As state stay-at-home orders across the nation begin to relax and public spaces commence reopening, all sorts of companies, including senior living communities, are returning to a world where almost every aspect of business has changed, including how to engage with consumers.
The current marketing climate is one of perpetual disruption, requiring businesses and organizations to constantly innovate in their customer relationships, As a result, many marketing teams have been forced to rethink how they interact with prospects and adjust their content marketing strategy accordingly. But this momentous change isn’t necessarily a negative one.
“There was an amazing turnaround in marketing messaging that took place,” Bob Liodice, CEO of the Association of National Advertisers, told Marketing Dive recently. “Our analysis has shown that the relationship between consumers and brands has, in fact, strengthened.”
Taking a cue from these three companies’ examples, here are a few ways your senior living community can strengthen relationships with potential customers and leads in a time when the only thing that’s for certain is change:
State Your Greater Purpose
One reason consumer relations have improved during the pandemic is because more businesses are learning to tune in with what consumers care about — not what they don’t — and adapting their content marketing strategy to meet those issues. According to Brand Channel, Unilever caught up with the current moment by establishing its Climate and Nature fund, which promises to invest one billion Euros over the next decade in environmental projects to improve the “health of the planet”.
Unilever CEO Alan Jope said that, right now, while the world was rightly focused on COVID-19 and racial justice issues, climate change should not be forgotten. It’s no longer enough for companies to see their duty as only to sell products, he said; consumers also want their favorite brands to have a “purpose.”
Be an Authentic Thought Leader
In this new marketing climate, companies also need to serve as authentic thought leaders by sharing their knowledge, being genuine and providing their audience with information they need. According to content marketing company Influence & Co., Yale University professor Laurie Santos launched her popular “Psychology and the Good Life” class in 2018 in response to stress, depression and anxiety among students.
Then, during the pandemic, Santos adapted her curriculum as a free Coursera course, “The Science of Well-Being,” so she could offer access to a wider audience that might benefit from learning coping skills. By allowing her to offer this helpful content for free, Yale University showed that, as a brand, it believes in sharing important information to benefit the community and the greater good.
Connect With Your Audience Where They Are
For senior living companies and others, it is important to create content that connects with your audience members where they are right now, rather than just selling them a product or an experience. As shared on Influence & Co., while the world was engaged in its first months of social distancing, Swedish furniture giant IKEA created an ad that encouraged people to reconnect with their homes.
This was a relevant message that connected to IKEA’s audience by encouraging them to find comfort in their own homes; more importantly, it didn’t try to directly sell them anything, establishing themselves as a helpful and compassionate resource in times of change.