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By: Emily Bezak
Are seniors using social media? The short answer is a tall yes.
Adults over 65 is the fastest-growing demographic on social media. And seniors not only sign-up to see photos of their grandkids – they’re using social media on their smartphones regularly, watching videos, and finding business pages too. In fact, higher-income seniors with propensity to spend are the ones using social media more often.
In today’s connected and digital world, brands must take their marketing beyond promoting their products and services. Social media provides businesses with the perfect opportunity to engage with target audiences, flex their creative and experimental muscles, and create a community among nearby businesses and within industries.
Social Media for Senior Brands: 5 Tips for Success
Tip 1: Tell your brand’s story through the successes of your employees.
When it comes to senior living communities, your brand is your workforce. So, use that treasure chest of stories to your advantage and feature your employees on social media. Prospective and current clients and their families love to put a face to their care provider, and your employees will love the recognition. Many companies in all types of industries use this tactic to help grow their social media audiences with these high-engagement posts and keep their brand name top-of-mind as your prospective customers move – and scroll – through their day.
Tip 2: Respond to, escalate, and share patient reviews and comments.
More than four in five of patients use online reviews to evaluate physicians during their decision-making process. And patient reviews are so important, that almost half of patients would select an out-of-network doctor over a doctor in their network with lower patient ratings. Facebook business pages are built to collect reviews easily, and those ratings help brands’ rank higher on search engines (hello, SEO!) since reviews can count toward your page update frequency. So be sure to encourage your patients to provide reviews for your facility online and through social media. This gives you access to patient testimonials you can use in future marketing efforts.* Of course, when you ask for feedback, you should continue the conversation by thanking reviewers, escalating complaints or issues, and responding to questions or confusion around a service or product.
*Be sure to reach out privately for appropriate permissions and approvals to comply with HIPAA privacy laws.
Tip 3: Make events and facility tours more fun and interactive with multiple social media tools and post formats.
Nursing home marketing plans have always included a focus on event marketing. From holiday celebrations to facility tours or community mixers, it’s important to derive as much ROI from these efforts as possible. At minimum, you should share your event on social media to increase awareness, encourage RSVPs, and recap your event afterward to keep the momentum going.
Here are some other innovative ideas for promoting your senior living facility events on social media:
Tip 4: Reach out to your community.
In marketing, it’s easy to forget that communicating with your audience is a two-way street. From responding quickly to messages on Facebook to escalating poor reviews, social media serves as your company’s Suggestion Box without the privacy of a lid. Balancing your social media strategy with promoting and engaging your audience ensures your followers will value the content you provide, and ultimately translate into direct or indirect revenue through new residents, referrals, or word-of-mouth in the community you serve.
Here are some ways to build an online community for your brand using social media:
Social Media for Assisted Living Facilities: Final Thoughts
Marketing a senior living community can be challenging – from privacy concerns to the sheer number of stakeholders in the complex process of providing and receiving senior residential care. Social media can provide a platform for talking directly to your audience, telling the compelling stories of your work, and having a bit of fun.
These tips for marketing your healthcare brand should provide your team a foundation to build a thorough social media strategy for your senior brand. However, sometimes it pays to talk to an expert to guide your team to help you embark on new territory with your digital marketing. Or, maybe you need an extra pair of marketing hands? A marketing agency that specializes in assisted living marketing may be exactly what you need to take your brand to the next level.