By Susan Saldibar

What has changed for your community since COVID hijacked our lives?

Just about everything, right? And, on top of working to keep residents and staff healthy, you have to also make sure you’re not letting up on your marketing and sales efforts. Because we all know that, when COVID eventually releases its grip, those communities who have already transitioned to new marketing tactics during the pandemic will come out of the gate much stronger than those who haven’t.

LeadingResponse (a Senior Living Foresight partner) is using consumer behavior data to help communities make those marketing transitions. And they have an advantage with all the consumer behavior data they’ve been collecting relating to COVID since early April. According to Valerie Whitman, VP of Senior Living for LeadingResponse, it’s helped them carve out multi-media tactics for their clients that are allowing them to do what seems almost impossible these days: increase leads.

All About the Numbers

Take a look at these LeadingResponse database stats:

  • Their data comes out of 1 million events, an average of 5 million mailed invites sent each month
  • They conduct an average of 3,000 events per month, nationwide
  • An average of 200k consumers per month are connecting with their clients via webinars, landing pages, phone appointments, virtual appointments, and in-person appointments
  • That includes over 22 million baby boomers, pre-retirees, and retirees

Wow. That’s a lot of data, in anyone’s book. And it’s helped them better position their senior living clients during COVID, leading to recommended adjustments to marketing tactics. One of the biggest has been the transition from onsite events to virtual webinars. “There are many benefits to doing a virtual webinar,” Valerie says. “We’re seeing 45-60% and higher attendance rates, in part because we’re able to extend our reach. It’s easier for adult children who are remote to tune in,” she says. “But, to get those numbers, there are a lot of things you need to do right,” she adds.

Getting It Right

One thing you need to get right from the beginning is your consumer behavior data. The deeper the information set you have, the more likely you will be able to meet prospects where they are and engage with them. That should include hyper-targeted demographics, utilizing ailment data and familial connections. “COVID has changed a lot of thinking out there,” Valerie says. “You need to be agile enough to adjust your messaging and digital marketing vehicles to respond accordingly.”  

Below is an example of how a LeadingResponse client, who had been using their offsite events to market, was able to transition to virtual webinars, using the LeadingResponse WebinarConnect program. Doing so, they were able to increase new lead generation for an upcoming opening of a new retirement community. All this during COVID!


Graphic for LR


Pretty impressive numbers, especially given today’s climate. As for the webinars themselves, LeadingResponse has recommendations on how to optimize them for a higher conversion rate. Here are some tips, once again based on their recent relevant collected consumer behavior data:

  • Make it easy to jump into a virtual tour right from your webinar. People want to see your community. And they’d rather not wait. There are tools to enable this connection.
  • Provide downloadable tools for participants, like care assessment tools and financial worksheets.
  • Create a way for a participant to schedule a next step during the actual webinar. Allowing the prospect to be in the driver’s seat. Don’t make them schedule a call.

The important takeaway here is not to stand still and wait for life to return to normal, because it may never be the same “normal” we once knew. The key is to take actions that will generate leads in this “new normal”.

Valerie will be sharing much more data as well as new, successful lead generation programs in their next webinar: Marketing for the New Normal, Based on Consumer Behavior Data, Tuesday, June 16th. You can register here.

To learn more about LeadingResponse, visit their website.