Stay on top of your senior living marketing competition
When it comes to senior living, it used to be the adult children of seniors who did the bulk of the research and decision-making. However, times are changing as technology becomes more prevalent than ever. According to Google, 75% of senior living consumers research their options on search engines. Unlike their parents, Baby Boomers have been harnessing the benefits of technology for some time now, and your senior living marketing strategies can make or break your online leads.
In terms of their Internet use, Google found that Boomers were spending up to 23 hours per week online, with the majority of survey respondents using email, reading the news, shopping, leverage social networks and watching video, which commanded over 50% of respondents’ online use.
With the internet keeping the whole world at our fingertips, the challenge of senior living marketing is less about reaching consumers and more about standing out against your competition.
10 Ways to Optimize Your Senior Living Marketing
1. Develop and Maintain a Good Website
68% of surveyed senior living marketers cited the community website as one of their top three most effective ways of marketing. Make sure your website is designed and managed in the most efficient way possible by including the following characteristics:
- It is structured to convert prospective consumers. The goal of your website should not be to dump every single detail about your residence onto the page. The goal should be to motivate them to act. Websites that successfully convert prospective consumers include concise content, strong calls to action, clear navigation, and distinct visuals.
- It is designed for your audience. Just like anything else, keeping your target audience in mind is crucial when building your website. Developing content that will address the most common questions and concerns seniors or their caretakers will have is a key component to inviting traffic onto your site.
- It is consistently updated. Websites are not something you set up and walk away from. Keep your content fresh by updating pictures and videos, posting blogs, and creating new landing pages.
Unless you are a highly skilled web developer who is up-to-date on the latest programming trends and protocols, you should not be building your own senior living community website. Hire a professional.
2. Be Aware of Your Audience
This may seem like an obvious element of your senior living marketing campaign, but there is more to consider than the geographic location and age group of your target consumers. It is also important to think about where they are in the buying process.
To better identify this, it is helpful to use the Buyer’s Journey concept, which categorizes consumers into three categories:
- Awareness Stage – This is when the consumer becomes aware of a problem. This is the stage in which consumers will turn to search engines to learn more about their problem.
- Consideration Stage – This is when the consumer has identified their problem and begins considering solutions to it. This leads to more online researching to understand their options.
- Decision Stage – This is when the consumer is ready to act on the best option for them. This is when the consumer looks at locations, reviews, and ultimately your website.
Your website doesn’t have to exist only in the third stage, however. Including things like infographics and educational articles will capture those in the Awareness Stage. A clear, organized page of your services, rates, and amenities will appeal to those in the Consideration Stage. Testimonials, core values, and virtual tours can capture those in the Decision Stage. By varying your website or blog content to meet the needs of the other stages, you can introduce your residence to the consumer from the very beginning.
3. Establish Your Senior Living Staff as Experts
Senior living marketing is more than nice pictures and community events, though. As much as people appreciate your mission statement, they also want to know that the seniors at your residence are in knowledgeable, reliable hands. It is important to communicate that your staff is trained to help seniors maintain their scheduled medicine and stay active and safe. It is also important to communicate your knowledge of the senior living industry in general. It gives you credibility and appeals to consumers.
4. Post Valuable Blog Content
The importance of company blogs has already been touched on, but there are a few key aspects to keep in mind in order to make the most out of your posts. First, blog posts are opportunities to delve into topics that your prospective residents care about. Use this opportunity to briefly, in only 1000 words or less, showcase your expertise and highlight what your senior living community cares about. Secondly, blogs are one of the most helpful ways to search engine optimize your website. Through keywords and continually updating content, you can drive more and more traffic to your site. The more often you post, the more credibility Google gives to your website. Maintaining a quality blog will tell prospective residents that your company pays attention to details, stays on top of the game, and makes the most of every opportunity.
5. Incite Action Through Email Marketing
With people largely ignoring the wave of commercial messages that hit their inbox every day, many marketers might think that email marketing is dead. However, there is an important distinction to be made here. Email marketing isn’t dead, but spam and irrelevant advertisements are. The best way to make the most of email marketing today is to focus on valuable content. When you write the email that will pop up in subscribers’ inboxes, make sure your message is concise and impactful. Anything that is designed to address a specific audience and make consumers’ lives easier is bound to be successful.
6. Be Competitive Through Online Ads
Though pricey, online ads are incredibly effective at cutting through the clutter on the internet and presenting your senior living community directly to prospective residents. As a result, they can boost the success of every other element of your senior living marketing. Because online ads can be expensive, though, it’s important to use them wisely. Target individuals who are later in the buyer’s journey, who are ready to visit your community and make a decision. Also, use eye-catching copy to invite more clicks and get the most value out of your online ad.
7. Build Trust on Social Media
Social media is a great way to build rapport with potential residents. Use this outlet as a way to open a conversation between your senior living community and prospective residents. Include engaging content that encourages people to comment and share. Also be responsive to questions and concerns from others – always reply promptly and professionally. Sharing things like blog posts and events from your website is another great idea, but remember it is equally important to post original content.
While you can do all of this through any social media platform, data shows that the majority of people, especially seniors, spend the majority of their internet usage on Facebook.
8. Landing Pages Get You Leads
Landing pages are quite simple. Typically they include an image of a downloadable resource (your lead magnet), an email form to receive the resource via email and to subscribe for future notifications, and a small blurb of writing to convince the viewer to engage. To make an effective landing page, be sure to develop strong copy and distinct visuals. You can also create more detailed forms that collect specific information about the individual so that you can more closely tailor the content you send them.
9. Show Off Your Community Through Event Marketing
Event marketing does so much for your senior living community – it showcases your amenities, engages the surrounding community, and provides residents an opportunity to socialize with new people. It’s also a great way to use all of your senior living marketing strategies at once. Publicize your event on your blog, emails, and social media platforms. Use high-quality pictures or create short videos to advertise it. Your opportunity is only beginning when you plan an event. There is a great chance to leverage that event well beyond its initial impact.
10. Refresh Your Brand
Even the best brands become stale over enough time. It’s important to periodically assess the strengths and weaknesses of your brand, and change things up as necessary. The essence of your brand is whatever jumps to mind whenever your community’s name is mentioned. For consumers this might include your name, tagline, logo and color schemes, communications, staff, and the public’s experiences with your services. To keep things current, consider some of the following options:
- Changing your service focus from assisted living to memory care
- Renovating or expanding your community and adding new services and programs
- Adding energy and vitality to a stale or underperforming brand
- Relaunching your brand to distance yourself from past reputation issues
Your brand is your calling card to the world. An updated brand that keeps you fresh and relevant can have a substantial impact on how prospective residents view you and respond to your offers.
We Take You From The Bottom To The Top!
Let us help you propel your senior living community to the top with our comprehensive digital marketing services. We handle everything from website development and content management to search engine optimization and online reputation management, and much more. Ready to get started? Contact us now or call us at 678-573-5026.