A prospect has submitted a form on your website and is interested in booking a tour of your community. Great! The hardest part of the selling process is over, the prospect has reached out in hopes of contacting your sales team to discuss the next steps. While things may be headed in the right direction there's a lot of room to mess up this sale or appointment. In order to assist sales directors with their senior living lead response and follow-up, we've outlined some helpful senior living sales tips to ensure that prospect books a tour and ultimately moves into your community.
The length of time it takes you to provide a senior living lead response plays a huge role in whether or not they will convert into a tour and/or new resident. Don't believe us? Using the chart below researched from an MIT study we can see that leads who were responded to within the first minute converted almost 4x better! And waiting just ONE additional minute drops the chances of converting by more than half of that! If you wait until 24 hours or more (which is more than HALF of companies do) your conversion rates will drop below 17%.
These stats are extremely powerful and show that simply responding quickly to leads not only puts you WAY ahead of the crowd but also has a sizeable increase in your number of customers and revenue at the end of the day.
Have a Process in Place and Stick to It!
Well done: you received the lead and have responded quickly. Now what? When a new lead has entered your system you'll want to have a well-thought process on a senior living lead response to know what to do next. Depending on whether the lead came in through your website, a referral partner, or as a result of an event in your community, you'll want to create customized plans for responding and moving the lead through your sales funnel. A typical next step would be to get that prospect in for an on-site visit. But how do you ask? Is it over the phone? Through an automated email? Do you further qualify them by asking a series of questions before you decide they're even ready for a visit? These are all things that you'll want to consider and map out ahead of time for your sales staff.
*The above graphic is an example of a customizable format we use to help our clients with the lead response. We now incorporate text messaging as well but the process is similar. The
Know The Questions (And Answers)
Making sure you know the answers to any potential question that a senior living lead has is vital for your sales team. Often you'll hear the same questions over and over. Typically they're questions around cost, amenities, health services, transportation, meals, or visitation. It's important that you know the answers to these questions and you are ready to assist and qualify prospects right there on the phone. (Click here to learn more about How to Qualify Senior Living Leads). The most successful sales directors often have a cheat sheet of common questions and answers ready at their desks. You don't want a lack of knowledge about your community to be the reason a senior living lead chooses another community over yours.
*The chart above illustrates where sales reps get involved in the buying process highlighting the need for an easy-to-find, educational, informative website. “57% of the purchase decision is complete before a customer even calls a supplier.” (CEB)
Use Technology to Your Advantage
In this day and age not using technology to your advantage is a way to really miss out on opportunities when it comes to converting prospects. Many of the items listed in this post can be quickly and efficiently handled using marketing automation and a high-quality senior living CRM. We recommend you to read our post about the 3 Benefits of Using Hubspot for Senior Living Companies to see how Hubspot can help your company in this area.
Instead of leaving it up to your sales staff to respond to inquiries on your website, why not set up an automated email that gets sent immediately to the prospect? The email lets them know that you've received their form submission and can also be used to further qualify the prospect by asking them questions about pricing or timeline for move-in. An automated notification from a CRM can be used to ensure that the appropriate sales member is immediately notified of a new lead. It can also be used to gather information about that prospect and the journey that they took to arrive at your website. Using form data and analytics you can learn a ton about a prospect before your sales staff even picks up the phone. And the more personalized their sales approach is the better the chances are of the senior living lead converting into a tour or new resident.
These are just a few tips you can implement to drastically improve your sales processes and conversion rates. Being quick to respond, having a process, knowing the answers, and tracking and measuring everything in CRM or marketing automation software tool will put you miles ahead of the majority of your competition. As time goes on you can refine each of these tips and customize them to the specifics of your community.
To schedule a free consultation about sales automation for senior living or to discuss the many ways marketing automation can improve your sales and marketing efforts contact us today.