We believe that positive brand experience is the key to attracting and retaining clients and is also at the core of a solid brand position.

Competing against private sector businesses

The NDIS new funding model is fast approaching and If your organisation is slow to market, you are opening up the door to private sector businesses with better funding and more commercial experience to penetrate your market share.

To retain your market position and continue on a growth trajectory start planning:

  • your value propositions
  • implementing your digital marketing ecosystem for customer attraction and retention
  • and, reposition your brand to be the leader in the products and services you provide.


About the authors

Tim Hughes

Co-founder and Director

Tim is an astute business man with passion for breaking barriers and transforming operations. He is tertiary qualified in marketing, as well as demand planning, supply chain management and logistics. Tim is a rare breed of genius who thinks with both sides of his beautiful brain to solve complex business challenges. He has successfully played strategic roles with global enterprises as they navigate tremendous change. Tim is a great man to have on your side.

Louise Hughes

Co-founder and Director

Louise is a vibrant and creative soul who has been waving her public relations and marketing magic wand across organisations of all sizes and industries for the past 17 years. She has a deep passion for beautifully crafted words and intelligent marketing responses to the challenges of business. Louise is tertiary qualified in political science, journalism and public relations. She has worked in the marketing industry most of her career with achievements ranging from attracting crowds of more than 40,000 to the Queensland Multicultural Festival, project managing the establishment of the Community Services Industry Alliance, running highly successful advertising campaigns, marketing international conferences and much, much more.