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Another year gone by, and boy was it a doosy! Against the backdrop of dramatic political change and cultural shifting, our readers remained homed in on issues relevant to how the mature market is evolving.

Below are Creating Results’ top five posts from 2016 on marketing to seniors / marketing to boomers, along with our top five tweets. PLUS, a look back at top content from 2015 and 2014.

Top Blog Posts of 2016

5_2_16_FlyingPig2#5.  If Pigs Could Fly… “Embrace Flying Pigs!” was a tweet and call to action from LeadingAge Maryland speaker Scott Townsley of CliftonLarsonAllen.

In addition to providing seven ideas for gaining an edge in the marketplace, Townsley challenged senior living providers to embrace change and start doing things they previously would only do “when pigs fly.” View his speech here.

 

Tips for using images as part of storytelling marketing to baby boomers and beyond#4.  The Big Picture: Storytelling and Older Adults. As a follow-on to presentations to the LeadingAge Massachusetts and Pennsylvania chapters about the value of using video as a part of an integrated marketing strategy, we looked at ways photos can be used effectively when video isn’t an option.

Here are the some of the “Don’ts” we highlighted: photo filters, collages, images that aren’t easily identifiable, and product-only images (people and activities resonate more). Read the full post.

#3.  Middle-Aged Renters on the Rise: What Marketers Should Know. In March we shared that America’s Rental Housing reported a decline in homeownership among middle-agers and a subsequent rise in renters among this group. Learn more and see the data behind this trend.

1_19_16MoreAlikeThanYuThink3#2.  For Housing, Are Baby Boomers and Millennials More Alike Than You Think? This post recapped some of the valuable insights gained at the 2016 International Builders’ Show in Las Vegas. The post highlighted preferences and values shared by these different generational groups, such as the desire to live in multi-generational / mixed-use communities and the importance of everyday conveniences and having control over housing dollars in their busy lives. Read the full post here.

And a drum roll please…..

GoogleBlogHeader#1.  Google Surprises Us Again! Why Senior Living and Housing Marketers Should Care About This Change. Paid Search text ads have been moved from where they previously lived — on the right side of the search window — to the main Search listing on the left.

This is a BIG deal. It means that only the top 4 paid display advertisers will appear top of page, and everyone else (positions 5 and higher) will appear at the bottom of the page. Read more to understand how this will impact this type of advertising and what it means for you when marketing to seniors  and boomers online.

 

Top Seniors/Boomers Marketing Tweets of 2016

  • Amen! Too many clients start with “let’s send a release” — need to be clear of Public Relations goals up front. https://t.co/KEEKjhPmmY
  • Nice piece by @InaJaffeNPR on trained companions for elders to ease hospital isolation. ow.ly/dsra306njQY
  • There’s no age-based ‘shelf life’ on senior’s ability to live independently. ow.ly/ix8s306qftV via @mindingourelder
  • “Keep the 90/90 rule in mind” + 6 more tips for repositioning senior living communities — Part III, #LeadingAge16 take-aways. https://t.co/B5ayCNhXx1

 

A Look Further Back

In the spirit of Auld Lang Syne, we encourage you to take a look back at the top posts for 2015 and 2014 for some helpful perspective (or just for “old times’ sake”) to see what has changed — and what hasn’t — over the last couple of years.

Overall, 2014 readers were looking more for general input about marketing to seniors (including and / or vs. marketing to baby boomers), while in 2015 and 2016 readers seemed focused on housing trends and leveraging social and web channels.

Top 2015 Posts

#4.  In “Maximizing the ROI of Online Leads” Creating Results cautions that relying on your existing sales counselors (or junior sales counselor) to handle online leads may be the LEAST effective strategy to achieve conversion. Learn a better strategy.


#3.  In its annual look at social media site usage, The Pew Research Project showed that more seniors than ever are using social networks, specifically Facebook. See more stats on social usage among older generations
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#2.  Your website is rapidly becoming the most powerful part of the sales process, and boomer homebuyers form an opinion before they even step foot on your site. In “How to ‘Up the Ante’ When Marketing to Baby Boomer Homebuyers” we discuss how to avoid losing prospects because your website doesn’t meet their standards.

#1.  One of our millennial team members shares her take-aways from the 2015 International Builders’ Show in Vegas in “Playing the Best Hand to Reach Your Audience.” She observes: You now have less time to introduce and reinforce your brand than it took Usain Bolt to break a world record….Keep it short so that after 8 seconds they head to your website. Read her tips and insights here.

Top 2014 Posts

#4:  We share “Senior Care Marketing Tips” from the first annual SMASH senior care marketing summit in Chicago, covering topics such as creating real-world communities and content marketing.

#3:  Graduating to College Towns” looked at the appeal of retirement communities located in proximity to these vibrant centers of learning and culture. It also provides data showing trends in adoption of technology and income among older adults.

#2:  Part I in a series of 3 posts, 15 Marketing Insights for Motivating Boomers & Seniors in 2015″ provides 15 actionable ideas to apply to your marketing programs, including insights from thought leaders. Add the 15 actionable ideas to your arsenal.

#1:  In our upcoming edition of Social, Silver Surfers Creating Results will provide new data and analysis of the digital preferences and practices of older adults. In our top 2014 blog post — “Which Social Networks are Boomers and Seniors Using Now?” — we provided some of the stats from our 2013 study, along with results of a Pew study showing which social platforms were preferred by boomers in 2013. Read more and keep your eyes out for more on Social, Silver Surfers in the months to come!

 

The year 2017 promises to be one of uncertainty on many fronts – the U.S. economy, the business regulation climate, housing markets, social programs and healthcare, to name a few.

One thing you can be certain of: Creating Results will continue to keep offering recommendations for how we can best react to changing realities and be more effective in marketing to seniors and boomers.

About The Author

Martha Schultz

Martha has worked in the communications field for more than 20 years for a wide range of clients and organizations, giving her a breadth of expertise in marketing, along with many other skills. She has worked as an editor, graphic designer, publications manager, brand manager and creative director. As a member of our creative team, Martha applies her experience to produce effective online and print advertising and marketing solutions for our clients.

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