Assisted living communities and senior care businesses are at an interesting juncture. The pre-2008 days of waiting lists remain a memory, but the golden years of millions of baby boomers are looming. The opportunities for success with senior living businesses are looking good.
Here are some tips to help you improve your assisted living marketing, from the fundamental to the fine-tuned. Get these in place to reach the right audience, diversify your offering and communicate the right message at the right time.
Develop an effective website
Your assisted living website will be the focal point of your online marketing, so its importance cannot be overstated. It’s not only your main informational hub but also one of your most important salespeople.
Key Design Elements include:
- Attractive but not overwhelming images that show your facility and communicate the value you offer
- Simple, intuitive navigation
- Content that is broken up into headlines and small blocks so it’s easy to skim read
- Clear contact information, with maps to your location
- Easy-to-fill-out contact forms
Think of your website design as a first impression — a kind of handshake. As much as anything, you want to impart a sense of trust. If your website fails there, it’s likely you won’t get the chance to meet the prospective family in person.
Get on page one of search
Page one of the search results is broken up into three different sections.
The first is pay-per-click advertising (PPC). This is how you get to the top spots on search, using the auction systems on Google and Bing. PPC ads give you the most control over ranking and content delivery, but you have to pay to gain top spots.
Second, set up and optimize your Google Business Profile listing. This is a free listing that connects to Google Maps. It’s the primary way that Google knows where your service area is so you come up for local searches. Optimize your descriptions with keywords and get customer reviews to increase your ranking.
Third, do search engine optimization (SEO) work on your website. This also gives you free ranking/clicks and is a good way to expand the keywords you rank for so you can get traffic from people doing informational searches. Optimize your main pages for your main target keywords, then use your blog to expand on diets, memory loss, retirement and other issues of importance to seniors.
Develop your social media presence
Many assisted living and home healthcare services think social media is pointless because their target demographic isn’t active on any of the platforms.
And granted, it’s not wise to target people in their 80s on Snapchat (at least not yet).
But you probably already realize the fault in this thinking. You’re not simply targeting elderly would-be residents, but also you’re targeting their adult children, many of whom are very active on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
It’s worth it to set up a business Facebook page, and use it as a gallery, place for updates and information resource. We already mentioned how you should post your blogs and videos here. You can also curate content from other sources.