By Sofia Pompeo

The senior living industry has been going through many changes since March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Even though in April communities had experienced a 22 percent decrease in move-ins, they have also had fewer move-outs, averaging a 15 percent decrease year-to-date. That being the case, sales and marketing metrics have shifted from the norm to better support communities. Because of this, you need to figure out the key metrics for your organization that will create the most success.

Naturally, as a senior living company you want your occupancy rates high, or increasing as often as possible. We are going to dive into some specific senior care sales and marketing metrics that you should follow so you can track your occupancy rates. But first, there are a few overall key performance indicator (KPI) strategies to keep in mind:

  1. Define goals that are achievable.
  2. Determine what’s moving the needle.
  3. Be ready to pivot at any given time.
  4. Understand your conversion rates to inform your strategy.

What is a KPI?

A KPI is a metric that can be tracked to measure your progress in trying to reach your defined business goals. To help fully achieve your desired business goals, you must track KPIs effectively.

Which are the crucial senior sales and marketing metrics?

Once your business goals are clearly defined, you can start tracking your metrics. Increasing your senior care occupancy rates is very important in this industry, so here are five crucial metrics that you should track so you can hit that goal:

Increase your number of MQLs

It’s obvious that conversions are very critical for this industry, but in order to get a lot of conversions, you need to drive a lot of traffic. Setting a goal to increase new contacts (marketing qualified leads, or MQLs) is a good place to start. Look at your MQL number from the previous year and set a realistic goal for where you’d like the number to be at the end of the current year. 

Increase your number of SQLs

This metric (sales qualified lead, or SQL) provides you with a look at the number of potential customers who become sales opportunities. By tracking this metric, you are able to determine some of the strengths and weaknesses of your sales pipeline system and your lead generation.

Improve your MQL-to-SQL conversion rate

MQL-to-SQL conversion rate is the percentage of MQLs that actually get converted into SQLs. Tracking this metric is one of the best ways to determine your lead quality. It also helps to identify how well your marketing team is qualifying leads. You want to make sure you have a solid and stable sales pipeline in this industry.

Improve your SQL-to-opportunity conversion rate

This sales metric is vital because you want to track the people that you do deem qualified when they become an actual opportunity (when this is an indication that a potential deal can be made and you can turn that SQL into an actual customer). The more SQLs in the pipeline, the greater the chance is for an opportunity to occur.

Improve your opportunity-to-move-in conversion rate

From start to finish, your main goal is to convert the contact into a customer, which will also increase revenue for your business. In this case, a customer is someone who moves into your senior living community. Also, more move-ins means your senior care occupancy rates will increase. When you have more potential customers, you are able to hopefully turn them into an actual customer. If your conversion rate is high, then you know your sales and marketing efforts were aligned, working to move them from an opportunity to a customer.

Are you ready to learn how to set realistic, seasonally adjusted senior care  marketing performance goals? Download our free worksheet to enter your data and  see web traffic, lead, and move-in projections.

How can I align my marketing efforts to my KPIs?


Increase your number of MQLs

Benchmark traffic and engagement with content—this will indicate if you’re attracting people to the sales funnel. Here you are going to want to attract top-of-funnel leads and new contacts through blogging and social media, such as Facebook. You’ll want to show new contacts that your senior living company is a top thought leader in the industry, and that you are able to provide educational content. Utilizing Facebook is a great idea to show what’s going on in your communities as well, and you’ll be able to interact with potential leads. If you do go this route, be sure to have an editorial calendar to help with your social media posts, and have someone dedicated to tracking social media comments, engaging with others, and so on.

Increase your number of SQLs

It’s not a secret that paid search is one of the best ways to raise brand awareness and acquire new leads. Be sure you’re taking advantage of paid search for sales-ready leads. You should definitely be using Google AdWords for your company and communities, and you can try out Bing Ads.

Improve your MQL-to-SQL conversion rate

It’s very critical that you nurture your MQLs to get them to be SQLs. You never want your leads to become stale—keep nurturing them throughout their Buyer’s Journey. Show your prospects that your company is providing informative and educational content that they’ll find helpful. You should have workflows set up in place to help with this initiative. Try out corporate versus community-specific lead nurtures, and track each to see how effective they are.

Improve your SQL-to-opportunity conversion rate

To improve upon this metric there are a few things you can do. You can examine your conversion rates by various sources:

  • Organic, paid search, and paid social: Tracking by these sources helps you determine where your budget is most effectively spent for maximum return on investment (ROI).
  • Integrated marketing for offline campaigns: Tracking URLs and phone numbers is crucial for determining how non-digital leads are finding and interacting with your brand. This will also inform your budget strategy.
  • Systems integration: Ensuring your marketing and sales systems play nice together is important to producing good KPI data and closed-loop reporting.

You’ll want to be sure to invest in channels that are delivering higher-converting SQLs.

It’s also possible that for each metric, you evaluate your sales process and see if you need to make any improvements.

Improve your opportunity-to-move-in conversion rate

To get your opportunities to turn into actual customers you may want to invest in sales enablement. Sales enablement provides your sales team with more resources that they need so they can close more deals. Another idea is to consider storytelling to move opportunities past emotional hurdles that they may have when considering the commitment to a senior living facility.

Your end goal is to drive revenue for your senior living business, and by following these tips, you should be able to do so. Focus on the sales and marketing metrics that matter to your business specifically to increase your senior care occupancy rates. These five metrics will help your overall marketing strategy and lead you in the right direction for success.

Seasonally-Adjusted-Worksheet-to-Track-Your-Marketing-Metrics-cover

Adjust your senior care marketing and revenue goals for seasonality with this

Seasonally Adjusted Worksheet to Track Your Marketing Metrics

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Sofia Pompeo

About the author

Sofia Pompeo is an Inbound Marketing Senior Specialist for SmartBug. She has had previous experience providing marketing solutions for clients in different industries, developing and executing social media content and implementing inbound marketing campaigns. She really enjoys utilizing every aspect of HubSpot. Read more articles by Sofia Pompeo.

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