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If you have been in the assisted living industry for any amount of time then you are well aware of how difficult it can be getting placements during the summer months. It is almost as if the whole world stops and comes to a screeching halt. If you are full or have a very low vacancy rate then the slow summer months may not affect you that much. However if your home or community is not full and your vacancy rate is starting to creep up, then the summer season can be quite stressful.
This month’s insider article gives 3 basic common sense tips to help you get more placements during the summer months. As a successful home owner or marketer you may already be doing some or all of these tips, but either way it is always good to be reminded from time to time.
Tip #1: Work your old leads
This tip seems so obvious, but it is often the first thing people overlook. Do you have prospects that have toured months ago, but never made a decision? Time to follow up with them. Maybe you have had people call for information, but they never came to tour your home or property. Call them up and invite them to tour. The important thing to remember is to work the phone. No stone should go uncovered. Every potential lead could end up being a placement.
Tip #2: Notify Your Colleagues
When your vacancy rate starts to climb then it is time to start letting people know you have availability in your home or community. This includes but not limited to referral companies and even other homes and communities. As a referral company, We Know A Place is happy to hear when a home has an opening. This actually helps us narrow down our search for families. Notifying your contacts in the industry helps keep your home out-front and in peoples mind. Also remember to let other homes know that you have a vacancy, especially if you know that home is currently full. If another home does get a lead that they cannot take, then it would be ideal for them to refer to you. Also don’t be timid and ask people for the referral. Remember the old adage “Ask and you shall receive”.
Tip #3: Offer Incentives
If there ever is a time to offer incentives it would be during the summer months. Of course, if you are going to offer a financial incentive then you need to make sure it makes financial sense. However you do not always have to offer huge financial incentives, but be creative and think outside the box. Have a family that is on the fence? Then offer to waive the assessment fee or offer a small discount for the first 3 months. Do you work with referral companies? If so think of creative ways to give them more incentive to put you at the top of the list. This could be a slightly higher referral fee, a gift card to your advisors favorite restaurant, or even just a hand written thank you card for the past referrals. Remember your incentives do not have to be expensive. There are many things you can do that carry a high perceived value that do not cost much. Of course whatever you do make sure all referral fees, incentives and spiffs are legal for your state.
If you currently have vacancies please notify your Senior Care Adviso at We Know A Place. We would love to try to help you fill your rooms. If you would like to get some more marketing exposure, then check out our monthly marketing plans. Visit getfound.weknowaplace.com. Monthly plans start as low as $9.95 a month.