By Susan Saldibar

Good reviews. Bad reviews. Meh reviews.

What’s your average review rating across the board? Are they getting better? Worse? Do you even know? Let’s say that you do. Good for you. Now, what is the sentiment that your residents and family members have regarding your communities?

Sentiment is important these days. It picks up where the 5-star reviews leave off. It represents what people are actually saying about you. It’s those things that pop up in the comments section, that have heretofore been hard to interpret, let alone quantify. Well, guess what? Now you can.

Did You Know You Can Do This?

I spoke with Celena Canode, with G5 (a Senior Living Foresight partner) about their Pulse tool, offered as part of their G5 Rep and Social platform. It uses AI and machine learning technology to bring a level of tracking you may not have known was possible. It analyzes the text of your customer reviews and conversation and generates measurable sentiment data that helps you decipher what people are saying and how they feel about your brand. It can be used to analyze customer reviews, surveys, and social text.

Measuring sentiment helps you do the following:

    • Identify repeat issues you may have in your communities
    • Identify location-based issues
    • Validate the success (or lack of success) of new services or programs you offer
    • Discover new services or concepts
    • Improve resident and family experience

I asked Celena how Pulse works. It uses a concept called NLP or “natural language processing” to analyze text from reviews and social conversations. It assigns a positive, negative or neutral class to the analyzed text. It then displays the results of the analysis in a format referred to as an “interactive sunburst”, which allows the user to refer back to the reviews to get the details of the full story. So, that allows you to do a deeper dive into a category, topic, or attribute sentiment. By drilling down deeper, you can turn previously indecipherable text into actionable intelligence that can be used to take whatever actions are needed.

Expecting Each of Your Communities to Tackle This on Their Own May Not Be a Smart Move

The system also produces reports, which include charts that can show how sentiment is changing over a period of time. So, you’ll know if people are feeling better about your community or worse. And it can home in on a specific period of time, so you can see when sentiment changed and look for reasons why it may have changed. I would think this would be helpful for communities that have experienced issues and have put initiatives in place to make improvements. You can see if they’ve made an impact.

I would also think this technology would be a given for operators with multiple campuses. Expecting each community to tackle this on their own seems like asking too much. It makes more sense to monitor this centrally, so that senior management can analyze and compare performance across communities and sharpen their focus on who’s doing great and why, as well as where the issues lie.

Today’s operators are struggling to protect their brands. The rapid-fire “tell it like it is” social environment invites casual, off-the-cuff comments, which doesn’t make it any easier. How can you keep up with monitoring it all, let alone across multiple communities? Tools like Pulse, with its ability to translate what people are saying into performance indicators, could be a big help. I know that if I were operating a network of senior living communities, it’s one tool I wouldn’t want to be without.

You can learn more about the tool and the latest in digital marketing by downloading G5’s Senior Living State of Digital Marketing Report