Senior Living Sales: Tips for Achieving Measurable Sales Success

Business Success

Jul 9, 2013 | Sales/Sales Training

Many senior living leaders today hear the familiar refrain from their sales people that “they don’t have any hot leads.” But are “hot leads” more a matter of attitude or reality? And are hot leads a result of effective sales preparation and process or are they simply a matter of luck and the good fortune of being in the right place at the right time?

As senior living sales blogger Diane Masson says, “Some senior living sales people expect a prospective resident to walk in and say, ‘I have my house on the market and I’m ready to move into your retirement community.’ How often does this happen?” As she points out, it could happen 20% of the time, but that means 80% of the time, a sales person needs to build a relationship, document it in the database and do the dreaded follow up phone calls.

Not all sales people are created equal.

Attracting and hiring the right people to build an effective sales team is an essential ingredient for your community’s marketing growth strategy. This requires an investment of time and effort if you are going to achieve the proper return on your investment. That means taking the time to identify people who truly have what it takes to be successful.

Senior living sales today require individuals with special personality traits and skill sets. For starters, they need to be:

  • Engaging and empathetic
  • Confident and pleasantly persuasive
  • Good listeners
  • Effective problem solvers
  • Comfortable answering difficult questions and responding to objections in a helpful, non-confrontational manner
  • Strong in their follow up skills
  • Persistent

While recruiting the right talent is key, it is often not enough by itself. It is also very important to arm them with “best practice” sales training that uses approaches that have proven effective with today’s consumer – most often the adult daughter of aging parents. With the right people, the right training and the proper nurturing, a cool lead can become hot much sooner than expected.

In her July 7th 2013 article, 13 Quick Tips to Increase the Occupancy by 3%!,, Diane Masson offers the following suggestions for successful senior living sales:

  • Focus on personal and team occupancy goals (visualize success).
  • Expect the entire senior living sales team to have a good attitude!
  • Treat all initial leads as hot until they cool off.
  • Listen to prospective residents and solve their problems!
  • Don’t listen when they say, “I am not ready yet.”
  • Give a wow tour!
  • Introduce prospective residents to multiple residents and staff.
  • Always inquire about the senior’s timeline on making a move.
  • Ask for the deposit – every time.
  • Have fun.
  • Represent a beautiful and clean retirement community.
  • Call potential senior residents and/or their boomer children the next day after the tour.
  • The sales team needs to believe and treat every walk-in or Internet lead as though they are ready to move in now!

Implications for Senior Living Providers

Selecting people who have the right “markers” for senior living sales success and providing them with proven, best practice sales training is an essential foundation for your community’s growth strategy. If your community requires additional support to optimize the return on your sales function investment, be sure to look for an experienced organization that operates exclusively in the senior living marketplace and has the specialized expertise and experience in senior living sales and marketing required to succeed.

Marketing Events for Senior Living Communities

SageAge is here to make you stand out from the crowd with unique marketing ideas and events, helping you generate leads and enhance seniors’ lives.

7 Expert Tips for Maximizing Your Senior Living “Google My Business” Profile

As senior living marketing experts, we’re always looking for the best ways to improve our clients’ online presence. A client’s Google My Business (GMB) profile is one part of a greater digital presence, but it is truly an important component of online reputation and...

Where Should I Advertise to Seniors and Baby Boomers?

Marketing and advertising to seniors and Baby Boomers doesn’t need to be difficult. We’re here to help.

Senior Living Social Media 101

There’s a lot to know about senior living social media. From choosing a community’s social media platforms to implementing content marketing strategies and more, it can feel overwhelming to even the most seasoned social media gurus. What’s more, according to the Pew...

How To Develop a Senior Living Marketing Plan

What Is a Senior Living Marketing Plan? A marketing plan is also regarded as an advertising strategy that a company, in this case a retirement community, will implement to help them achieve (or exceed) their operational goals and marketing initiatives for a set period...

40 Years and 40 Pieces of Sage Advice

2023 has been a year full of new ideas, growth, and planning for the future. At SageAge, 2023 brings a significant milestone for our company – our 40th anniversary. In honor of our 40 years of delivering strategic marketing and business growth strategies to the senior...

The Best Senior Living CRM: Three Experts Weigh In

Looking to end your days of manually entering customer data in Excel? If so, a customer relationship management (CRM) tool is the perfect choice. Three of our senior living industry experts are weighing in on everything you need to know about CRM. Meet the SageAge...

How To Generate Leads for Senior Living Communities

Are you looking for ways to spark robust lead generation through your senior living marketing strategy? With the right team on your side and the right approach, it might be easier than you think. Check out some of these top ways to generate senior living leads through...

Senior Living SEO: 7 Tactics That Work

Want to discover a cost-effective way to provide value to others while enhancing your senior living strategy? Through Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, you can do just that.  What Is SEO? SEO is about improving your website’s visibility to search engines, increasing...

The Importance of Responding to Online Reviews

Did you know: 95% of people consult reviews before purchasing products or services. 88% of consumers are likely to use a business if they can see the business owner responds to all reviews, whether positive or negative. 87% of consumers used Google to evaluate local...
Share This