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Creating Results is a full-service strategic marketing, public relations and advertising agency with more than 15 years of experience. Our expertise is motivating mature 40+ consumers, including Baby Boomers, Silent (Ike) Generation and Gen X.
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Mature Marketing Links of the Week: The Power of Technology

March 23rd, 2015 Posted by Beth Mickey

Happy Monday!  This week our mature marketing stories of interest focus on technology—the power it provides for connecting with family and taking charge of our own health.  Have something to share? We’d love to hear from you.

MOST CLICKED:  The most clicked mature marketing story of the week was a blog post by one of our favorites, Chuck Nyren.  In the post Chuck chronicled his adventures in the hospital after a fainting spell, sharing his interactions with doctors, not-yet-doctors and the like.  After his “team” tossed around a number of likely reasons for his fainting, Chuck took the matter in his own hands and searched his symptoms online.

Early next morning. I grab my smartphone and search for orthostatic hypotension, find out there’s a good chance certain prescription drugs cause it, I search for a medication I take right before bed. Bingo. Recent studies link fainting to the med. If there’s a culprit, that’s the culprit.

While self-diagnosis (especially if you’re not a doctor) isn’t encouraged, many utilize online searches for this very need.  For marketers, knowing how your senior target uses technology (in real-time) is important when developing an integrated marketing strategy. Make sure you have a digital presence and the information you provide is easily digestible through a variety of platforms.

Read the full blog post.

MOST SHARED: According to a recent eMarketer article, mature consumers aren’t rejecting newer technology, they are Grandparent technologyembracing it.  The article highlighted findings of digital methods used for communicating with grandchildren.  What they found is that 54% owned a smartphone and 46% a tablet, with the most popular communication avenues including email, text and video conferencing.

Grandparents acknowledged that digital tools had reshaped the frequency and method of communicating with younger generations. Among this group, nearly half said that technology gave them the ability to communicate more with their grandchildren than they did with their own grandparents, and one-fifth even spent more time communicating with their grandchildren online than offline.

Creating Results’ Social, Silver Surfers research reinforces this trend of technology usage.  In fact, we found that email is the leading social tool among boomers and seniors.  While traditional print and online avenues are important, don’t be afraid to consider the possibilities for reaching your audience in a variety of digital methods.

RELATED: What older people do online infographic

Mature Marketing Links of the Week – Nursing Homes: Abolish or Evolve?

March 16th, 2015 Posted by Erin Read

Every Monday we recap the top links of the week, the resources shared via Twitter, LinkedIn or other social platforms that most engaged our audience. This week’s round-up has a senior care slant to it. However the central idea — that the structures and institutions currently serving our elder population will not be able to do so in the future — applies to many industries. We’d love to hear your thoughts, below!

senior-housing-forum-logo1. MOST CLICKED: Steve Moran of Senior Housing Forum and Bill Thomas of Changing Aging declare war on the traditional way of providing nursing home care.

Moran first quotes Thomas, a self-declared “nursing-home abolitionist:”

“Buoyed by astonishingly low expectations and a reimbursement system that literally pays them for making their patients sicker and weaker, nursing homes represent the one part of our health care system that has seen little substantive change in more than half a century … Imagine the difference it would make if every state committed to revoking the licenses of the 10, 30 or 50 worst nursing homes within its borders– and they did so every single year.”

Thomas’ fire prompted further incendiary language from Moran:

 

“We have a system that gives us what we have. A reimbursement system that is not adequate to provide decent care, a living wage to line staff, and a decent bottom line for providers.

We have a patchwork system that demands vast amounts of time be spent on documentation in order to stay out of the hair of regulators and to protect owners from predatory attorneys.

We have a cat & mouse payment system that provides the greatest amount of compensation for the most interventions without a lot of attention being paid to outcomes.”

Read the post: http://bit.ly/1BLycDa. We’re curious to see the conversation it will spark!

2. MOST SHARED: Todd Harff and I had the privilege of speaking at the 2015 Ziegler/Leading Age Massachusetts Senior Living Symposium last week, where there was a lot of discussion about the future of nursing homes.

It’s not quite abolition, but demographic shifts are impacting the system already. People are moving to independent living older and sicker; as a response, many continuing care retirement communities are shifting away from skilled nursing and into high acuity assisted living.

System Trends - LeadingAge Ziegler 2015

Lisa McCracken of Ziegler noted two factors that will impact how nursing care and all senior living evolves in Massachusetts:

1) the state’s 65+ population is rising faster than the national average

2) 8.8% of Massachusetts’ 65+ seniors are at or below the poverty level (vs. 9.6% of U.S. seniors)

That latter statistic became our most shared item of the week.

3. Also of note: Two more items related to the evolution of senior housing.

* Creating Your Own Retirement Community – Next Avenue, as seen in Forbes – http://onforb.es/1CmONj2

* Aging Single Americans To Push Senior Housing Demand – Senior Housing News – http://bit.ly/1FrNoa6

RELATED: “All The Singular Ladies”

 

What do YOU think? What kind of transformation, if any, is ahead for nursing homes, senior living or other elder-focused businesses? Please share your comments below.

 

Mature Marketing Links of the Week – Barbie and Boomer Market Opportunities

March 9th, 2015 Posted by Erin Read

Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthday dear Barbie …

Source: TruthDig.com http://www.truthdig.com/cartoon/item/20090301_barbie_at_50

Source: TruthDig.com http://www.truthdig.com/cartoon/item/20090301_barbie_at_50

Barbie, the iconic toy of the Baby Boom, turns 56 today. Like her peers, the doll has seen great personal and societal changes. From mass production to personalization. From activist (she received a black friend during the Civil Rights movement) to flashpoint for debates on female identity. And, like her peers, this Boomer has reinvented herself at least a thousand times.

Assuming that, like her peers, Barbie is going to enjoy a longevity bonus of several decades more … what will this Boomer be when she’s 86 years old? A frail patient, a blushing newlywed, a demanding consumer, an eager entrepreneur?

Last Thursday a large group gathered at Harvard Business School to consider Boomers, seniors and the market opportunities aging represents. Panelists and speakers included Fortune 100 companies such as CVS and Procter and Gamble, along with New England leader Benchmark Senior Living and many caregiver focused groups.

The event led to Creating Results’ MOST SHARED tweet of the week, quoting Joseph Coughlin of the MIT AgeLab:

“The greatest success of humankind is living longer.” Also its greatest challenge.

We’ll be sharing observations and insights from the “Our Aging Market” event on this blog in the near future.

 

There was quite a variety and quite a lot of sharing of Boomer- and aging-related links on Twitter this week. The top items:

* Health – 45% of RNs were over 50 years old in 2008; is there a mass exodus of experienced nurses coming?

“One of the greatest challenges the healthcare industry is facing in its efforts to prepare for the needs of the elderly is training and hiring the health professionals needed to care for this population, such as primary care workers. Yet, it is no secret that today the nation is facing a significant primary care shortage. As the situation stands, nearly 40,000 primary care physicians are needed to meet the demands of the nation – a number that is only expected to rise as insurance coverage is expanded to more people through the ACA and the baby boom generation ages.”

Download this PDF report from the Center for Health Affairs. http://ow.ly/JDcMa

* Digital — GOOD advice from HubSpot on the WORST advice given for driving website traffic: http://bit.ly/18uDjfl

RELATED: You’ll find website advice specific to boomers and seniors in our Social, Silver Surfers ebook. http://bit.ly/SSS13blog

Hands* Health — Is B2B is the next B2C in medtech marketing? How are you innovating to meet shift? http://bit.ly/1wjCP71

* Travel — While retireees spend more overall on luxury travel, Gen X burns through more money every day they are away from home. http://bit.ly/1MkP45j

 * Hysterical  —  Thank you, AdAge copywriters, for this fantastic headline: “Were Millennials Just Figments of Our Fevered Imagination All Along? Fear of Youth Demographic Overblown as Invasive Alien Species Grows Up.” http://bit.ly/1HmqEYh

 

Have an opinion on Barbie, or any of this week’s links? Please share your comments below.

Trends and Truths

March 3rd, 2015 Posted by Erin Read

Next week at the LeadingAge Massachusetts 2015 Senior Living Symposium, Todd Harff and I will be talking about “The End of Advertising, The Advent of Engagement.” The topic was sparked by all those headlines we kept seeing proclaiming that ads were dead, by the many breathless posts heralding a new trend or extolling social marketing over all other tactics.LeadingAgeMA-TheEndOfAdvertising-MAR2015

I’m a GenXer. This doesn’t make me cynical, but it does make me a bit skeptical. So we wondered … Is it really the end of advertising? And are industries focused on older adults (active adult housing, continuing care retirement communities, etc.) really pursuing the hot marketing trends?

Only one way to find out what are trends and what are truths: Creating Results is surveying marketers and execs in 50+ housing and senior living.

It’s a VERY SHORT, 3 question, 1 minute survey. http://bit.ly/1CvpaeZ

This SHORT marketing survey is designed to get a snapshot of what the trends really are, whether those marketing to older adults are really shifting spending away from traditional channels or not. Creating Results will share the results in presentations at LeadingAge Massachusetts, LeadingAge Pennsylvania and other conferences. Of course we’ll also share those insights here on the blog.

Please help us separate facts from fads by taking this SHORT marketing survey!  http://bit.ly/1CvpaeZ

Thank you in advance. If you have questions or comments, please share them below.

 

RELATED: LeadingAge Massachusetts Senior Living Symposium

Mature Marketing Links of the Week: Dancing Grannies & Email Preferences

March 2nd, 2015 Posted by Beth Mickey

Happy Monday!  Let’s jump right into the mature marketing stories of the past week that had people clicking and sharing.  Have something to share?  We’d love to hear from you, just leave a note in our comment section.

 

MOST CLICKED

Cover songBy far the most clicked story of the past week was a Mashable article that shared a video of a remake of “Uptown Funk”.  This fun video featured seniors age 65-92 remaking the catchy song their way.  You can’t help but dance and tap your toes when you check out this fun remake.

Watch the video here.

 

MOST SHARED

At Creating Results we’ve long shared that email is a top avenue for engaging mature consumers. A recent MarketingSherpa survey reinforced this through findings from a recent study which noted that more than 70% of adults rank email as the #1 communication method with brands. During a survey individuals were asked to identify their preferred avenues for engaging with brands, with email blowing the others away.

sherpa emailInsights from the survey included:

*  Email was tops for females 65+ with 64% preferring this channel.

*  64% of those 55 and better selected postal mail.

*  34% of all respondents identified print media as a primary channel.

Read the full survey here.

The take away? For marketers it is important to utilize an integrated marketing approach.  This will effectively ensure you reach your target market where they are most comfortable engaging with you.

RELATED: Creating Results uncovered similar preferences within our Social, Silver Surfers research about email, as well as other digital portals including websites.  Click here to learn more and download our eBook

 

Mature Marketing Links of the Week – Aging Issues and Inspiration

February 23rd, 2015 Posted by Erin Read

Good morning! Did you watch the Academy Awards show last night? Inspired by the “choose your own adventure” biography of host Neil Patrick Harris, today’s blog post offers choices. You can go immediately to the practical (top links for mature marketing) OR jump to heartwarming (some Oscar- and aging-related thoughts). Or, throw caution to the wind and do it all!

Either way, I promise this show won’t take 4 hours.

Inspiration

LeadingAge_Square_Logo_Large1. MOST CLICKED: Get inspired! LeadingAge showcases 30 outstanding projects in assisted living, CCRCs, nursing homes in their 12th edition of the Design For Aging Review. http://bit.ly/18fR3vl

2. MOST SHARED: The danger of “end of life poverty” as 4 million Americans turn 65. While the topic sounds depressing, the author, Ai-jen Poo, sounded several hopeful notes in her interview with NPR, such as

“[T]he baby boom generation in particular is such a culture-driving generation. I mean, rock ‘n’ roll — and so much has changed in our culture as a result of the baby boom generation. They are the generation that’s aging, and if any generation is going to change how we orient around aging, it’s going to be that generation.”

Read or listen to the interview at http://n.pr/1ABIGTS

3. Also of note: This Is How We Watch Video Now, says Seth Godin:

“Forty years ago, Stanley Kubrick showed us 2001. The first 90 seconds are without dialogue and solid black. It’s hard to imagine that working as the intro to a YouTube video today.

Instead, our finger is on the mouse trigger, ready to leave in a moment. Not only that, but instead of leaning forward, we’ve got our shields set to level 7, wary of what’s to come.”

Read Seth’s post at http://bit.ly/1EmSWSN.

Issues

I was touched to see the Oscar spotlight shine briefly on an issue important to older adults and those who care for them — Alzheimer’s disease.

Country star Tim McGraw performed “I’m Not Gonna Miss You,” from the documentary Glen Campbell … I’ll Be Me. The movie focused on Campbell’s goodbye tour after his Alzheimer’s diagnosis. The Oscar-nominated song is a a bittersweet note that Campbell’s love for his family will remain as his memory of them fades.

Julianne Moore took home the Best Actress statue for her turn as a woman diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s in Still Alice. In her acceptance speech, Moore said “So many people with this disease feel isolated and marginalized. And one of the wonderful things about movies is that it makes us feel seen and not alone. People with Alzheimer’s deserve to be seen, so we can find a cure.”

The Oscars draw audiences of more than 40 million. For helping bring attention to Alzheimer’s, it’s now our turn to thank the Academy.

Senior Living Online Reviews – Don’t Miss The Boat

February 18th, 2015 Posted by Beth Mickey

It wasn’t too long ago when the only attention paid to online reviews of senior living communities was making sure only the positive comments saw the light of day.

A recent article within Senior Housing News confirmed that if you’re not thinking about online reviews you’re missing the boat.  The article included insights from a digital marketing survey conducted by Software Advice regarding seniors and their views/reliance on peer reviews when choosing an assisted living community.

“Good online reviews can be seen as marketing tools to attract high-paying residents,” says Software Advice. “Consumers are not only using reviews in the selection process—they are incorporating reviews significantly in their budgeting decisions, too.”

The article goes on to detail how a negative review could have far-reaching repercussions, as it could discourage other mature consumers from even considering your community.

We couldn’t agree more. In fact, when conducting our Social, Silver Surfers researcTop sharing toolsh, here is what we heard about online reviews:

*  User reviews were used by half of all Baby Boomers and 4 in 10 Silent Generation seniors. In fact, the percentage of people over 40 who used these reviews doubled in just three years.

*  Among those who had moved to a senior living or active adult community, more than a third had used online directories in their move decision. Most of these directories include star ratings or other reviews.

Perception is reality and online reviews do matter. The fact of the matter is, as people trust organizations less and peers more, reviews can lend credibility to your marketing claims.

Senior living organizations should employ a strategic approach to the capturing of insights from happy residents online. Here are three ways to make sure you not only capture reviews, but glowing ones at that.

  1. New resident?  Include a request to complete a review of the community online as a part of their welcome experience.
  2. Incorporate testimonials and reviews within your website/social media for further credibility. Senior living community Fairing Way created a “Neighbor’s Corner” that slides positive testimonials into engaging future resident profiles.FW-WEB-NeighborsCorner-2013.sm
  3. Ratings matter—encourage satisfied residents to give you positive rankings within directory listings sites.

Does your organization consider online listing rankings as a part of your marketing strategy?  How do you encourage participation?  We’d love to hear your thoughts- just share in the comments below.

Mature Marketing Links of the Week – I Can Relate

February 16th, 2015 Posted by Erin Read

“Thomas Jefferson once said, ‘We should never judge a president by his age, only by his works.’

And ever since he told me that, I stopped worrying.”  – Ronald Reagan

Happy Presidents Day! For our readers in the U.S., today is the official celebration of George Washington’s birthday. But never fear — the Creating Results’ team wouldn’t let a federal holiday get between you and the top mature marketing links of the week.

1. MOST SHARED: A Last Thought from Las Vegas: Put Away the Poker Face

Creating Results’ Sally O’Donnell wraps up her series of posts offering a millennial’s perspective on marketing to baby boomers. This latesTOA-new-site-ratingst installment looks into transparency and why creating an environment of trust is actually a service to older home buyers. Testimonials and ratings help people relate to the current residents of a 50+ community.

“Millennials like me rely heavily on Yelp, for example, to find restaurants, hotels, etc. More and more 50-plus homebuyers are using similar tools to influence their purchasing decision.

Because there has been such a shift toward digital with less face-to-face time, it’s increasingly difficult to build trust with online prospects. Something as simple as a positive review tells a compelling story and reinforces confidence in your brand.”

Read more at http://bit.ly/1DY5hwI.

2. MOST CLICKED: 50 shades of white?

AdAge reports that sex therapist and media personality Dr. Ruth Westheimer is the new face of a laundry campaign. “Think of Valentine’s Day or sex, and chances are laundry doesn’t immediately come to mind. Clorox Co. has enlisted Dr. Ruth to change that.”

The 86-year-old brings her trademark good humor to the campaign. We had fun discovering she also has nearly 85,000 followers on Twitter. Seattle fans will want to look away …Tweets by Dr Ruth

Only 10% of Twitter users are older than 65. So this means it’s mostly the young who are following Dr. Ruth. They do so not because she’s a peer but because they relate to her humor and forthright approach.

Read more on the Clorox campaign at http://bit.ly/1BgYeiS.

RELATED: We’ve always appreciated marketing to baby boomers and seniors that recognizes these older adults as sexual. You don’t stop being interested in romance, sex and connections just because your AARP card has arrived. Click here to see how we addressed the topic in 2012, on this blog.

3. Also of noteRetiree housing wealth is “Battered but still significant,” reports MarketWatch  http://on.mktw.net/17Gs1VZ

 

Did you relate to any of the items in this week’s round-up? If so, please share your thoughts below!

A Last Thought from Las Vegas: Put Away the Poker Face

February 11th, 2015 Posted by Sally O'Donnell

Third in a series of posts reflecting on marketing homes to 50-plus homebuyers, from a Millennial’s perspective.

Last week I shared two take-aways from my time at the International Builders’ Show in Las Vegas — the importance of grabbing a prospect’s attention and the need to invest in a website the way you would a model home. We finished post #2 with a question:

“What’s the one thing your brand can give boomer homebuyers that they can’t search for on Google?”

If you guessed “service,” you’d be hitting the jackpot! Today’s 50-plus homebuyers are expecting on demand, high-quality service when it comes to their purchasing decisions. It is critical that your team meets boomer expectations.

How can you do this?

1) Create an environment of trust and transparency. Previously, buyers would rely on longevity for purchasing decisions. For example, your family has gone to Walgreens for decades. Therefore, it is your “trusted” go-to pharmacy. Nowadays, buyers are more concerned with transparency vs. longevity. Think about those calorie counts on all food menus. While learning how many calories are really in that “skinny” salad could ruin your appetite, the transparency allows for a feeling of confidence in the brand.

You want your sales teams to convey that same feeling. 50-plus homebuyers want transparency in price, offerings and selections. This means that your team should have a strong grasp on all of these pieces to deliver high-quality service – creating credibility and a bond between you and your buyer.

2) Resident testimonials are a powerful tool to use in marketing to boomers that can communicate transparency. From a millennial perspective, I appreciate a story from someone in my demographic. But, there are so many variables and perspectives that it sometimes can be hard to relate. For example, I follow a few fellow millennial fashion bloggers to keep up with what’s in style. They may be the same age as me, but I don’t actually relate to them – there is no way I would spend $2,500 on a handbag.

The 50+ audience is different. Their upbringing and current situations are more aligned than my generation. They are looking for similar things in this stage in their lives. Use that to your advantage. Leveraging positive experiences from your homeowners through testimonials is a service. It allows for your target audience to say “I relate to that person and I can picture myself there.”

Source: North Hill

3)  Ratings and reviews are another increasingly popular way to create an environment of trust. Millennials like me rely heavily on Yelp, for example, to find restaurants, hotels, etc. More and more 50-plus homebuyers are using similar tools to influence their purchasing decision.

Because there has been such a shift toward digital with less face-to-face time, it’s increasingly difficult to build trust with online prospects. Something as simple as a positive review tells a compelling story and reinforces confidence in your brand.

Creating Results recently applied these insights into a site redesign for leading 50-plus homebuilder, Traditions of America. Their ratings and reviews pages are something they can give buyers that Google can’t.

TOA-new-site-ratings TOA-new-site-reviews

 

Your marketing is definitely not something to gamble with. By incorporating these ideas and suggestions, you can bet that you’ll reach your 50-plus audience in an impactful way.

How do you plan on hitting the marketing jackpot? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

RELATED: Part 1, Playing the Best Hand to Reach Your Audience

Part 2, How to “Up the Ante” When Marketing to Baby Boomer Homebuyers

Mature Marketing Links of the Week – Vegas, Baby (Boomer)!

February 9th, 2015 Posted by Erin Read

Snowy days and Mondays always got you down? We’ve got the cure. Put on your shades and dream of Las Vegas, as it prompted the top content in this week’s 50+ marketing links round-up.

1. MOST CLICKED: Creating Results’ Sally O’Donnell went to Las Vegas in late January, for the International Builders’ Show. Her focus at the conference (as it is on a daily basis) was 50+ or “active adult” housing. Sally fought the crowds on the show floor, attended various sessions and cheered on two of our clients who won national Best of 50+ Housing Awards. (See below.)

Then Sally made her way back to our West Coast office and shared “A Millennial’s Perspective on Marketing to Boomers,” a series of posts for this blog.

To continue the Vegas theme, her first post was a winning hand. She wrote:

“Did you know that the average attention span now is only 8 seconds? That’s less than the attention span of a goldfish. While I didn’t even know that goldfish had attention spans, it brings to light a critical issue in marketing to your audience.

You now have less time than it took Usain Bolt to break a world record to introduce and reinforce your brand so that people even take a second look.”

Find out how Sally recommends 50+ housing marketers “get lucky in 8 seconds:” http://bit.ly/1AO7Q4q

2. MOST SHARED: Part 2 of Sally’s 50+ housing series had our audience of mature marketing pros going all in, re-tweeting, sharing and favoriting the post.

“It’s time to invest in your website the way you would invest in a model home or printing collateral,” she wrote, and offered some recent research findings to explain why. Larry Guengerich of Landis Homes then shared a terrific example of website upgrades in a comment on the post.

Check out Landis’ idea, and add your own: http://bit.ly/1zOCaZG

RELATED: White paper – “Web Usability Guidelines for Active Adult Home Buyers”

3. Also of note

* 4 Things Every CEO Should Know About Their Inbound Marketing, by Neil Eniex  http://bit.ly/1KA7JLE

* Video will become the “content of choice” + more predictions from Social Media Examiner  http://bit.ly/1zOCOq3

* “Next year, old people will be the new puppy dogs” of Super Bowl advertising, says the Ad Contrarian in his recap of the Big Game’s big ads  http://bit.ly/1733KZO

 

Creating Results' Sally O'Donnell at the 2015 Best of 50+ Housing Awards

2015 Best of 50+ Housing Awards

A hearty CONGRATULATIONS to Creating Results’ clients on their 2015 Best of 50+ Housing awards!

Liberty Healthcare was honored with two Gold awards, for the “Best 50+ Independent Living Community On the Boards,” and “Best 50+ Fitness & Wellness Program.” Fantastic news!

Traditions of America received 6 Golds and 1 Silver, including four awards for marketing. Creating Results is proud to have partnered with Traditions on these innovative programs. And we just had to take a photo of our favorite Millennial after the event …

Kudos to Sally and the whole team!


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