Why Senior Housing should care about Adult Children
September 4, 2019
As a senior housing operator, if you’re limiting your marketing to seniors themselves, then you are missing an opportunity to connect with a highly influential audience. In the effort to provide comfort and care for their aging parents, adult children have become key decision-makers in the transition to senior housing. More specifically, adult daughters are the ones conducting the most research and making the most inquiries, making it beneficial to tailor your messaging to address their concerns.
Understanding the concerns of the adult child
While the ultimate needs of adult children are not so different from that of their parents, it is important for a senior housing operator to understand not only what they are looking for, but how they see themselves in the context of this journey.
Some adult children may be primary caregivers, and many may be caring for their own families and simply cannot handle the added stress. One study, conducted by AgingCare, revealed that more than 34 percent of adult children consider themselves the only ones qualified to look after their parents. These are all critical aspects that should be considered when determining your marketing strategy. Here are a few items that you should keep in mind…
This is an emotional decision
When seeking out senior housing for a parent, adult children are often looking for a residential experience that they could see themselves enjoying. They are looking for a quality experience for their parents, one that can offer the lifestyle and amenities they can imagine that they would want if they were in the same situation.
Reduce their stress
Stress is a significant factor. To alleviate stress, simplifying the process is essential. To close the gap between motivations and the unknown, answer your most frequently asked questions in your outbound marketing. The more questions you can answer without them having to pick up the phone, the better.
Acknowledge and empathize
The journey should be addressed. Your outreach should be reassuring and insightful, letting them know that what they are experiencing is understandable and that they are not alone.
Support their needs
Many adult children are concerned that they are the only ones who can adequately care for their parents. They know they need to move forward, but they don’t know how. Show them how your community can provide an extension of what they do and take it a step beyond. Offer resources, research, and information that illustrate how you can meet those needs.
Provide a sense of community
Amenities are not always a significant factor in the decision-making process. However, they do help to build a sense of what the community is like to live in, and how warm, friendly, and inviting it will be. For example, a game room might be appealing, but unless there are organized activities to help them make use of it, it may not have a great deal of value to the residents.
What types of amenities appeal to adult children?
If a senior housing facility feels too institutional, there is little chance it will appeal to adult children or their parents. Argentum offers some insight with a list of 10 amenities that adult children look for.
A dining room that looks and feels more like a restaurant, offers menu choices and a nicely designed interior with a variety of seating options answers this need. The more choices residents have in terms of their everyday environment, the more independent they will feel, contributing to an excellent quality of life.
Fitness facilities and wellness programs figure high on the adult children’s priority list. Group fitness classes, aquafit, yoga, strength training, and even Zumba fit the bill – provided the fitness spaces are being used appropriately, and in such a way that it encourages residents to participate. For example, there is little value in having a well-equipped gym if there is nobody there to show residents how to use it.
Generating qualified leads in the senior housing market
In the end, it’s about quality of life. If the adult child is the primary information-seeker and decision-maker, their concerns will need to be addressed in your marketing outreach.
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