July 25, 2019
By Jamison Gosselin
Choosing a senior living community can be a complicated experience. Seniors and their adult children face a tough, life changing decision that—let’s face it—is often difficult to navigate when balancing emotion with the reality of the situation.
The upside? With the proliferation of individual communities online using websites, social media, testimonials, and third-party ratings and reviews, it is easier than ever to evaluate a brand. While this digital insight is valuable, communities need to personalize their approach to truly make an impact. Reaching the demographic in a supportive and engaging way will attract potential residents. The best way to do this is to publish quality video content.
About 90% of consumers say video helps them make buying decisions. This doesn’t exclude seniors. Marketing for senior living is complex, nuanced, and hasn’t always involved digital, but with today’s mass shift to mobile and social across generations, it has become much more important for marketers to reach seniors and their families through dynamic digital approaches. Let’s explore why video content most effectively reaches this target market:
Seniors are interacting with digital content now more than ever. Simply put, seniors are spending more time online – researching, browsing, interacting on social platforms, etc.—and are becoming more tech-savvy and interested in digital content. Research shows that 59% of adults aged 65 and older regularly use the internet (71% of those surveyed use it daily), and video is getting through to them.
Video brings brands to life. Senior living marketers need to establish a meaningful connection with prospects and their families, and video is the best way to accomplish this. Deciding whether to move into a senior living community – and which one – can define the rest of an individual’s life, so what they experience online must resonate and represent what the brand has to offer. First impressions are key. These storytelling videos nurture your brand, educate families and drive interest in all your communities do to support quality of life.
Video lifts the curtain on key differentiators of senior living communities. Showcasing positive experiences and highlighting key services and amenities offered allows marketers to demonstrate what it means to be a resident within a senior living community. Video content can capture aspects of communities that would normally go unseen by target markets and has the power to evoke excitement in an otherwise difficult transition.
Video content positively impacts SEO. Video can also improve search engine rankings. Today’s search engine algorithms factor in video when determining page rank and consider how long visitors stay on a page to calculate its validity. These factors coincide with and help boost overall digital marketing efforts, making a community’s website more visible during a user’s search.
Video content enhances overall website and social media experience. Many senior living marketers assume that it’s too costly or time consuming to develop consistent high-quality videos. Not true. With today’s fast-paced, constantly evolving digital landscape, reaching prospective residents through video is one of the most important forms of communication—and can be done seamlessly and cost-effectively through today’s digital and social platforms. Most video doesn’t need to cost thousands of dollars and have high end marketing quality. Many viewers today look for authenticity, originality, and brevity.
Senior living operators can take a strategic approach to video, utilizing it for more than just sales and marketing. Here are four ways to leverage video to engage prospects and create an impactful senior living marketing strategy:
- Encourage residents to share stories and testimonials with family members, fellow residents, and prospects about how the community has enhanced their lives. Or, create a campaign around veterans or grandparents and allow residents to share their stories on the community’s website or social pages via video.
- Highlight areas of interest and amenities for targeted prospects and reach those who live outside the area or who are not able to visit the community for an in-person tour.
- Allow new team members to introduce themselves to fellow staff and residents to support a more personalized, community-centric environment.
- Relay timely, important information about the community to residents—from construction status to menu planning—to ensure they feel involved and considered.
One in three Baby Boomers use YouTube to learn about products and services rather than non-video driven platforms. Seniors have officially embraced YouTube and on-demand media formats, emphasizing the importance of reaching them at every digital touchpoint. Through video, potential residents and their families can conceptualize their experience in a senior living community, connect with others, and develop a deeper affinity, which can ultimately lead to more move-ins and higher satisfaction.
Senior living communities must be sensitive to the personal, emotional nature of the decision-making process. Tt’s important to recognize the challenges these individuals are facing and use storytelling to bridge a meaningful connection. Sharing stories helps establish trust throughout the customer journey, and there’s no better way to do it than through video. Marketers who realize how tech-savvy the Baby Boomer generation really will have the greatest success in creating brand awareness through impactful video marketing strategies.
Credit: Jamison Gosselin is vice president of senior living strategy at G5. A leader in real estate marketing optimization, G5 is a predictive marketing SaaS company that uses AI and other emerging technologies to help marketers amplify their impact. Founded in 2005, G5 has more than 7,000 properties under management throughout the U.S. and Canada. G5 was named one of the fastest-growing private U.S. companies by Inc. magazine and one of North America’s fastest-growing technology companies by Deloitte.