By Allyssa Guccione

It’s no secret that technology is changing the senior living landscape. With new tools and updated websites, companies are upping their capabilities and investing in high-level strategies to engage potential customers.

Whether your team has hosted virtual tours in the past or not, in the world today it is more evident than ever that these options will be highly utilized by prospective clients. Here are our six tips for creating an engaging strategy for virtual senior living tours.


1. Understand your audience.

When it comes to a community tour, it is crucial to focus first and foremost on your counterpart—the prospective resident taking the tour.

The main point of the tour is to show your audience around the community while providing insights and answering questions they may have. If you are unable to pinpoint who your potential audience is, it will be highly difficult to create a strategy targeted toward attracting the best market to your tour. So be sure you start by answering crucial questions that will lead to defining your buyer persona.

When developing an understanding of your audience, you should also consider what technologies will work best with them. For example, adult children are probably very used to Zoom, but seniors might have a difficult time navigating newer, more complex software, and they may prefer an interactive walkthrough.

2. Understand potential requirements and constraints. 

As you embark on the journey of creating your virtual tour, you will want to know exactly what resources you need, along with any constraints that may hold you back before you begin. This is why it is so necessary to start with the end in mind.

Whether it be technology, budget, team members, or time, you must be aware of what will be required to achieve your mission. Having team capacity to carry out tours during—and after—regular work hours will make this virtual tour highly convenient for prospects working during a typical workday. Similarly, by providing options for prospects to navigate a self-service tour or a one-on-one tour, you will engage a wider range of people, depending upon their individual preferences.

On the other hand, don’t be afraid to state what constraints may force you to pivot. It is better to create a strategy that is realistic rather than one that is going to come with frustrations driven by consistent constraints. If you know what may be an obstacle, you can determine a roadmap to overcome those more efficiently. When determining potential requirements, consider what tour technology will most effectively integrate with your existing systems and processes. Don't try to fit a square peg in a round hole.

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3. Determine your messaging and positioning.

It’s all fun and games until no one knows there's a virtual tour option. It would be unfortunate to create a powerful strategy for your virtual tour and then have no one know it exists.

This is where strong messaging and positioning on your website comes in. Your messaging will explain to your customers how much value your product—in this case, tour—may provide them with.

Alongside messaging comes positioning. Your positioning is the segment of your strategy that will set your tour and community apart from the competition. Be sure you have a clear idea of what position you want to be in before strategizing the best way to get there.

4. Handcraft your advertising strategy.

Speaking of messaging, you’re going to need to get your message out there somehow. This is where advertising comes in.

Crafting a strategic advertising plan is what will deliver your message to the right people at the right time. Once this happens, you will be one step closer to carrying out the engaging virtual tour you set out to accomplish in the first place.

To start, go back to those buyer personas we discussed earlier and ask, “Where is my audience?” Popular areas for a senior living audience are social media groups, senior care publications, and of course Google. Knowing the “where” will set you up for success in determining the “how.”

5. Qualify prospects before taking them on the tour. 

Don’t waste time—this includes your time or anyone else's. If your prospect is not qualified to realistically move forward in the decision-making process, it isn’t useful for your team to carry out the tour. In order to respect everyone’s time, your team should take a deep dive into your audience's financial situation through form submissions or questionnaires on the website or provided by the sales team.

With that said, you need to keep the user experience in mind. You want to find the right balance between asking the right questions while not overwhelming a prospect with too many. Talk with your sales team to understand the bare minimum for qualifying a tour lead, and don’t be afraid to experiment with strategic methods for gaining that information.

6. Give the prospect your honest list of what to look for on the tour.

Your ability to answer questions openly and honestly will build trust with your audience and allow them to feel more comfortable moving forward in the decision-making process.

By providing the prospect with an agenda or a list of questions that they may want answered, you are going to create an open relationship where trust and understanding can be built. They will see you are not trying to hide anything, and they will also feel less stress or worry that they are missing anything during their time on the virtual tour. 

Use virtual senior living tours to gain new residents.

Overall, the end goal of your virtual senior living tour is to determine if you and your prospect make the perfect match. Don’t miss out on a great opportunity to make a great impression.

Focus immensely on your strategy, and watch your virtual tour utilization take off. By following these six tips as your guide, you will be sure to set yourself, your team, and your community up for success while you welcome in new residents!

Now all that’s left to do is get started.

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Allyssa Guccione

About the author

Allyssa Guccione is a Marketing Coordinator that is based out of St. Louis, Missouri. She is passionate about all things marketing strategy, social media, and design. She enjoys working with new people, staying creative, and is always striving to learn more when it comes to the digital experience. Outside of work she enjoys traveling, spending time with her huge family, and listening to live music. Read more articles by Allyssa Guccione.

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