By Susan Saldibar

My brother-in-law used to own and operate a Harley-Davidson dealership. I won’t bore you with the details, but suffice it to say, he is as much a biker dude as I am a bada bing pole dancer.

So he had little interest in visiting biker websites, reading biker rags, or hanging out in places that his Harley prospects did.

But he was smart enough to market his ass off in those places. 

His reward for meeting his prospects on their turf? A wildly successful dealership.

Whose turfs are you marketing on? The ones you’re comfortable with? 

Brandy Meyers and Jennifer Snyder-Lovely with Conversion Logix (a Foresight partner) can tell you story upon story of senior living marketers who continued to stay in safe territory with their marketing and came up empty-handed.

Brandy and Jen joined Leigh Ann Hubbard, host of Marketing Monday, to talk primarily about the differences between marketing in the multifamily housing space versus senior living communities. (You can watch the full interview here.)

But there are also some similarities. 

Here’s what just about every prospect is doing these days:

  • Starting online. No surprise here, but stop and ask yourself, how are people finding us?
  • Going to your website and clicking on your virtual tour. That means you’d better have videos and tons of those 360-degree panoramas of rooms, grounds, clubhouses, pools, courtyards.
  • Checking out what others think of your place. So they’ll expect star ratings and reviews.

Now if you’re selling senior living, especially assisted or memory care, you have more work to do:

  • There are more people to market to (adult children, etc.).
  • It’s a more emotional decision. So you need to make them feel comfortable in your community before they even visit.
  • They’ll want to know about your medical credentials and qualifications.
  • Your social media pages should show how active and engaged your community is.

Then, after they leave your website, you should not leave them.

  • Your community should pop up when they’re checking out DIY stuff on YouTube.
  • They should be invited to an event that is tailored to their interests. (Think eight-person book club for some versus 100-person luau for others.)
  • Explore creative stuff, like Conversion Logix’s “drive-by pies” and other ways to engage with prospects on site without it being intimidating for them.
  • You need to nurture them, but at their pace, not yours. After all, they have stuff to do, like clean up and sell a house, or get other family members on board.
  • Not sure how to do all this? Check in with Conversion Logix. They live and breathe it.

Maybe it’s time to hold your nose and plunge into places you’ve never been before.

To that end, Jen and Brandy have some warnings for you:

  • Don’t exclude a channel because you think they’re not going to use it since you don’t. They’re using things like TikTok.
  • Don’t avoid a new channel because it’s a hassle to deal with. Go to the experts like Conversion Logix to get tips on how to make it easier.
  • Don’t copy your competitors. They may be leaving a huge gap that you can take advantage of.
  • Don’t rely on Google search alone. Give them multiple paths to communicate with you — chat, email, text, phone.
  • Don’t set it and forget it. Make sure you’re looking at what’s working and what isn’t. Attribution is key to knowing where to put your money. If you don’t know how to do this, reach out to experts.

Being open to new ideas is huge these days. Don’t close your community out. 

That’s why Jen and Brandy urge marketers to partner with someone who understands your vertical. And listen to them. They may see something you don’t.

For more tips from these digital marketing experts, check out their 2023 report 5 Ways to Reach Peak Occupancy, which you can download here.