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Greystone Hosts Sales School, Development Conference

Greystone hosted two important events at its Dallas-area offices this October — Sales School and the Annual Development Conference. These events are part of an ongoing effort to gather senior living professionals from different disciplines and different areas around the country to spend time sharing ideas and talking about how to improve at creating quality living environments for today’s seniors.


Sales School

More than 50 senior living marketers met in October for the Greystone Sales School. Sales School is designed as an annual opportunity for both new and experienced marketers to spend time discussing what’s going on at their communities and learning about the latest trends and innovations in:

  • Referrals
  • Opening a community
  • Development cycles
  • Customer profiles
  • Adult child influencers
  • First impressions and visitor experience
  • Lead management
  • Wait list options
  • Digital inquiries
  • Anticipating objections
  • Much more

Development Conference

This year’s Development Conference focused on one theme: How can we all work better together? Development of a senior living community includes a development consultant, architect, contractor, interior designer, engineer and many other professionals. As with any complicated process, there are roadblocks and challenges along the way. This year’s education sessions were focused more on dialogue among attendees and the objective of improving teamwork across the process.

Look for more content next month as these senior living development professionals continue to talk through ways to improve efficiency and effectiveness in their work. See photos from the Annual Greystone Development Conference in the gallery below.

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Recap: Sales School 2014

Class was in session earlier this fall as Greystone hosted our annual Sales School for professionals new to the senior living industry. The seminar provided advice and techniques to grow occupancy at every level of care by focusing on sales and database training, resident needs, and an introduction to the Greystone team and our service offerings.

Roughly 25 marketing professionals from across the country attended this intimate gathering. Sales School kicked off with remarks by Greystone President and Chief Operating Officer Mark Andrews, who stressed the importance of marketing by likening it to the engine that powers high-performance sports cars. The general session covered a variety of topics, including a Top 10 list of marketing ideas from GlynnDevins, the importance of data and reporting, REPS, residency agreements and cross-selling.

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On cross-selling, our presenters focused on the different approaches one must take when selling each level of care. A prospective client’s thought process varies at each level, meaning sales counselors should tailor unique questions and delivery styles in order to guide the right conversation.

“Learning to feel confident in our process and delivery is important to earning the respect of each of our customers,” said Mindy Cheek, Greystone vice president – marketing services, “and ultimately, it will drive the overall census of each level of care.”

Breakout sessions were divided into health care- and independent living-oriented groups. In health care, attendees learned how to develop an outreach plan for lead generation and how to apply a consistent and effective sales process across multiple audiences – adult children, seniors and spouses.

In the independent living sessions, attendees learned how to overcome objections, winning a “permission-based” sale and how using tangible items – in this case, candy – can help you build a more financially persuasive and compelling case for entrance-fee CCRC’s.

Sales School also featured nightly networking outings, including a trivia night that put attendees’ pop culture expertise to the test.

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Top 10 marketing ideas for senior living communities

GlynnDevins stopped by Sales School to share its tried-and-true list of effective marketing techniques in the digital age. Susan Bogan, EVP Client Relations, and Lisa Zieren, Senior Account Supervisor, gave the audience plenty to think about as they asked if their communities were actively using each method.

Onto the Top 10…

#10. Believe in you. Get behind your community and what you’re selling.

#9. Content is key. Create relevant content that engages a well-defined audience.

#8. Seeing is believing. Leverage image galleries and videos – from agency-produced to those you shoot with your smartphone – as much as possible on your community’s website.

#7. Don’t waste a good first impression. Optimize your website across desktop and mobile platforms and provide easy options for lead conversion.

#6. Be hostess with the mostest. Take advantage of every touch point when you host an event. Use large events as a platform to make an initial inquiry for your community, and small events to make a personal connection with someone.

#5. Be a champion for chatter. Referral programs strengthen your brand and are a cost-efficient way to drive sales.

#4. Connect with the right people. Seventy-five to 80 percent of a community’s website traffic can come through search, especially in the adult child demo.

#3. Let them know you’re interested. Don’t be coy. Try initiatives like an on boarding program/email campaign so that interested parties receive information about the community on a regular basis.

#2. Find the right fit. Lead scoring helps you target individuals based on specific criteria (financials, resident profile, level of engagement) who are the most likely to buy today.

#1. Follow up fast. When you receive an online lead, treat it like a golden opportunity and attempt to respond with 24 hours. Marketing automation allows you to instantly send a welcome email with pre-populated, relevant content.

Get more tips from GlynnDevins by checking out INSIGHTS their senior living marketing blog.