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Mature Marketing Links of the Week – Senior Care Marketing Tips

Monday, November 24th, 2014

It’s hard to believe we are nearly at the end of November. The Creating Results team has been very much on the go this month, spending time with clients, visiting prospects and participating in various conferences. Looking back on the past few weeks and looking ahead to Thanksgiving Day, I thought this quote was apt:

“If you are really thankful, what do you do? You share.”

- W. Clement Stone

We are really thankful to the many folks who shared their expertise in senior care marketing, as this week’s mature marketing links round-up collects many of those insights.

1. MOST SHARED: A handful of ideas from the first annual Senior Care Marketing Summit held in Chicago last week. This conference drew professionals from both non-profit and for-profit senior living and senior services organizations. And it drew an impressive line-up of speakers, whose insights were retweeted, favorited and passed along. Starting with Amber Naslund:

Tweets with insights from Amber Naslund at Senior Care Marketing Summit

Senior living creates “real-world” communities that older adults, their families and employees want to belong to. No wonder Amber’s statement resonated with this crowd! (You can gain further insights by following her on Twitter – @AmberCadabra – or subscribing to her blog http://www.brasstackthinking.com.)

 

Andy Crestodina proved he has a talent for making complex ideas easily understood, and in an elegant fashion. In explaining the ins and outs of content marketing, Andy noted that “the problem with the Internet is that everyone is one click away” from another site. This means senior care websites have to be the best at solving their customer’s problems. How do you do that?

#1 – Skip the acronyms and the insider, technical language. This advice resonated with several of our Twitter followers:

Tweet - Andy Crestodina at Senior Care Marketing Summit

#2 – Listen to what customers want and need. You’ll find content marketing inspiration in your email inbox, in the questions posed to your sales team. You’ll even find it while doing keyword research, which Andy described as “data-driven empathy.”

(You can follow Andy @Crestodina or find his posts at http://www.orbitmedia.com/blog.)

 

Senior living leaders also shared some great tips during the Summit.

* Jonathan Ruchman, Brookdale Senior Living: “Feedback is a gift and every day is Christmas.”

* Dan Hutson, be.group: Use content marketing to have conversations with people who are not yet sold on housing. His organization does so through a separate website called “My Silver Age” and through materials such as a magazine and PDF guides.

* Lori Alford, Avanti Senior Living: Each week, her marketing team is asked to bring in one of two items — either an example of good marketing from another industry or an example of bad marketing from senior care. Plenty of insights from both samples!

* Kim Kilday, Liberty Healthcare and Rehab: To the “4 Ps of marketing” add Pleasing. We must please our senior customers!

* Lori Woodward, ACTS Retirement Life Communities: The motivation of older adults to embrace senior living remains the same; “we haven’t found a cure for the aging body.”

Sharing is caring! Please forward this post to colleagues who would benefit from the insights. And/or, let us know your thoughts, below.

 

2. MOST CLICKED: Frank Bruni’s op-ed in the New York Times, “Gray Hair and Silver Linings,” struck a chord with many. After musing about losses (people, muscle tone, ambitions) he wrote:

“But there’s something else that you start to notice, something that muffles all of that, a muscle that grows stronger, not weaker. More than before, you’re able to find the good in the bad. You start to master perspective, realizing that with a shift in it — an adjustment of attitude, a reorientation of expectations — what’s bothersome can evaporate and what only seems to be urgent really isn’t.”

Read Bruni’s lovely piece: http://nyti.ms/1uw4sBZ

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Mature Marketing Links of the Week- Boomers & Health

Monday, November 17th, 2014

It’s the start of a new week, which means a fresh look at the mature marketing news that had people talking.  This week is all about the boomer and their approach to staying healthy.  Have something to share?  We’d love to hear from you.

MOST CLICKED: 84% of baby boomers turn to the web for health-related insights according to a recent Klick HealBoomer and health related online searchesth article.  The survey examined responses across all generations, and explored how people use the web for health-related searches, questions and needs. Other insights from the survey: 27% of boomers and 22% of silents use the web to access personal health info while 58% use the web to learn more about health symptoms.   The study also found that boomers and seniors are least likely to refill prescriptions online.

Discover more here.

MOST SHARED: Boomers are increasingly more focused on sustaining their wellness, and look to the healthcare industry for helping them achieve it, according to a new eMarketer article.

Marketers are looking for ways to encourage them to take more responsibility for their own care and become comfortable with technology that will reduce long-term costs and keep them healthier. Digital advances, including electronic health records, mobile apps, video and wireless monitoring technology, allow for widespread adoption of digital care management.
The takeaway for senior living?  A focus on wellness (and the programs to back up that dedication) is mission critical for enticing your residents of tomorrow, as boomers have a renewed passion for not just being healthy, but thriving.

Mature Marketing Links of the Week- Road Trips and SEO

Monday, November 3rd, 2014

Happy Monday!  Let’s get right into the mature marketing stories that had people clicking and sharing this past week.  Our focus- a road trip for the books and SEO tips.  Have something to share?  We’d love to hear from you so be sure to add it to our comment section.

Road TripMOST SHARED: For 26 years Gunther Holtorf traveled the world- exploring Brazil, Australia, Paris and even Hollywood…all from his car.  A recent article highlighted snippets of his travels to many breathtaking (and sometimes dangerous) destinations.  In total, he visited more than 170 countries, drove 549,000 miles and even interacted with baboons.

Click here to discover more about Gunther’s travels.

 

MOST CLICKED: The quality of  content is the most important element for SEO rankings.  This is just one insight from a MarketingCharts article for how to effectively improve your search engine optimization.

The article referenced research from Ascend2 and SearchMetrics that examined several ranking factors of search engine optimization.

The importance of keywords in the URL and domain name has disappeared over the past couple of years, to the extent that this “no longer exists as a ranking factor.” However, there are some onpage keyword factors that have a positive correlation with rankings; namely, keywords in description, the title and the H1 heading, with the latter two increasing in importance from last year.

Other results of note:

*The highest ranking content typically has a higher word count.

*Even though its importance has decreased slightly from previous years, backlinks remain incredibly important.

*Look at your webstats, as longer time on site and lower bounce rates matter.

While the importance of some individual factors may shift over time, one thing remains—a properly optimized website is critical to ensure your prospects can find you, and is not a one-time set it and forget it.  It takes care and ongoing review and adjustments.

Read more of the findings here.

Mature Marketing Links of the Week – Resident Knows Best

Monday, October 20th, 2014

Happy Monday!  This week’s mature marketing stories that had people talking examine the benefits of resident surveys and content marketing. Have something to add?  Please be sure to incorporate in the comment section.

MOST CLICKED: Content marketing (also known as inbound marketing) is all the rage these days.  Why you ask?  Because it generates more leads and sales while increasing your ROI, by highlighting the value of your brand in a non-threatening way.    A recent article examined just how (and why) it is so effective.

First and foremost, the author defines inbound marketing as:

Inbound marketing strives to convert website visitors to customers through tactics that align content with customer interests, nurture these leads along conversion paths into customers, and delighting these customers so they become outspoken promoters of the company. 

Some statistics the article included:

*  80% of business decision makers prefer to receive insights about your brand through a series of pieces.
*  90% of consumers will find the information you incorporate within custom content more useful in their decision making process.
*  Brands that create 15 blog posts per month generate an average of 1,200 leads through that content.
An inbound marketing strategy can be incredibly effective in creating relevant, motivating pieces that inspire your prospects and reinforce why your service or community is THE BEST choice.  How do you approach your strategy?  We’d love to hear your thoughts or discuss how you can take a few easy steps that make your inbound marketing shine.

MOST SHARED: Never underestimate the power of a resident satisfaction survey.  At Creating Results we work closely with many Senior Living clients as they strive to not only attract new prospects, but work with happy residents to generate even more word-of-mouth marketing (and leads) for their communities.  It goes without saying that the more content the resident, the more enthusiastic the recommendation to friends.

A Senior Housing News recent article and webinar discussed just how powerful a resident satisfaction survey can be. The piece followed The Marshes at Skidaway Island, a CCRC in Georgia.  After struggling with resident satisfaction the community decided to do something about it by capturing insights from residents to help improve the community.  The result? Within the first year The Marshes reported positive increases in occupancy, sales and referrals.

Resident surveys can help identify not only areas for improvement, but where your community already is heads above the competition.  But a survey is only as effective as your approach to what happens next, what you do with those insights.

“You get out of a resident satisfaction survey what you put into it,” said Catherine Jenkins, vice president and director of operations management at Life Care Services. “I’m not talking about just the process of getting it distributed, but what you put into those results. … The commitment to put the hard work in [during] the years leading up to that survey is really critical.”

For The Marshes, they received feedback from residents that highlighted the need to make some improvements within their Health Center.  By implementing some changes to their overall approach they were able to move the satisfaction needle from 59% to 90%.  This satisfaction has led to more resident referrals and new members of the community.

Discover more about how you can approach satisfaction surveys when you read the full article.

Mature Marketing Links of the Week-Email and the Economy

Monday, October 13th, 2014

Happy Monday.  This week’s mature marketing links are brought to you by the letter “E”.  Let’s jump right in.  Have something to share or add?  Please leave in the comment section.

MOST CLICKED: E is for EMAIL

We continually work to remind our clients that email isn’t dead.  In fact, it continues to serve as an important avenue for engaging your boomer and senior target markets.  But an email list doesn’t grow on its own—there is a lot of care and nurturing that needs to go into it. Why is growth important you ask?  Each year current subscribers will leave you.  It’s sad but true.  You need to be able to account for the inevitable unsubscribes and bounces your list will receive by continually adding new subscribers.

A recent article focusing on tips for driving subscriptions through offline avenues generated a lot of interest this past week. The author focused on 8 things you can do in your everyday marketing efforts to generate more awareness of your email program.  These tips included:

*  Incorporating incentives for sign up

*  Using a paper sign up at special events

*  Using planned signage to promote

No matter which promotional avenue you pick, remember to highlight the value of your program. You need to give your prospects a reason to join (and engage with you).  Get more tips here when you read the full article.

How do you promote your eNews?  We’d love to hear your ideas.

RELATED: Don’t Let Your Email be Evil

MOST SHARED: E is for ECONOMY

The middle-class is still feeling the pinch, according to an article in The Dallas Morning News.  The author notes:

Now, five years after the recession ended, the economy appears to be improving, but middle-class consumers still haven’t bounced back.

In fact, a recent Federal Reserve report found that more than a third of American households say they’re worse off now than in 2008, and nearly 40 percent said they’re “just getting by” or struggling to do so.

As savings shrink and money remains tight, people continue to scale back. For the mature consumer, this means a focus on the essentials, like healthcare, and possibly putting off a desired home move.  For Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRCs), opportunities do exist to demonstrate how a move would be smart financially and allow for planning for the future, however this does require examination of how you are positioning your communities during the critical awareness and interest phases of the purchase process.

How do you address the changing economic tide?  We’d love to hear your thoughts.

Read the full article here.

TV viewing “remains solid among older age groups”

Tuesday, September 30th, 2014

MarketingCharts.com recently posted an analysis of Nielsen TV viewing data. The upshot? Traditional TV viewing is dropping substantially among US 18-24 year olds. Yet our favorite people — baby boomers and seniors — continue to log significant time in front of the boob tube.

The up & right-ward slope of the maroon and gray lines in this chart show a gradual increase in traditional TV viewing by older adults:

Chart - Traditional TV Viewing By Age - MarketingCharts.com

Source: MarketingCharts.com

Click here to see an interactive version of this chart.

MarketingCharts notes that, contrary to every other age group, 65+ seniors increased their TV time. And while 50-64 year olds decreased traditional TV hours for the first time since the third quarter of 2013, the losses in TV consumption by baby boomers and GenXers are smaller than the losses within the Millennial cohort.

Bruce Springsteen sang “57 Channels (And Nothin’ On).” Today’s marketers are choosing not just between 57+++ TV channels but between traditional broadcast and newer channels such as social and Internet.  Data from sources such as MarketingCharts and Nielsen can help those marketing to baby boomers and seniors make better choices.

 

READ the article: http://bit.ly/YGPW2b

RELATED:

* Boomers are more influenced by advertising than their Gen Y children http://bit.ly/1wUeTmL

* Use of buzzed-about Instagram and Snapchat vs. TV News, by age http://bit.ly/1mLbypj

* TV and newspapers trump social networks for influence on seniors http://bit.ly/14nGboA

 

Landing Pages and Boomers – Mature Marketing Links of the Week

Monday, September 29th, 2014

Happy Monday!  Let’s jump right into the mature marketing stories that had people talking, clicking and shaMature links of weekring this past week.  Have something to share?  Please be sure to add to the comment section.

MOST SHARED:  At Creating Results, we work with a number of clients on how to best leverage the web to convert visitors to prospects. Inevitably this includes a strategically designed and messaged landing page that includes a form for information capture.  For mature consumers, paying attention to each aspect of the layout and content is especially important, as they are concerned about privacy and need to have a particularly good reason to provide personal information. An article by Jacqueline Thomas recently explored what she outlined as 10 Essential Elements of a Landing Page.  

According to Thomas:

Unlike the rest of your website, a landing page operates like an island. It’s not connected to the rest of your website and it only has one focus: convince the visitor to do the one thing you want them to do.

Some of the elements identified include navigation (or lack of), layout (very important in our book too!), incorporating colors that convey a desired emotion and more.

Discover other elements here.

MOST CLICKED: AARP recently conducted a new survey of where boomers reside as well as some other fun facts, including:

*The largest concentration of boomer females call Delaware home
*Boomers in North Dakota are most likely to still be working
*Utah is home to the most married boomers
*Those that live in Washington, DC are most likely to not own a car

Knowing who your mature consumers are is half the battle, and will help you most effectively craft a message that will resonate with your target market.  After all, you wouldn’t necessarily want to tout a work-free life to folks in North Dakota since many are still on the job.

See the full survey here.

Content Theft, Copyrights and Common Courtesy

Thursday, September 25th, 2014

Recently, one of our agency’s competitors sent me (and their entire email list) a message with the latest research into what boomers and seniors do/don’t want from websites. The research they shared? Creating Results’ Social, Silver Surfers study.

After a hearty laugh, our results-focused team decided to use this as a teaching opportunity.

Share and Share Alike …

Some say we’re moving to a “sharing economy,” sharing or re-using goods, services and resources. It certainly is easier than ever to share content and ideas.

A quick click on the tools below and you could share this post with your networks via email or via roughly 300 social networks. (Try it! We’d love it.) We can embed photos, video and audio (as we did on this blog two days ago). Copy/paste, scanning, screengrabs, save link as …

The ease with which we can share means marketers have to work harder to balance sharing and caring (about others’ intellectual property).

What Is “Content Theft”?

This post from Ann Marie van den Hurk offers a very clear description of content theft: http://bit.ly/1ungovw. For me, the key statement is:

“[It} is content theft when someone reads a blog post online and decides to share it. Except they curate it in a way where they copy and paste the entire post into their blog or website with a tiny print attribution with a link to the actual author. Done without asking the author if they would be OK with sharing their work. What is happening there is plagiarism where someone is taking someone else’s work or ideas and passing them off as one’s own.”

A real world example: Often organizations get excited about news coverage and copy/paste the entire article from that news outlet into their own site. This is content theft. It doesn’t matter if they include an attribution line or what size that attribution to the source is.

In this case, Creating Results didn’t get any attribution at all.

What Are the Rules for Attribution?

Because we’re marketers, we really do WANT people to share our content. It extends Creating Results’ brand reach and — we hope! — elevates the quality of marketing aimed at boomers and seniors.

For this reason our Social, Silver Surfers ebook included this note on page 6:

Source: "Social Silver Surfers 2013: An Updated Look at the Attitudes of Baby Boomers and Seniors Towards Websites and Social Media"

Because we’re marketers, not lawyers, we asked an expert about attribution.

Jodi McLane, Partner at Dingman, McInnes & McLane LLP, has extensive experience in trademark infringement litigation and in protecting intellectual property. She shared a link to a recent post by Corey Eridon of HubSpot that, as she puts it, “does a really good job of explaining internet etiquette regarding attribution:”  http://bit.ly/1DxlvMc

Jodi went on to say:

“It is important to provide proper attribution to an author, but giving attribution does not relieve you of the obligation to not copy someone’s work in a manner that would constitute copyright infringement. For example, it is one thing to quote a statistic from an article and give the proper attribution (probably ok), it is quite another to copy the entire article and re-post it on your site (even with proper attribution). Attribution does not cure the copyright infringement.

Not giving proper attribution and making it appear the work is your own is often called ‘Plagiarism.’ However, the legal liability associated with plagiarism is copyright infringement. If a work is copyright protected (such as original works of authorship), it does not matter whether they are published in print or online. If you copy them absent an exception it is copyright infringement.”

So what does that mean for marketers? Before you share someone else’s work ANYWHERE, look for and respect their copyrights. Creating Results’ Social, Silver Surfers research, for instance, is copyrighted. As is the executive summary our competitive agency picked up at a tradeshow before they incorporated our findings into their email.

Note that this blog post does not constitute legal advice. Please consult your organization’s lawyer with questions or reach out to experts like Jodi.

Lawsuit or Hissyfit?

How should Creating Results … or any organization … respond when copyright infringement is suspected?

A few years ago an outlet called Cooks Source took the work of blogger Monica Gaudio and printed it in their magazine. When challenged, the editor responded “the web is considered ‘public domain’ and you should be happy we just didn’t ‘lift’ your whole article and put someone else’s name on it!” [Editorial note: the author shouldn’t be happy and the editor was just plain wrong.]

Linda Holmes of NPR wrote about what happened next in her post, “The Day The Internet Threw A Righteous Hissyfit About Copyright And Pie.”

Should we sue? Throw a hissyfit? Neither seems the Creating Results way. We chose to use this experience to hopefully educate clients, colleagues and those concerned.

Did we make the right choice?

Please sound off below. Share your experiences, comments or questions. We’ll address other sticky content sharing/intellectual property questions on this blog in the coming weeks.

Editor’s Note: As we want to keep the focus on the importance of proper attribution, we have removed an image seen in an earlier version of this post.

Mature Marketing Links of the Week – Landing Pages, Pictures

Monday, September 22nd, 2014

Monday morning and your to do list is already full. To help you get better results from your many efforts, let’s jump right into our top mature marketing links of the week, based on social media clicks/shares/+1s/etc.

1. MOST SHARED: A tie!

* Pictures are proven to motivate 50+ consumers. But how can you make an impact when email images get turned off? A case study from What Counts on a very clever effort for “A Place for Mom:” http://bit.ly/1v8jFM0

RELATED: Free ebook from Creating Results with insights into WHY photos are so powerful with older adults and tips for HOW to choose the images that will connect with baby boomers and seniors: http://bit.ly/50Photo

* The 10 essential elements of a landing page: http://bit.ly/1pokkEr. As writer Jacqueline Thomas notes,

“The only purpose of a landing page is to sell. Either you’re selling your design services or you’re selling your information for their email address. Your information comes in the form of newsletters, downloadable books, design freebies, pay-what-you-can fonts, courses, etc. … No matter how you use a landing page, the goal is to convert visitors into clients or community.”

At Creating Results, we love landing pages, especially when deployed as part of strategic integrated programs such as this one for CCRC Westminster at Lake Ridge. You’ll note that a critical element to its success was photography, #4 on Thomas’ list. This campaign featured original, authentic and engaging images of community residents (including a four-legged one!).

Photo - CCRC landing pages

Offline direct mail and print ads drove to online landing pages in a CCRC (continuing care retirement community) campaign that boosted leads 267%.

(Click here or on the photo to read the case study.)

 

2. MOST CLICKED: Why don’t advertisers value seniors? Public radio’s Marketplace tapped CreatingResults for an answer: http://bit.ly/1mp7xGU

 

And here are two articles that should have gotten more attention. They include new statistics to inform your mature marketing decisions:

CHART - The seven leading causes of death among elders* Snapshots of US 65+ seniors. Ronni Bennett calls out a few stats from the new Census Bureau report, “65+ in the United States.” Her post shares a few report highlights on life expectancy, income, and the seven leading causes of death among elders:

“Death rates declined for the 65-plus populations (other age groups too) between 2000 and 2010 but it was the same old, same old diseases – heart disease and cancer being the top two – that carried elders away.”

Read more: http://bit.ly/1uSee5U

* What does the “Boomer Nation” look like? Thanks to the AARP, you can explore an interactive, state-by-state snapshot.

It includes top 10s for the highest concentration of baby boomers, where the richest boomers live and where Spanish-speaking boomers are most likely to live. Haga clic aqui para aprender mas: http://bit.ly/1uYKsLL

 

Feliz Lunes! Happy Monday! (Whatever language you prefer, please share your comments and thoughts below. Gracias!)

All About Housing: Mature Marketing Links of the Week

Monday, September 8th, 2014

Happy Monday!  Let’s jump right into those mature marketing stories of the week that had people talking around the water coolers.  This week’s focus is all about housing.  Have something to add?  Please note in the comments below, we’d love to hear from you.

MOST CLICKED: Don’t blame the Millennials for housing market woes.  At least that is the sentiment in a recent article in Market Watch.  The article is based on new housing purchase insights released by Zillow.  Many homeowners are suffering from negative equity issues, which are preventing them from putting their current homes on the market.  This is especially the case for Millennials and Gen Xers, with the number of underwater homes for these cohorts nearly twice that of baby boomers.  For Sale

While boomers may not be as impacted directly by negative equity, they are still feeling the effects. Those boomers who want to sell homes and downsize are unable to find buyers, as Gen Xers and Millennials aren’t in a position to want to upgrade to a larger home.

According to the director of UCLA’s Richard S. Ziman Center for Real Estate:

Many millennials don’t have the resources to compete with cash offers or engage in bidding wars with older buyers, he adds. “The reality is, negative equity is part of the new normal, and finding creative solutions to keeping homes affordable, available and accessible to this generation will be critical,” he says.

There is good news, however, the article concludes: as home prices rise the negative equity issues decrease.

Read the full article here.

MOST SHARED:  An article referencing the recent report “Housing America’s Older Adults – Meeting the Needs of an Aging Population” discussed the current housing shortage for seniors. Specifically, that there are not enough affordable options that offer senior-friendly accessibility and are well-located.

Some points of the report included:

*  1/3 of boomers and beyond spend more than 30% of their income on housing, which could make it difficult if additional care/support is required as they age.

Younger baby boomers, those now in their 50s, are of special concern, since they’re less financially secure than generations past — thanks to the Great Recession, according to the report. This is a group of people with lower incomes, wealth and home ownership rates, who may struggle to afford housing and long-term care in retirement.

*Most seniors’ homes don’t have accessibility features to help them as they age, including no-step entries and single-floor living.  This makes either substantial renovations or moving required.

*For many seniors there is a  lack of amenities within close proximity to their current homes.  This is especially important as people become unable to drive and require easy access to nearby health-care and opportunities to remain socially active.

Click here to read the full article.

 


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