When it comes to marketing a retirement community, senior citizens are the main target audience that immediately come to mind, but are they the only one? Retirement is a serious decision that takes years of preparation. Many people are actively planning for retirement by their mid-to-late 40s, while some are even starting as early as their 20s. While marketing to Baby Boomers is still important, being able to communicate to tomorrow’s retirees is just as necessary. Here are a few suggestions to improve your reach and begin developing rapport with this population of prospective residents.
Content is King
Capturing the attention of your target audience takes more than a catchy advertising campaign. Building and maintaining a brand that consumers trust requires a content marketing strategy. Whether through a blog or social media, a steady flow of thoughtful content will set your retirement community apart to prospective residents.
From homes and location to amenities such as walking trails, wellness centers and social clubs, this is your opportunity to highlight what makes your retirement community exceptional. According to a survey from ideal-LIVING, retirement home preferences tend to be either new or under construction and around 2,000 square feet with first-floor living, large open kitchen and a separate master suite. Popular amenities from the survey included dining, swimming and fitness centers. If your retirement community includes any of these features, they need to be visible on your website, blog or social media accounts. If possible, include photos and videos to show future retirees what your community has to offer.
Make Current Residents Your Ambassadors
Nobody knows what makes your retirement community great better than your current residents. Whether they just moved in or have been there for years, your current residents can provide authentic testimonials that will go a long way toward establishing your community as the place where future retirees will want to settle down. Maybe you have a tenant who moved from far away that can explain why the location is ideal. Or, perhaps there’s a resident who is an avid outdoorsman that can speak to the elite status of your walking trail, swimming pool or golf course.
No matter the angle, including the voice of your current residents will be invaluable to your content marketing efforts. A video or quote from a resident sharing their experience is a great addition to your website, blog or social media accounts, and there’s no expiration date; these testimonials can be shared again and again to get your message to future retirees. There’s no better way for them to learn why your community is the place to be than by hearing it straight from residents who call it home.
Keep it Simple
Communicating to and reaching tomorrow’s retirees should be easy for both them and you. From the language that you use in your marketing efforts to where your content lives, simplicity is key. When someone is searching for more information on retirement communities, they are likely to use search engines such as ideal-LIVING.com, Zillow and Realtor.com. Having a presence on any or all of these websites is a smart and effective way to keep your community in front of prospective residents. Your website and any social media accounts are also where these soon-to-be retirees will be going to learn about your community, so these should all be easy to find. If you have a blog, it should live in an easy-to-find tab or link on your website. If your content is not easily accessible and navigable, your content marketing plan will fail before it even begins.
How you are communicating to tomorrow’s retirees should also be simple. You are the expert on your retirement community, but prospective residents are not. Don’t turn them away by giving them content that is difficult to read and understand. Even when sharing about the location, homes, amenities and everything else that make your community ideal, be simple and concise. You understand the value your neighborhood offers better than anyone; just make sure your content sounds and feels relatable.
As the age old saying goes, trust is hard to earn and easy to lose. Building and maintaining trust with tomorrow’s retirees can ultimately be the reason that someone chooses to settle down in your retirement community. There are a few ways that you can go about building this trust with prospective residents. Again, your social media accounts are a great tool in these efforts. People will often turn to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or other social media sites first when they have questions. If you get an inquiry on your social media account, respond to it promptly. Transparency is essential. Everyone has dealt with poor customer service in the past, so a quick response is key to building that trust.
Engaging with others on your social media accounts can also go a long way toward building trust. Regardless of which social media site you’re posting to, comments and replies are likely to follow. Whether these are good comments or criticisms, respond appropriately. All of your followers can see these comments and when you are actively engaging with others on your posts, you become more approachable and trustworthy to prospective residents.