By Sofia Pompeo
At a senior living community, it’s important to host events throughout the year. Events can help build brand awareness and they’re nice ways to invite others into your community to see everything you provide. Events are a big opportunities for the community to market itself. Some examples of events that a community can host are: educational events, open house events, happy hours, partnership events with a company in the town (such as a rehab company)—the possibilities are endless.
You may be wondering: Is hosting these events worthwhile? Is there any ROI that can come out of hosting an event? To be honest, the answer isn’t simple. For a senior care event to be efficient and achieve ROI, there are some things that need to be done.
What Does Marketing a Successful Senior Care Event Look Like?
One of the first things a community needs to figure out is how many events they want to have throughout the year. One big event per month? Smaller, more intimate events throughout each month and one big event per quarter? The decision made will set the tone on how the community will market each event and how much money the community will be willing to spend.
To market a senior care event well, there are some fundamentals that can help you get your ROI and make sure your event is as successful as possible.
First, be sure to prepare all of the collateral you need to promote the event well in advance so you aren’t scrambling a couple of weeks beforehand. A good rule of thumb is to receive all of the collateral you need a month and a half to two months in advance of the actual event.
This would include any flyers, invitations, postcards, direct mailers, and scheduled emails. You want to have all of your ducks in a row. Also, be sure that you are well-staffed for the event and prepare a backup plan in case something goes wrong (such as a staff member getting sick at the last minute).
Second, there are a couple of things you can do to ensure that you can track everything that’s promoting the event you’re hosting:
- On all collateral you hand out include a tracking phone number and a tracking URL (if applicable).
- A tracking phone number is one that forwards to the main phone number of the community. This is beneficial because when someone calls you, you’ll be able to tell what piece of collateral they received based on the number they call, and because of this, you can track how many RSVPs or calls you get from specific pieces promoting that event.
- A tracking URL (ex: www.***.com/***) allows people to RSVP on your website. You could send out an automatic “thank you” email once someone fills out the RSVP form. You may wonder how this has anything to do with ROI but it will help in the end because you will be able to see who attended your event from that exact tracking URL to see if the collateral piece performed well.
- At the event, collect everyone’s information (name, phone number, email, and so on) so you can follow up with them afterward. Follow-up is especially important when it comes to senior living, because it shows that you and your community care.
Is There Any ROI?
It’s important to track the outcomes of your event because you’ll be able to see the impact it had. For a senior living community, it’s possible that you can get multiple leads from hosting an event, which can help your ROI. Leads could turn into move-ins for a community if they are nurtured enough.
That’s why it’s key to collect attendees’ information and follow up and ask if they or their loved ones are looking to make the transition. The best ROI you could get from a community event is if someone actually moved into the community and the first touch they had with your community was at a specific event.
It’s difficult for communities to track the ROI of events they host because some do not take the right steps in marketing these events. If you use the tips provided in this blog, you will be on a better track toward seeing if your events are worthwhile by measuring how much ROI they are producing.