Today, “content marketing” is considered a bellwether business strategy by growth experts inside and outside the senior living space.
However, a key question remains for many senior living communities today. What is it really, and how can I harness content marketing for maximum marketing value?
As described by the Content Marketing Institute, “At its core, your content marketing strategy is your ‘why.’ Why you are creating content, who you are helping, and how you will help them in a way no one else can. Organizations typically use content marketing to build an audience and to achieve at least one of these profitable results: increased revenue, lower costs or better customers.”
In short, a content marketing strategy enables you to identify, deploy and optimize your community’s compelling features, benefits and advantages that are viewed as relevant and helpful by senior living audiences.
Your Content Can Be King … but ONLY If It Resonates with Your Prospects’ Lives
Determining your go-to content is a key step in creating an integrated content marketing strategy that will connect with your senior living prospects and offer them value, i.e. meaningful information that provides tangible benefit to their lives and moves them to action and the next steps in their buyer journey.
Your prospective customers have unique needs, problems and situations for which they are seeking solutions. As a result, your content is only useful to your prospects – and beneficial to you – if it responds directly to what they want to hear about. For memory care communities, it could be coping tips for at-home caregivers or content on activities that promote social engagement and reduce anxiety. For assisted living providers, content on supporting personal independence and providing an enriching lifestyle might be most appropriate.
Harking back to your Marketing 101 course, it is essential to know your prospective customers inside and out. Once you fully understand and appreciate what makes them tick, you can create meaningful content that speaks directly to them. Simply put, they are searching for tangible solutions to their various senior living needs and senior living communities that can best understand and respond to their specific circumstances.
The Forbes Agency Council reinforces this “customer-centric” approach and offers several valuable content marketing development tips, including:
- Develop Your Audience Personas – The first and most important thing while developing a content strategy is to develop your audience personas and understand where to reach them so you can develop a multi-channel strategy approach. This is the fuel for all of your digital marketing activities. Make sure your audience is engaged, as the quality of your content is key to driving success.
- Map the Customer Journey – Before creating a content strategy, it’s vital to know when, where and how to best reach your target audience. Answer these questions by mapping their customer journey. Include emotions, thoughts and expectations at each touchpoint of the journey.
- Don’t Make Content for Content’s Sake – Good marketing’s purpose never changes – what need are you trying to solve for? Creating content for content’s sake just adds noise. Your first question is: what are your consumers’ needs, and how will your content solve those needs for them in a way that your existing marketing efforts don’t?
- Provide Solutions with Your Content – Content marketing works best when your content provides answers or solutions to your target audience’s questions or problems. By answering their questions and solving their problems, you are positioning yourself as a subject matter expert and building trust and respect. This is what makes content marketing so powerful.
- Develop an Evergreen Content Plan Around Broad Themes and Common Questions – Many organizations start a content program at extremes, with too many ideas or too few. Begin with common customer questions, misinformation or complaints to build your library. Think in terms of broad themes, all of which are supported by individual posts that are narrow and deep.
Once your content marketing strategy is determined, you can then create a tactical content marketing plan. This plan aligns your senior living community’s relevant content with your target audience’s needs and specifies the media channels you will use to reach them. As one example for a memory care senior living community: “Communicate authoritative information that is valuable to the needs of at-home caregivers of loved ones with dementia via a monthly blog article that also articulates our personalized memory care programs, family-centered philosophy and engaging lifestyle.”
Why Blogging Is a Powerful Tool in Your Content Marketing Arsenal Today
Today’s wide array of digital marketing and social media applications offer a variety of proven ways to grow your search results, build engagement with your community and generate quality leads for your sales funnel. One of the most cost-effective of these content marketing tools is blogging – a service that SageAge Strategies provides to many of our growth-focused senior living client-partners.
Neil Patel, a successful software entrepreneur and web influencer, provides the following commentary on the value of a content development strategy and the use of blogging as an ideal tactic to get your content noticed and utilized.
“All content is not created equal. Some content will make your search traffic skyrocket and improve your personal brand significantly. The smart strategy is to understand your target audience, get to know what questions keep them awake at night and take decisive action to provide them with the right answers.
“With the right content, you can grow your search traffic. You don’t need 100,000 readers each month to become successful or get noticed. When you decide to use other channels, such as Google AdWords or Facebook PPC, you should be ready to spend some money. But when you embrace blogging with passion, you’ll spend less and get more targeted leads and customers.”
Simply put, blogs can deliver more leads at a lesser cost than other non-paid, “organic” marketing options.
Digital Writing Makes Your Content Soar!
As winner of The Mature Online Marketing Business Achievement Award for Best Senior Living Blog, SageAge Strategies provides expertise to senior living communities nationwide to develop content marketing strategies that work and create content-rich blogs that attract attention and motivate senior living prospects to take action. We offer a vast inventory of relevant blog topics that deliver the content your prospects are searching for.
Our exceptional team of senior living marketing professionals is trained in the new science of digital writing, which combines effective storytelling with best-practice techniques designed to optimize the search rankings of your content. Effective digital writing involves many detailed elements – from using primary and secondary keywords that match actual senior living search data, to optimized word counts, keyword ratios, paragraph density, subhead use, bulleted and numbered lists for easy readability, and meta titles and descriptions.
In today’s highly competitive digital marketplace, writing a nice article and posting it online is no longer sufficient for generating the level of exposure and desired response for your community’s content. For optimal results, your key content must now be presented in a prescriptive digital context that the latest search engine algorithms will respond to favorably and provide your senior living community with the high-profile exposure it deserves.
In addition to blogging and digital writing, SageAge provides a wide array of best-practice integrated marketing solutions designed to achieve your current marketing goals and your long-term growth.
SageAge Strategies: Leaders in Integrated Content Marketing and Lead Gen Solutions
At SageAge Strategies, our marketing team excels in the latest senior living best practices such as integrated content marketing that increase quality lead generation and grow your occupancy. If you need assistance in any areas of digital (online) marketing and integrated growth strategy to improve your business results, we invite you to contact us today to learn more about our proven strategies that have transformed other senior living communities like yours.
SageAge Strategies is a multiple-award-winning, strategic growth, marketing and consulting organization that operates exclusively in the unique senior living marketplace. For more information, please call or email Tom Senger at 704-619-9337 or [email protected].