Learn 3 Keys how a Senior Living Community Achieved 98.4% Occupancy!

Are you looking for the secrets to occupancy success?  How can you fill up your retirement community now?  Maybe you work at a stand-alone assisted living, CCRC or independent living community?

Here are three keys being utilized by a 98.4% occupied assisted living community sales person!

1) Referrals Through Outreach – The assisted living sales person built relationships with hospital discharge planners, skilled nursing/rehab social workers and other assisted livings that provided lighter care.   The relationships were built by meeting each of these people monthly and offering interesting/fun events for referrals to visit his assisted living on a monthly basis.  When referrals toured his assisted living community they could experience firsthand how happy the residents were and see the quality of the care.

When an assisted living resident was suddenly out-placed to a hospital the resident family members might ask which skilled nursing or rehabilitation center would be the best for the recuperation of the parent.   The community could share knowledgeable communication about the available choices, because they visit them regularly.  When the family member selected a choice for their parent (with the doctor’s input of course and after visiting at least two choices), the sales person would call to their referral choice and let them know what the family selected.  Outreach sources quickly realized the assisted living community cared about their residents even when they weren’t currently residing in the community and now their healthcare referrals have increased 50%.

2) First Impressions – If a guest called ahead, the sale person would walk the possible tour path to pick up an accidentally dropped Kleenex on the floor or straighten up by putting away all the walkers by the front door.  He’d train the front desk staff to be welcoming – by standing up and greeting all guests with a smile and a handshake.  He would have chocolate chip cookies baking right by the front entrance, so it would be the first thing they smelled walking in the building.   There would always be a framed sign on the front desk welcoming the guest by name.  Checking the parking lot for cans and cigarette butts was always on his list too.

3) Orchestrating a Great Tour – When new people wanted to tour the community, he did everything within his power to make sure it would be a great experience. Instead of giving everyone the exact same tour, he would tailor it to the guest’s needs and interests (after he spent some time sitting down with them to find out exactly what prompted the visit and what they hoped to see).   He went out of his way to introduce key staff to the guests, like the dining director, administrator or director of nursing (again it would depend on their needs).  When he showed an apartment, it would be rent ready and appeal to their needs and budget.  Then he would sit down again with them (before they left), to find out if they had any additional questions and to offer to take the deposit check for the apartment they liked the best (He always asked for a deposit).  If they decided not to deposit, he assumed they would, when he made a follow up call the next day.

Congrats to my friend and colleague for 98.4% occupancy.  He was just promoted to a larger community.  It has been my pleasure to coach and mentor him!

Diane Twohy Masson is the author of “Senior Housing Marketing – How to Increase Your Occupancy and Stay Full,” available for sale at Amazon.com.  For volume discount pricing or to inquire on Diane’s availability to coach and/or train your senior living marketing team (CCRC, independent living, assisted living, skilled nursing or memory care) – please call: 206-853-6655 or email diane@marketing2seniors.net.  For more information: Twitter: @market2seniors Web: www.marketing2seniors.net Blog: http://marketing2seniors.net/blog/

1 Comment

  1. Ms. Masson makes some great points in this posting. We have found that attention to detail and the focus on “the little things” makes a rewarding difference for your tours and visitors. If they leave your community so impressed with your attention to detail, your story will be told with enthusiasm and passion! Thanks for these reminders!
    RonnDa Peters


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