It’s hard to believe that very soon we’ll be watching that glittering ball drop over Times Square to ring in the new year – and a new decade. 2020 is on approach, and the landscape for senior living – and marketing for senior living – is a completely different beast than it was in the past decade.
“I think we’re going to see some amazing shifts and changes in the senior living landscape over the next decade as more and more Boomers retire and enter the senior living market,” says Sean Ochester, Executive Vice President of Digital and Integrated Strategy of Sage Age Strategies. “The digital strategy and marketing space will probably shift more than anything. Just take a look at how quickly digital technology has integrated into our lives in the past 10 – or even past 5 – years. People are shopping differently, looking for resources differently and demanding different things from the companies they use, and marketers are looking to the digital landscape to make the customer experience bigger and better than ever.”
Let’s take a look at an old Entrepreneur article and see what experts predicted would be the Top 10 web marketing trends for 2010. Any of them sound familiar?
- Search engine optimization, or SEO
- Paid search advertising
- Email marketing
- Social Network Marketing
- A strong web presence
- Mobile marketing
- Podcasting and online radio
- Online video
- Coupons, discounts and savings
Based on what happened over the past decade, we can safely say that these were pretty darn good predictions. Besides podcasting and discounts/savings, your senior living community is probably entrenched in all these web marketing trends, and for good reason – these tactics work. In fact, if you aren’t playing in those buckets, you’re probably behind the curve and losing leads to your competitors.
In the past decade, digital marketing has exploded and developed a ton of moving parts, all of which need to work in tandem like a well-oiled machine in order to maximize your ROI and reach. As the senior living landscape grows in response to the wave of retirees coming down the pike, you and your community will need to take a hard look at what digital marketing tactics prospects are using and see how you can adopt them to make your marketing efforts more successful.
“Today’s retirees are tech savvy and are expecting senior living communities to interact with them in similar ways to other brands they use,” says Sean. “In order to be successful and reach this demanding new audience, you’ll want to study digital marketing trends, fast-follow where appropriate and find new ways to integrate new strategies into your digital marketing campaigns.”
The Digital Marketing Trends We’re Watching for 2020 (and Beyond)
What digital trends are we excited for in the new year – and how can you integrate them successfully into your campaigns? We took a look at the trends that are predicted to be the hot new thing in 2020 through the eye of a senior living marketer. Here are the top tactics we’re excited about:
We’re specifically speaking about augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). While this can conjure up images of gamers wearing clunky goggles and wired gloves, the technology has become more streamlined and savvy, landing squarely in the online space to help customers do everything from see how furniture will fit in their space to exploring faraway locations. At the moment, this is primarily being used for online retailers, but we can see a future where your leads and potential residents could use immersive technology to literally picture themselves in your community.
Content marketing is shifting from being a static “informational” type of marketing to an interactive experience. Think of, for example, a wine company that sends you a quiz about your preferences and then chooses a collection of wines that “fits” your taste. Or shoppable posts on Instagram that take you directly to the featured product so it can be yours with a few clicks.
Yes, it takes more than a few clicks to get customers to choose your senior living community as their new home, but interactive content like virtual tours or quizzes on what floor plan is right for your needs can provide you a new, original edge to keep visitors coming back to your page (and maybe even sharing it with friends and family). Let’s be real – people love interacting, whether it’s with a brand, person or bot.
Highly targeted advertising will only become more popular as we enter 2020. People these days aren’t moved by generic ads – but they will sit up and take notice if an ad (whether direct mail, mobile, social or other forms of digital) is tailored specifically to their needs and interests. One of the best and easiest ways to personalize advertising is through segmented email lists, PPC campaigns and keyword advertising. If you’re a community in San Antonio, you definitely want to be at the top of the list when a customer types “best assisted living community in San Antonio.” In 2020, personalized marketing won’t just be an add-on to your current marketing strategy – it will become as important and expected as having a website for your community.
Social media and messaging.
In 2020, social media will really amp up the “social” for senior living communities. These days, customers are moving from Twitter and Facebook pages to messaging apps like WeChat, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger to have instant, direct conversations with brands and companies. It’s convenient for customers. It provides a personal look and feel for senior living communities. And it provides a truly personalized experience, which is essential for customers who are making a large emotional decision such as what senior living community to choose.
Revitalize Your Digital Marketing Strategy for the New Decade with Sage Age Strategies.
Sean says it’s crucial for senior living operators to review objectives for 2020 to determine if current tactics are effective and if strategy needs to be adjusted. “Once you’ve taken a look at 2019’s efforts and your results, you’ll have a clearer picture of what tactics to use – and what not to use – as you establish new goals for 2020.”
Once you’ve established your goals, you’ll want to figure out specific tasks and ways to get there. That’s where Sage Age Strategies can help. We understand the importance that digital marketing will play in your 2020 efforts, and because we’re on the cutting edge of trends – both for digital marketing and senior living best practices – we’re able to help you combine tried and true strategies, proven approaches as well as the hottest digital trends (where appropriate) to help you maximize your reach, convert more leads and improve your occupancy rate.
Sage Age Strategies has seen the senior living community space move through the past three decades (more than that, actually), and helped communities just like yours target the leads they’re looking for in a concise, streamlined and efficient way. Since we’re experts in the senior marketing field, we stay abreast of the latest trends and practices to help you grow your occupancy and convert more leads to residents. Using data to inform your marketing strategy, we can make suggestions and improvements in real-time, tailoring your campaign to work as perfectly as possible for 2020 and beyond.
If you need assistance in any areas of senior living development 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.
Sage Age 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 570.601.1720 / firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also visit us on our website at www.sageagestrategies.com/.
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