Marketing Your RAL: Adapting to The Times

Marketing Your RAL: Adapting to The Times

“COVID-19 does not have to cripple the future of your residential assisted living business endeavor. While owners work tirelessly to ensure the health and safety of residents and staff, the health and safety of your brand is just as vital.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought some of the strongest industries and their associated corporations to their knees.  

Americans were out and about living and thriving, and then suddenly everything shut down.  

However, as COVID-19 placed unwanted and unexpected restrictions on business owners, in many ways, life continued.  

  • The aging process did not cease because airlines were grounded.  
  • The aging process did not cease because shopping malls across America locked their doors.  
  • Actually, safety concerns increased for seniors as visitations decreased and homebound expectations became the norm.

So, marketing your residential assisted living home is more crucial now than it has been in the recent past.  

Families are suffering and extremely concerned about their beloved elders who may be in danger, not from COVID-19, but from hazards in their homes – question remains:

  • How to keep seniors safe during a pandemic?  
  • How do you balance all of the increased safety requirements and protocols in assisted living, while continuing meaningful marketing?  
  • What’s most important to highlight during the pandemic?  

Resolutions to these questions are essential to increasing leads for your residential assisted living home.


COVID-19 does not have to cripple the future of your residential assisted living business endeavor.  

While owners work tirelessly to ensure the health and safety of residents and staff, the health and safety of your brand is just as vital.  

How do you ensure the health and safety of your RAL business today and tomorrow?

A transition to marketing tactics that can position your residential assisted living business post-COVID is essential.  

Residential assisted living homes that engage in meaningful marketing activity during the COVID-19 pandemic will be far better positioned to grow post-pandemic.  

Families will need assisted living, and your ability to usher them into your RAL home starts now.

How do you make the adjustments necessary in your marketing tactics to position your residential assisted living home for a post-COVID America?

The answer is simple – data.  

Data will provide the clarity needed for an owner to make crucial decisions that will drive occupancy and value in a post-COVID America.

Some owners have asked, “What kind of data?”  

At first, many think of medical outcomes data to determine who will possibly need residential assisted living services.  

Not quite.  

Good old-fashioned consumer data will do the trick just fine.

Consumer behavior documented during the COVID-19 pandemic reveals some very interesting facts.  

Watching the purchasing behavior, the website visitations and the ensuing inquiries really provides owners and operators with marketing tactics that will drive occupancy in the future.

The most effective outcome of this data is the generation of leads.  

People who have purchasing behavior and website visitations that show the strong possibility of needing your help.  

Either for themselves or their loved ones, this data gives owners the answers to the magic questions needed for effective marketing:

  • Who has expressed interest in residential assisted living?
  • What needs do these interested inquisitors have?
  • When do they need assistance living?
  • How to contact these interested parties?


A plethora of data exists from a variety of sources. However, regardless of the data source, a common thread seems to have been woven between each of them.  

Digital marketing is driving the future consumer – these consumers are shopping now for tomorrow.  

What does this mean? Engagement with your community is vital.  

Since this engagement needs to happen digitally, your RAL business must host:

  • Webinars
  • Virtual Tours
  • Pre Recorded Interviews
  • Facebook Live Chats

All of these activities should drive prospects to your website, which must be crisp, clean, and inviting.  

Effective marketers get interested parties to complete a short but informative survey and contact card – digitally. 


These people are more than likely the adult-children of baby boomers who have young families and work full-time.  

They socialize via social media.  

Therefore, you must socialize with them in the space where they exist – digitally.

Also, while prospects are visiting your site, have them check-in on their social media platforms or “Like/Follow” the platforms used by your assisted living home.  

This keeps them involved with the happenings of your RAL business long after the virtual tour is complete.

It is essential that your marketer drive the numbers digitally. This needs to be done now. However, this must be done right.


The use of consumer data should be in accordance with the depth of the information supplied. In other words, do not speculate on what the information is not conveying.  

Therefore, the deeper the information set the better it will help identify the right prospects at the right time in their life.  

Engagement with these people will be:

  • Easier to achieve
  • Pertinent to their current circumstance
  • A meaningful experience for both parties
  • A catalyst to future residency

This data will also give insight to your messaging.  

The one-size-fit-all model of marketing does not work in the digital world and the same is true for the residential assisted living industry.  

COVID-19 does not have to cripple the future of your residential assisted living business endeavor.  

While owners work tirelessly to ensure the health and safety of residents and staff, the health and safety of your brand is just as vital.  

Therefore, do not be afraid to make adjustments, truthful adjustments that is. Do not manufacture digitally what you cannot produce realistically.  

When transitioning from traditional marketing to digital outreach, especially as it relates to hosting webinars, the numbers prove themselves in terms of effectiveness.  

One new RAL home, which is slated to open during the COVID-19 pandemic hosted several webinars.  The results speak for themselves:

  • 60% of the deposit achieved 
  • Over 100 attendees for the webinars
  • 73% of participants remain in contact with the RAL

When conducting digital marketing based upon consumer data, owners and operators are more likely to convert these prospects into actual residents.  

Digital engagement pairs people in ways that traditional marketing simply could not. Here are some benefits of digital marketing based upon consumer data:

  • An immediate virtual tour right from your webinar. People want to see your community, immediately. Be sure to include this in the webinar.  It should be a part of the presentation.
  • Care Assessment Tools and Financial Worksheets should be provided so participants can really get a grasp of the gravity of making a transition from home to your RAL.
  • Follow up is key.  Create a way for a participant to schedule a next step during the actual webinar. Surrender control of the sale to the participant by allowing them to determine what happens next.  You will find your serious prospects will be driving to your RAL sooner than later.

The important takeaway here is not to stand still and wait for life to return to normal.  

Create your new normal based upon consumer data and change your marketing tactics to match and meet what the data supports. 


How can you ensure that you are getting the right results? Through a carefully developed sales methodology that has three proven steps:

  1. Relate: forming a personal connection with the prospect
  2. Reason: persuading a prospect that they will have a better outcome by purchasing your product or service 
  3. Resolve: removing the obstacles that are preventing your prospect from making a commitment to buy your product or service

As an owner or investor, you need not go it alone. This is a lot of information to absorb and then act upon. However, the vitality and future of your RAL home depends upon you making adjustments now.  Therefore, act now!  

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