Marketing events are a goldmine for attracting both highly motivated prospects and referral sources to your senior living community. If you don’t have an active calendar of marketing events in your sales toolkit, you’re missing out!
Planning and executing effective marketing events doesn’t require a small army of event planners and staff. These 6 steps will help you successfully plan your next marketing event.
- Think Small. An effective marketing event doesn’t need to a) be elaborate, and b) draw a massive crowd. Coming out of the pandemic, many people are still shy when it comes to large crowds, so small group events will still draw attendees. Events like lunch n’ learns, educational speakers, art classes, cooking demos, outdoor gatherings, etc. are in this small event category. Promote the fact that it’s a small event by promoting the intimacy, i.e. don’t be afraid to say that space is extremely limited.
- Plan Ahead. Last-minute events typically aren’t successful. Why? First, just about every event has a lot of moving pieces, many of which have lead time involved. Second, prospects and professional referral sources need some advance notice get it on their calendar. Don’t go overboard though, 2-3 weeks is sweet spot between the time they are invited to the date of the event.
- Hold Events Outside. Whenever possible, take advantage of fresh air and the beauty of the warmer months to bring people together outdoors. Have a back-up plan in place for rain/weather contingencies though. For example, be ready to pivot to a drive through grab-and-go event in which the hors d’oeuvres you were going to serve are now bagged take-out style!
- Bring the Event to Those Who Can’t Attend. Do you have a few folks who expressed interest but cannot attend due to a conflict or other reason? Offer to record the presentation, deliver the meal, enter them for a chance to win a door prize, etc. Did someone RSVP but not show up? Give them the same service!
- Extend Invitations Personally. Don’t rely on postcards, social media posts, or mass emails only. People respond much better to a personal invitation. Invite prospects and referral sources in person or by phone calls (leaving a voice mail counts) first, then follow up with video message, email, or text.
- Text a Reminder. We all have forgotten about an event that we said we would attend. Want to boost attendance to your event? Text a reminder to your RSVPs the day before the event.
Finally, as I’m writing this article in August, the time to be planning your fall and holiday events is NOW! Don’t let the prime opportunity to hold an open house, giftwrapping party, after-5 mixer, canned goods or toy drive event, or other seasonal networking event go by – use our 6 steps above and start planning your upcoming events today.
Ready to take your senior living sales success to a new level by elevating your executive directors to community sales leaders? Grow Your Occupancy provides the sales coaching, accountability coaching, and sales-skill coaching essential to fill that important role. Learn more about Grow Your Occupancy’s sales coaching and training here. Or book your free 30-minute consultation today.