This has been an unprecedented year. Aren’t you tired of hearing that? Ahh… Let’s change it. 2020 is a year that provides time for reflection and adjustment. That sounds better, and actually, it’s more applicable.
This year you have had time to think and ponder on decisions, actions, purpose and the future. As the year rounds to its close in a few months, let’s conduct a check-up. A check-up is good for your body, your automobile, your relationships and it can be great for your business too.
Owners of residential assisted living homes need the time and space to reflect and conduct a thorough check-up on their businesses. The pandemic has affected our industry and the future demands a strong plan to keep our seniors well taken care of.
Residential Assisted Living National Association advocates for owners but also builds coalitions and support groups to help owners thrive, especially in tough times.
Take some time to give your business this 10-Step Check-Up and assess where adjustments may need to be made.
THE 10-STEP CHECK-UP
1. Use and Trust the Experts
‘There’s nothing new under the sun,’ says the ancient proverb. Someone else has been where you are and has lived to tell the story. They are called experts. RAL homeowners should take heed of this wisdom and implement beneficial suggestions. Their word can be trusted because it is battle tested. Thankfully, these experts are within your grasp. Simply join RALNA and network with multiple experts of all sorts relative to residential assisted living.
2. Have A Marketing Playbook, But Be Flexible
This year has taught us all a valuable lesson – be flexible. Rigidity in this current market or future markets will prove intolerable. Marketing should be focused and very intentional. Electronic means seem to do best, especially when many Americans are not keen on receiving too much mail. Also, keep in touch, even when you are compelled to stay “out of touch.” Social Media Marketing makes this possible and keeps potential residents within a moment’s grasp.
3. Set Goals for The Year
Goals are necessary for RAL homeowners. They keep you accountable to the commitment of growth. Growth comes in a plethora of ways: personal, professional, financial, customer satisfaction, home enrichment and the list goes on. Do not limit yourself to the sky, as we are now exploring Mars. In other words, extend yourself and go for it. Set milestones and have small celebrations along the way. These will keep you encouraged and improve overall business operations.
4. Have a Plan
Once you establish your marketing plan, commit to it. There are plenty of people who think they have the latest and greatest method for marketing. You know your community and market better than anyone. You probably already know what needs to happen in 2021 for your RAL home. So commit to your plan.
5. Do Your Research
Information disclosed to you is convenient, but information you have labored to acquire is permanent. You will not forget what your brain’s sweat equity has discovered. Therefore, do your research. RALNA is essential in this area as we are able to support and undergird strong research in most markets throughout the United States and partner with you to decipher, decode and understand this information.
6. Know Your Competition
How do you know the effectiveness of your marketing campaign? Watch your competition. If your competition begins to adopt your methods, style or diction, you are hitting them in the right spot. Keep it going. Stick to your marketing plan. Remember across the street from McDonald’s is Burger King. Get it? Monitor your social media outlets as well to ensure no “false” reviews of a rather, superficial critical nature, appear. Also, be sure to know the pricing of your competition and how they position their business in the marketplace.
7. Build Brand Consistency Across All Social Media Channels
Ensure your brand is consistent from Facebook to Twitter to Instagram to Google. Make sure it is all the same because people will become confused if your branding is confusing and not know who or what you really are and do. When this happens, trust is lost, and skepticism sets in with potential residents as well as existing ones. Be consistent. In the long run, your brand can become a verb, just like Google.
8. Be Authentic
There’s a famous quote that says, “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” The feeling people get from you and your business is directly tied to authenticity. Authentic people build authentic businesses. Authentic businesses hire and train authentic staff. The end of the matter is as the beginning – authenticity cultivates care. Your existing residents and your future residents will feel your care because you are authentic – uniquely yourself. It really works.
9. Humanize your Brand with Social Media
Social Media Marketing is important, even vital. But, sharing a day in the life of a resident is meaningful and reaches where nifty phrases and great pricing cannot – it massages the heart. Share the life of your RAL home on your social media page(s). Share breakfast time, activity time, social hours, dinner dances and whatever other life activities you create in your RAL home. Potential residents want to know what life is like in your home prior to moving in. So, show them.
Key Benefits of Humanizing Your Brand
a) Conduct virtual tours.
b) Respond to comments and reviews swiftly and graciously.
c) Have residents share reviews online.
d) Feature a resident on your social media accounts.
e) Let your champions recruit the new champions.
10. Have A Strong Call To Action
When you have prospects that visit your RAL home, be sure to have next steps understood and implemented. Whether you are giving the tour or it is being given by a staff member or marketing associate, next steps are essential. People who are shopping want to know when they can buy. Don’t hide this and don’t ignore the pricing conversation. Be strong with your pricing because it is not the pricing that matters, but the value. Therefore, gently, yet firmly, guide your prospect through the process of becoming a resident with empathy and strength. You can do it.
RESIDENTIAL ASSISTED LIVING NATIONAL ASSOCIATION CHECK-UP COMPLETE
What’s the prognosis? What needs to happen for 2021 to be a year of growth? Without a doubt, investors, owners and operators will need to collaborate even more in 2021.
Click to learn how we can become stronger together.