What Do Retirees Want In a Community?

ideal-LIVING’s latest report helps communities better understand their target audience in order to create more valuable content.

As with any business, in order to successfully market a retirement home, you must first understand your target audience. Knowing what they want will allow you to more effectively reach them and, ideally, generate home sales within the community. For those seeking to better understand this demographic of affluent adults 50 years of age and older, there’s ideal-LIVING magazine, the expert source in retirement and second homes since 1989. This prominent publication recently released the findings from its lifestyle questionnaire in which 600 participants provided insight into what these buyers want and need to know before relocating to a retirement community. 

Where Are Retirees Searching For Information?

According to the results of the survey, ideal-LIVING.com and Zillow are the most popular search engines for those interested in moving to a retirement community, with 53 percent electing for ideal-LIVING.com and 52 percent choosing Zillow. Realtor.com received 31 percent of the vote, while Google had 23 percent and Trulia was selected by 18 percent. 

When it comes to social media usage, Facebook was a heavy favorite among participants at 36 percent, more than Instagram (7 percent), Pinterest (4 percent) and Houzz (2 percent) combined. This is an important statistic to note because it shows just where retirees are spending the most time, and where you’ll want to focus your content marketing strategy. Based on these results, your retirement community would benefit from a presence on Facebook and ideal-LIVING or Zillow. 

What Questions Are Retirees Asking?

Before someone makes the decision to settle into a retirement or second home, location preferences will certainly be top of the list. The survey from ideal-LIVING found that age restrictions are not particularly important to prospective residents. Only 19 percent of participants said it was very important to live in a community exclusively for those 55 years of age and older, while 47 percent said it was somewhat important and 34 percent said it was not important. A close proximity to an extended care facility for parents or other family members also rated low on the scale of importance. Nearly half of those responding to the survey rated it as not important, with 36 percent voting it as somewhat important and only 16 percent saying it was very important. 

According to the survey, the most important factor in determining a retirement destination is likely to be financial relief, as lower property tax and lower state income tax ranked first and second in the list of reasons for relocation or property purchase. Mild winter climate ranked third, followed by less traffic and congestion and a change in lifestyle. Moving closer to family or friends and investment were the least important reasons as ranked by participants. 

Retirees do a lot of research before choosing a community to settle into for retirement. Providing answers to these highly sought after questions such as tax exclusions, weather, quality of healthcare facilities nearby and other amenities will get you one step closer to turning a prospective resident into a permanent resident. 

What Are Retirees Looking For In A Home?

After closing in on the location of their liking, the next step for retirees is determining the type of home they want to live in. The ideal size for most survey responders was 2,000 square feet, followed by 2,000 to 3,000 square feet and 3,000 square feet. New/under construction/finished properties narrowly edged out existing homes as the type of property that adults 50 years of age and older are seeking. First-floor living, large open kitchen and a separate master suite were the most popular amenities. Energy efficiency, outdoor living, a nature view, pool, additional storage and golf view were some of the other things that retirees said they would be likely to look for in a new home.

The overwhelming majority of responses claimed to be in the market for a primary home, compared to just 13 percent seeking a vacation or second home and only 6 percent interested in a rental property. Activities are important, walking trails, wellness or fitness centers, social clubs, dining and swimming are the most popular. Other popular amenities include a town center, cycling, cultural arts and golf. 

So how do you differentiate your retirement community? Make sure you’re giving prospective residents an interactive experience once they land on your website, social media or blog, giving them a real sense of what your community offers. This might be in the form of a resident video showcasing all the opportunities for keeping active, or a gallery of images to highlight real estate and neighborhood amenities throughout your community. Immerse them in an experience that 1) answers their top questions and 2) engages them to dig deeper and learn more. 

Take the Time to Get to Know Your Audience

Better understanding this ideal-LIVING report and what consumers want can go a long way toward attracting potential residents. A knowledgeable understanding of what retirees are looking for will help establish what your retirement community should offer and the types of content you should use to effectively reach new residents. Use this information to better build a picture of your dream resident and then build a content marketing strategy to reach them! 

Showcasing on ideal-LIVING or Zillow will put your retirement community in front of thousands of prospective residents, while an active, engaging Facebook presence provides an opportunity to increase your brand awareness and a well kept blog allows you to let your current residents tell the stories of what makes your community great. So, what are you waiting for? Get out there and show why your neighborhood is the ideal place for retirees to settle down. 

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We’d love to start a conversation with you about how we can create results for you. First step? Request your very own Guide to Ghidotti to learn more about our public relations and content marketing firm. This is a look inside our agency and will give you a good feel for who we are, what we do and how we partner with our clients to move the needle.


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Are You the Next Rock Star on the Ghidotti Team?

The Ghidotti Team is overflowing with full-fledged rock stars. Sure – we’re looking for the best, brightest, most creative, most organized. You get the picture. But what we REALLY want is someone who we can laugh with, depend on, learn from and do great work together. Learn more about who we’re looking for and what you can expect.

Ghidotti is currently hiring for three positions listed below – Account Executive, Account Supervisor and Media Relations Manager.

Account Executive Job Description: 

In the Account Executive position, emphasis is placed on growing independent work within the areas of project management, client relations, media relations, digital/marketing, and/or lead generation among other skills. You are the face to our clients and will play an integral role in daily communication and should be able to demonstrate tactical excellence. 

  • Write client and internal correspondence effectively and with limited supervision.
  • Successfully plan and execute client activities such as media tours, digital and social campaigns, business missions and/or other special events. 
  • Proactively identify blog content story ideas and work with the supervisor to develop. 
  • Develop relevant blogs, e-newsletters and website content effectively and with limited supervision. 
  • Successfully manage independently the execution of all client content calendars, which can include media relations pitch calendars, blogs, social content and paid media campaigns.
  • Exhibit competency and efficiency in drafting copy for client marketing materials and/or campaigns, such as website content, e-newsletters, collateral materials, paid media campaigns, etc. 
  • As it relates to social/digital media, regularly suggest ideas, manage the planning, and comfortably execute campaigns on behalf of clients. Efficiency with Canva, a plus!
  • Assist in the management of interns, when applicable. 
  • Be proficient in WordPress.
  • Easily navigate agency platforms such as Cision, TVEyes, Sprout Social, Sprinklr.
  • Depending on the needs of the service area, responsibilities may extend beyond the items above as skill sets, client contracts and other extenuating circumstances dictate.

Apply for this open position by emailing Bethany Siems at bethany@ghidotti.com.

 

Account Supervisor Job Description: 
In the Account Supervisor position, a staff member will be responsible for assisting and managing the public relations, content marketing, digital media, account services and/or creative/strategy for clients. This position requires fully developed specialty skills, a strong understanding of the industry landscape and an understanding of client priorities and objectives.
  • Serve as the account strategist/lead and oversee/play a clear leadership role on at least three clients.
  • Manage the implementation of work plans and ensure client deliverables are successfully met on deadline.
  • Play a leadership role in the sales process by identifying additional services to sell to existing clients and assisting with RFP responses, new business proposals, presentations, etc. with senior leadership or independently.
  • Display a strong understanding of and effectively communicate Ghidotti’s service offerings to existing clients.
  • Successfully supervise at least one junior staff member, including providing guidance on their professional growth.
  • Begin to play a role in the agency’s marketing efforts, guiding aspects of certain campaigns and/or helping to execute in their areas of expertise.

Account Services: 

  • Play a clear leadership role in the planning and execution of integrated marketing campaigns for clients.
  • Develop and write comprehensive strategic marketing plans for clients.
  • Handle vendor contracts and ensure proper billing.
  • Demonstrate a clear track record of successfully meeting deadlines and timelines.
  • Handle day-of logistics on behalf of clients, responding quickly and effectively.
  • Assist in providing leadership and professional development on client relations, helping team members improve their skills in managing conflict, presentations, sales, etc.

Client Strategy: 

  • Develop or oversee the visual content creation for client materials, including e-newsletters, website content, digital campaigns, marketing collateral, etc.
  • Oversee the development of marketing materials and branding campaigns.
  • Manage creative marketing campaigns on behalf of clients.
  • Demonstrate a clear track record of leading brainstorms, and providing and implementing creative ideas for proposals, presentations, etc.
  • Continually provide new and ‘fresh’ ideas for proposals, new business proposals and current clients’ marketing campaigns.

Apply for this open position by emailing Bethany Siems at bethany@ghidotti.com.

 

Media Relations Manager Job Description: 

In the Media Relations Manager position, a staff member will be responsible for assisting and managing the public relations, content marketing, digital media, account services and/or strategy for clients. This position requires fully developed specialty skills, a strong understanding of the public relations industry landscape and an understanding of client priorities and objectives. 

Main Responsibilities – General: 

  • Serve as the account strategist/lead and oversee/play a clear leadership role on media relations client accounts.
  • Display a strong understanding of and effectively communicate Ghidotti’s service offerings to existing clients. 
  • Successfully supervise at least one junior staff member, including providing guidance on their professional growth.

Main Responsibilities – Media Relations: 

  • Develop strategic media relations plans, direct management and outreach for client accounts with the supervision of Senior Leadership.
  • Perform with Senior Leadership to prepare a plan for strategic crisis communications.
  • Manage and facilitate the execution of media relations outreach for special events, programs and major initiatives.
  • Perform as spokesperson and coordinates official responses to media inquiries.
  • Conduct media training with clients in preparation for external media interviews. 
  • Support framing and development of main message points for better positioning prior to media interviews.
  • Prepare speeches, talking points and varied communications materials assisting client spokespersons.
  • Write pitches, backgrounders, press releases, key messages and blog posts.
  • Manage and monitor reporter hotline, client media relations calendar, metrics, media relations processes and press release approvals.
  • Propose ideas proactively for media pitches to stimulate media coverage.
  • Consistently pitch stories and secure strategic media placements assisting client reputation and business goals.
  • Manage and supervise media events along with initiatives defining company stories.
  • Identify proactive stories for trade, business as well as consumer media across multiple client industries.
  • Develop and maintain close media relations to improve press efforts.
  • Identify brands promoting opportunities and improve awareness of services and products.

Main Responsibilities – Client Strategy: 

  • Develop or oversee the visual content creation for client materials, including e-newsletters, website content, digital campaigns (webinar/live stream events), etc.
  • Demonstrate a clear track record of leading brainstorms and providing and implementing creative ideas for proposals, presentations, etc.
  • Continually provide new and ‘fresh’ ideas for new business proposals and current clients’ PR campaigns.

Apply for this open position by emailing Bethany Siems at bethany@ghidotti.com.

 

Rock Star Environment

We strive to create a fun, engaging atmosphere where high fives, chicken minis, and celebrations are commonplace. We lift one another up, honor achievements and reward hard work.

  1. Professional Enrichment

    Whether instructor-led, web-based or sharing during Fireside Friday, we are always learning more!

  2. Community Engagement

    We love the state of Arkansas. Our team enjoys outings to locally-owned businesses and pride ourselves on community involvement. In addition, employees are often offered free tickets to community events to get out and enjoy life with friends and family.

  3. Team Building

    Quarterly adventures for the team!

  4. Winter Recess

    We shut this place down at the holidays so we can all rest, relax and reinvigorate for the new year.

  5. Summer Fridays

    We get an early jump on the weekend every Friday during the summer.

  6. Volunteer Time Off (VTO)

    Along with your PTO, you also get VTO to use to support your favorite charity or organization.

Does this describe you?

Apply for one of our open positions or just send us an email letting us know why you should be part of this Rock Star team. Email bethany@ghidotti.com.