Times have changed and competition in the senior living business is fiercer than ever. Putting up a few billboards and circulating some flashy brochures isn’t effective anymore. Today’s seniors are savvier than that and expect a world-class digital experience when they find your senior living community online.
Every day, more than 10,000 baby boomers turn 65,1and most of them are using the internet to plan life’s big next chapter. Three out of four seniors are regular internet users2 and three out of five own a smartphone.2 With so many of your prospective residents and their loved ones beginning the new resident journey online a digital marketing strategy for your senior living community is no longer optional.
Here are four tactics to keep in mind when thinking about your senior living community’s digital marketing strategy.
1. Tailor Your Methods to Your Target Market
Goals are rarely realized by accident. A great digital marketing strategy is the first step to finding the seniors you want in your senior living community. Start by assessing your market and building your customer profile. Learn where your target audience is and what media they respond to.
With that information, create a plan accounting for their tastes, preferences, likes and dislikes. For senior living marketers, you’re looking for almost or over 65s. This group is more tech-savvy than the previous generation and extremely value-oriented. They want to feel like they’re getting a deal with every purchase decision.
When creating your marketing plan, consider factors like website deployment and design, social media use, Google advertising and more. These are your tools for building a base of prospects and converting new residents.
2. A Well-Maintained Website is Required
A website is the foundation of any digital marketing strategy for a senior living community. Think of your website as a living, breathing promotional tool, a reflection of your business that changes over time. Our point is your website needs to be flexible and responsive to cultural shifts and market changes.
Websites aren’t simply set it and forget it. Factor in time for continual tweaking and editing to ensure your online presence remains helpful to prospects and effective for you. Most marketing experts believe complete web audits are necessary every few months. So be prepared to change your website at any moment, should the need arise.
Don’t rule out a total website overhaul. Your site design plays a huge role in conversion. Investing time and effort into ensuring you have a well-designed website for your community is a must-have. Studies show that 75% of consumers will form an opinion of your business based on your website’s design.3 And they form that opinion, good or bad, very quickly!
3. Your Reputation is Your Reviews
Online reviews are a powerful promotional tool. Ninety percent of customers check reviews5 before making a purchase.4 And they believe what they read! Seventy-nine percent say they trust an online testimonial written by a stranger, just as much as a recommendation from a family member or friend.5
Encourage, monitor, and moderate your online reviews. The more reviews you have, the more seniors will trust what they read about your community. And if you respond to your reviews, whether positive or critical, people will take notice. Almost all review readers check to see if the business has responded to their review.5
4. Your Audience is on Social
Love it or hate it, social media isn’t going anywhere. And as annoying as this marketing medium may be, your customers love it. Seniors are the fastest growing demographic on Facebook, because they can connect with friends, family and businesses—including your senior living community—on an emotional level.6 That’s important, because for most seniors, choosing to move to a community like yours is a huge, life-changing decision.
Most people trust what they see on social media more than advertising.7 Building trust is an essential component of your customer journey. Seniors won’t move into your community if they don’t trust you.
Need to build trust through social media, or just want to revamp your marketing techniques? Dreamscape can help. Contact us today at 888.307.7304 to learn more.
For a list of references, please contact us.