In the retirement living IRC industry, guiding leads through the sales cycle is crucial for occupancy growth and maintaining a healthy pipeline of leads is essential.
Sales/Marketing funnels typically follow the AIDA (Attraction, Interest, Decision, Action) model with only minor differences between applications, but there are always 3 primary considerations without worrying about the detail of your funnel stages:
1. Prospects finding your funnel to start with - through digital marketing.
2. Getting a prospect to step into your funnel - with lead engagement and conversion tools.
3. Moving prospects through the funnel - by nurturing prospects through the process.
As a retirement living provider, you use digital marketing tools like search engine optimisation (SEO) to boost your website's position in search engine results. This will attract organic traffic and improve the chances of potential customers discovering your facility without paying referrals or commissions to 3rd party directories or referral services. Targeted online advertising campaigns and content marketing can also help you generate leads by promoting relevant and engaging content to likely residents and their families.
Offline marketing, such as door-to-door leaflets, billboards, newspapers & magazines, etc., can be brought online through dedicated Tracked Phone numbers and QR codes. They are also great methods for easy attribution reporting of your advertising efforts.
Only when potential customers have discovered your website and begin engaging with your assets can they enter the sales/marketing funnel. Lead engagement and conversion tools are crucial at this stage. Tools such as interactive chatbots, online surveys, open-house tour schedules, eBooks and other downloadable content can be valuable in attracting, capturing and segmenting leads.
In studies, some 50% of website users say they are happy to engage with Chatbots, a feature missing from so many communities websites. Scheduling facility tours online, answering or guiding to FAQs, etc., help potential residents navigate their options and address concerns for a seamless customer experience. The other 50% of web users prefer to Chat with a real person, so an option button to talk with a live operator is also good to present. This could be a challenge at extreme hours like 2 a.m., so consider the Chatbot as the virtual assistant at these hours. Chat and Chatbots significantly improve the Speed to Lead, answering prompts in seconds and giving prospects what they want potentially on demand.
Surveys (created using motivational interviewing techniques) can help gather feedback and better understand the needs and preferences of prospective residents, enabling sales teams to tailor their approach accordingly. This can also help prospects to qualify or disqualify themselves based on their answers and any feedback the survey gives them.
Downloadable content, e-books and guides are valuable for educating potential customers about their retirement living options, care services, and amenities. Retirement community providers can build trust and establish themselves as industry experts by providing informative and helpful content in the early stages of engagement.
By providing a range of engagement tools, customers stay engaged throughout their journey, matching their needs at every stage of the funnel. For instance, if a website visitor prefers not to speak with someone but downloads content instead, they can be placed in nurturing campaigns where content is delivered in a timely fashion, engaging with them until they are ready to proceed to the next step.
Retirement living providers have to concentrate on guiding customers through the sales process during this last stage. Potentially less automated, it falls to the responsibility of the Community Advisers, to ensure an outstanding experience for potential customers and follow up with them. Building rapport with likely residents and their families, answering questions, addressing concerns, and demonstrating empathy throughout the decision-making journey.
Responding promptly to inquiries (speed to the lead), providing valuable information, and offering personalised tours can significantly impact decision-making. Maintaining regular communication with prospects, providing timely information, and addressing any remaining concerns demonstrates commitment and professionalism. Along the way there may be family members or friends involved in the final decision. Being able to supply information to them in a related fashion and capture feedback within your system is invaluable. Customer relationship management (CRM) tools can help sales teams stay organised, track interactions, never drop a prospect and streamline the sales process.
Mastering the senior living sales cycle requires a strategic approach encompassing the funnel through digital marketing, engaging leads with conversion tools, and providing exceptional guidance throughout the sales process. By optimising each phase, senior living providers can enhance their sales strategies, improve customer experiences, and increase conversions.
Embracing digital marketing, utilising lead engagement and conversion tools, and prioritising the delivery of personalised advice are crucial factors for success in the retirement living industry. By adopting a strategic approach to the three phases of the sales cycle, later-life living providers can enhance their sales outcomes and increase their occupancy rates
Are you looking to learn more or need help implementing your sales & marketing strategies with automation? Schedule a 30-minute discovery call today to gain direction on implementing your marketing approach and growing your occupancy.
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As the official UK reseller and support partner of ActiveDEMAND, Lead Intuition offers this powerful technology solution that simplifies the marketing stacks for Retirement Living sales & marketing teams. ActiveDEMAND is a web-based marketing automation & sales CRM tool tailored to meet Later Living single or multi-community needs.
By functioning as an integrated CRM platform, ActiveDEMAND enables marketing & sales team alignment with all data available from a single point of truth. Streamlined campaign management, funnel visualisation, content hubs, CRM + sales pipelines, attribution, revenue reporting & forecasting are just a few features that ActiveDEMAND offers while seamlessly integrating with daily-use business applications.
Lead Intuition brings the human touch to automation. As an ActiveDEMAND Certified Gold Deployment Partner, you can leverage our technical & digital marketing knowledge with the power of ActiveDEMAND to optimise your marketing strategies and drive impactful results.