Digital channels offer an invaluable opportunity to reinforce relationships with current residents, connect with their loved ones, engage new leads in the area, and further solidify the standing of your community. The challenge is learning how to leverage these digital resources as part of an effective strategy that integrates both online and offline opportunities into one unified mission: connecting with people who could become brand ambassadors — or even residents and their family members — of your senior living community.
In this blog post, we’ll discuss how to create strong social media campaigns designed specifically for senior living communities that have tangible effects on engagement.
How should senior living communities use social media?
As society becomes increasingly connected through technology, it’s important for senior living communities to adapt accordingly. That’s where social media marketing comes in. By utilizing platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, senior living facilities can reach a wider audience and cultivate a stronger online presence. Social media also provides a valuable tool for engaging with residents and their families, sharing updates and news, and promoting events and activities. However, this type of marketing can also present challenges, such as ensuring privacy and security for residents and adhering to industry regulations. To get around this, senior living communities can focus content around their staff, amenities, education (such as addressing frequently asked questions), promoting events, etc. And to be sure, there is nothing long with using images of residents — in fact, we encourage it! As long as you have received permission from them and their family to use their images (which could be a part of your move-in paperwork).
How to grow your senior living community’s social media presence — the right way!
Most communities have probably set up their Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and even LinkedIn channels. However, simply creating an online presence isn’t enough. The content you share must be engaging, informative, and relevant to your target audience. Whether you’re sharing upcoming events, news updates or highlighting local business, your content should be interesting and valuable to your followers. To achieve this, it’s essential to develop a strategy that aligns with your community’s goals and values. By doing so, you’ll accelerate your online growth, build stronger relationships with your community, and maintain a thriving online presence that’s relevant and engaging. When posting, be sure to encourage discussion, likes, and shares… these actions allow your community’s page to show up more frequently on most social networks.
Here are some tips for using social media to market senior living communities:
Need a step-by-step plan? Here are some quick ways to get your social media plan off the ground.
1. Create a Social Media Strategy:
Before diving into social media marketing, it’s important to have a strategy in place. Consider your target audience, goals, and key messages. Make sure your messaging is consistent across all social media platforms. Think about the types of content you can start posting right away, and how that content can tie back to your overall goals.
2. Utilize Multiple Platforms:
There are a variety of social media platforms available, and it’s important to use multiple platforms to reach different audiences. Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are popular platforms for seniors, while LinkedIn can be useful for reaching adult children who may be helping their parents with their search for a senior living community.
3. Highlight Community Events:
Senior living communities offer a variety of events and activities for their residents, and social media is a great way to promote these events and showcase the community’s lifestyle. Consider creating Facebook events for community events and sharing photos and videos on Instagram and Twitter.
4. Share Resident Stories:
Highlighting the stories of current residents can be a powerful marketing tool. Share resident testimonials and success stories on social media to showcase the community’s welcoming environment and sense of community.
5. Connect with Local Businesses and Organizations:
Building relationships with local businesses and organizations can help to expand your community’s reach. Share their content on your social media pages and engage with their pages to build a strong network of support. Partnerships that begin online can easily translate into a real-world relationship!
6. Utilize Online Reviews:
Online reviews are a valuable resource for potential residents and their families. Encourage residents to leave reviews on Google, Yelp, and Facebook, and respond to all reviews (positive and negative) in a professional and timely manner.
Summing It Up: Best Practices for Managing Social Media for Senior Living Communities
While this may seem like a lot of effort, remember that the most important step is to get started! Social media is something that can evolve and grow overtime, and usually just doing something is better than nothing.
Remember to keep our best practices in mind! First, it’s important to set clear goals and metrics for success. This will help you measure the impact of your efforts and adjust your strategy accordingly. You should also establish a consistent brand voice and messaging that aligns with your community’s values and mission. Engaging with your audience is crucial, so make sure to respond to comments and messages in a timely manner. Finally, be sure to track and analyze your social media data to understand what’s working and what’s not, so that you can continue to refine your approach over time.
While social media can be a powerful marketing tool, it’s important to remember that building a strong community also requires offline efforts. Hosting open houses, participating in community events, and building relationships with local businesses can all help to create a strong sense of community within and outside of the senior living community, and social media can serve to amplify the reach of these efforts.
All that being said, at Dovetail, we recognize the work it requires to undertake social media management for your senior living community. Luckily, we have content resources and team members who specialize in creating engaging social media content, or senior living and many other market verticals. Interested in learning more? Contact us today!