Growing Your Census: Are You Missing These Essentials?
Think about the sales cycle at your senior living community. How long would you say it takes – on average – from first contact with a lead to a deposit on a residence? One year… two years… three years?
If your senior living community is like most, the average time from lead to close is about three years. That said, you probably also have a significant percentage of leads that close within 12 months and another percentage that stays in your sales cycle for as long as five years or more.
The key to boosting your census and shortening your sales cycle is to manage these relationships over time so that your sales team can identify the leads that are most likely to become residents and spend more time nurturing those prospects – regardless of how long they’ve been in your funnel.
3 Tips for Shortening the Sales Cycle and Growing Your Senior Living Community
While it’s easy to think of your sales team in terms of what it can do for your bottom line, it’s important to consider how you can set your team up for success. The following tips could help you enhance your sales performance and empower your team to deliver the results your community needs to grow. The best part? All of our suggestions are easy and actionable – today. Let’s get started:
1. Foster a Culture of Growth & Development
It’s great if your sales managers are tracking team activity and performance in a CRM or a spreadsheet, but simply recording this data isn’t enough to increase your census or shorten your sales cycle. While accurate data is important, it can’t tell your managers the “why” behind the performance statistics. The only way to gain this insight is to physically sit down with the salespeople on your team and listen to what they have to say. When you understand the underlying beliefs that drive their behaviors and inform their decisions, you can more effectively nudge them in the right direction.
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2. Give Credit Where Credit is Due
Maintaining your community’s census rate can sometimes be stressful, not just for senior leadership, but also for the individuals on your sales team. Believe it or not, something as simple as a “thank you” or meaningful acknowledgment of a job well-done goes a long way toward employee performance and even retention. In fact, according to a study by the American Psychological Association, more than half of all employees surveyed intended to search for a new job because they felt underappreciated. Can you imagine losing one of your senior salespeople – and their relationships with prospects – because of something that costs you nothing but a few moments of your time to provide?
3. Give Your Team the Tools It Needs to Grow Your Census
Ultimately, maintaining the census rate at your senior living community is about building relationships – with prospective residents, their adult children and, increasingly, even their adult grandchildren. At any given time, how many prospects would you say are currently in your sales funnel? What about influencers? Hopefully quite a few. If so, this is where it becomes critical to have the right tools and the right processes in place for effectively tracking, managing and nurturing those relationships during the entire sales cycle.
All your prospects have unique needs, desires and preferences in mind when it comes to choosing a senior living community. So, it only makes sense for your salespeople to prioritize their call time by first speaking to the prospects who are most likely to find what they’re looking for at your community.
For example, if a prospect is looking for Alzheimer’s care and your community is well-known for its individualized memory care programming, and you also need to focus on growing your census in this area, your team can easily follow up with the right information at the right time.
The easier it is for your sales team to segment and sort leads based on both their needs and level of interest, the smarter the team can be when deciding which leads to follow up with, when to follow up and how often. Today, senior living communities are relying on customer relationship management (CRM) software to build better relationships with prospects and make the most out of every interaction.
Grow Your Community with MatrixCare Marketing Essentials
You might think you need a bigger sales team for this kind of data-driven approach, or an expensive piece of senior living CRM software. In reality, though, you may just need the essentials. That’s where we come in. No matter how many buildings or users you need to manage, MatrixCare Marketing Essentials provides the tools you need to increase residency and efficiencies within your community – all for less than the cost of office supplies. Learn how easy it is to implement, or request a demo today.
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