The adult children of aging parents play an important role in the search and choice of a fitting senior living community for their loved ones. Statistics show that 73% of adult children were involved in their parent’s transition to a community. Therefore, senior living communities should not only consider the prospective resident when developing their senior living marketing materials, but also cater directly to the adult children who have a big say on the final decision.
Adult children go through three different stages when helping to find a suitable senior living community for a loved one. During each stage the adult child has different problems and needs and it's important that you provide the appropriate information based on whichever stage they're in at that time. Let’s look at each stage of the adult child’s senior living buyer’s journey and see what your community can do to address the needs with effective content marketing.
Breaking Down the Senior Living Buyer's Journey Via Effective Content Marketing
Stage 1: Awareness Stage
At the first stage, the adult child becomes aware of the special needs of his/her aging parents. Besides normal aging, seniors may suffer from health conditions that require assistance in taking medicines, self-care and preparing meals. But needs are not limited to the physical. They may also long for companionship and other social activities due to feelings of isolation. Typically some type of trigger event might cause an adult child to be pushed into the awareness stage of the senior living buyers process. Maybe their loved on fell down recently. Maybe they're noticing them becoming more and more forgetful. Or maybe they just notice that their aging loved one is having a tough time keeping up their house and seems to need more and more attention. Whatever the trigger is the awareness stage is marked by the adult child realizing that there's a problem that senior housing might be able to solve.
During this stage the adult child will start to go online and search for answers to the problem they're having. As a marketing or sales director at a local senior living community you want your website to do the best possible job it can answering these questions. Whatever it is this content should be geared at an adult child who's just starting in their information gathering process online.
Example Blog Post Title: "How to know if my parent needs senior living."
Example Downloadable E-book Title: "Tips for Helping My Parents Age Gracefully."
"Today’s buyers will navigate up to 70% of their path to purchase alone."
Stage 2: Consideration Stage
In the second stage, adult children are beginning to look online for communities and services that could provide the needs of their loved ones. In this stage they are aware of a problem and want to start reviewing solutions and gaining a deeper understanding of what's needed. During this phase they might have honed in the fact that they need senior living and are comparing the different available options and starting to narrow down their local options. With content for this phase you'll want to show how your community is the best choice.
Example Website Page: In depth case study highlighting a happy, successful resident at your community. This page should have pictures, testimonials, and be easily shareable with potential residents
Example PDF document: A document showing how your community is an industry leader and what sets it apart from other communities. This could include any awards you may have received and other testimonials.
Example Video Content: A video tour of your community highlighting all the features and amenities. This video is meant to showcase your community and give your prospect a reason to want to book an on-site visit.
*This E-book is a great example of a mid-bottom of the funnel content piece for adult children. Holiday did a great job of creating an e-book that any adult child would find valuable.
Stage 3: Decision Stage
In the third stage, we’ll see the adult children making a decision to choose a senior living community after diligently doing their research. This is finally the point that they may reach out to a member of your sales staff to book a personal visit. At this point a large portion of the buying decision has been made by adult children. They just want a final nudge to push them over the edge and call to come in for a visit. For this stage you'll want to gather content to re-enforce that they're making the right choice in choosing your community. Get them in for a tour and highlight your communities best assets.
Example Content: Online Testimonials and Google Reviews from happy residents
Example Calls to Action: "Book a Tour" or "Speak to Our Community Sales Director" should be the CTA's that the prospect gets at this phase. If they receive these messages too early in the process they may not be ready and you run the risk of being seen as too pushy or salesy and lose the prospect completely.
*This is a great testimonial example from New Perspective Senior Living. A testimonial like this re-enforces trust and helps assist the adult child in feeling comfortable moving their parent into one of their communities.
Understanding the journey that adult children go through when their aging loved ones needs a lifestyle solution like senior living is very important. The closer you can match your conversations and the content on your website with the stage that the prospect is in, the more they will trust your community and the more likely you'll be to become their leading choice when they're ready to make a purchase decision. If you'd like to implement a content marketing strategy at your company but don't have the time or internal resources you should consider outsourcing to a specialized inbound marketing agency. Click the CTA below to learn how to outsource senior living content marketing and see how it can be much more efficient and cost-effective compared to doing it in-house at your company.