It’s almost a new year, which means a new article about “keeping your sales pipeline full.” Normally, these types of articles are pretty straightforward and contain lots of useful tips that you may or may not already know. But – shocker – this is not a “normally” kind of year.
No, 2020 has taken the playbook and ripped it up, leaving many companies feeling rather adrift when it comes to building a sales pipeline for 2021. After all, a year ago, who would have expected how drastically our industry – our sales structure – our lives – would shift? As we look forward to 2021, there’s only one certainty: anything is to be expected.
“Don’t fret – this isn’t a doom and gloom type of article,” says John Devins, Director of Business Development at SageAge Strategies. “Actually, this is a pretty exciting time to be in sales – especially when it comes to senior living. We’ve seen, more than ever, that our industry is essential to helping keep older adults healthy, happy and engaged. As long as we’re willing to embrace the new normal and lean into our sales strategy with a whole heart and a multichannel approach, there are so many ways to remain successful.”
One of the positive things that has come out of the COVID-19 pandemic, with regards to the senior living space, is the amount of flexibility and technology adaptation that our industry has experienced. “Stepping outside of our established comfort zone, especially when it comes to sales, has enabled us to continue to serve our current residents as well as attract new ones,” says John. “We are so glad we were able to help our client-partners adopt new technologies and embrace alternate ways for converting prospects … successfully.”
So, what can we expect for the upcoming year? Well, we can be sure that COVID-19 will remain a concern for our industry. It will be up to all of us to not just protect current and future residents from contracting the virus, but doing that in a way that doesn’t hinder your sales prospects. Here are our suggestions for using a multichannel approach to meet your prospects where they are, communicate in effective ways and build a robust prospect list to keep your occupancy rates high through 2021 and beyond.
Get outside your comfort zone.
In terms of technology, that is. There’s a stigma of older adults not being as technologically savvy as their younger counterparts, but the wave of virtual tours, mobile connection and video conferencing would beg to differ. Older adults are embracing different media and technology at a rapid rate, especially now as they search for ways to stay connected while remaining socially distanced.
For senior living providers, filling your sales pipeline in 2021 will mean stepping outside your comfort zone – your previously established sales and marketing techniques. Go beyond email, direct marketing and regularly scheduled social posts to reach consumers anywhere and anytime. A robust automated digital campaign is a great place to start.
Watch for upcoming social media trends.
In the blog post , Pamela Bump of Hubspot notes that social has become the king of content as consumers have used these channels to connect with loved ones, research products, stay informed on news coverage and, of course, entertainment. Social is where your prospects will want you to meet them, so it’s essential that you stay up-to-date on emerging trends and best practices. Some of the watch-fors listed in Bump’s article are:
- Gone are the days of constantly churning content. Brands are now posting less, but what they do post is more meaningful.
- Production quality isn’t nearly as important as content value.
- Video will continue to grow in popularity – and going “live” on social will become a standard for brands.
By watching the marketplace and staying in line with the curve, you’ll be better able to outperform your competitors and get to your prospects sooner. Of course, we know that it can be hard to stay up-to-date on all social media trends while still doing your daily job. At SageAge, we stay on top of current trends because senior living marketing is all we do. This helps our client-partners by taking work off their plate and letting them do what they need to do to keep their communities safe and successful.
Don’t forget about the basics.
Any good sales pipeline will include a solid foundation in the basics. This is everything from direct mail to online advertising to good old fashioned phone calls and emails. Having a multichannel approach that includes these tried-and-true basics means multiple touchpoints in different venues that will help break through the marketing clutter and allow you to be more effective when moving a prospect through your pipeline.
“Relying on just one channel to get your message out increases the chance that your prospects will miss your messages, or worse, tune them out,” says John. “That’s why a multichannel approach has worked so well for our client-partners. More channels mean more options for your prospects to interact with you, so they’re able to take control of the conversation on their terms – which always makes them more amenable to your brand.”
While there is no crystal ball we can peer into to say confidently what exactly you need to be doing in order to be successful in 2021, we can confidently say that partnering with a company like SageAge Strategies can help improve your success greatly. “Our goal is always to provide our client-partners with the best, most informed strategies to enable them to win the marketplace without then having to spend valuable time learning different techniques, platforms and channels,” says John.
SageAge Strategies: Here for You, Always
At SageAge Strategies, our marketing team excels in helping senior living communities target prospective residents and gather essential information through surveys, focus groups and other tools that will help communities just like yours get the information you need to succeed.
If you need assistance in any areas of 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 Melinda Schmitz at 816.349.0464 / [email protected]. You can also visit us on our website at https://www.sageage.com/.
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