The Impact of Marketing Automation on One Senior Living Community
Sonata Senior Living operates in highly competitive markets in central and southern Florida. They were looking for a way to drive more qualified prospects to their site, convert more tour and phone interactions, and determine the ROI of their digital efforts.
We recommended marketing automation, since it’s both strategic and measurable.
Here’s the philosophy behind it…
Persona Development to Attract the Ideal Prospects
A persona is a fictional representation of the most qualified prospects with the highest opportunity to convert to a resident. Think about your most successful residents. They’ve lived in the community for a long time, they enjoy the amenities and lifestyle, and their families are involved and supportive. To get more of those ideal leads, you should develop buyer personas to understand common attributes, decision-making behavior, and key motivators.
Content Development to Attract More Qualified Leads
Once the personas are developed, the next step is to create an editorial calendar with relevant topics that are compelling to your personas throughout their journey. Content development should start with a keyword analysis for the target community and their nearest and dearest competitors. We focus on building a content strategy with topics for each persona and each stage within their journey.
Our copywriters work from keyword enriched titles based on our clients’ ranking for desirable keywords vs. the ranking of their competitors. For example, Sonata ranked lower on “Florida Senior Living” than their competitors. This keyword had a strong search volume, so we increased the number of blog titles with that keyword to elevate their ranking.
Blogs serve as the bait that attracts interested prospect to the website, but gated premium content (such as guides, e-books, and toolkits) reels them in! Simply having regular blog content (we recommend two to four original blogs per month) will improve your SEO, but once you add gated premium content, conversions will significantly increase. For example, Sonata is seeing contacts double thanks to premium content.
Optimizing contact forms is a quick win. Offering multiple choices to prospects instead of only “contact us” or “schedule a tour” will allow prospects to opt in at the level they are most comfortable.
For instance, early stage leads are not ready for a tour, but they will eagerly download brochures and pricing. We like to offer “speak with an advisor,” “join us for lunch,” “schedule a tour,” and “receive our newsletter.” Sometimes just changing the location of the contact us form can increase conversions.
Creating Workflows to Nurture Leads
Once a prospect takes the bait (whatever that bait might be), marketing automation ensures that each prospect is nurtured according to where they are in the buyer’s journey.
Leads in the “bottom” of the sales funnel are ready to buy. We call these Sales Qualified Leads (SQLs), and the goal is to get SQLs to the sales team quickly by sending emails to the community and integrating prospect information into the CRM.
Another goal is to keep Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLs) in a nurturing environment to build trust, provide valuable information and resources, and continue to advance them to SQL status.
Sending all leads to the CRM is a distraction to the sales team and often turns off early stage prospects who are not ready for the sales pitch. Marketing automation can discern sales qualified vs. marketing qualified leads and plate up highly qualified and motivated leads to the sales team without losing the “not ready” opportunities.
Return on Investment – How Much Revenue Does Your Website Generate?
Sonata was very interested in measuring the effectiveness of every marketing investment. They provided us with their average rent and length of stay by lifestyle. We tracked deposits and move-ins and were able to calculate the ROI of marketing automation and PPC efforts. In the first three months, Sonata realized a 1200% ROI. (Nope, that’s not a typo.)