All you have is the present to increase your occupancy. Resident holiday parties, festivities, live entertainment and decorating the retirement community can distract senior living sales from the purpose of filling the building. It’s easy to get stinking thinking and decide that no one wants to move right now and every senior is busy preparing for Christmas. Wrong!!!
If you are reading this blog today, it is not too late to get humming again. Let me give you some current examples from two successful Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC) in Southern California:
- 11 CCRC move-ins scheduled during December at one CCRC and another has six move-ins set.
- A $5000 deposit was collected yesterday for a December CCRC move-in.
- One senior living sales person, who had 139 calls for the week said, “This is the best time of year to make calls and learn vital information about prospective seniors families.”
- When a senior came in for a holiday event, they shared that it was their holiday meal, because they had sat at home eating a “Lean Cuisine” on Thanksgiving.
- Another senior shared that this was her last year to host Christmas for the entire family. She was exhausted and said she was ready to sell her home and move in early 2014.
- Many calls said, “I am not ready, let me get through the holidays and let’s talk the first week in January.” (Whom will this senior be talking about with his or her adult children over the holidays? The family will most likely come in to tour around Christmas.)
You can learn so much if you make calls this time of year. Don’t be a scrooge and not believe. Be Tiny Tim and make a lonely seniors day by reaching out with a holiday phone call. Create an emotional connection with a senior now and watch how quickly they move into your senior living community in 2014.
Please share your successes, failures or comment below to join the conversation and interact with other senior living professionals on what is currently being effective to increase occupancy on a nationwide basis.
Diane Twohy Masson is the author of “Senior Housing Marketing – How to Increase Your Occupancy and Stay Full,” available at Amazon.com with a 5-star rating. The book is required reading at George Mason University as a part of its marketing curriculum. Within this book, the author developed a sales & marketing method with 12 keys to help senior living providers increase their occupancy. Masson developed this expertise as a marketing consultant, sought-after blogger for senior housing and a regional marketing director of continuing care retirement communities in several markets. She has also been a corporate director of sales and a mystery shopper for independent living, assisted living, memory care and skilled care nursing communities in multiple states. Most recently Masson was recruited to consult for two debt-free Continuing Care Retirement Communities in Southern California – Freedom Village in Lake Forest and The Village in Hemet, California. Interestingly, this career started when she was looking for a place for her own mom and helped her loved one transition through three levels of care.