A couple of weeks ago I spent some time with Katie Roper, the VP of Sales and Andy Cohen, the CEO and founder of Caring.com. My big challenge to them was to talk about why those big checks providers write them are worth it.

Yesterday I published an article titled “Pay for Move-in, the Big Ripoff or Not?” where I talked about the challenges that surround the pay per move-in websites like Caring.com, a Senior Housing Forum partner. 

A couple of weeks ago I spent some time with Katie Roper, the VP of Sales, and Andy Cohen, the CEO and founder of Caring.com. My big challenge to them was to talk about why those big checks providers write them are worth it. 

The Evolution of a Lead

GemThey started with a lesson in search optimization and what it takes to generate the screened leads that show up in your CRM or email inbox.  I found the numbers really fascinating and maybe you will too.

  • Caring.com provides a huge number of resources to seniors and their families. They have 2 million unique visitors each month. These  resources start the process of building a relationship and, ultimately, end up as screened leads in your marketing office or call center.
  • The number of unique visitors that use the senior living directory section of Caring.com each month is around 300,000. This includes prospects, people who are really looking for something else, and senior living professionals.
  • Then, about 40,000 people each month submit a request for more information. The vast majority fill out an online form requesting more information. Only a very small number of requests for information start with a phone call. 
  • Each inquiry gets an immediate email response.
  • During normal business hours, if there is a valid phone number, the prospect is called within 30 seconds of receipt of the inquiry. This is a core value for Caring.com because their data shows the more time that elapses between the inquiry and the first return call, the less likely it is that the inquiry will turn into a move-in.
  • If the call is not answered by the inquirer on the first call back, a Caring.com advisor will keep calling up to 20 times.
  • As would be expected, many of the leads come in without phone numbers or with bad or incomplete numbers. Those leads get an immediate email response, with a number of follow-ups. Even these numberless inquiries regularly turn into conversations with Caring.com advisors and a decent percentage of them become screened leads that turn into move-ins.
  • As the funnel narrows, about 7,000 individuals turn into leads that are sent out to senior living communities. Only those communities that are specifically requested by the prospect get sent to communities.
  • The goal of the Caring.com advisor is to provide a prospect with 3 or 4 options. Occasionally they will want a list of every single community in the marketplace. The average, though, is 2.6 communities per screened lead.
  • Caring.com has as a goal scheduling a visit to your community on a specific day and time.
  • Finally, depending on how the community manages the leads they receive from Caring.com, the move-in rate ranges from 1.5% to 4% of the 7,000 qualified prospects.
  • Only about 15% of the prospects move into senior living someplace.
  • On average, a Caring.com senior living advisor spends 25 minutes with a qualified prospect (age, need, income) before they send the prospect a list of senior living options.

Ultimately each of these things would need to be done by someone in the senior living community. Caring.com is a way to get better web exposure than any company can really do standing alone.

A Mixed Bag of Opinions

It is a curious thing that I don’t quite understand. While still way less than half of the people I talk to, there is a sizeable group of people who see great value in the “pay per move-in” business proposition. Some organizations have told me that as many as 30% of their move-ins are the result of leads generated by Caring.com and other similar sites. 

Their feeling is that what it means to them is fewer unqualified, leads that need to be assessed, filtered and moved toward that first appointment. It makes their sales people more efficient and, ultimately, gives them access to prospects they might well have completely missed.

That’s the case. What do you think?

Steve Moran