1. Update Your Website
A website that is easy to navigate and has all the information your potential customers are looking for is essential to the success of your senior living business. Streamline navigation so visitors can find what they are looking for quickly and easily through clear headers and a minimalistic site layout. And don’t forget – with how often people are using smartphones to browse the Internet today, ensure that your site is mobile-friendly.
As you’re building out or revamping your website, be sure to include the following pages:
- Your website should have an “about” page that tells the story of the business, what it does, and why future residents and their loved ones should consider your facility as a senior living option.
- You should also include an online contact form that people can reference. Include your hours, phone numbers, email addresses, and other ways to get in contact with the facility, including social media. On this page, allow visitors to enter their own contact information so they can send questions or comments.
- With all the misconceptions about senior living, it’s also vital that you have an FAQ page with common questions about senior living. Answer them all in detail.
You must have an interactive website with photos and videos that show off the facility and the residents. Show off a variety of amenities, like fitness centers, outdoor pools, movie theaters, and social areas. Consider hiring a professional photographer to take the photos so they’re as eye-grabbing as possible. Be sure to also include testimonials from happy residents. It’s a good idea to also have downloadable content like brochures or white papers for visitors to download from the website instead of having to print them out.
2. Start A Marketing Initiative
If you haven’t already, create a Facebook page for your senior living facility where you can stay engaged with the community and share updates and upcoming events. If you have a senior living blog, you can share that content on your Facebook page, too.
There are a number of marketing opportunities available to companies in the senior living industry. Here are a few example ideas that you can try out for your own facility:
- Advertise your community in public places, like the supermarket or library. Putting signage where seniors frequently walk by ensures that they will see it and keep your facility top of mind. In your signage and other marketing materials, use words like “modern” and “contemporary” to describe your community.
- Offer discounts for first-time visitors. Many seniors think senior living will be too expensive for them to afford, so this can be a good gesture that you’re willing to work with them on the affordability aspect.
- Provide a free senior living guide to those who sign up for your newsletter. This is helpful to them because they get the guide for free, and it’s helpful to you because now you can use their email address to send marketing materials to.
- Host community events, like a craft night or bingo. You can invite non-residents so they can get a feel for how they like your community in a fun, no-pressure environment. It also provides socialization opportunities for your current residents.
3. Build Relationships On Social Media And Your Blog
Be sure to use your social media to share photos of happy residents and events at the facility so when people look up your facility online, they see what an engaging place to live it is. Use captions and hashtags on your posts to extend their reach; hashtags make it easier for people who might not know you yet to find you on social Media. And don’t be afraid to put links in your post that drive traffic to other pages on your site or blog to keep people engaged with your content and generate interest.
Make the content fun! Post photos of people having a good time together at your facility playing cards or enjoying lunch. You can create polls and surveys for residents to answer questions about their experience in the community. Sharing content that relates to senior living issues is also engaging, like articles about housing trends or interviews of seniors talking about life after retirement.
Don’t forget about the network-building aspect of social media. Social media goes both ways – you want people to engage with your content, so you should also be engaging with other peoples’ content. Follow your customers on social media and comment on posts from other companies in the senior living industry to show you care about them, too. Connect with influencers in the industry and ask if they would like to collaborate or promote each other’s work through social media channels.
4. Manage Your Reputation
It’s important to be sure that you are seen as a reputable, trusted name in the senior living industry. You can do this by being proactive with social media, keeping an up-to-date blog, and answering questions on online forums to promote yourself as a resource for seniors.
You could also join groups related to senior living, such as the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging’s Facebook group, or other online communities like Senior Housing Talk Forums. Participate in community events related to your business (like volunteering at retirement homes).
To be seen as a trusted advocate for seniors, it’s vital that you are honest and transparent with all your residents. Update them with changes happening in the community, like new construction or road closures. Encourage them to volunteer at events around town with you so you can have some quality time together.
5. Take Advantage Of Google Adwords
Adwords is a great way to get your message in front of the right audience. You can target Adwords by location, age, gender, and more. Be sure you’re using keywords that are relevant to your product or service to get the most clicks possible. And also be sure you’re targeting your ads using all of the targetings that Adwords offers – you don’t want them going out to everybody, since that would be a waste of money.
Patience is key when working on ad campaigns. Don’t expect results and tons of new leads overnight – the key is to use it as a long-term strategy to build your business. Keep track of which ads are working best by using conversion tracking and seeing benchmarks for yourself.
In your ads, include a call to action so people know how they can contact you or visit your website. It could say something like “Contact Us Today!”, and ads could also link to your social channels with contact information. Make sure you create an effective landing page with clear instructions on what visitors should do after viewing your ad.
In your ads as well as your website, include keywords in your content like “senior living” and “retirement homes” to extend your reach. Create a Google My Business page for your business and add it to the search engine results. And be sure your website is optimized for mobile devices so people can find you on their phones and tablets.
6. Update Your Entire Staff On Sales Strategies
Your staff is a vital part of your senior living community, and great ideas for how to improve it can come at any level. Find out from your staff what interests your residents, and use those to create fun activities for them to enjoy together. Talk with staff members, including nurses and caregivers, to find out what they think would be helpful areas to improve the facility. And be sure you’re asking how you can improve their work experience too – a happy crew means happy residents, and happy residents are more likely to spread positive word of mouth about your community.
For a business to be successful, all staff must be aware of the company’s sales strategy. You can create an in-house training video or a Powerpoint about the sales strategy and share it with staff members so they understand how the business side works. Monthly or quarterly meetings for all staff members to review progress is a helpful way to make sure everyone is still aligned to the strategy and focused on self-improvement.
Incentives are also an important part of maintaining staff morale. A weekly newsletter that highlights accomplishments, gives shout-outs to helpful staff members, and includes information related to employees’ work lives can be really motivating for staff members. Financial incentives like prizes or bonuses based on meeting certain milestones related to the sales strategy are also effective.
7. Use A CRM To Track Leads
Create a list of all the people related to senior living you know and their contact information, and keep it all in one central place so it’s nice and organized. Keeping detailed notes is essential here. Keep track of your conversations with prospects and current residents, including date, time, duration, and content, who initiated it, how they responded to what you said or did, and any follow-up actions that were taken by either party. Be sure to also layer in detail about webinars attended or presentations given at conferences.
This list could definitely get pretty long. You can keep it organized by assigning tags to different contacts. You could categorize them by how recently you’ve reached out, where they are in the pipeline (prospect, potential client, current resident, etc.), how likely you think they will be to convert, or any way that makes the most sense to you.
Make sure you have the right CRM software for your business needs. Many CRMs have a lead scoring system to prioritize which leads are most important and need the most attention. They can track how many times someone has visited your website or called you about senior living opportunities to gauge interest level. Set up reminders in your CRM so you don’t forget to follow up where needed or check in on the status of your leads.
You can identify potential customers by keeping an eye out for clues that someone might be interested in senior living. For example, maybe they mentioned that they’re looking into assisted living homes or other related topics. Taking notes when you meet someone who could be a potential customer is another good practice. What are their interests? What did they share about their family? Keeping track of this information is a helpful way to show genuine interest in them and increase their chances of conversion.
Having a strong digital marketing strategy is key to ensuring the success of your senior living community. By following these seven tips, you’ll be on your way to having an excellent digital reputation, and the future opportunities will be coming through in no time. If you want help getting started with any of these strategies or would like more information about how we can assist you as a partner, give us a call today! We look forward to hearing from you soon.