How investing in online reputation can drive moves
The reputation of an organization of seniors precedes it, especially if that reputation is online.
The internet is teeming with information about your communities, and potential residents and their families make purchasing decisions every day based on what that information says about an organization. Google searches in particular provide prospects with tons of information that collectively builds the reputation of each community.
A tech company is helping senior living marketers use that reputation to increase visibility and engagement.
Reputation, based in Redwood City, Calif., Merges all the elements online to give senior housing operators a single reputation score, which acts as a key performance indicator (KPI) for senior living brands. The score is created by measuring several factors that Google weighs in its search algorithm, including:
- Volume, length, recency and sentiment of customer reviews
- Star ratings
- Business response rate
- Data accuracy
Here’s a look at how reputation-driven online reputation can fuel more moves and success in senior lives – and why this type of online reputation management can drive massive increases in conversions per senior. versus a brand that simply engages with customers through its website. .
Improve transparency to strengthen online reputation
Based in St. Louis, Missouri, Cedarhurst owns and operates 53 communities in nine states with six communities currently under construction. He came to Reputation in 2018 to improve his digital footprint and the reputation that goes with it.
“I think for us, especially in early 2020, there was an added layer of anxiety and fear in the lives of seniors,” says Kelly Reed, chief revenue officer for Cedarhurst’s parent company, The Dover. Companies. “The consumer of uneducated adult children does not know the difference between a skilled nursing facility, rehabilitation or senior housing, and puts it all together in ‘a nursing home.’ Giving a transparency lens was essential to keep moving in. “
Since then, Cedarhurst has been creative in increasing transparency and improving the consumer experience, with two innovative policies since October 2020. One of these efforts is called ‘Pair to Prepare’, which adult children can move into. a community of Cedarhurst with their loved one for five years. days.
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This helps adult children ease the transition for parents and also allows them to experience community life, putting them at ease with the quality of care and services.
The other major policy is “The Cedarhurst Promise,” which promises a refund if a resident chooses to move within the first 60 days because of their dissatisfaction.
“It’s very important to our organization: we don’t want income from families that we haven’t met,” says Reed. “Cedarhurst’s promise is based on this transparency that we want to offer the adult child. And that transparency starts online. “
Reputation as a KPI: Expert knowledge of Google and other tips
Tangible, consumer-centric policies such as “Pair to Prepare” and “Cedarhurst Promise” are the low-tech, high-touch ways Cedarhurst implements its brand. But the consumer’s journey to senior care begins much earlier: online.
A 2014 Software Advice Study showed that 82% of people reviewing assisted living facilities used online reviews to guide their decisions – and that was seven years ago.
Reviews, of course, are one of the main components of the reputation score, which becomes an influential KPI for consumers. This is where understanding Google’s Reputation and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) comes in.
“Not only does a high volume of recent reviews add credibility with those seeking care, it also helps you rank higher in local searches, as an average rating of 4.5 stars out of 60 recent reviews will tend to be higher than a 5-star rating from two old journals, ”says Annie Haarmann, Head of Strategy and Consulting, Health and Life Sciences at Reputation.
As Reed learned, these reviews, along with the polls, are at the heart of the online survey adult children now do for their parents. She and the Cedarhurst team saw the pandemic as an opportunity to adapt to the changing shopping habits among these online researchers.
“Adult children have become much more educated and focused on reviewing poll results and star ratings,” she says. “These consumers research and trust the feedback from residents and their families who hold us accountable.”
As Cedarhurst introduced more of its reputation building initiatives online, its consumer reviews increased in volume and improved their reviews. These high-level strategies responded directly to the adult children’s needs and wants and perspective; as such, the satisfaction of residents and families has increased, which is reflected in Cedarhurst’s online reviews.
Cedarhurst is also investing in an internal feedback program to help improve retention during a time when employee burnout is high for the industry. This feedback-success cycle creates another boost for their reviews – and another boost for consumer satisfaction.
Permanent increase in conversions – for a better return on investment
A perfect reputation score is 1000. The best in class for the senior living industry is around 933. Cedarhurst last month upped his score above 800, placing him in a rare company. . They did this by using reputation to identify areas where they could optimize online visibility, increase reviews, and improve sentiment.
“Google is now the starting point for consumers seeking care for their loved ones, and increasingly, these consumers convert directly in Google results, on what is called the Google Knowledge Panel,” says Haarmann. “In an overall analysis of our customers, we found that these results, known as Google My Business listings, generate up to ten times more conversions than a brand’s website.”
For Cedarhurst, reputation score is a key indicator of success. And as Cedarhurst’s reputation score has increased over the past 24 months, so have the accommodations.
“I can tell you we’re having a good month,” Reed says.
The ROI for reputation management can be much better than the ROI for traditional senior life tactics such as third-party referral sites. Haarmann notes that the typical fee for senior referral sites is around a month’s rent, or around $ 4,000. This price converts only one family, most of which will still inspect a vendor’s online ratings and reviews.
“On the other hand, if you invest in reputation management, you establish a permanent and credible presence for your sites at a much lower conversion cost,” says Haarmann. “In fact, most of our senior living clients find that their annual investment in managing the reputation of a senior living community can be less than half of what they would invest in a single referral per year.”
Adds Reed: “I can’t understand how an organization wouldn’t have its reputation being part of its primary strategy in today’s environment. If it is not positive online, this investigation does not take place. “
This article is sponsored by Reputation. To learn more about how to improve your online reputation with potential buyers, visit Reputation.com.