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My Creating Results colleagues call me the “Email Queen.” While I relish the idea of wearing a tiara, the main reason I have been dubbed as such is that I LOVE email. And more importantly, I’ve seen how powerful email marketing can be in driving new leads to action.

In this blog post we will explore how your organization can leverage email to not only reach your mature consumers, but move them through the purchase funnel to action.

87 percent of boomers and seniors who check email on their cellphones each week.But first, the answer to the question I know is on the top of everyone’s mind: “Beth, if we are selling to boomers and seniors, should we even use email marketing?”

The short answer is a resounding “YES” — if your target market includes seniors, then email should definitely be getting an increasing portion of your marketing investment and efforts.

Two reasons:

  1. Email is at the top of the online activity list for 65+ers.  With a bullet. (They even check it on their cellphones.)
  2. Email marketing is low effort and high impact –  allowing you to send targeted, relevant messaging to recipients with light effort.

Additionally, according to a recent report one-third of the world will be using email by 2020.

Get Moving

Simplified Purchase FunnelA customer’s decision to buy is often represented as a funnel, such as this one.

 

Let’s use this simplified funnel to visualize just how you can leverage email marketing to move people further along in their purchase journey.

Interest/Consideration:  Within an opt-in email program it’s relatively easy to foster further awareness about your organization.

The hard part is done. They’ve already raised their hand to indicate they are aware enough (and interested to an extent) to want to learn more about your organization through regular messaging that shares exclusive insights.

Desire: We at Creating Results stress the need for relevancy across all marketing avenues when working with our clients.  Relevancy in email is mission-critical when creating desire among your recipients.

Virginia is for Lovers does a great job in creating desire with their eNewsletter.  When I first opted in, I noted that I was interested in learning about outdoor opportunities. Each month I receive newsletters specific to the great outdoors – in the subject line, in the content and in suggested getaways.

Email sample - virginia is for lovers

Aligning your content with a recipient’s desire is the best (and easiest way) to guide your email subscribers to action.

Action:  Once you’ve established the interest and peaked desires, it’s time to deliver a powerful message that will drive to action/purchase – the goal of the funnel.

I really like the email from West Broad that a colleague recently shared with me.  It was sent to all within their database who had conducted a previous apartment search.

Email Sample - West Broad

If I was still searching for a home, the prospect of receiving 2 months free at a community I already desired would certainly cause me to take action.

Retention/Advocacy: After a prospect takes the desired action, email can (and should) continue to play a role – even in senior housing. Here the focus isn’t on keeping the buyer happy so they don’t give the item back (no one’s giving back a two-bedroom apartment) but on turning the new buyer into a new advocate. This is such a perfect pool for referrals, why not strike while the iron is hot and ask via email right away.

Additionally – you still have news you can share with recipients after they take action (ie- buy a home) make it easy for subscribers to update their preferences and sign up for resident- focused messaging. This will keep them “in the know” and can easily be passed along to family/friends.

How do YOU leverage email within your purchase funnel? We’d love to see (and share) examples of successful approaches so please be sure to note in the comment section below.

About The Author

Beth Mickey

Beth has more than 15 years of marketing experience and 10+ years experience working with both 55+ and Senior Living as a Certified Aging In Place Specialist (CAPS), and serves as Client Services Director for Creating Results. As an expert in e-engagement, Beth applies her experience in strategic planning and execution of digital marketing efforts for her clients to identify opportunities to leverage online and offline marketing avenues as part of an integrated marketing approach. Her experience serving both in a client and agency capacity helps her gain an understanding for her client’s needs and goals to maximize program performance and return on investment.